Welcome to the Cheeky Weekly blog!


Welcome to the Cheeky Weekly blog!
Cheeky Weekly ™ REBELLION PUBLISHING LTD, COPYRIGHT ©  REBELLION PUBLISHING LTD, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED was a British children's comic with cover dates spanning 22 October 1977 to 02 February 1980.

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Basic Stats
Cheeky Weekly Index
Cheeky Weekly Artist Index
Features by Number of Appearances
Issue Summaries posted to date
Major Characters from the Cheeky pages
Features Ordered by Date of Commencement

*** ALL IMAGES COPYRIGHT ©  REBELLION PUBLISHING LTD, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Used with permission. ***
*** CHEEKY WEEKLY, KRAZY, WHOOPEE and WHIZZER AND CHIPS ARE ™ REBELLION PUBLISHING LTD, COPYRIGHT ©  REBELLION PUBLISHING LTD, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. ***

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Sunday, 7 October 2018

Profile – Burpo’s Cousins

As if one terrifying toddler wasn’t enough for the toothy funster to contend with, the introduction to 26 November 1977’s Creepy Sleepy Tale revealed that there were in fact a further 5 (possibly more) belligerent babies in the same mould.

Art: Frank McDiarmid pencils
 
Despite the presence of the cousins, only Burpo was seen in the post-creepy-sleepy-tale scene as Cheeky left for home, and this was the case on all the subsequent occasions on which the myriad of mini marauders appeared prior to the Wednesday bedtime story.

The kiddie cousins’ next appearance was in the 'Ello It's Cheeky strip in Krazy dated 14 January 1978, the only time they featured in that title, in which we saw there were at least 6 mini mischief makers in addition to Burpo, although the line of Burpo-alikes was emerging from around a corner so there could have been many more.

Krazy 14 January 1978
Art: Frank McDiarmid


The toddler troupe’s next Cheeky Weekly appearance was in the 11 February 1978 edition, in which on Monday Cheeky hid himself among the nappy-wearing throng in order to enter the newsagent’s unseen for a free read of James Bold novel The Ghost Highwayman. The toothy funster’s usual perusal of 2-comic-pages-worth of the supernatural thriller was interrupted on the Suddenly page when the cousins gave him away, and he was propelled from the shop by the proprietor’s boot. The cousins were back on Wednesday in the same issue when, in the pre-Creepy Sleepy Tale sequence we witnessed 12 cousins in addition to the ‘orrible original, although once again only Burpo was in evidence in the post-Tale conclusion. This three-pages-of-cousins issue was the only one in which the toddling terrors appeared on more than one page, and also the only time they featured on any day other than Wednesday.

Cheeky was again waylaid by Burpo and rowdy relatives as he arrived for his Wednesday babysitting ordeal in the 06 May and 29 July 1978 issues.

Our toothy pal expected to be free of Burpo, let alone the attendant horde of diabolical dummy-suckers, when he embarked on a canal barge holiday in the comic dated 12 August 1978, but found himself being forced to walk the plank by a plethora of piratical potty-perchers.

The cousins’ final Cheeky Weekly appearance was in the 23 September 1978 comic, wherein the menacing multitude was so great that counting them was impossible. It seems that the intolerable infants were surplus to requirements once the depiction of Cheeky’s babysitting misfortunes was dropped from the comic.
 
The cousins' final appearance. Art: Frank McDiarmid pencils
By this time Creepy Sleepy Tale had come to an end, and in this issue the Wednesday page above was followed by the final instalment of the Crack-A-Joke Game

The cousins, none of whom were identified by name, terrorised our toothy pal in 6 issues of his comic.


Character Total Issues First Appearance Final Appearance
Burpo's Cousins626-Nov-197723-Sep-1978

Count of elements by artist
Character Artist Total Elements
Burpo's CousinsFrank McDiarmid pencils5
Burpo's CousinsFrank McDiarmid2
Burpo's CousinsJim Watson1

Gaps between appearances





Prev Date Next Date Gap (weeks)
11-Feb-197806-May-197812
06-May-197829-Jul-197812
26-Nov-197711-Feb-197811
12-Aug-197823-Sep-19786
29-Jul-197812-Aug-19782

Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Whizzer and Chips - The Cheeky Raids part 35

New readers start here... After Cheeky Weekly folded and was incorporated into Whoopee as of February 1980 six strips that had originated in the toothy funster's title survived the merge and continued to appear in the amalgamated comic. Whoopee itself foundered in March 1985 and was merged into Whizzer and Chips. Three of the surviving Cheeky Weekly strips successfully negotiated this second merge and went on to appear in the newly combined publication, rather inelegantly titled 'Whizzer and Chips now including Whoopee'. The survivors were Mustapha Million, Calculator Kid and (appearing only twice) Stage School. Cheeky continued to appear, but as a member of The Krazy Gang, who had moved into W&C when Krazy, the comic in which the Gang originated, expired in April 1978. However, the Krazy Gang's Whizzer and Chips run ended in the issue dated 08 February 1986. Calculator Kid survived a little longer, his run of reprints coming to an end in the 26 July 1986 edition and leaving Mustapha Million as the sole Cheeky Weekly survivor.


