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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Sunday, 31 July 2011

Profile - Telephone Pole Man

I have assigned this character the name Telephone Pole Man, as he was never named in any of the 16 issues of Cheeky Weekly in which he appeared.  This was because Cheeky was unaware of the existence of his telephonic tormentor, perched among the telecommunications paraphernalia above the streets of Krazy Town.

In the first issue of Cheeky Weekly, our toothy hero is reluctantly wending his way to babysit Burpo, when the phone rings in a public call box.  Cheeky picks up the receiver and a mysterious voice poses him a 'what's the difference between…' riddle.  Cheeky naturally responds with the appropriate punchline, but afterwards puzzles at how the mystery caller knows to phone every time he's passing the phone box.  Unknown to Cheeky, but observed by us readers, Telephone Pole Man can be seen working on the phone wires above.

This scenario became the template for all subsequent Telephone Pole Man appearances until his final phone call to Cheeky in the issue dated 24 June 1978.

First appearance
The initials GPO on Telephone Pole Man's toolbag stand for General Post Office, the body who were responsible for the UK telecoms network (up until 1969 according to Wikipedia), after which Post Office Telephones became the custodians of the country's telephone system.  However, seeing Telephone Pole Man's bag with POT written on it could have raised a few eyebrows.

Telephone Pole Man, who hadn't appeared in Cheeky's strip in Krazy comic, never made it into the exalted band of Cheeky's pals who featured across a whole Cheeky's Week, nor did he ever appear on the cover.  The longest gap between appearances was the 14 weeks that elapsed between 14 January 1978 and 22 April 1978.

On occasion, Buzby, the star of a series of animated TV ads promoting telephone usage, is seen on the telephone wires.  Buzby caught the public's imagination and eventually had his own strip in Polystyle's TV Comic.  You can see the cover to the Buzby Holiday Special 1979 about half way down the page here.  Wonder if Buzby was appearing in TV comic at the time he was being depicted in Cheeky Weekly.

Character Total Issues First Appearance Final Appearance
Telephone Pole Man1622-Oct-197724-Jun-1978

Telephone Pole Man - Number of appearances by Element
Element Number of Appearances
Sunday evening2

Telephone Pole Man - Number of appearances by Page
Page Number of Appearances

Count of elements by artist
Character Artist Total Elements
Telephone Pole ManFrank McDiarmid7
Telephone Pole ManFrank McDiarmid pencils5
Telephone Pole ManUnknown Cheeky Artist 11
Telephone Pole ManJim Watson1
Telephone Pole ManBarrie Appleby1
Telephone Pole ManDick Millington1

Saturday, 30 July 2011

James Bold - Island of Fear

The fifth (and final as far as Cheeky Weekly is concerned) James Bold adventure saw Bold make the switch from novel to big screen.  Evidently, in Cheeky's universe the Bold series of books had been successful enough to spawn a film version, although only as a kids' Saturday-morning-pictures serial rather than a full-blown cinema release.  The actors who play Bold and Angel on screen (unlike in the Home Movie strips, we never get to know the names of the cast) look remarkably like the heroes we saw in the earlier Bold tales, which were presumably depicted via Cheeky's mind's-eye.

Whether Island of Fear is based on an existing Bold novel, which Cheeky has possibly not read, or maybe one he read before Cheeky Weekly began documenting his reading habits, we have no way of knowing.  What we do know is that Cheeky watched the episodes of Island of Fear during the Saturday morning picture show in the Cheeky Weekly issues from 01 July 1978 to 05 August 1978.

The film series opens with Bold and Angel navigating stormy seas, apparently intent on some fishing…

As Bold approaches, the spectral axeman turns and passes through the stone wall into the castle.  Caleb shows Bold the castle gates, on which appear a message in glowing letters, "Defy not ye curse of Craven Castle!"  Bold tries the gates but finds them immovable.

Caleb tells Bold that such spooky happenings started soon after "the great hole" appeared.  Taking our heroes to the site of the chasm, Caleb further explains that the hole, which Bold estimates to be 30 feet wide, appeared one night after a light had come from the sky.  Intrepid Bold edges out on the limb of a tree precariously near the edge, but finds he can't see anything in the gloom at the bottom of the pit.

Returning to the castle, Bold loops his rope around a gargoyle atop the wall and climbs, then pulls Angel up with him.  Caleb is too fearful to join our heroes.

On top of the castle wall a black knight appears, surrounded by a glowing aura, and swings his mace at Bold's head.  The ghost-hunter's lightning-fast reflexes save him and the mace crunches into the stone ramparts.  The knight flees into the castle, just as another fiery message appears in the air before our heroes, warning them that if they proceed they will "hear ye knell of doom - and perish!"

As Bold pursues the knight past the eerie message, he falls into a deep shaft, down which hangs a rope.  Bold twists desperately and grabs the rope, and Angel points to the bell above, from which the rope depends.  As the bell reverberates in response to Bold's weight on the rope, the pair realise Bold is tolling the knell of doom.  Bold climbs back up the rope and soon discovers a stone staircase leading down into the castle.

