|Whoopee! 29 August 1981|
Quite why the plaything-obsessed Toy Boy was chosen in 1981 to recommend IPC’s line-up of Annuals (all of course carrying a cover date 1 year ahead as was the custom) instead of his seemingly better-suited bibliophile Whoopee! colleague Bookworm is something that will probably forever remain wreathed in the mists of time. Another matter to ponder is the fact that the Cheeky Annual was located on the third row in last year’s equivalent ad (equally puzzlingly overseen by the perfectly-qualified-to-comment-on-the-quality-of-turnips, but less-authoritative-concerning-reading-matter Pa Bumpkin), but this year has dropped to the fourth row. Are we to infer anything from the seeming demotion? You decide, as I have no idea myself.
The first of this ad’s 5 appearances in Whoopee! occurred in the 29 August 1981 edition and the ad, together with a variant as explained below, appeared on a further 4 occasions up to December 1981, the final 3 times with Toy Boy’s speech balloon reading ‘Stacks of Christmas fun!’, and with a holly design replacing the black line framing the covers.
Cheeky Weekly had of course ceased publication in February 1980, since when Cheeky and a select few of his colleagues from that title had moved into Whoopee! (the reference to Cheeky in the comic's title, which was adopted following the 'merge', had been dropped as from the issue dated 01 August 1981). Our toothy chum had a restless Whoopee! career and by the time of this Annual his weekly strip had undergone a number of reformulations as the editor presumably sought (unsuccessfully, it would seem) to restore him to the heights of popularity which he enjoyed back in Krazy comic in 1976/77. In contrast to the turbulence of his sojourn in Whoopee!, the toothy funster’s appearances in his own Annuals maintained the formula that was set out in the first of his yearly collections of fun and frolics, as in each book we followed the grinning gagster through 12 months of mirth, echoing the ‘week with cheeky’ aspect of his own comic and very much in the classic Cheeky mould from his Krazy days.
This Mike Lacey Annual cover is somewhat reminiscent of his design for the front page of the1981 Cheeky Summer Special, and is a departure from the subjects on the previous Cheeky Annual covers, which have all been Christmas-related. Nice to see the toothy funster’s long-time comic foil Manhole Man rewarded with an Annual cover appearance.
Knock-Knock Door joins Cheeky and Snail on this year’s This Book Belongs To page, and after we’ve laid claim to our copy by inscribing our personal details in the space provided, we’re straight into January with Cheeky. Krazy Town has had a fall of snow as our grinning chum commences his usual round of gags and puns. This 3-page sequence is drawn by the Cheekmeister, Frank McDiarmid, and boasts full colour.
Since the Annual owned by the person who kindly provided the scans is a 'price-clipped' one, I have taken a photo of my own, undocked copy for the benefit of completists everywhere.
|Bernie gets a special introduction|
Is that our grinning hero’s slithering sidekick in the first panel of the Calculator Kid 2-page tale which follows? Charlie’s omniscient battery-powered buddy seems to be struggling to locate any buried booty as the curly-headed kid is directed to dig multiple holes in his uncle’s field. However, in a twist typical of the feature, Uncle, who is just about to plant an orchard in that very location, rewards Charlie for his excavations which will accommodate the trees. The feelings of the two workmen who are seen putting saplings into the ground while witnessing young Charlie being handed what is presumably a portion of their wages are not explored.
|Art: Terry Bave|
Page 8 sees the first reprint of this Annual, and the office junior at IPC headquarters has once again been despatched to the dusty basement and directed to visit the area in which former Buster features are stored with instructions to retrieve a batch of Cave Kids strips. This episode sees Rocky and his pal Charlie tasked with buying some comestibles, and there’s a nice Flintstoneian gag as mum hands over the cash. The contents of Charlie’s speech balloon a couple of panels later have been altered to read, ‘Crumbs! I’ve dropped a coin!’, the word coin replacing what probably originally read ‘tanner’ or some such reference to pre-decimal currency (the strip originally ran from 1967-68).
The colour printing that we have enjoyed up to now ends as 8 single-panel gags drawn by Artie Jackson, appearing under the title Cheeky Chuckles, are presented four our monochrome amusement on page 9.
Whereas the Cheeky Chuckles are a random selection of jokes with no common theme, the following 2 pages focus on matters festive as we enjoy Flash Harry’s Silly Christmas Snaps (with captions by Cheeky!), a seasonal variant of the Silly Snaps feature which appeared on an occasional basis in the toothy funster’s comic.