Concerns about the amount of time kids spend looking at screens have probably existed since magic lanterns first radiated their beguiling beams across well-to-do 18th century living rooms. Mustapha's story in Whizzer and Chips dated 20 June 1987 takes 20th century screen-time worries as its kicking-off point. During the tale, in which our middle eastern pal demonstrates a typically Mustapharian misunderstanding of British phraseology, a wily Whizz-kid manages to infiltrate the proceedings. Can you spot the trespasser? Answer below...

Whizzer and Chips 20 June 1987
Art: Barry Glennard












Yes, it's that plaything-preoccupied pipsqueak, Toy Boy, who had previously raided Mustapha in Whizzer and Chips dated 06 December 1986. Unfortunately, the intensely annoying 'I made a mug of Mustapha Million' slogan now seems to have become permanent. It's just not cricket (sorry).

Whizzer and Chips Cover Date Raider Raided
06 April 1985Mustapha MillionSuper Steve
04 May 1985Bloggs (Store Wars)Mustapha Million
11 May 1985JokerThe Krazy Gang (Cheeky)
18 May 1985Calculator Kid & CalcOdd-Ball
01 June 1985
Animalad
Mustapha Million
The Krazy Gang (Cheeky)
Boy Boss
08 June 1985Odd-BallCalculator Kid
06 July 1985Toy BoyCalculator Kid
13 July 1985Pa BumpkinThe Krazy Gang (Cheeky)
27 July 1985JokerMustapha Million
24 August 1985CheekySid's Snake
14 September 1985
Odd-Ball
Calculator Kid
Calculator Kid
Store Wars
05 October 1985Mustapha MillionAnimalad
19 October 1985Odd-BallMustapha Million
23 November 1985
Sweeny Toddler
Sweeny Toddler
Sweeny Toddler
Calculator Kid
The Krazy Gang (Cheeky)
Mustapha Million
18 January 1986Mustapha MillionSuper Steve
25 January 1986
Odd-Ball
Cheeky
Mustapha Million
Odd-Ball
08 February 1986
The Krazy Gang ends this issue
AnimaladMustapha Million
15 February 1986Lazy BonesCalculator Kid
15 March 1986Odd-BallCalculator Kid
29 March 1986Calculator KidMaster P Brain
05 April 1986Bumpkin BillionairesMustapha Million
12 April 1986AnimaladCalculator Kid
31 May 1986Lazy BonesCalculator Kid
07 June 1986Mustapha MillionJoker
28 June 1986Sweet ToothMustapha Million
26 July 1986
Calculator Kid ends this issue
No Cheeky-related raid this issueNo Cheeky-related raid this issue
16 August 1986Mustapha MillionJoker
23 August 1986Sweet ToothMustapha Million
18 October 1986Winnie the Royal NagMustapha Million
06 December 1986Toy BoyMustapha Million
13 December 1986Mustapha MillionOdd-Ball
17 January 1987SidMustapha Million
14 February 1987Odd-BallMustapha Million
11 April 1987Pa BumpkinMustapha Million
25 April 1987Mustapha MillionOdd-Ball
20 June 1987Toy BoyMustapha Million

Thursday, 20 September 2018

Cheeky Weekly cover date 12 January 1980

Art: Frank McDiarmid







Cheeky is joined on the cover by Welsh wit Taff the Laff for rugby repartee. Over the page, Cheeky’s first gag while on his Sunday paper round (although we don’t actually witness him making any paper deliveries this week) is with Milkie, making his final Cheeky Weekly appearance. I don’t think milk was delivered on a Sunday in those days but I may be wrong.









Art: Mike Lacey
 
Paddywack continues to cause consternation thanks to readers’ jokes. I particularly like Jack Clayton’s background gags in the restaurant.

Art: Jack Clayton
As with the Chit-Chat and Joke-Box Jury pages, since last week
the Paddywack page is no longer soliciting reader submissions


There’s a rare turn from cravat-sporting ‘Showbiz Teacher’ in this week’s Stage School.

