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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Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Cheeky Weekly cover date 29 December 1979

Merry Christmas Pals! I’m not entirely sure who drew Lily Pop, busting with Christmas cheer, on this week’s festive cover, which maintains the tradition of the snow-bedecked masthead. Louise looks to me like the work of Frank McDiarmid, but Lily and Cheeky don't seem quite 'Frank' to my eyes.

Cheeky Weekly reaches its third Christmas, although this is only the second festive issue because last year’s failed to appear due to industrial troubles. As with the previous issue, several of the elements included this week were in fact prepared over a year ago. A while back I examined the edits which were necessary in order to incorporate the artwork a year later than intended, so I’ll be linking to those posts as we progress through the yuletide fun, beginning with Sunday, which was actually originally drawn as a Thursday page.

As mentioned in the above link. It’s not Speed Squad who follow ‘Sunday’, it’s young Charlie Counter and his battery-powered buddy. Charlie helps Dad clear the front path by rolling a snowball, but said frozen agglomeration goes rogue and fetches up in the local park. A bully gets covered in the white stuff just as the judging of the snowman contest (prize; a big box of chocs) commences. You’ve read enough comic strips to guess how the chilly tale concludes.

Art: Terry Bave

I suspect that the Calculator Kid strip that Terry Bave drew for the 1978 Christmas Cheeky weekly was eventually used in the 1980 Cheeky Annual - see the Wednesday link below. If I'm right then this week's strip is new and not held over.

There’s a distinct lack of festive fun on Paddywack’s page (maybe no readers sent in Chrimbo gags), after which it’s Monday (originally Sunday).

Instead of being followed by 6 Million Dollar Gran, it’s Mustapha who’s up next, having a Christmas Eve encounter with Santa, who is evidently on the little-known maritime leg of his annual deliveries. Our ever-generous middle eastern pal gives away all his toys to the giftless island-dwellers, and there’s a heartwarming conclusion to the story as the dilemma facing Mustapha’s pals is resolved.

Art: Joe McCaffrey
 

Joe again

There follows a reprinted adventure for Soggy the Sea Monster, which touches on the festive season only tangentially. More in a Christmas mood is Elephant on the Run, wherein The Man in the Plastic Mac, out shopping with his wife for a turkey, notices elephant tracks in the snow. Hunting down the errant pachyderm, TMITPM is dismayed to see his leathern-skinned quarry hopping on a waiting bus. Elephant's implacable pursuer launches his shopping bag, containing the turkey, at his fleeing foe...

Art: Robert Nixon

...the large-eared fugitive, having set the bus in motion by inadvertent trunkular engagement with the bell-ringing mechanism, avails himself of the frozen bird and a Slap Up Festive Feed (SUFF) ensues.

Christmas really kicks in with a bumper 3 Cheeky’s Week pages devoted to our toothy pal’s December 25th, culminating in a full-page SUFF for Cheeky and pals.

Cheeky’s Cut-Out Comedy Catalogue of Christmas Jokes provides a whole-box-of-crackers-worth of festive funnies, after which it’s Boxing Day.

Tub has a rather tedious adventure at the Chistmas circus during which his jumper changes from white to pink for no apparent reason. Surprisingly, there’s no SUFF conclusion.

Pages 17 and 18 are the location of Cheeky’s Christmas card to readers, signed by the toothy funster, some of his pals and the Cheeky Weekly production team including Frank McDiarmid, writer Willie (Gordon) Cook and editor Bob Paynter. I realise Snail can’t hold a pen, but he could have ‘slithered’ a message, and he had over a year in which to add his greeting.

Cheeky and Louise are wearing the same hats as on the cover
Art: Frank McDiarmid
 
Six Million Dollar Gran is enduring a Christmas heatwave, but the local mountains (where is this supposed to be set?) provide the synthetic senior citizen with plenty of frozen flakes with which to cool down the town.

Art: Ian Knox

Cheeky is still consuming turkey on Thursday.