IPC’s office junior clearly stopped off at the Shiver and Shake repository to wring out some Soggy the Sea Monster reprints while down in the bowels of King’s Reach Tower, a trip that they didn't make a year earlier as the Soggster was absent from the 1981 Cheeky Annual. The tale of the likeable leviathan chosen for the next 2 pages is one drawn by Terry Bave. Reference to the invaluable Kazoop! blog informs us that Terry drew 2 episodes of Soggy’s original run, and the dates of the issues in question have enabled me to answer a question that’s been niggling at me for a while. Several times since I began documenting the Cheeky Specials and Annuals I have speculated on the source of 2-page episodes of reprinted material which in its original weekly run consisted of single page episodes. In such cases I have suggested that the 2-pagers probably themselves originated in Specials or Annuals of previous years. However, we’re now able to compare the original single page version of this Soggy saga with its reprinted counterpart and can see that some clever page restructuring has converted it from the 3-panel-wide original to a 2-panel-spanning (apart from the final panel), 2-pager. It seems that the Cheeky editor has now exhausted the available Bave renderings of our sea-faring chum since the other was the first of the feature’s reprints to appear in Cheeky Weekly (although reprinted Soggy episodes had previously appeared in the Cheeky Summer Specials of 1978 and ‘79, and the 1979 Cheeky Annual, all of which were drawn by Robert Nixon) dated 17 November 1979.
|Shiver and Shake 29 September 1973|
|Cheeky Annual 1982|
We then rejoin the star of this Annual for February with Cheeky, and specifically the 14th of that month, as our punning pal unsuccessfully tries to avoid the inevitable osculatory Valentine’s Day encounter with Louise.
A thaw had clearly taken place since January as the February streets of Krazy Town were free of snow, but our prehistoric pals The Cave Kids are revelling in the white stuff as Rocky is riding the sledge he received as a birthday present (presumably on its original run this strip followed the episode which was reprinted on page 53 of the Cheeky Summer Special 1981 wherein Rocky was anticipating the anniversary of his emergence into the potty paleolithic period in which he finds himself). Unfortunately, Rocky’s enjoyment of his wooden conveyance proves short-lived when it hits a rock and is destroyed, prompting his dad to hand him a punishment of writing one hundred lines. The lines present a trip hazard, a further accident propels Rocky’s birthday cake into Dad’s face and a whacking (for Rocky) ensues.
|Leo Baxendale avoids the ire of Hanna Barbera's legal department|
by naming Rocky's sibling in the singular
Next up is The Girls, a feature focusing on some of the females among the Cheeky supporting cast, which has appeared in all the Cheeky Annuals to date despite not being based on a strip either from Cheeky Weekly or Whoopee!. This 4-page distillation of distaff drollery is drawn by Frank McDiarmid (the first time he has drawn the strip, the previous ones being illustrated by Jim Watson and Barrie Appleby [twice]), after which Paddywack is ‘At Large’ in a 2-page collection of single-panel gags drawn by the bumbling buffoon’s regular artist, Jack Clayton.
3 pages of March mirth with Cheeky are followed by a Creepy Sleepy Tale which is actually a reprint of the Badtime Bedtime Book originally published in Monster Fun dated 03 July 1976. Cheeky has been drafted in to replace the original opening panel, and for some reason Mike Brown’s signature, which was present at the bottom of the first page on the strip’s original appearance, has been obliterated from this recycled version. Some of the panels have been trimmed at the bottom in order to fit the artwork into the Annual pages, and the reference to Monster Fun above the ‘adverts’ has of course been removed. For some reason the caption in the final panel of the escape story has been erased, and Leonard Rottingsocks’ (whose name I have just realised is a play on Leonard Rossiter) original closing comment has been replaced by an image of Cheeky. Whereas certain pages of the original version were presented in colour, the reprint is entirely black and white.
8 more single-panel jokes follow as Artie Jackson delivers another page of Cheeky Chuckles, following which Cheeky’s back for his April round of humour. There’s a gag running through all the ‘...with Cheeky’ sets in this Annual, as our toothy pal tries to speak to Bump-Bump Bernie, but finds his accident-prone pal to be undergoing the inevitable misadventure of some description, and has to postpone his interview until the following month.
|Art: Frank McDiarmid|
Following 3 pages of April Antics we arrive at the feature without which no self-respecting Annual would be complete – the Spot the Difference page. This time the subjects in the 2 seemingly identical images are the stars of the Calculator Kid feature. Charlie is seen participating in a porridge-eating contest, with Calc on hand to offer advice, in a panel lifted from the Calculator Kid episode that appeared in Cheeky Weekly dated 19 January 1980. There are 10 differences to be identified.
Bicycles are the mode of transport chosen by Speed Squad as they embark on a trip commencing on page 40. Lack of attention when planning their route causes the terrific trio to collide with an exhibition about Australia. Preparations for the opening are behind schedule, but the ever-helpful team lend a hand in setting up the displays and leave with some antipodean booty (it’s not clear whether the items the Squad are brandishing in the final panel were given to them as rewards for their assistance – maybe Wipe-Out exchanged the bike he was riding at the beginning of the story for the surf board on wheels).
|Art: Jimmy Hansen|
The Soggy the Sea Monster reprint which follows retains its original single-page format and has not been expanded to 2 pages as was his previous escapade in this Annual. Robert Nixon draws this tale in which the titular sea serpent helps a lumberjack clear a logjam.