Art: Robert Nixon

Page 11 includes an ad encouraging readers to place a regular order for Cheeky Weekly, a bit surprising since we now know the comic would survive for only 3 more weeks. I’ve always wondered what happened to regular orders when a comic was merged – would the merged title, in this case Whoopee and Cheeky, automatically be substituted by the newsagent unless the customer specified otherwise? Obviously not in those cases where lucky readers were already receiving the absorbing comic in a multi-comic order.
  
Farmer Giles harvests a crop of corn in this week’s Cut-Out Comedy Catalogue.

6 Million Dollar Gran is evidently undergoing some sort of memory-circuit malfunction during this week’s snowy episode, as she is under the impression that she existed in 1906, when she was actually built in 1977.

Art: Ian Knox


The synthetic senior citizen is not the only one feeling the cold, as on the Chit-Chat page our toothy pal keeps us up to date with the seasonal sartorial choices of the production team. Meanwhile reader Douglas Bell notifies us that our favourite comic appeared in a recent edition of telly ‘tec series Shoestring.


I wonder if there was a bit of a mix-up in the Cheeky office while the staff were comparing winter outfits, as on page 30 Cheeky seems to be introducing this week’s issue. Did someone forget that Cheeky's Week commences on Sunday, not Saturday?

Art: Mike Lacey

The back cover is again home to Snail of The Century, bringing the comic to another garden gagfest conclusion.

Mike Lacey provides all the Cheeky's Week artwork this time round, and this is the final time he will draw Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Frank McDiarmid furnishes the front and back covers. Vic Neill does the final of his four stand-ins for Robert Nixon on Elephant on the Run.

Making their final Cheeky Weekly appearances along with Milkie are Cheeky's mum and Hypno-Tessa.

  

Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 12-Jan-1980, Issue 114 of 117
PageDetails
1Cover Feature 'Taff the Laff' - Art Frank McDiarmid
2Sunday - Art Mike Lacey (final art on feature)
3Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave
4Paddywack - Art Jack Clayton
5Monday - Art Mike Lacey (final art on feature)
6Joke-Box Jury
7Ad: Pop-A-Points
8Stage School - Art Robert Nixon
9Stage School - Art Robert Nixon
10Tuesday - Art Mike Lacey (final art on feature)
11Ad: IPC 'Penny' 3 of 3 Ad: 'Do you have trouble getting copies of Cheeky Weekly' 5 of 5
12Soggy the Sea Monster reprint from Shiver and Shake - Art Robert Nixon
13Cheeky's Cut-Out Comedy Catalogue 'Farmer Giles Jokes'
14Cheeky's Cut-Out Comedy Catalogue 'Farmer Giles Jokes'
15Wednesday - Art Mike Lacey (final art on feature)
16Mustapha Million - Art Joe McCaffrey
17Mustapha Million - Art Joe McCaffrey
18The Gang reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Robert MacGillivray
19The Gang reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Robert MacGillivray
20Thursday - Art Mike Lacey
21Tub - Art Nigel Edwards
22Elephant On The Run - Art Vic Neill (final art on feature)
23Elephant On The Run - Art Vic Neill (final art on feature)
246 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
256 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
26Friday - Art Mike Lacey
27Ad: IPC 'Mickey Mouse' 15 of 18 Ad: 'Shoot' 10 of 13
28Speed Squad - Art Jimmy Hansen
29Chit-Chat
30Saturday - Art Mike Lacey
31Saturday - Art Mike Lacey
32Snail of the Century - Art Frank McDiarmid

Tuesday, 18 September 2018

Comic Scene gets Cheeky

I've now got a copy of Comic Scene issue 2 - I opted for the digital version. Publication was delayed a little (originally intended for 01 September), but the folks at the mag kept me, and no doubt others who had placed an order, informed of the situation which apparently resulted because the print run was increased, which is obviously good news.

It was apparent from the pre-publication publicity shot of the mag's cover that it was to contain an article about Cheeky Weekly. In my opinion there can never be enough mentions of the toothy funster's comic - it's rarely covered in nostalgic looks back at the comics of yesteryear, and I was keen to see what the piece contained.

Written by Pete Doree of The Bronze Age of Blogs, the article contains his affectionate memories of the comic and a concise overview of Cheeky Weekly's unique properties. Pete does a good job of distilling the essence of our favourite title into the limited space available - 2 pages, one of which carries a Cheeky's Week page from the first issue. I'm hesitant to mention the couple of errors I spotted, but I'm going to anyway - Lily Pop is referred to as Lili, and Leo Baxendale is credited with providing art for the Creepy Sleepy Tales.