Using his lighter to pierce the gloom, Bold descends with Angel close behind.  They emerge in a chamber filled with instruments of torture.  As they stare in horror at the fiendish implements, the black knight appears and pulls a lever, rotating the section of floor and wall where Bold and Angel are standing.  Finding themselves trapped in a small room, our heroes are dismayed as water pours in from pipes in the ceiling.  The water rises swiftly and soon Bold and Angel are gasping for breath in the few inches of air that remain at the top of the room.  Just as it seems hopeless, the floor revolves again, releasing the water, and our heroes are surprised to find that Caleb has pulled the lever controlling the floor mechanism.

Caleb explains that he eventually plucked up the courage to follow Bold and Angel, then saw the black night use the lever to imprison the pair.  As Bold thanks the grotesque figure for saving their lives, Angel spots a medieval court jester running down a corridor.  All three set off in pursuit and chase the jester through a door that leads out of the castle.  In the daylight, there is no sign of the jester, and the door through which they emerged closes firmly behind them.  Bold sees that the rope which he left tied around the gargoyle has gone.

Caleb invites Bold and Angel to spend the night at his cabin in the woods, and as the three gather round a fire they spy a hooded monk, surrounded by an eerie glow, walking towards the marsh.  Caleb warns bold that if the monk continues he will be swallowed by the bottomless morass.  To the amazement of the onlookers, the monk walks across the swamp and towards the castle.  Bold vows to return to the castle in the morning to solve the mystery.

Next day, Caleb shows his guests a cave that runs beneath Craven Castle.  As they progress deeper into the subterranean tunnel, a section of floor opens and the three are pitched down a slope.  Sliding to the bottom, the explorers find themselves in a gigantic cavern, in the centre of which stands a colossal stone pillar with a staircase cut into it.  Mounting the steps which spiral up the outside of the column, our heroes make the perilous ascent, only to find that the column reaches the stone roof of the cavern, with no apparent means of escape.

Read on if you dare…

This tale brings a twist to the usual 'felonious faking of ghostly goings-on' storyline, using aliens instead of criminals as the source of the apparitions.  And wasn't it lucky that Bold entered the castle just as the aliens completed the repairs to their interstellar transport, giving them time to explain all before they turned the ignition key and fired up the anti-gravity generators to take them home.

We have seen that the first James Bold tale, Fangs of Fear was  based on a rehashed Maxwell Hawke script from Buster. Although a knell of doom was mentioned in Island of Fear, I've seen an episode of Maxwell Hawke and the Knell of Doom and it bears no similarity to this James Bold tale.  It seems that the basic premise of the final Bold adventure was based on Maxwell Hawke and The Isle of Ghosts, which ran in Buster from 07 March 1964 to 09 May 1964 (thanks to alanultron5 from the Comics UK forum for the info re Isle of Ghosts).

I'm assuming again that the art on this Bold tale is by Mike White.

Thus ends James Bold's run in Cheeky Weekly.  Cheeky's visits to the cinema continued to be depicted in the pages of his comic until the toothy funster's final excursion to the flicks was shown in the issue dated 02 December 1978, but no further Bold serials appeared.  The steel-nerved ghost hunter did return in the Cheeky annuals dated 1979, 1980, 1981 and 1982.  Evidently it was felt that Bold's creepy adventures suited the gloom of winter rather than sunny days on the beach, as our investigator of the supernatural didn't appear in any of the Cheeky summer/holiday specials.

A summary of all the James Bold tales can be seen here.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

A quick look at Cheeky Summer Special 1978

In the previous Cheeky Weekly issue summary post, we saw that the 1978 Cheeky Summer Special hit the shops in July.  In this blog I intend to concentrate on Cheeky Weekly rather than the annuals (which Bruce has already covered) and the specials (which I think Bruce is intending to look at in the future), but I couldn't let this landmark pass without some brief comments about the first Cheeky Special.

The artwork benefits from the slightly better quality paper than was used in the weekly comic, and Frank McDiarmid makes the most of this opportunity by using inks to produce grey tones in the opening and closing Cheeky sequences, a technique that he didn't employ in Cheeky Weekly.  This makes this Special feel really special, and the fact that Frank handles most of the Cheeky art is very pleasing.

The back cover features more nice artwork by Mr McD, depicting Cheeky and pals returning home from their holiday by coach.  The Cracking Crossing Lady has never looked lovelier and I don't know what Herman did to deserve a lapful of Lily, but I'm extremely jealous.

The editor wisely decided to call this mag Cheeky Summer Special, rather than Cheeky Weekly Summer Special, which would have resulted in scenes of confusion in newsagents all over the country as customers returned to the shop 7 days after purchasing a copy and asking for this week's issue of the Summer Special.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Mini comics - Mickey Mouse

As we reach the fourth and final week of IPC's summer '78 mini comics promotion, we find that Cheeky Weekly dated 22 July is host to a sampler version of Mickey Mouse, a comic that I've never read.  I'm afraid I have no idea who the artists were on this, so I'll leave you to study it in peace.

Monday, 25 July 2011

Cheeky Weekly cover date 08 July 1978

We're now into the second week of the mini comics promotion, and the cover leads with the news of a Buster replica inside, emphasised by yet another appearance of the 'standard Cheeky face'.  Barrie Appleby does the honours on the What a Cheek strip featuring Cheeky, Snail and anonymous stooge.