Boomerangs are of course expected to return, and the iconic Australian weapon makes its second appearance in this Annual (having previously featured in the Speed Squad strip) as Rocky, star of The Cave Kids, is seen hurling his prehistoric version in a somewhat reckless manner. The tale ends in a rather Shakespearean vein with Rocky being chased by an ursine inhabitant of the prehistoric period.
|Art: Leo Baxendale|
There’s a further
reference to the works of the Bard of Avon on the following page as
the first of this year’s Ringer Dinger reprints commences with our
young hero wanting his grub. Dialing for assistance causes a witch
and her assistant to materialise, equipped with a cauldron and of
course the inevitable list of questionable ingredients - all
references to Macbeth. While Dinger is reluctant to consume the
resultant noxious brew, Dad polishes it off, leaving Dinger to enjoy
a slap up feed when Mum cooks dinner. This episode plays out over 2
pages so I suspect it’s been expanded from its original single page
format in the manner of the first Soggy story in this Annual. UPDATE - My thanks to Stephen Archer who informs me that the two pointed-hat-sporting characters in the panel below are Ivy and Miss Fizz who formerly appeared in The Scareys of St Marys feature in Whizzer and Chips.
|Art and script: Terry Bave after William Shakespeare|
Mustapha Million’s pal Jimmy is on hand to witness a money-moving mishap as the wheel falls off the affluent Arab’s wheelbarrow. The artist deputising on this 3-page cash crisis for Joe McCaffrey, regular illustrator of the weekly strip, is one whom I’m unable to identify.
Next up is Gran, who is currently appearing in Whoopee! as Robot Granny, but in this Annual reverts to the setup of her original strip, as has been the case in all the preceding Cheeky Annuals and Specials. When the senior citizen made her debut in Cheeky Weekly her strip went by the title 6 Million Dollar Gran. Following her transfer into the pages of Whoopee!, and before her Robot Granny revision, the title of the synthetic senior citizen’s feature underwent an overhaul to become $6,000,000 Gran. However, this particular strip assimilates both title variants to create the tautology that is $6,000,000 Dollar Gran. In the tale that follows, the aged automaton sets out to win a skiing trophy but the plot also involves that old comic chestnut, a thief stealing the silverware. This 4-page escapade is drawn by Nigel Edwards.
A tramp and cat feature on the next page in a ‘silent’ single-page strip (apart from the sounds emanating from the feline half of the cast) entitled Puss an’ Boots. The artwork seems to me to have something of Brian Walker about it but I’m not entirely sure.
Colour printing resumes on page 57 and horticultural humour is on the agenda as we begin 3 pages of June with Cheeky. It looks to me as though something was originally written on the bag of compost/manure but has subsequently been obliterated – this is how it was printed; it hasn’t been scribbled on by an aggrieved reader!
|Art: Frank McDiarmid|
2 pages of Tub tribulations follow, as our portly pal’s dad takes him to the gym, saying, “See he loses twenty pounds, Mister Instructor”. We can see where this is going, and the gym equipment, unable to withstand Tub’s bulk, is wrecked by the end of the tale. The inevitable punchline is delivered, although I don’t think £20 would cover the cost of the damage. Although I’ve never liked the ‘let’s laugh at a fat kid’ premise behind this feature, artist Nigel Edwards renders some nice scenes of exertion and destruction in this particular episode.
Readers of Ringer Dinger are given no behind the scenes insight into who or what is responsible for processing the young hero’s telephonic requests, nor the source of the various characters who materialise as a result, but some of the misunderstandings that drive the plots are more logical than others. In the Dinger tale that unfolds over the following 2 colour pages (another example, I’m guessing, of a reprint that has been expanded from an original single page) a request for a new suit results in the appearance of a clearly unhinged chimney sweep who, pausing only to shriek “Who’s needing some new soot, then?”, empties a sack of the black dust over Dinger’s long-suffering dad. Further chaos ensues as the sweep commences to clean the chimney using Mum’s vacuum cleaner. Mum attempts to wrest the suction device from the sweep’s grip, causing more soot to be distributed around the front room. Following the sweep’s summoning back to wherever he originated, a disgruntled Dinger is left to clean up the mess.
Son’s incessant questioning of a flying saucer-ful of aliens causes them to abandon their intended planetary domination in the colour episode of Why, Dad, Why? which occupies pages 64 and 65.
Teacher orders that the
kids attending Stage School, who have hitherto been allowed to wear
their showbiz costumes in ‘real’ class, must in future be attired
in school uniforms. On the day that the edict comes into force, the
aspiring entertainers arrive enveloped in a Chinese dragon costume,
causing ‘Sir’ to flee in panic. It would seem that the
pedagogue soon relented as the more familiar showbiz costumes were in evidence for the majority of the subsequent Stage School episodes, although the kids did have dalliances with more formal school clothes (occasionally of their own volition) in Whoopee! dated 10 April 1982 and 23 April 1983, and Whoopee and Wow! dated 19 November 1983 and 12 May 1984.