Why, Dad, Why’s SUFF begins with son considering it a dull affair due to the rather stuffy guests, then degenerates into a food fight but all ends happily.

Art: John Geering
 
There’s a yuletide filler on page 23 in the form of Cheeky’s Christmas Quiz, following which is a reprint episode of The Gang (originally appearing under The Double Deckers title). Last week’s Gang story was a Christmas one, which I suspect was the only genuine festive Double Deckers tale in the strip’s original run. Thus this week’s adventure has had some of the dialogue altered to refer to a Christmas party – the original probably concerned just a generic party (a reference to Disco Kid has also been added). Tiger’s references to her soft toy, also called Tiger in the TV series on which the strip is based, have been changed to ‘my toy’.

Turkey is still on the menu on Friday.

Then mean-spirited Mr Scroonge plots to spoil the kids’ Christmas party by luring Disaster Des past the venue. A pity the old miser didn't appear again – a nice character design by Mike Lacey.

Mr Scroonge is so mean he won't even give away a 'humbug'

Art: Mike Lacey




Art: Robert Nixon
 
...using their showbiz wiles, the kids relocate the food to their hut and a SUFF is enjoyed by all (except teacher).

We don't have to wait until 3pm for Cheeky's Christmas message on the Chit-Chat page...



Following which we reach the end of Cheeky’s Week.

Snail heads out into the snowy garden to see what his wildlife pals got for Christmas, bringing this super celebration issue to a conclusion.

We say goodbye to a number of Cheeky's pals in this issue, namely Crunching Chris, Flash Harry, Libby, Snoozin' Susan and Spiv. The members of Speed Squad also make their final appearance in Cheeky's Week. They actually ceased to appear in Cheeky's Week back in the 23 June 1979 issue, but this week's artwork was of course prepared some months before that date.

Frank McDiarmid does his usual excellent work this week, providing 13 festive fun-packed Cheeky's Week elements, plus the Christmas card. Here's looking forward to Cheeky Weekly's Christmas 1980 edition (irony).


Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 29-Dec-1979, Issue 112 of 117
PageDetails
1Cover Feature 'Christmas Issue' 2 of 2 - Art Frank McDiarmid
2Sunday - Art Frank McDiarmid
3Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave
4Paddywack - Art Jack Clayton
5Monday - Art Frank McDiarmid
6Mustapha Million - Art Joe McCaffrey
7Mustapha Million - Art Joe McCaffrey
8Soggy the Sea Monster reprint from Shiver and Shake - Art Robert Nixon
9Elephant On The Run - Art Robert Nixon
10Tuesday - Art Frank McDiarmid
11Tuesday - Art Frank McDiarmid
12Tuesday - Art Frank McDiarmid
13Cheeky's Cut-Out Comedy Catalogue 'Christmas Jokes'
14Cheeky's Cut-Out Comedy Catalogue 'Christmas Jokes'
15Wednesday - Art Frank McDiarmid
16Tub - Art Nigel Edwards
17Christmas Card (single appearance) - Art Frank McDiarmid (single art on feature)
18Christmas Card (single appearance) - Art Frank McDiarmid (single art on feature)
196 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
20Thursday - Art Frank McDiarmid
21Why, Dad, Why? - Art John K. Geering
22Ad: IPC 'Shoot' 9 of 13 Ad: 'Penny' 1 of 3
23Christmas Quiz (single appearance)
24The Gang reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Robert MacGillivray
25The Gang reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Robert MacGillivray
26Friday - Art Frank McDiarmid
27Disaster Des - Art Mike Lacey
28Stage School - Art Robert Nixon
29Chit-Chat
30Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid
31Saturday - Art Frank McDiarmid
32Snail of the Century - Art Frank McDiarmid

4 comments:

  1. ooooh Lily is under the mistletoe!!!xxxxxxxxxxx

    ReplyDelete
  2. Looks like Colin Whittock imitating Frank, but could be wrong.

    ReplyDelete