I haven't looked at any of the other articles yet but I'm sure this special humour issue will, at 64 pages, keep me amused for a while.

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

The Rejects - Dan Dan the Lollipop Man

A number of the supporting cast who populated Cheeky's Week in his own comic originated in the Cheeky pages in Krazy. However not all the characters who appeared in the toothy funster's Krazy strip made the transition into Cheeky Weekly. The character examined in this Rejects post differs somewhat from those featured previously in this series as he was not entirely rejected, but rather repurposed, as we will see...

Imagine a nightmare version of Krazy Town where (now steel yourselves for this) luscious Lily Pop is not the school crossing attendant. Unthinkable, yet there was a time when this was the case.

Krazy dated 26 March 1977 illustrated this horrific scenario, when Cheeky introduced one Daniel McSpaniel.

Krazy 26 March 1977
Art: Frank McDiarmid




Dan Dan made no further Lollipop Man appearances in Krazy, as (fortunately for Lily Pop’s many fans, including the motorists of Krazy Town) it seems he embarked on a new career before returning in Krazy dated 04 June 1977 in a role which was to transfer into the spin-off and become a Cheeky Weekly regular, that of school gardener Dan-Dan the Lavender Man.

Tuesday, 4 September 2018

Profiles – The Other Cats of Krazy Town – Scruffbag and Tired Tom

Goalie Cat was of course the most frequent feline participant in the Cheeky’s Week pages, appearing in 71 issues, but there were two other memorable moggies among the supporting cast.

Scruffbag

A number of anonymous felines featured on the Cheeky pages during the early months of Krazy, the first to appear being a rather scruffy, wind-swept individual sporting a plaster on his rump who made his unnamed debut in the 04 December 1976 issue.

Krazy 04 December 1976
Art: Frank McDiarmid


We were formally introduced to school cat Scruffbag in Krazy’s 02 April 1977 issue, some 7 months before Cheeky’s own title shouldered its way onto newsagents’ shelves.

Krazy 02 April 1977
Frank again


The lethargic animal evidently suffered some trauma to his rear end during the summer of 1977 as his trademark bandaged tail became evident in Krazy's 02 July 1977 edition.

Krazy 02 July 1977
Frank

Krazy dated 27 August 1977 included a Cheeky’s Pal page devoted to the passive puss.

More Frank

Scruffbag’s Cheeky Weekly debut came in the 05 November 1977 edition, wherein the indolent moggy appeared on the Sunday Evening, Monday and Tuesday pages. This was the highest number of appearances he made in a single issue of Cheeky Weekly, the next highest being his Monday and Friday outings in the 21 January 1978 comic.

Frank

 
Nosy Nora suspects Scruffbag may have secreted the Mystery Comic about his purrson.
Art: Frank McDiarmid pencils

Cheeky’s feline friend appeared in the cinema during the interval in the comic dated 28 January 1978.

Scruffbag fell victim to the Cheeky Weekly Inconsistent Hair (Fur)
Colour Syndrome  when he unaccountably developed stripes
in the comic dated 18 March 1978.
Frank McDiarmid pencils

Fortunately the moggy was able to soon shake off the malady and by the time of his next appearance in the 22 April 1978 edition, had reverted to his normal scruffy self.

Scruffbag’s longest absence was the 32 weeks between his 09 December 1978 and 21 July 1979 farewell appearance. He contributed feline fun to 10 editions of the toothy funster’s comic.


Character Total Issues First Appearance Final Appearance
Scruffbag1005-Nov-197721-Jul-1979

Count of elements by artist


Character Artist Total Elements
ScruffbagFrank McDiarmid10
ScruffbagFrank McDiarmid pencils2
ScruffbagUnknown Cheeky Artist 11


Tired Tom

In the same 05 November 1977 issue of Cheeky Weekly that featured Scruffbag's debut in that title, Granny Gumdrop's cat Tired Tom also made his first appearance. This stripy feline evidently out-snoozed his school-based comrade.

Tired Tom's debut
Frank



Possibly because the comic couldn't really accommodate more than one fatigued feline, Tom made only one more appearance in the toothy funster's title, that being in the 17 December 1977 issue. Thus he avoided, by a whisker, falling into the one-offs category.

Tom snoozes his way out of the comic
Frank

Although he did put in an appearance (of sorts) in Krazy dated 18 March 1978, when Baby Burpo was the subject of the Cheeky's Pal page.





Wednesday, 29 August 2018

Whoopee - 1984, the year of the big issue (marginally boring opening section - feel free to skip)

As I near the end of my examination of Cheeky Weekly, I am now preparing for the next phase of this blog, which will be following the fortunes of that select band of strips that transferred into Whoopee following the cancellation of  Cheeky's comic.