Cheeky’s looking forward to the school holidays as he banters his way through a full-colour July, then monochrome printing returns as Disaster Des meets Bump-Bump Bernie in a strip entitled... Disaster Des meets Bump-Bump Bernie. The setup sees Des manhandling Bernie into the driving seat of what is described as a jet-car, then accidentally pressing the start button. The souped-up vehicle carries the pair onto the racetrack, and Des’ influence results in the steering wheel detaching itself while the car gains speed, followed swiftly by a failure of the brakes. One would imagine a meeting of these two masters of mishap would generate destruction on a grand scale, but apart from crashing through a safety barrier, no damage is caused and all involved, including Bernie, emerge unscathed – at least physically. Cheeky appears in the final panel to tell us he’ll never let such an event occur again. This 3-page chronicle of car catastrophe is illustrated by Barrie Appleby, who is drawing Des for the first time, although he’s an old hand at deputising for Frank McDiarmid on Cheeky and pals.
Mum is tickling the ivories at the commencement of the next Ringer Dinger episode, and complains that the ‘doh’ is flat. The young owner of the magic-but-malfunctioning phone dials for assistance, causing a baker to appear, accompanied by a considerable amount of dough. The usual pandemonium erupts (as do the contents of the oven) as this 2-page tale proceeds.
|Art: Terry Bave|
Following a third gaggle of gags appearing under the Cheeky Chuckles banner is the less than edifying sight of our toothy pal clad in only his monogrammed swimming trunks (possibly knitted by his mum, adapted from the Cheeky's Jumper knitting pattern) as he embarks on some beach-based banter in August with Cheeky.
|Art: Frank McDiarmid|
Artist Cliff Brown then taxes our brains with 2 pages of posers entitled Cheeky’s Year of Puzzles. There are 4 teasers to be tackled, each with a seasonal theme. For spring, readers have to identify 8 flowers from the picture clues. Summer is represented by an image of our toothy pal and his slithering sidekick fishing from a boat, with 8 sea-dwelling creatures below, surrounded by a tangle of fishing lines. The task is to follow the lines from each rod to discover which 2 fish have been hooked. Autumn’s challenge is to study the 30 falling leaves surrounding Cheeky and match the identical pairs, while the toothy funster is hoping we can guide his toboggan safely through a snowy maze in the winter test.
Disaster Des returns on pages 84 and 85, but this time unaccompanied by Bernie, so Cheeky has kept his promise not to allow the two to meet again. This particular catalogue of catastrophe concerns the young doom-bringer’s visit to a model aircraft display, and the deleterious effect his presence has on the remote controls of the operators. This is the second time Jimmy Hansen has illustrated the character – he previously stood in for regular Des artist Mike Lacey in Cheeky Weekly dated 13 October 1979.
Also embroiled in matters aeronautical is Calculator Kid who, on a visit to an airfield, yearns to go on a flight. Calc advises him to go home and don his cowboy outfit. Returning to the aerodrome clad in his wild west gear, Charlie is spotted by the commander of the squadron from Texas who are stationed there and, in reward for the nostalgic feeling engendered by his manner of dress, invited to take a trip in a jet fighter.
Rocky is the only Cave Kid seen on the following page (apart from the title panel which always features a selection of his prehistoric pals) as he tries to cool off under the fierce Paleolithic sun. Cooler weather is in evidence as we join Cheeky in September. Our toothy pal is enjoying a last few days of freedom as the leaves fall and a new school year looms, and the gags flow as freely as ever.
James Bold and his ‘assistant’ Angel O’Mercy are, as is often the case at the beginning of their stories, on holiday. While enjoying some time pony trekking on Dartmoor the pair are caught out by a sudden thunderstorm and Angel is thrown by her panicked mount. Bold carries the unconscious Angel to a nearby sinister-looking property but the occupant refuses to assist. Eventually receiving help at a small cottage, bold is told that the mysterious house from which he was turned away is haunted by highwayman Tom Gilpin. The resilient Ms O’Mercy soon recovers and the plucky pair determine to investigate the allegedly haunted mansion. Apparently ghostly goings-on ensue, but SPOILER ALERT it emerges that the supposed phantom is human, a ploy to deter visitors to the spooky house which conceals the end of a tunnel leading from nearby Dartmoor Prison. Bold and Angel thwart the planned prison break. This 8 page adventure is titled The Ghostly Highwayman, not to be confused with The Ghost Highwayman, a different James Bold tale featuring another seemingly spectral horseman which appeared in Cheeky Weekly. Bold has featured in all of the Cheeky Annuals published to date.
Artie Jackson contributes a fourth collection of Cheeky Chuckles single-panel gags on page 100, after which it’s time to meet Cheeky in October and the 3 pages of this sequence are set in Cheeky’s school.
