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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 Annuals and Specials Index
Cheeky Weekly Artist Index
Features by Number of Appearances
Cheeky Weekly Timeline
Major Characters from the Cheeky pages
Features Ordered by Date of Commencement

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Monday 22 April 2013

The Features - Eagle Eye

Cheeky Weekly dated 06 January 1979 was the first issue to appear after the 3 week gap in publication in December 1978. The main cover pic on this issue announced the commencement of a new (to many readers, anyway) adventure serial featuring Eagle Eye. The new strip's schoolboy star was seen on the cover in a variety of poses demonstrating his talent for bird watching, train spotting, peering at shipping on the horizon and taking down vehicle registrations. Hardly the stuff to set pulses racing, but let's reserve judgement until we've read the story.

Turning to the Eagle Eye strip on page 26, readers were treated to a repeat of the scenes printed on the cover (although in black and white) before the story commenced. London lad Tommy Trotter (aka Eagle Eye due to his keen observational skills) is travelling home from school on the bus when he spots a suspicious baker's van. Alighting from the bus, Tommy chases the vehicle on foot and discovers the van is being used by a gang who are staging a bullion robbery. Eagle Eye rips the mask off one of the gang but is kidnapped by the felons. Young Tommy manages to escape and, using his powers of observation, leads the police to the robbers and their haul of gold. Along the way Eagle Eye, armed only with a couple of brooms, fights his way past three of the hardened criminals, and at the climax of the story brings down the lead villain following a tense, armed (apparently) stand-off. How the local constabulary allowed a young boy to approach a firearm-wielding felon was no doubt the subject of a later police inquiry.

Eagle Eye, which ran for eight two-page instalments, coming to a conclusion in Cheeky Weekly dated 24 February 1979, was in fact a reprint from Shiver and Shake, where it had commenced in the issue dated 18 August 1973. In its original format, a prize competition was based around the story, but on its outing in Cheeky Weekly no prizes were on offer, in the same way that the competition element was removed from The Terrible Trail To Taggart's Treasure (another tale exhumed from the Shiver and Shake vaults) when it ran in the toothy funster's comic.

As was the case with the Taggart reprints, the Cheeky Weekly version of Eagle Eye was for some reason re-lettered.

The second page of the first Eagle Eye instalment -
comparison of original and reprint versions.
For some reason the final letter of the van's licence plate
has been changed.
The mystery has been solved - see C_Oliver's replies in the comments section.
Acknowledgements to the scanner of the S&S page.

Not only was Eagle Eye featured on the front of the issue of Cheeky Weekly in which the strip made its debut, but the story also got a boost on the cover of the issue containing the final episode of Tommy Trotter's adventure (although Tommy himself was absent from the cover pic used on that occasion).

At this point in Cheeky Weekly's history The Mystery Comic was occupying the centre pages, and located within it was the adventure serial Mystery Boy. The most recent non-Mystery Comic adventure strip, The Terrible Trail to Taggart's Treasure, had been incorporated into Cheeky's Week as a film serial watched by Cheeky and pals on their regular outing to the Saturday morning picture show. Since the picture show visits had by this time come to an end, another framing device was required for Eagle Eye.

The first Eagle Eye episode was introduced in the final panel of the Friday element of Cheeky's Week, when the toothy funster whipped out his new Eagle Eye book for a surreptitious classroom read, but in the introduction to all the subsequent instalments, Cheeky was seen sneaking a Friday read of Eagle Eye which was being serialised in Teacher's copy of Teachers' Weekly.

The first and second introductory panels
(06 January and 13 January 1979)

I suspect that Eagle Eye was slated to start in one of the issues that failed to appear due to industrial action.

The story proved more exciting than the cover pic which announced its debut suggested (albeit stretching credulity beyond its limit on occasion - but that's common in comics). As there was no associated competition in Cheeky Weekly, readers were left to work out for themselves how the schoolboy hero picked up some of the clues or achieved certain feats, although to be honest the solutions were pretty clearly signposted.