This week's storyline running throughout Cheeky's Week sees Cheeky trying to avoid Teacher, as toothy funster owes podgy pedagogue 500 lines.  There is also a running joke featuring Magnus Pyke, imparting facts about the life cycle of the haggis.  Pyke was at the time a presenter on the TV show Don't Ask Me, where he would answer viewers' questions on science topics, playing up to the image of the dotty professor and gesticulating wildly.  His eccentric manner made him a popular TV personality.

6 Million Dollar Gran's story is reduced to 2 pages, and contains a rare instance of Gran acknowledging that she is not human, as she comments "I've not been oiled this week".

Cheeky has a crafty read of the Buster mini comic in class on Monday.

Returning to the comic for the first time since 14 January 1978, Doodle Doug shows Cheeky his new comic strip, Paddywack.

On page 15 there's exciting news for Cheeky fans - the first Cheeky Summer Special is out now.

Unlike last week when it was blue and white, Creepy Sleepy Tale is in black and white this issue.  The story tells how Medusa turns Johnny Rotten, The Rolling Stones and The Bee Gees to stone.  Some would say not before time, and I'd certainly agree with regard to one of the groups involved.

Like Gran, Mustapha Million suffers a reduction in page count due to the presence of the mini comic, and has a single-page adventure with art by Joe McCaffrey.

As mentioned above, the Paddywack strip appears for the first time this week.

3 characters make their Cheeky's Week debuts this issue; Charlie Counter (aka Calculator Kid), Disco Kid and Farmer Giles.  The Calculator Kid feature had of course made its first appearance last week, but Charlie makes the first of his crossovers into Cheeky's Week in this week's comic.

Last week's issue featured an almost all-pure-Frank-McDiarmid Cheeky's Week, but in this issue the cover portrait of Cheeky is the only pure Frank art.  Frank McDiarmid pencils deliver 10 Cheeky's Week elements, with Barrie Appleby giving us his What a Cheek and Wednesday conclusion.


Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 08-Jul-1978, Issue 38 of 117
1Cover Feature 'Buster mini comic' - Art Frank McDiarmid\What a Cheek - Art Barrie Appleby
2Sunday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
3Skateboard Squad - Art Mike Lacey
4Sunday evening - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
56 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
66 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
7Monday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
8Ad: Horror Bags (single appearance)
9Buster mini comic (single appearance) 'All this and Leopard Boy too!' - Art Mike Western 'Buster's Diary' - Art Angel Nadal
10Buster mini comic (single appearance) 'Stan Still's Stopwatch' - Art Reg Parlett 'Kid Kong' - Art Rob Lee
11Buster mini comic (single appearance) 'X-Ray Specs' - Art Mike Lacey 'Kid Gloves' - Art Rob Lee
12Buster mini comic (single appearance) 'Tin Teacher' - Art Peter Davidson 'Faceache' - Art Ken Reid
13Tuesday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
14Paddywack (first appearance) - Art Jack Clayton
15Ad: IPC 'Cheeky Summer Special' 1 of 6
16Wednesday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
17Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known
18Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known\Wednesday - Art Barrie Appleby
19Ad: Gold Spinner (first appearance)
20Thursday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
21Mustapha Million - Art Joe McCaffrey
22Ad: Peter Pan Playthings (first appearance)
23Friday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
24Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave
25Ad: Texan bars (final appearance)
26Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
27Tweety and Sylvester 'Getting Cagey'
28Tweety and Sylvester 'Getting Cagey'
29Interval - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
30James Bold 'Island of Fear' 2 of 6
31James Bold 'Island of Fear' 2 of 6
32Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils\Ad: IPC 'Whizzer and Chips Holiday Special' 3 of 3

Cheeky's Week Artists Cover Date 08-Jul-1978


Frank McDiarmid pencils10
Barrie Appleby2

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Mini Comics - Cheeky mini comic in Buster and Monster Fun

The third week of IPC's summer 1978 mini comic promotion saw a miniature replica of Cheeky Weekly appearing in Buster and Monster Fun dated 15 July.  Many thanks to Zeg for providing the scans.

The format and artists for this Cheeky mini comic are the same as they were in the version that appeared in Whoopee! the previous week, although the content is different, so for artist details please look here.

Having said the format is the same as for the Cheeky mini comic in Whoopee! there is one major difference - the back/front cover of this mini comic is in black and white.  This is because, for some reason, Buster had colour only on the front and back covers, whereas Whoopee! and Cheeky Weekly, in addition to colour front and back, had 2 internal feature pages in colour.  Why this should be when all three comics had the same page count and cover price remains a mystery.

The image on the mini comic cover is from the Pin-Up Pal poster that appeared in Cheeky Weekly dated 08 April 1978.

Unlike the Cheeky comic that appeared in Whoopee! there is a panel explaining the reason for Gran's amazing feats.  However the explanation that Gran is bionic is not actually correct, as according to the first issue of Cheeky Weekly she is a robot.