Dinger dials for someone to give his dad a ‘hand up’ with some wallpaper, and the magic phone conjures forth a Mexican bandit named (rather incongruously) Hans Upp. Typical Ringer Dinger pandemonium plays out over this 2-pager.
Soggy the Sea Monster informs us he’s in Canada at the beginning of his next adventure. I suspect that on its original appearance this strip appeared in a subsequent issue of Shiver and Shake to that containing the tale of Soggy's encounter with a lumberjack, which was reprinted earlier in this Annual Cheeky fans first became acquainted with our behemoth buddy back in the 1978 Cheeky Summer Special, and this escapade brings the number of reprinted Soggy episodes that have featured so far in various Cheeky-related publications to 32, 29 of which have been drawn by Robert Nixon. Irmantas informs us that 3 artists depicted our amiable aquatic acquaintance during his original seafaring saga, and this Annual contains one example of each of the illustrators in question, as Paul Ailey delivers this Canadian caper (evidently the only Soggy strip on which Paul worked), joining Robert Nixon and Terry Bave who supplied the artwork on pages 42 and 12/13 respectively.
I thought it might be interesting to ascertain how many of the available episodes from Soggy’s original run have been used in the various Cheeky publications up to and including this Annual. As we have seen, a story which on its original appearance concluded on a single page, was sometimes refashioned into a multi-page spanning adventure when reprinted. I therefore had to embrace the concept of ‘the episode’ which is something that I hadn’t previously considered as it’s not really relevant to the weekly comic. The database query that generates the data below considers an ‘episode’ to be, in any publication, an appearance of (in this case) Soggy on either a single page, or consecutive pages, which are bounded on either side by pages containing other features, or in the case of features on the front or back pages, having no preceding page/following page and being bounded in the relevant direction by other features. The query then groups those episodes per issue by artist. Thus the 2-page stories constructed from single page originals will be counted as 1 episode. The information that Irmantas supplies allows us to deduce that, including his Star Guest appearance in Whizzer and Chips, Soggy’s original run in the weekly comics consisted of (if my maths is correct) 42 stories, thus there are a further 10 unused weekly strips available to the editor for use in future Cheeky Specials and Annuals.
|01/07/78||Cheeky Summer Special||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||3|
|01/09/78||Cheeky Annual 1979||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||3|
|01/06/79||Cheeky Summer Special||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||2|
|17/11/79||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Terry Bave||1|
|24/11/79||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|01/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|08/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|15/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|22/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|29/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|05/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|12/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|19/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|26/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|02/02/80||Cheeky Weekly||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|01/04/80||Cheeky Holiday Special||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||5|
|01/09/80||Cheeky Annual 1981||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||4|
|01/08/81||Cheeky Annual 1982||Soggy the Sea Monster||Paul Ailey||1|
|01/08/81||Cheeky Annual 1982||Soggy the Sea Monster||Robert Nixon||1|
|01/08/81||Cheeky Annual 1982||Soggy the Sea Monster||Terry Bave||1|
The artist supplying the visuals on the next page, consisting of a ‘silent’ strip concerning a lacking-in-diy-skills character’s attempt to level the uneven legs of a table and titled A “Saw” Point, is one I can’t identify. However, the unmistakable hand of Frank McDiarmid is in evidence on the following 2 pages as we enjoy a strip devoted to Cheeky’s slimy sidekick. This tale, entitled Smile Along A Snail (a reference to entertainer Max Bygraves’ series of SingalongaMax medley albums of the 1970s) follows the Snail of The Century format.
Rocky is pitted against bully Bill Boulder in a series of sporting challenges during the fifth and final Cave Kids reprint of this Annual. This page tells us that The Kids’ original Buster run spanned 33 issues, although it doesn’t say whether the feature was present in all editions between those dates. If we assume there were no breaks in the original run, it means the compiler of the Cheeky Annuals and Specials, having put the 1982 Annual to bed, has recourse to a further 17 episodes of prehistoric pranks with which to populate upcoming publications.
|01/04/80||Cheeky Holiday Special||The Cave Kids||Leo Baxendale||3|
|01/09/80||Cheeky Annual 1981||The Cave Kids||Leo Baxendale||4|
|01/06/81||Cheeky Summer Special||The Cave Kids||Leo Baxendale||4|
|01/08/81||Cheeky Annual 1982||The Cave Kids||Leo Baxendale||5|
Sadly the internet is not forthcoming regarding the number of original Ringer Dinger episodes, but here is a summary of the reprints to have appeared across the Cheeky publications to date...