I don't know who the artist was.

Final panel of Cheeky Weekly's final Eagle Eye episode

Eagle Eye in the Cheeky Weekly Index

Feature First Appearance Final Appearance Total Issues Total Issues Missed In Run Page History
Eagle Eye06-Jan-7924-Feb-798026,27

Thursday 18 April 2013

The Pages - Page 15

On my exploratory mission through the contents of each of Cheeky Weekly's pages we have arrived at page 15 which, in a 32-page comic, is the page before the centre spread.

In Cheeky Weekly's debut issue, page 15 was the home of the What's New, Kids advertising feature, as it was in issue number two. However, in issue three, the concluding part of that week's Creepy Sleepy Tale and the related Wednesday (conclusion) came to rest on page 15 for the only time in the comic's run (CST was prevented from appearing in what became its regular centre-pages slot in the first 3 Cheeky Weeklies due to the presence of posters in the middle of those issues).

With effect from the 12 November 1977 comic, the Wednesday element of Cheeky's Week commenced a run on page 15 that would last for 34 issues.

When that run concluded, for the following 2 weeks page 15 was home to advertisements for the first Cheeky Summer Special and a '5 Papers competition' (in which readers of IPC's humour line could win prizes of super summer games) respectively. The following week a half-page Joke-Box Jury and ad for the Whoopee! Holiday Special shared page 15.

Wednesday was then back on page 15 for 2 weeks, after which Thursday moved in for a fortnight (its only appearances in this location) until Wednesday regained control for another run, this time of 4 weeks duration. In the 23 September 1978 issue, the second page of that week's Silly Snaps feature landed on page 15 for the only time in the feature's run, because big changes to Cheeky Weekly were afoot...

Cheeky Weekly dated 30 September 1978 saw the comic undergo a major overhaul, the most significant change being the introduction of The Mystery Comic, a comic-within-a-comic idea akin to Chips in IPC's long-running Whizzer and Chips. Since for this and the following 36 issues, the centre pages would be the home of The Mystery Comic, a whole new set of features shouldered their way onto page 15 as the weeks progressed. The first of these was Mystery Boy, Mystery Comic's wartime adventure serial. Mystery Boy, whose real name was David but was known for the duration of this adventure as Sandy, appeared on page 15 for 4 weeks until his run in this location was interrupted in the 28 October 1978 comic by 2 half-page ads, one for the 1979 Shiver and Shake Annual (S&S being another comic to adopt the one-comic-inside-another template) and the other for Whoopee! which that week included the customary Guy Fawkes mask as it always did in the run up to bonfire night (or did it? See later).

Mystery Boy/Sandy/David then resumed his page 15 slot for another 2 weeks until he was ousted for 4 weeks - firstly by the second page of Mustapha Million's story, then an ad for the Woodcraft Village modelling kit, after which the second page of the Elephant On The Run 2-pager came to rest on page 15 for 2 issues. Our plucky wartime amnesiac chum then returned to page 15 for one week before being dislodged again by page 2 of Mustapha Million for 2 weeks.

Not to be deterred, Mystery Boy then commenced an 8 week page 15 run, until in the 24 March 1979 comic he was displaced by an ad for the first issue of IPC's new adventure title, Tornado.

The following week saw page 2 of Mustapha Million return to page 15, and the week after that the same location was home to a half-page Tease Break puzzle collection and an ad for IPC's 'Comics Go Pop' posters promotion running across Whoopee!, Whizzer and Chips and Cheeky Weekly.

For the next 4 issues, IPC ads appeared on page 15, and it's apparent that IPC were pushing Tornado hard, as 2 more ads for their new comic appeared on page 15 (Tornado ads appeared in 4 issues of Cheeky Weekly in total).