Saturday, 23 July 2011

Cheeky Weekly cover date 01 July 1978

The mini comic promotion gets under way this week, and is the subject of the main cover pic.  Underneath, Cheeky has a school canteen encounter with Auntie Daisy.

The Skateboard Squad are at a cycle championship this week and yes, it's that comic cliche again - the trophy gets stolen.  Fortunately, the Squad nab the felon who filched the silverware.

In a storyline continued from the previous issue, on Sunday evening Cheeky meets Petula and Sherlock who are still on the trail of a missing elephant.  The pachyderm-pursuing pair resurface throughout Cheeky's Week.

Also appearing several times on the toothy funster's pages is Chancellor of the Exchequer, Denis Healy, a very distinctive character with bushy eyebrows.  On the Thursday page is a limerick which uses Healey's supposed catch-phrase "Silly Billy", which I think is attributable to 70s impressionist Mike Yarwood rather than Denis himself.

Nigel Edwards does the art honours on this week's 6 Million Dollar Gran episode in which the synthetic senior citizen gets a job as a tea lady at a factory, with predictably chaotic results.

On Monday Cheeky enjoys a sneaky read of the Whizzer and Chips mini comic while in class.  This raises the question - as Cheeky had read this issue of Cheeky Weekly, why didn't he avoid Burpo's front-garden trap on Wednesday, since he would have known about it in advance?

This week's Creepy Sleepy Tale is printed in light blue ink.  This is because one of the full colour feature pages is allocated to printing the front/back cover of the mini comic.  This leaves a single colour feature page available, so rather than printing one Creepy Sleepy Tale page in full colour, Calculator Kid gets to debut in glorious colour while CST is reduced to blue and white.

James Bold makes the leap from novel to silver screen as the first part of a new adventure commences at the Saturday morning picture show.

There is no Pin-Up Pal poster this week due to the presence of the mini comic, which results in the conclusion to Saturday, including the denouement of the missing elephant saga, being located on the back cover.  I wonder if this evasive elephant storyline was the inspiration for the Elephant On The Run strip which was to begin in Cheeky Weekly dated 30 September 1978

As mentioned earlier, the Calculator Kid feature makes its debut this week, although Charlie Counter has yet to appear on a Cheeky's Week page.

This is a pleasing Frank McDiarmid-fest of an issue, with Frank delivering 9 Cheeky's Week elements (plus the main cover pic), with Frank McDiarmid pencils and Barrie Appleby providing one element each.


Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 01-Jul-1978, Issue 37 of 117
1Cover Feature 'Whizzer and Chips mini comic' - Art Frank McDiarmid\What a Cheek - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
2Sunday - Art Frank McDiarmid
3Skateboard Squad - Art Mike Lacey
4Sunday evening - Art Frank McDiarmid
56 Million Dollar Gran - Art Nigel Edwards
66 Million Dollar Gran - Art Nigel Edwards
76 Million Dollar Gran - Art Nigel Edwards
8Monday - Art Frank McDiarmid
9Whizzer and Chips mini comic (single appearance) 'Shiner' - Art Mike Lacey 'Sid's Snake' - Art Mike Lacey
10Whizzer and Chips mini comic (single appearance) 'Sweet Tooth' - Art Dick Millington 'Paws' - Art Artie Jackson
11Whizzer and Chips mini comic (single appearance) 'Joker' - Art Tom Williams 'Fuss Pot' - Art Tom Williams
12Whizzer and Chips mini comic (single appearance) '12 1/2p Buytonic Boy' - Art Ed McHenry
13Old Comic reprint from Knockout 'Beaver Patrol' 2 of 2
14Ad: World Cup Aces (single appearance)
15Wednesday - Art Frank McDiarmid
16Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known
17Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known\Wednesday - Art Barrie Appleby
18Ad: IPC 'Whizzer and Chips Holiday Special' 2 of 3 Ad:  'The Best of Krazy' 2 of 2
19Thursday - Art Frank McDiarmid
20Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
21Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
22Joke-Box Jury
23Friday - Art Frank McDiarmid
24Calculator Kid (first appearance) - Art Terry Bave
25Ad: Smax and Wagon Wheels (single appearance)
26Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid
27Tweety and Sylvester 'The Stalking Cat'
28Tweety and Sylvester 'The Stalking Cat'
29Interval - Art Frank McDiarmid
30James Bold 'Island of Fear' 1 of 6
31James Bold 'Island of Fear' 1 of 6
32Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid\Ad: IPC 'Mini Comics promotion' 2 of 3

Cheeky's Week Artists Cover Date 01-Jul-1978

Frank McDiarmid9
Frank McDiarmid pencils1
Barrie Appleby1

Friday, 22 July 2011

Mini Comics - Whoopee!

The third week of the summer 1978 mini comics promotion saw Cheeky Weekly dated 15 July hosting a sampler version of Whoopee!

The back/front cover features the conclusion of Frankie Stein's story, and the first part of a Sweeny Toddler tale.  I don't know who did the art on the Frankie strip, but it's certainly not by Robert Nixon, who was the regular artist on the feature in Whoopee! at the time this mini comic was published.  I'm not sure who the artist is on the Sweeny strip either, to me the policemen on page 2  have something of Paul Ailey's style about them.  Tom Paterson was the regular Sweeny artist in Whoopee!  Sweeny was back in Cheeky Weekly on a Star Guest page in the 14 April 1979 issue.