|01/07/78||Cheeky Summer Special||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||5|
|01/09/78||Cheeky Annual 1979||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||4|
|01/06/79||Cheeky Summer Special||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||4|
|01/09/79||Cheeky Annual 1980||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||5|
|06/10/79||Cheeky Weekly||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||1|
|26/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||1|
|02/02/80||Cheeky Weekly||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||1|
|01/04/80||Cheeky Holiday Special||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||4|
|01/09/80||Cheeky Annual 1981||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||4|
|01/06/81||Cheeky Summer Special||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||3|
|01/08/81||Cheeky Annual 1982||Ringer Dinger||Terry Bave||4|
Despite now being aware of IPC's practice of reprinting of single page episodes in certain cases as 2-pagers, I still suspect that the page-and-a-half Dinger tale which appeared on pages 26 and 27 of the 1981 Cheeky Summer Special spanned one and a half pages on its original outing and that it was first published in the Whizzer and Chips Summer Special of 1971. It may well be that the Cheeky editor has now exhausted the contents of the Dinger section of the Whizzer and Chips filing cabinets, as there will be no further telephonic tribulations in future Cheeky Specials or Annuals, rather a pity as I have a soft spot for the appealingly daft and mysterious mechanics of the feature.
Following our farewell for now to Rocky and his antediluvian associates, we join our toothy pal again for November, and he’s at Krazy Town FC’s ground, although the match is so painful to watch (the home team lost 27-nil) that he spends the time telling gags to his pals. Cheeky's visits to his local club pre-date Cheeky Weekly. At the end of this 3-page sequence, Cheeky tells us he’ll see us in December for a ‘special story’.
Dick Twerpin, a feature that was never seen in Cheeky Weekly but has appeared in the two previous Cheeky Annuals, occupies the next 4 pages (the previous Twerpin outings have both been 5-pagers). Concerned that his appearance is not sufficiently fearsome to halt the stage coaches transporting his intended robbery victims, Dick visits Professor Frankenstein. The mad scientist puts the anti-hero of the strip through a number of transformations, the first of which, by means of a pill, transforms young Dick into a giant, but none of the remedies prove effective. Of course the Professor’s creation consisting of reanimated human remains and a bolted-on head is seen and inevitably named Frankie. Martin Baxendale is the artist, having also drawn the previous Twerpin tales.
Paddywack’s feature in Whoopee! underwent a change of format in January 1982. Whereas previously the dithering dunderhead’s strips each consisted of a single gag played out over several panels, as from the 09 January 1982 edition Paddywack’s weekly contributions conformed to the more traditional British humour comic style, with a plot unfolding across a full page as the strip progressed towards a tag line. Paddywack’s previous Cheeky Special and Annual appearances, including the one earlier in this Annual, have consisted of collections of single-panel gags, but his 3-page strip commencing on page 118 is based on the renovated format in Whoopee! and follows our bumbling pal’s efforts to recover the receipt for the jumper that he has bought for his mum. The ever-reliable Jack Clayton, who has drawn all the Paddywack features to have appeared since the welly-wearing wonder first appeared back in Cheeky Weekly dated 08 July 1978, provides the visuals.
Colour printing resumes on page 121, with the fifth and final collection for this year of Cheeky Chuckles single-panel gags from the smoking nib of Artie Jackson.
Tub has a seaside pocket-money poser to contend with as his colour strip commences – should he spend his 50p on a boat trip round the lighthouse or use it to buy some grub? The decision is made for him when the boat owner purloins our portly pal’s cash. Tub’s strips are often populated by unpleasant characters such as the unscrupulous seafarer, which is one of the reasons I’ve never liked it. The 2-page tale ends with our hero enjoying a slap-up feed, although it’s probably not the best of endings as far as his future health is concerned. Nigel Edwards who, like Jack Clayton with Paddywack, has drawn all of Tub’s escapades since the character made his debut in Cheeky Weekly, is the artist.
Page 124 sees Cheeky embark on a trip to Greenland, and in this December with Cheeky sequence we join our toothy pal on the boat across the North Atlantic. The gags keep flowing as a number of his pals accompany the toothy funster on this Arctic adventure. On arrival at his destination, Cheeky sees an opportunity to talk to Bump-Bump Bernie, something he’s been promising readers since January, but before he can respond, our gag-cracking chum's accident-prone pal is flattened by a crate of medical supplies being offloaded to the shore. The tale concludes with Cheeky assisting Santa on his annual flight around the globe (or at least as far as Krazy Town, anyway).
The back cover is a reprise of the front, bringing another Cheeky Annual to a close.
This Annual conforms to the 128 page, with 32 in colour (including covers), standard of the previous Cheeky Annuals. The price has risen to £1.95 from last year's £1.50. Cheeky features on 13 internal colour pages, down slightly from last year when our toothy pal benefited from colour on 15 internal pages. Of the Cheeky Annuals published to date, this features the highest number of contributions by Frank McDiarmid, who delivers no fewer than 46 pages packed with his inimitable energetic artwork. Frank's previous highest Cheeky Annual contribution rate was in that dated 1980, which contained 6 pieces by him, and that's including the front and back covers, which were the same!