Date Details
14-Apr-79Ad: IPC 'Tornado' 3 of 4 Ad: 'Buster and Monster Fun Spring Special' 1 of 3
21-Apr-79Ad: IPC 'Tornado' 4 of 4 Ad: 'Cor Holiday Special' 2 of 2
28-Apr-79Ad: IPC 'Jackpot No 1'Ad: 'Buster and Monster Fun Spring Special' 3 of 3
05-May-79Ad: IPC 'Free milkshake promo' 2 of 3

An ad alerting kids that sachets of Kellogg's milkshake were to be given away in IPC's humour titles appeared on page 15 in the comic dated 05 May 1979.

Page 15 in the next 5 issues was again home to the second page of Mustapha Million's stories, then a 'Star Guest' feature, which IPC ran in their humour line to introduce readers to characters from their other titles (in this case Sheerluck and Son from Whoopee! ghosted by Barry Glennard in place of regular artist Trevor Metcalfe) appeared in the 16 June 1979 comic.

Mustapha Million then returned for 2 further weeks, the second of these 2 appearances coinciding with the final appearance of The Mystery Comic in the 30 July 1979 issue, as Cheeky Weekly geared up for another revamp.

Cheeky Weekly dated 07 July 1979 was that revamp issue, which saw the arrival of the second page of a new strip on page 15 – Stage School. However, the following week old favourite Mustapha Million was back on page 15, but for the next 2 issues the newcomers of Stage School moved back in before relocating elsewhere in the comic for the remainder of its run.

An ad for Palitoy's Pippa doll occupied page 15 in the 04 August 1979 Cheeky Weekly, then our middle-eastern mate Mustapha was back for one week before being displaced by What's New, Kids.

Another ad relating to IPC's nascent title, Tornado, appeared in Cheeky Weekly dated 25 August 1979. However, this ad informed readers that, just 22 weeks after its debut, Tornado had folded and been absorbed into 2000AD. Somewhat confusingly, the ad claimed the first combined 2000AD and Tornado was on sale 'next week' and also 'out now' (it was in fact on newsagents' shelves that week). Sharing the page with the news of Tornado's untimely assimilation was an ad for the second issue of IPC's Walt Disney's Puzzle Time.

In a surprise move, the final page of that week's 6 Million Dollar Gran occupied page 15 of the 01 September 1979 issue, the only occasion on which the synthetic senior citizen fetched up on page 15. What's New, Kids was then back for 2 weeks, a brief run that brought its page 15 appearances to an end.

Elephant On The Run then made its second and final page 15 showing, before Mystery Boy made three more appearances in that location, the third bringing his story to a happy conclusion in Cheeky Weekly dated 13 October 1979. In the following issue, 2 IPC ads shared the fifteenth page, one for the 1980 Krazy Annual, and the other for Whoopee! which for bonfire night 1979 seems to have foregone the Guy Fawkes mask and in place included the final part of a cut-out Gunpowder Plot Game.

Mustapha Million then made the last of his 14 page 15 appearances, before Wednesday moved back in for a 14 week run, culminating in Cheeky Weekly's final issue. This makes Wednesday the feature to occupy page 15 the most times, with a total of 54 appearances, followed some way behind by the WWII escapades of Mystery Boy with 18 appearances, then in third place Mustapha, who flaunted his Millions on page 15 a total of 14 times.

Count of Elements (or distinct combinations thereof) appearing on Page 15
Elements Total
Mystery Boy18
Mustapha Million 2/214
Advertisement: IPC10
What's New, Kids5
Stage School 2/23
Elephant On The Run 2/22
6 Million Dollar Gran 3/31
Advertisement: Palitoy1
Advertisement: Woodcraft Village1
Elephant On The Run1
Joke-Box Jury\Advertisement: IPC1
Silly Snaps 2/21
Star Guest1
Tease Break\Advertisement: IPC1
Wednesday (conclusion)\Creepy Sleepy Tale 2/21

Friday 12 April 2013

Cheeky Weekly cover date 24 February 1979

Cheeky Weekly issue 68 has an unusually violent cover as, with a Thwuump! and resultant Nee-Aagh!, readers are alerted that the final instalment of Eagle Eye appears inside. Surprisingly, schoolboy hero Eagle Eye himself isn't present in the panel from this week's story chosen to appear on the front page. Using precious cover space to advertise the final episode of a serial seems rather odd, but at least it bookends things nicely with the front cover of Cheeky Weekly dated 06 January 1979, which heralded the commencement of the (reprint) series.