You're probably aware that I built a database to record all the Cheeky Weekly data, and I use this to do various analyses about the comic. The database idea developed from my decision about nine years ago to scan all my issues of Cheeky Weekly as a kind of backup to the physical copies should anything happen to them. I began the Cheeky scanning process on 30 November 2009, with the aim of completing 2 issues per day, and finished on 07 March 2010. This process encompassed all 117 issues of the weekly comic (the summer/holiday specials being scanned between 13 and 22 August 2010), but not the annuals as I didn't want to damage them.

As I scanned each image I included in the filename the contents of that particular page, and the artist information. As I looked at the growing 'Cheeky Scans' folder on my laptop, I realised all that data could be mined and yield some interesting (to me, anyway) information, such as the number of strips drawn by a particular artist. I therefore developed a structured way of recording in the file name all the various nuggets of info about each page.

Initially my intention was to search through the filenames using Windows File Explorer to satisfy my curiosity about the comic's history, but I soon encountered the limitations of this approach. A further idea then emerged which was to design and build a database to accommodate the information, allowing much deeper analysis of the data. So I built the database then created some procedures that would read through all the filenames in the Cheeky Scans folder and distribute the data into the various database tables.

The Cheeky Weekly data was loaded, some more procedures written to do the analysis and generate the tables that you will be only too familiar with on this blog, and I tentatively entered the blogosphere with this humble offering on 26 June 2010.

But that wasn't the end of the scanning - 06 December 2013 saw me hunched once again over a steaming scanner and commencing to work through my Whoopee collection, which commences from the first Whoopee/Cheeky merged edition. This scanning project was more onerous than the Cheeky one, as there were 264 editions of Whoopee between its absorption of the toothy funster's comic and its own demise. The Whoopee scans were completed on 24 July 2015, and as I write this I realise I didn't scan the Whoopee specials, and I'm not even sure if I have them in my collection - will have to investigate.

In recent weeks my preparations for the Whoopee phase of this blog have involved doing some loads of the Whoopee data into a test instance of my comics database. I encountered some errors resulting from typos in the data (not surprising when you consider that the data relates to 8,462 Whoopee pages) which have now been corrected, but I'm pleased to say that my code for doing the data loads was found to be entirely bulletproof.

Now that figure of 8,462 Whoopee pages brings me to the real subject of this post. The mathematicians among you will of course be shouting 'Whoopee was a 32 page comic, and 8462/32 = 264.4375, so explain yourself at once, Mr Niblet'.  And indeed I was also puzzled as to how .4375 of a Whoopee could exist. Had I, in a frenzy of scanning, somehow entered duplicates of some pages? A quick delve into the data revealed that there were in the period in question 4 issues of Whoopee which exceeded the normal 32 pages;

Art: Tom Paterson


The first was 25 August 1984's 36-pager, which contained a 4-page flyer (or 'Extra 4-Page Pull-Out' as it styled itself) in its centre pages for football mag Shoot! which was evidently getting a big promotional push for the 1984/85 season.











Tom again


The next 32+ issue was the same year's 15 September edition which contained a new version of the flyer, still describing itself as an extra 4-page pull-out, which was a little fraudulent as the comic that week amounted to 34 pages and thus readers were actually 2 pages down on the deal.








Toy Boy: Terry Bave
Sweeny: Tom Paterson



The next issue to exceed 32 pages was 29 September 1984, which contained a 4-page flyer among its 36 pages, the design cheekily referencing The Sun newspaper.





You brainy readers will have calculated that the supposed 50 titles (although the first page of the flyer promises full details of 50 titles, only 30 are detailed - 29 pictured plus mention of David Bellamy who may have had an annual devoted to him although Wikipedia doesn't mention it in his bibliography) and million annuals equates to 20,000 of each, but maybe IPC weighted their print runs towards those they expected to be popular so, for example, there may have been fewer 321 Annuals than Buster (I know which I'd rather read, and the less said about the Jim'll Fix It annual the better). And why no mention of the mighty Whizzer and Chips and, for that matter, Whoopee? Pleasing, though, to see the Cheeky Annual listed second, after IPC's humour heavyweight, Buster.

Tom Paterson


Whoopee's final 36-page issue was that dated 20 October 1984, which contained a 4-page flyer for IPC's computer mag, Big K. Wikipedia tells us that the mag launched in April 1984 and survived for only a year (maybe not surprising for a publication whose name sounds more like a breakfast cereal than a hip guide to the latest tech).