The percentage of reprint content continues to rise, although not by much since last year.
|Title||Total Elements||Original Elements||Reprint Elements||Reprint %|
|Cheeky Annual 1979||130||114||16||12.31|
|Cheeky Annual 1980||128||107||21||16.41|
|Cheeky Annual 1981||128||103||25||19.53|
|Cheeky Annual 1982||128||102||26||20.31|
The Gang, a reprint from Whizzer and Chips appeared in 31 issues of Cheeky Weekly, and was also included in the 1980 Cheeky Holiday Special and the Cheeky Annual 1981, are absent this year. Wikipedia suggests that the original run of the Double Deckers strip (its title was changed when it was resurrected for Cheeky Weekly) spanned issues dated 22 May 1971 to 13 May 1972. Assuming there were no gaps in its original run would mean there were 52 episodes in Whizzer and Chips. Let's see how many Gang episodes have been reprinted to date...
|07/07/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|14/07/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|21/07/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|28/07/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|04/08/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|11/08/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|18/08/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|25/08/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|01/09/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|08/09/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|15/09/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|22/09/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|29/09/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|06/10/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|13/10/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|20/10/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|27/10/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|03/11/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|10/11/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|17/11/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|24/11/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|01/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|08/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|15/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|22/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|29/12/79||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|05/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|12/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|19/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|26/01/80||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|02/02/80||Cheeky Weekly||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|01/04/80||Cheeky Holiday Special||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||2|
|01/09/80||Cheeky Annual 1981||The Gang||Robert MacGillivray||1|
|01/09/80||Cheeky Annual 1981||The Gang||1|
So it seems that, despite (presumably) having a few more Gang episodes at his disposal, the Cheeky editor has mercifully spared us from any further tedious doings of the bus-based band, as they will not appear in any of the future Cheeky Annuals or Specials.
Also missing from this Annual is Elephant on the Run which, unlike The Gang, was not a reprint. Although the saga of our pachyderm pal continued in Cheeky Weekly until its final edition, his tale was not continued in Whoopee! However, the amnesiac tusker did return in the 1980 Cheeky Holiday Special and the Cheeky Annual 1981. Sadly, these further episodes did not enlighten us as to the reason for our large-eared chum's predicament, which was not explained during the 63 issues of Cheeky Weekly in which the strip appeared, and it seems the matter will forever remain an enigma since no further episodes would appear in the remaining Cheeky Specials or Annuals.
With the exception of the fugitive circus performer and The Gang, all the strips that were present in the final issue of Cheeky Weekly (including Soggy and Dinger reprints) are represented in this Annual (Paddywack wasn't actually present in the final Cheeky Weekly, but his strip did resume following the Whoopee! merge), although sometimes with different titles, i.e. Cheeky's '[Month] with Cheeky' pages in this Annual correspond with his Cheeky's Week features back in his own comic, and this Annual's Smile Along A Snail is analogous to the mirthful mollusc's erstwhile vehicle Snail of the Century. The former 6 Million Dollar Gran is given the ridiculous title $6,000,000 Dollar Gran.
We'll never know how many of those youngsters who received this Annual at Christmas 1981 were former readers of Krazy and Cheeky Weekly, but I'm sure those who had followed our toothy pal since his 1976 debut really appreciated the effort that Frank McDiarmid and his co-creators had put into this collection, and even those with no previous knowledge of the world of Cheeky and chums before unwrapping this Annual would have enjoyed their time with the Krazy Town crew.
|Cheeky Annual 1982 - published August 1981|
|1||Cover 'Ice Rink' - Art Mike Lacey|
|2||This Book Belongs To 'Cheeky Snail and Knock-Knock Door' - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|3||January with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|4||January with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|5||January with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|6||Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave|
|7||Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave|
|8||The Cave Kids reprint from Buster - Art Leo Baxendale|
|9||Cheeky Chuckles - Art Artie Jackson|
|10||Flash Harry's Silly Christmas Snaps|
|11||Flash Harry's Silly Christmas Snaps|
|12||Soggy the Sea Monster reprint from Shiver and Shake - Art Terry Bave|
|13||Soggy the Sea Monster reprint from Shiver and Shake - Art Terry Bave|
|14||February with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|15||February with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|16||February with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|17||The Cave Kids reprint from Buster - Art Leo Baxendale|
|18||The Girls - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|19||The Girls - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|20||The Girls - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|21||The Girls - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|22||Paddywack at Large - Art Jack Clayton|
|23||Paddywack at Large - Art Jack Clayton|