Next up is the final part of Sweeny's strip, together with the first Frankie page.  The title banner seems to feature a vintage Ken Reid rendition of Frankie.

Supermum is ghosted by Jack Clayton (Cheeky Weekly's Home Movie and Paddywack artist), standing in for Dicky Howett, who usually did the art on this strip in Whoopee!  Supermum made a Star Guest appearance in Cheeky Weekly dated 30 June 1979.  Alongside Supermum is a Claws strip drawn by Artie Jackson, deputising for usual artist Styx (Leslie Harding).  Artie ghosted on Paws, another Styx strip, in the Whizzer and Chips mini comic in the 01 July 1978 issue of Cheeky Weekly.

Ed McHenry stands in for Mike Lacey on the Bumpkin Billionaires strip.

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Cheeky Weekly cover date 24 June 1978

Another competition is announced on this week's cover, this time 30 Gyro-Tennis sets are to be won.  Cheeky and Manhole Man are on hand to demonstrate.  Below, Cheeky's What a Cheek joke causes his dad to trample his lunchbox.

Barrie Appleby gets Sunday underway, after which the Skateboard Squad strip features guest appearances by Cheeky and a number of his pals.

Snoozin' Susan is the featured character this issue, as she sleeps her way through Cheeky's Week.

Mike Lacey draws this week's 6 Million Dollar Gran strip, the first time he has stood in for regular artist Ian Knox - Mike will deliver 1 more Gran strip.

On pages 9 and 10, James Bold solves the riddle of The Frightened Village in the ninth and final instalment of his latest adventure.

On page 18, below an ad for this year's Whizzer and Chips Holiday Special, out Thursday 15 June, is the announcement of a mini comics promotion across 4 IPC comics.

The Gyro-Tennis competition on page 25 has the same format as last week's skateboard competition; spot the difference in 2 cartoons (basically the same pic as on this week's cover but with a few extra characters in the background) and supply a funny caption for it.

On the Saturday page, Snail insults us readers.  Now what did we do to deserve that?

Rounding off this particularly ad-packed issue is a colour Kellogg's ad.  The cereal manufacturers are running a promotion allowing consumers of their products to send off tokens and receive Playpeople models.  This back cover ad bumps the Pin-Up Pal poster from the comic.

This issue sees the final appearance of the Suddenly feature, and the Space Family Robinson escape from the planet on which they were marooned, to return to Earth in the final episode of their adventures.

Making its Cheeky Weekly debut is Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf (reprinted from Cor!!), appearing in the supporting feature slot, and on page 31 is news of a new feature starting next week - Calculator Kid

Two of Cheeky's pals depart this week.  Well, the first one is not really a pal - it's the newsagent who, as all his appearances were related to the Suddenly page which finishes this week, will not be seen again.  The other Krazy Town resident making his final appearance this issue is the Telephone Pole Man.

Barrie Appleby draws 6 Cheeky's Week elements in this issue, with Frank McDiarmid pencils supplying 5, and Frank McDiarmid giving us the What a Cheek strip and the Wednesday conclusion, although he also supplies the art for the main cover pic.


Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 24-Jun-1978, Issue 36 of 117
1Cover Feature '30 Gyro-Tennis sets to be won' - Art Frank McDiarmid\What a Cheek - Art Frank McDiarmid
2Sunday - Art Barrie Appleby
3Skateboard Squad - Art Mike Lacey
4Sunday evening - Art Barrie Appleby
56 Million Dollar Gran - Art Mike Lacey
66 Million Dollar Gran - Art Mike Lacey
76 Million Dollar Gran - Art Mike Lacey
8Monday - Art Barrie Appleby
9James Bold 'The Frightened Village' 9 of 9  - Art Mike White
10James Bold 'The Frightened Village' 9 of 9  - Art Mike White
11Suddenly (final appearance) - Art Barrie Appleby
12Tuesday - Art Barrie Appleby
13Old Comic reprint from Wonder 'Eric Eccles' reprint from Wonder 'Sheriff Shucks'
14Ad: Birds Eye Mousse (first appearance)
15Wednesday - Art Barrie Appleby
16Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known
17Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known\Wednesday - Art Frank McDiarmid
18Ad: IPC 'Whizzer and Chips Holiday Special' 1 of 3 Ad:  'Mini Comics promotion' 1 of 3
19Thursday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
20Joke-Box Jury\Ad: Twirly (final appearance)
21Friday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
22Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
23Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
24Ad: Green Cross Code (first appearance)
25Tennis Competition (single appearance)
26Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
27Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf (first appearance) reprint from Cor!!
28Interval - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils
29Space Family Robinson (final appearance) 'Homeward Bound'
30Space Family Robinson (final appearance) 'Homeward Bound'
31Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid pencils\Ad: IPC 'The Best of Krazy' 1 of 2
32Ad: Kellogg's

Cheeky's Week Artists Cover Date 24-Jun-1978


Barrie Appleby6
Frank McDiarmid pencils5
Frank McDiarmid2

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Mini Comics - Cheeky mini comic in Whoopee!

