Fred Fredericks

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Fred Fredericks
Biographical information
Born: August 9, 1929
Died: March 10, 2015
Nationality: Mini usa.gif American
Occupation: Artist, Cover artist
Website: N/A
Fredericks signature.jpg

Harold "Fred" Fredericks Jr. (August 9, 1929 – March 10, 2015) was an American cartoonist born in Atlantic City, New Jersey, who drew the "Mandrake the Magician" comic strip for almost 50 years, taking over for the late Phil Davis.


Fredericks sold his first cartoon at the age of 18, and in the late 1940's he worked for The Press of Atlantic City. In 1950 he joined the marine corps and served in the Korean War. After ending his military career in 1953 he attended the School of Visual Arts in New York City. At the same time he began to create historical comics aswell as commercial illustrations. Several of his historical comics were syndicated in the late 1950's and early 1960's.

In the 1960's he began to create comic books for Gold Key and Dell, including Nancy, The Twilight Zone, Mighty Mouse, Barney Google and Snuffy Smith, Bullwinkle, Mister Ed and The Munsters.

In 1964, Fredericks created the comic strip "Rebel" which was published in Scholastic Scope, a magazine distributed to schools in USA. Fredericks produced the strip for over 30 years and it has also been reprinted in collections.

In early 1965, Fredericks became the new artist on the "Mandrake the Magician" newspaper strip, after Phil Davis had passed away. Creator Lee Falk modernized the comic when Fredericks took over the strip, making it more reality-based by focusing less on science fiction and fantasy, and making Mandrake operate more like a secret agent, often helping out the police with cases they could not solve.

Fredericks returned to comic books in the late 1980's, first as inker on the Defenders of the Earth comic book where he and penciller Alex Saviuk got the chance to draw Mandrake, the Phantom and Flash Gordon. After that, Fredericks remained as a productive inker until the mid-1990's on several comic books for Marvel Comics and DC Comics, for example The Punisher War Journal, Nth Man: the Ultimate Ninja, Daredevil, G.I. Joe and Ren & Stimpy.

He is also well known for inking "The Phantom" Sunday strips from 1995 to 2000, after which Graham Nolan took over the Sundays. He also inked one week of Phantom daily strips in 1996 that was published in American newspapers the same week that the Phantom movie premiered.

After creator Lee Falk died in 1999, Fredericks was also responsible for writing the scripts for the Mandrake strip by himself. He often included guest appearances or cameos by The Phantom or other characters from the Phantom strip.

Fred Fredericks retired from the Sunday strip in 2002, and from the daily strip in 2013.

Phantom work by Fred Fredericks



Defenders of the Earth

# Title Writer Artist
1 "Defenders of the Earth" Lee, Harras Saviuk, Fredericks
2 "Creation" Higgins Saviuk, Fredericks
3 "Family Honor" Higgins Saviuk, Fredericks
4 "Magical Child" Higgins Saviuk, Fredericks

Sunday stories

# Title Writer Artist Start End
"Battle of the Jungle Boys" Falk Doescher, Olesen, Fredericks 11 Dec 1994 17 Sep 1995
"Queen Medusa" Falk Olesen, Fredericks 24 Sep 1995 26 May 1996
"The Lookout" Falk Olesen, Fredericks 2 Jun 1996 24 Nov 1996
"Dig" Falk Olesen, Fredericks 1 Dec 1996 24 Aug 1997
"Waterman" Falk Olesen, Fredericks 31 Aug 1997 19 Apr 1998
"The Vanished Village" Falk Olesen, Fredericks 26 Apr 1998 27 Sep 1998
"The Floradon Mystery" Falk Olesen, Fredericks 4 Oct 1998 14 Feb 1999
"The Kidnappers" Falk, Falk Olesen, Fredericks 21 Feb 1999 15 Aug 1999
"The Wharf Rats" Falk Olesen, Fredericks 22 Aug 1999 26 Dec 1999
10 "The Shipwreckers" Avenell, Reimerthi Olesen, Fredericks 2 Jan 2000 30 Jul 2000

Daily stories

# Title Writer Artist Start End
1 "Drama on Eden" Falk Olesen, Williams, Fredericks 20 May 1996 30 Nov 1996

Mandrake the Magician stories with appearances of the Phantom

Title Writer Artist Comments
"The Clay Camel (plus Women's Lib!)" Falk Fredericks cameo, on a comic book cover
"The Hijacking" Falk Fredericks cameo, on a comic book cover
"The Lost City" Falk Fredericks Defenders of the Earth promotion
"Mr Ttazz" Falk Fredericks cameo, Kit Walker mentioned and seen as a picture
"Matter Mover" Falk Fredericks cameo, Kit Walker mentioned and seen as a statue
"Pursuit of the Cobra" Falk Fredericks cameo, Phantom mask in a toy shop
"Mandrake's Wedding at Xanadu" Falk Fredericks
"The Haunted Ballroom" Fredericks Fredericks cameo, on a t-shirt
"Siege at Xanadu" Fredericks Frederics cameo, on TV and on a comic book cover
"The Missing Aviatrix" Fredericks Fredericks
"Lights! Camera! Danger!" Fredericks Fredericks
"Shadows on Devil Road" Fredericks Fredericks
"Blizzard of Crime" Fredericks Fredericks cameo, Phantom movie tag line on a t-shirt
"Still Lovely, Still Deadly" Fredericks Fredericks
"The Unknown Island" Fredericks Fredericks mentioned only