Sharing the front page is the Cheeky's Week...Sunday strip, which sees our grinning hero indulging in manhole mirth followed by farmyard fun.

This week's 6 Million Dollar Gran episode is reduced to 2 pages from the usual 3, and filling the vacant spot is the second appearance of the Tease Break puzzle feature.

The Cheeky Weekly office must have been inundated with Paddywack jokes from the readers (and have plenty of cash in the prize kitty) because for the second week running there are 2 pages featuring the disconcerting duffer.

Art: Jack Clayton

Speaking of prize kitties, the cat we saw in 27 January 1979's Calculator Kid strip is back this week. I hope Charlie slipped the inquisitive moggy a piece of fish as he enjoyed his cod and chips reward.

Art: Terry Bave

The Knock-Knock Door is the source of The Mystery Comic this Wednesday...

Art: Mike Lacey

In Elephant on the Run our hero, masquerading as a fortune teller until The Man in the Plastic Mac appears, makes ingenious use of his nasal attributes when adopting another disguise.

Art: Robert Nixon

Later in the same strip Elephant confuses British boxing legend Henry Cooper (or 'Couper' as the script has it, probably to avoid legal issues resulting from the punch-up conclusion) with fez-wearing comic magician Tommy Cooper.

Art: Robert Nixon

Tommy Cooper also makes an appearance in the Mustapha Million strip, in which Mustapha manages to trump every one of Boastful Bertie's attempts at bragging. Among the celebrity guests at Mustapha's banquet are Ken Dodd, Bruce Forsyth and the aforementioned tassel-topped titfer toting tittermeister. That may well be popular pugilist Our 'Enry again at the right hand end of the table, but I'm not sure.

Art: Joe McCaffrey

This is turning out to be a star-studded issue of The Mystery Comic, as The Two Ronnies make an appearance in the final panel of this week's Why, Dad, Why? strip.

Art: John Geering

For the third week running, all the Mystery Comic features are present, with no unexpected intrusions into the pages of the perplexing publication.

Silly Snaps continues its sporadic run, having last appeared in the 03 February 1979 issue.

On page 22 we get a glimpse of the thrills that lie ahead in place of Eagle Eye next week...

The Thursday page features an encounter between Cheeky and Yikky-Boo that will be re-used on the cover of the 14 July 1979 issue.

Art: Mike Lacey

This week's comic wraps up with a back-cover Pin-Up Pal poster featuring a puzzled Doctor Braincell.

It's been a busy week for Mike Lacey who, in addition to his usual strip Disaster Des, has provided the artwork on all 9 Cheeky's Week elements. Frank McDiarmid delivers the Pin-Up Pal poster.

Cheeky Weekly Cover Date: 24-Feb-1979, Issue 68 of 117
1Cover Feature 'Eagle Eye' 2 of 2 \Cheeky's Week - Art Mike Lacey
2Sunday - Art Mike Lacey
36 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
46 Million Dollar Gran - Art Ian Knox
5Tease Break
6Monday - Art Mike Lacey
7Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave
8Ad: KP 'Hula Hoops Hulk promo'
9Tuesday - Art Mike Lacey
10Paddywack - Art Jack Clayton
11Paddywack - Art Jack Clayton
12Wednesday - Art Mike Lacey
13Tub 'Mystery Comic' 17 of 34 - Art Nigel Edwards
14Disaster Des 'Mystery Comic' 18 of 30 - Art Mike Lacey
15Mystery Boy reprint from Whizzer and Chips 'Mystery Comic' 19 of 37 - Art John Richardson
16Elephant On The Run 'Mystery Comic' 18 of 34 - Art Robert Nixon
17Elephant On The Run 'Mystery Comic' 18 of 34 - Art Robert Nixon
18Mustapha Million 'Mystery Comic' 18 of 34 - Art Joe McCaffrey
19Mustapha Million 'Mystery Comic' 18 of 34 - Art Joe McCaffrey
20Why, Dad, Why? 'Mystery Comic' 14 of 28 - Art John K. Geering
21Silly Snaps
22Ad: IPC 'Alpha Man starts next week'\Joke-Box Jury
23Thursday - Art Mike Lacey
24Skateboard Squad - Art Jimmy Hansen
25Friday - Art Mike Lacey
26Eagle Eye (final appearance) reprint from Shiver and Shake
27Eagle Eye (final appearance) reprint from Shiver and Shake
30Saturday - Art Mike Lacey
31Saturday - Art Mike Lacey
32Pin-up pal 'Dr Braincell' - Art Frank McDiarmid

