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<   No. 409   2004-03-09   >

Comic #409

1 [caption]: Norman Manley Airport. Kingston, Jamaica.
2 Driver: Mr Stud? Welcome to Jamaica. I've been asked to take you to Government House.
2 Stud: Ah, good.
3 Stud: Excuse me while I make a subtle and completely non-paranoid phone call to check if they actually sent a driver to meet me. {walks off to phones}
4 Driver: {to self} Damn, I think he's on to me.

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That was a long flight from London to Kingston.

Yes, that's a Pan Am jet outside the window. This is 1962.

2013-02-18 Rerun commentary: While I was careful to use a Pan Am jet to establish that this is the 1960s and avoid anachronisms, I unfortunately didn't do the research on the name of Kingston's airport. In 1962 it was called Palisadoes Airport, after its location on the Palisadoes island off the shore of the city. It was renamed in honour of Jamaican statesman Norman Manley only in 1972.

Actually, I probably did try to do the research - it's the sort of anal thing I would do - but would presumably have been foiled by the less informative state of the Internet back in 2004. The year of the renaming is not listed in Wikipedia, and I had to rely on hits further down the Google results list.

EDIT: As several readers have pointed out, there's the additional small matter that Boeing 747s (as the plane obviously is, thanks to the distinctive forward bulge for the upper level cabin) didn't exist in 1962. Ooops! One reader writes:

Well, to be properly anal about the whole thing... I think that the PanAm plane looks like a Jumbo Jet (Boeing 747). And unfortunately, those did also not exist in 1962. The first one flew in 1969. And besides, I would think that if that is the plane that James came in on, it should have been a B.O.A.C. plane anyway, as this was then still somewhat an internal flight within the "Empire".

The wonders of the internet never cease. I found a site which has hundreds of old airline schedules, and there is one for BOAC in 1962.

As you can see, it is not a direct flight from London to Kingston, but it is a BOAC plane, going from London to NY, and then south through Montego Bay and Kingston. You can even see what plane type they used, and that it could also have been a BWIA plane.)

And yes, PanAm did fly to Kingston.

What strikes me most is how much those old flight timetables look like train timetables.

EDIT 2: Another reader writes:

While, yes, that is a Pan Am 747 shown in the background, eight years before the 747 entered service with Pan Am, there's another little temporal error. The aircraft is in Pan Am's "billboard" livery, which wasn't introduced until 1984. The 747s were delivered in the previous "modified jet" livery instead. To be strictly accurate, in 1962, the 707s that Pan Am used on their Atlantic routes were in the "jet delivery" livery (note the different location of the line name and lack of abbreviation of it on the fuselage) that was introduced with their delivery starting in 1958.

Yes, it's a bit pedantic, but isn't that half the fun of the annotations?

Well, now that the cat is out of the bag, my challenge to you, dear reader, is to spot the twelve other deliberate anachronisms in this strip!

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