The second week of IPC's summer 1978 mini comic promotion saw a miniature replica of Cheeky Weekly appearing in Whoopee! dated 08 July.  Many thanks to klakadak-ploobadoof from the Comics UK forum for providing the scans.

The combined back/front cover features a Bam, Splat and Blooie reprint from Buster, rather an odd choice to include in what one would expect to be a showcase of the best that Cheeky Weekly had to offer.  The BS&B filler strip appeared in only 9 of the 38 issues of Cheeky Weekly published by the time of this mini comic, and had appeared for the final time on 17 June 1978.  Alongside BS&B, on the mini comic cover, is a pic of Jogging Jeremy taken from the Pin-Up Pal poster in Cheeky Weekly's 25 February 1978 issue.  Beneath is a teeny-tiny What a Cheek that I think is by Frank McDiarmid, but the strip is printed so small it's hard to be certain.

Next up is a 6 Million Dollar Gran page by Nigel Edwards who, by the time of this mini comic, had stood in twice on the Gran strip for original artist Ian Knox over at Cheeky Weekly.  No attempt is made to explain to readers unfamiliar with Gran's back-story how or why she is able to perform such amazing feats.  Beside Gran is a Skateboard Squad strip by Mike Lacey.

This is followed by a Joe McCaffrey Mustapha Million page.  Over at Cheeky Weekly this very week, Joe was deputising for original Mustapha artist Reg Parlett for the second time.  Joe would eventually take over from Reg on Mustapha permanently (with one exception) in Cheeky Weekly from February 1979.  On the adjacent mini comic page is the conclusion of Gran's story.

Cheeky and a select few of his pals get the centre pages of the mini comic to themselves, drawn by Dick Millington.  Dick had provided Cheeky's Week pages in 3 issues of Cheeky Weekly by this time, as well as drawing the Sweet Tooth page in the Whizzer and Chips mini comic that had appeared in the previous week's issue of the toothy funster's comic.

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Cheeky Weekly cover dated 17 June 1978

Under the banner 'It's all happening inside', this week's rather uninspiring cover publicises the skateboard competition and the Father's Day messages to be found inside.  The 'Standard Cheeky Face' illustration is employed once again, with snail drawn on top for a bit of variation.

It's the turn of Mechanic to feature throughout Cheeky's Week, swapping a succession of car jokes with our toothy hero.  Or at least Mechanics' feet, protruding from beneath a variety of rusting wrecks, appear throughout the week, and Mechanic appears pushing a car on Saturday, but we don't see his face.  Unusually, Cheeky joins Mechanic under the car for Monday's, Suddenly's and Wednesday's jokes.

The Skateboard Squad help out at Joe's CafĂ© when the waitresses fail to turn up for work.  Later Cheeky uses a clockwork mouse to scare Mum up onto the sideboard, so that he can watch 6 Million Dollar Gran who, in a 2-page story, deals with a bully at the swimming pool.

Page 7 is home to the Father's Day messages sent in by readers, and on Monday Cheeky gleefully anticipates Angel O'Mercy being ritually sacrificed in the penultimate instalment of James Bold's adventure, The Frightened Village (Angel wasn't actually sacrificed in the end.  I bet Cheeky was disappointed).

A knight on a motorbike terrorizes the citizenry in this week's Creepy Sleepy Tale,

On Thursday, Oscar invites Cheeky to view his latest Home Movie, as he has done every week that a Home Movie strip has appeared.  Last week's issue contained the final Home Movie strip to appear in Cheeky Weekly, so in what is probably a change to the original text in his speech balloon, Cheeky declines the offer and speeds on to the next page to view the skateboard competition.  One wonders whether a Home Movie page was prepared for this issue, but bumped by the competition and Father's Day messages.  Assuming that IPC wouldn't let any unused strip go to waste, a search through subsequent Cheeky-related titles reveals the answer is no.  Home Movies appeared in the 1978 Cheeky Summer Special and the 1979 Cheeky Annual, but both covered 2-pages, so wouldn't have been originally prepared for Cheeky Weekly, where all the Home Movies were a single page.

The skateboard competition is a combination spot-the-difference and create-a-funny-caption affair, based on two drawings of the Skateboard Squad.

Mike Lacey draws Christopher Timothy, who played vet James Herriott in the BBC TV series All Creatures Great and Small, doing animal gags on several of the Cheeky's Week pages.

We are mercifully spared a Warner Brothers cartoon strip, as two Bam, Splat and Blooie reprints from Buster are the supporting features at the cinema on Saturday.  This is the final time B,S&B will appear.

We also say goodbye to stalwart Oscar, who seems to have been mortally offended by Cheeky's spurning of his latest movie, and is never seen again.

Mike Lacey takes on Cheeky's Week almost single-handed, delivering 11 elements.  The Wednesday conclusion is the only art Mike doesn't provide - that's by Barrie Appleby.  There's no What a Cheek on the cover this week, and Frank McDiarmid's only contribution is the Pin-Up Pal poster.  The standard Cheeky Face on the cover is probably by Frank (it's a kind of 'formal' portrait of the toothy funster and maybe it was produced as an artists' reference illustration, as it has been in evidence since the Cheeky Weekly flyer), but I've assigned it as a cut and paste job.


Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 17-Jun-1978, Issue 35 of 117
1Cover Feature '6 Skateboard sets to be won' - Art Cut and Paste
2Sunday - Art Mike Lacey
3Skateboard Squad - Art Mike Lacey
4Sunday evening - Art Mike Lacey
56 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
66 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
7Father's Day Messages (single appearance)
8Joke-Box Jury\Ad: IPC 'Buster Holiday Fun Special' 3 of 3
9Monday - Art Mike Lacey
10James Bold 'The Frightened Village' 8 of 9  - Art Mike White
11James Bold 'The Frightened Village' 8 of 9  - Art Mike White
12Suddenly - Art Mike Lacey
13Tuesday - Art Mike Lacey
14Old Comic reprint from Tiger 'Dodger Caine' 3 of 3
15Wednesday - Art Mike Lacey
16Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known
17Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known\Wednesday - Art Barrie Appleby
18What's New, Kids\Ad: Twirly (first appearance)
19Thursday - Art Mike Lacey
20Skateboard Competition (single appearance)
21Friday - Art Mike Lacey
22Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
23Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
24Ad: Kellogg's (first appearance)
25Saturday - Art Mike Lacey
26Ad: Woodcraft Village (first appearance)
27Bam Splat and Blooie (final appearance) reprint from Buster
28Interval - Art Mike Lacey
29Space Family Robinson 'Spaceport'
30Space Family Robinson 'Spaceport'
31Saturday - Art Mike Lacey\Ad: IPC 'Junior Puzzles'
32Pin-up pal 'Yikky-Boo' - Art Frank McDiarmid

Cheeky's Week Artists Cover Date 17-Jun-1978


Mike Lacey11
Barrie Appleby1

Monday, 18 July 2011

Mini Comics - Cheeky mini comic in Mickey Mouse

It's time for another look at a mini comic from IPC's summer 1978 promotion, and I'd like to look at the Cheeky mini comic which appeared in Mickey Mouse dated 01 July 1978.  I'd like to look at it, but I can't as I've never seen it.

My weekly IPC comic purchases in summer 1978 were Cheeky Weekly, Whizzer and Chips and 2000AD.  When IPC announced this mini comic scheme, I assumed the contents of each compressed comic would be reprints, so I didn't bother seeking out the Cheeky mini comics which appeared in other titles.  It was only when a Cheeky mini comic appeared in Whizzer and Chips during the final week of the promotion that I realised new material had been specially prepared for the mini Cheekys.  So in addition to the sample version of Cheeky Weekly in Mickey Mouse, I also missed those appearing in Whoopee! and Buster.  However, thanks to the generosity of Zeg and klakadak-ploobadoof, I now have scans of the Whoopee! and Buster mini Cheekys, which will be appearing here soon.

So I'll leave this post as a placeholder for the Cheeky mini comic from Mickey Mouse dated 01 July 1978.  If anyone has a copy, you can imagine how delighted I'd be to hear from you.

UPDATE 16 November 2011 - Well, all good things come to those who wait, and I'm extremely grateful to Jes who provided me with the scans of the Cheeky mini comic from IPC's Mickey Mouse comic dated 01 July 1978, the first week of IPC's summer 1978 mini comics promotion...

The combined front and back cover features a Bam, Splat and Blooie reprint from Buster, along with a tiny What A Cheek strip that's probably by Frank McDiarmid, but is so small it's hard to be sure.

The two other Cheeky mini comics (in Whoopee! and Buster and Monster Fun - click here to see all the mini comics posts) featured previously-published art from Cheeky Weekly's Pin-Up Pal posters on their covers.  The mini comic cover pic of Burpo and Cheeky above, which looks to me to be the work of Barrie Appleby, isn't from a poster.

There follows a coupling of Mustapha Million by Joe McAffrey, and Mike Lacey's Skateboard Squad.  Both strips are in colour, making this the only Cheeky mini comic to feature colour on internal pages as well as the front/back covers.  I suppose this makes up for the Cheeky mini comic that appeared in Buster, which had no colour pages at all.

Next up is the second page of the Cheeky strip drawn by Dick Millington, together with the first page of 6 Million Dollar Gran by Nigel Edwards.  As with the Cheeky mini comic in Buster and Monster Fun, the story erroneously refers to Gran as being bionic. In the debut issue of Cheeky Weekly it is clear she is a robot.

Now Gran and Cheeky swap places in order to complete their respective stories.  In honour of the host comic, Cheeky is making Disney jokes.

All 3 Cheeky mini comics featured the same strip and artist combinations, but with different content.  As I mentioned elsewhere in the mini comics posts, Bam, Splat and Blooie was an odd choice to include in the Cheeky mini comics, as not only was it a reprint, but it had finished its run in Cheeky Weekly by the time the mini comic promotion started.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Cheeky Weekly cover date 10 June 1978

Gloomy Glad dominates this week's cover, and there's a nice touch as her cloud envelops the comic title.  Despite the attempts by an assortment of Krazy Town's finest herberts to amuse her, rendered nicely by Frank McDiarmid, Glad remains resolutely downbeat.