Cheeky's Week Artists Cover Date 24-Feb-1979
Artist Elements
Mike Lacey9

Thursday 4 April 2013

Profile - Crunching Chris

Chris' first appearance - Cheeky Weekly issue 1
Art: Frank McDiarmid

Krazy Town's notoriously noisy nosher, Crunching Chris, was most frequently to be found indulging in cacophonous comestible consumption during the interval at the Saturday morning picture show. Chris had a peculiar talent for rendering the softest foodstuffs into ear-splitting edibles; ice cream, Jelly Babies and soup all raised a racket as they were subjected to molar action in Chris' resonant gob.

Chris appeared in 58 issues of Cheeky Weekly, and his moment in the spotlight came in the 27 May 1978 comic when he appeared throughout Cheeky's Week, masticating an ever-lasting toffee.

Art: Dick Millington

Chris was the first of his pensioner pals that Cheeky met when transported sixty years into the future in 19 August 1978's special issue of Cheeky Weekly.

Art: Frank McDiarmid

A momentous event occurred in the 06 January 1979 comic – Chris was confronted with the one substance that was impervious to his mighty gnashers; one of Auntie Daisy's marshmallows.

The strident snack scoffer had a starring role in the Cheeky's Week cover strip of the comic dated 21 April 1979, and appeared on 13 January 1979's back cover Pin-Up Pal poster in which he was depicted exporting his aggravating eating habits to the golf course (see Bruce's poster gallery).

Cheeky Weekly 05 November 1977
Art: Frank McDiarmid
Cheeky evidently has a short memory -
Cheeky Weekly 31 December 1977
Art: Frank McDiarmid

Chris astounded his pals by silently consuming crisps in the comics dated 19 November and 31 December 1977, and was again seen noiselessly nibbling the fried potato snacks in 09 June 1979's Burpo Special (in this case he was under the influence of the strip's subject, Hypno-Tessa). Yet another silent snacking episode occurred in the 18 August 1979 comic when Chris was seen quietly devouring some crisps made by Auntie Daisy.

The final issue of Cheeky Weekly to feature Chris was the 1979 Christmas issue, dated 29 December, in which the deafening diner was seen twice. He first popped up as a guest at Cheeky's Christmas party, crunching down a bowl of jelly, then 8 pages later shared a duck joke with the toothy funster.

The final Crunch.
Art: Frank McDiarmid

Character Total Issues First Appearance Final Appearance
Crunching Chris5822-Oct-197729-Dec-1979

Crunching Chris - Number of appearances by Element

Element Number of Appearances
The Burpo Special2
Boxing Day1
Cheeky's Week1
Shrove Tuesday1
Sunday evening1

Count of elements by artist

Character Artist Total Elements
Crunching ChrisFrank McDiarmid23
Crunching ChrisFrank McDiarmid pencils16
Crunching ChrisMike Lacey9
Crunching ChrisDick Millington9
Crunching ChrisUnknown Cheeky Artist 15
Crunching ChrisJim Watson5
Crunching ChrisBarrie Appleby3