Sherlock makes his only What A Cheek appearance to set up a joke that brings on an attack of Cheeky Weekly Inconsistent Hair Colour Syndrome in Teacher.

Cheeky gets the fun rolling on the Sunday page by telling us that this is Cheer Up Gloomy Glad Week, and he'll make the first attempt to lift Glad's spirits.  We're not surprised to find that she remains miserable, and during the week further attempts at getting Glad to crack a smile are made by Six-Gun Sam, Sid the Street-Sweeper, Baker's Boy, Louise, Granny Gumdrop and, surprisingly mingling with the hoi polloi, Posh Claude.

The Skateboard Squad are helping out at their Uncle Ben's farm, and 6 Million Dollar Gran wins a cricket match by going into bat and hitting the ball into the ground, so deep that the opposing team can't retrieve it.

In the background of a panel on the Monday page, high above Krazy Town the Bubblegum Boy collides with a UFO.

On Thursday Jim Watson takes over the Cheeky's Week art duties from Barrie Appleby who has provided the art so far this issue (with the exception of the cover's What a Cheek strip, which is by Frank McDiarmid).

The Home Movie strip bows out of Cheeky Weekly this issue (despite the banner at the bottom of the page promising another movie next week), and the final offering, in lurid pink ink (or is it a pink and white film?), is Robinson Crusoe.

On page 21 is something of a rarity - a Joke-Box Jury page with no inappropriate jokes (from our perspective).

Do-Good Dora is the subject of the Pin-Up Pal poster on the back page.

Barrie Appleby provides 7 Cheeky's Week elements, Jim Watson delivers 5, and Frank McDiarmid's contribution to Cheeky's Week is What a Cheek only, but he also does the honours on the main cover pic and the Pin-Up Pal poster.


Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 10-Jun-1978, Issue 34 of 117
1Cover Feature 'Gloomy Glad' - Art Frank McDiarmid\What a Cheek - Art Frank McDiarmid
2Sunday - Art Barrie Appleby
3Skateboard Squad - Art Mike Lacey
4Sunday evening - Art Barrie Appleby
56 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
66 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
76 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
8Ad: Texan bars (first appearance)
9Monday - Art Barrie Appleby
10James Bold 'The Frightened Village' 7 of 9  - Art Mike White
11James Bold 'The Frightened Village' 7 of 9  - Art Mike White
12Suddenly - Art Barrie Appleby
13Tuesday - Art Barrie Appleby
14Old Comic reprint from Chips 'Casey Court' 2 of 2  reprint from Chips 'Jimmy Joy' 2 of 2
15Wednesday - Art Barrie Appleby
16Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known
17Creepy Sleepy Tale - Art Not known\Wednesday - Art Barrie Appleby
18Ad: IPC 'Tiger' 5 of 10
19Thursday - Art Jim Watson
20Home Movie (final appearance) 'Robinson Crusoe' - Art Jack Clayton
21Joke-Box Jury\Ad: IPC 'Buster Holiday Fun Special' 2 of 3
22Friday - Art Jim Watson
23Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
24Mustapha Million - Art Reg Parlett
25Ad: Wall's 'Tom and Jerry and Skateboard Surfer lollies'
26Saturday - Art Jim Watson
27Tweety and Sylvester
28Interval - Art Jim Watson
29Space Family Robinson 'Captives'
30Space Family Robinson 'Captives'
31Saturday - Art Jim Watson\Ad: IPC 'Jinty' 4 of 7
32Pin-up pal 'Do-Good Dora' - Art Frank McDiarmid

Cheeky's Week Artists Cover Date 10-Jun-1978


Barrie Appleby7
Jim Watson5
Frank McDiarmid1

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Mini Comics - Buster

Moving into the second week of summer 1978's mini comic promotion, Cheeky Weekly dated 08 July was host to a miniature replica of IPC's long-running title, Buster, which at the time was sharing its masthead with the latest in a long line of merges, Monster Fun.

First on the combined front/back cover is an ad for the popular Leopard from Lime Street strip.  Presumably it was felt that a single page mini comic strip wouldn't do the Leopard Boy justice (it was an ongoing serial of 3-page instalments in Buster), so an ad has to suffice.  Art by Mike Western, who did the artwork on the regular strip.  Alongside is a Buster strip which demonstrates that reprinting artwork originally prepared for the full-sized page is not very satisfactory in a mini comic.  Angel Nadal's vintage Buster strip suffers in the reduction, and the text is squintingly compressed.  At the time the mini comic was published, Reg Parlett had taken over art duties on the Buster strip.

Thankfully, Reg furnishes us with a mini-comic-sized Stan Still's Stopwatch page.  Reg was the regular artist on this strip over at Buster.  On the adjacent page, in a nice touch, Rob Lee, the regular Kid Kong artist, depicts the 'nana-loving ape visiting Cheeky and pals in Krazy Town.

Mike Lacey gives us X-Ray specs, and Rob Lee is back with a page featuring Kid Gloves.  Mike and Rob were the regular artists on these strips.

Next we have a couple of reprints, so it's microscopes at the ready to study Tin Teacher and Faceache by Peter Davidson and Ken Reid respectively, both of whom were the regular artists.