|24||March with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|25||March with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|26||March with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|27||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|28||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|29||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|30||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|31||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|32||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|33||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|34||Creepy Sleepy Tale reprint from Monster Fun 'The Greatest Escape' - Art Mike Brown|
|35||Cheeky Chuckles - Art Artie Jackson|
|36||April with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|37||April with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|38||April with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|39||Spot the Difference reprint from Cheeky Weekly 'Calculator Kid' - Art Terry Bave|
|40||Speed Squad - Art Jimmy Hansen|
|41||Speed Squad - Art Jimmy Hansen|
|42||Soggy the Sea Monster reprint from Shiver and Shake - Art Robert Nixon|
|43||The Cave Kids reprint from Buster - Art Leo Baxendale|
|44||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|45||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|46||May with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|47||May with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|48||May with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|52||$6,000,000 Dollar Gran - Art Nigel Edwards|
|53||$6,000,000 Dollar Gran - Art Nigel Edwards|
|54||$6,000,000 Dollar Gran - Art Nigel Edwards|
|55||$6,000,000 Dollar Gran - Art Nigel Edwards|
|56||Puss an' Boots|
|57||June with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|58||June with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|59||June with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|60||Tub - Art Nigel Edwards|
|61||Tub - Art Nigel Edwards|
|62||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|63||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|64||Why, Dad, Why? - Art John K. Geering|
|65||Why, Dad, Why? - Art John K. Geering|
|66||Stage School - Art Robert Nixon|
|67||Stage School - Art Robert Nixon|
|68||Stage School - Art Robert Nixon|
|69||Stage School - Art Robert Nixon|
|70||July with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|71||July with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|72||July with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|73||Disaster Des meets Bump-Bump Bernie - Art Barrie Appleby|
|74||Disaster Des meets Bump-Bump Bernie - Art Barrie Appleby|
|75||Disaster Des meets Bump-Bump Bernie - Art Barrie Appleby|
|76||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|77||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|78||Cheeky Chuckles - Art Artie Jackson|
|79||August with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|80||August with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|81||August with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|82||Cheeky's Year of Puzzles - Art Cliff Brown|
|83||Cheeky's Year of Puzzles - Art Cliff Brown|
|84||Disaster Des - Art Jimmy Hansen|
|85||Disaster Des - Art Jimmy Hansen|
|86||Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave|
|87||Calculator Kid - Art Terry Bave|
|88||The Cave Kids reprint from Buster - Art Leo Baxendale|
|89||September with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|90||September with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|91||September with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|92||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|93||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|94||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|95||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|96||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|97||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|98||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|99||James Bold 'The Ghostly Highwayman'|
|100||Cheeky Chuckles - Art Artie Jackson|
|101||October with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|102||October with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|103||October with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|104||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|105||Ringer Dinger reprint from Whizzer and Chips - Art Terry Bave|
|106||Soggy the Sea Monster reprint from Shiver and Shake - Art Paul Ailey|
|107||A Saw Point|
|108||Smile Along A Snail - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|109||Smile Along A Snail - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|110||The Cave Kids reprint from Buster - Art Leo Baxendale|
|111||November with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|112||November with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|113||November with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|114||Dick Twerpin - Art Martin Baxendale|
|115||Dick Twerpin - Art Martin Baxendale|
|116||Dick Twerpin - Art Martin Baxendale|
|117||Dick Twerpin - Art Martin Baxendale|
|118||Paddywack - Art Jack Clayton|
|119||Paddywack - Art Jack Clayton|
|120||Paddywack - Art Jack Clayton|
|121||Cheeky Chuckles - Art Artie Jackson|
|122||Tub - Art Nigel Edwards|
|123||Tub - Art Nigel Edwards|
|124||December with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|125||December with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|126||December with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|127||December with Cheeky - Art Frank McDiarmid|
|128||Back Cover 'Ice Rink' - Art Mike Lacey|
Cheeky Annual 1982 Features Currently running in Cheeky Weekly
|Cheeky Annual 1982 Feature||Cheeky Weekly Dates|
Cheeky Annual 1982 Features ending earlier in Cheeky Weekly
|Cheeky Annual 1982 Feature||Cheeky Weekly Dates|
|Mustapha Million||22-Oct-77 to 02-Feb-80|
|Creepy Sleepy Tale||22-Oct-77 to 26-Aug-78|
|Paddywack||08-Jul-78 to 26-Jan-80|
|Why, Dad, Why?||30-Sep-78 to 02-Feb-80|
|Calculator Kid||01-Jul-78 to 02-Feb-80|
|Tub||30-Sep-78 to 02-Feb-80|
|Disaster Des||30-Sep-78 to 02-Feb-80|
|Speed Squad||26-May-79 to 02-Feb-80|
|Stage School||07-Jul-79 to 02-Feb-80|
|Ringer Dinger||06-Oct-79 to 02-Feb-80|
|Soggy the Sea Monster||17-Nov-79 to 02-Feb-80|
|James Bold||22-Oct-77 to 05-Aug-78|
|Cheeky Chuckles||15-Dec-79 to 15-Dec-79|
Cheeky Annual 1982 Features running later in Cheeky Weekly
|Cheeky Annual 1982 Feature||Cheeky Weekly Dates|
Cheeky Annual 1982 Features never running in Cheeky Weekly
|Cheeky Annual 1982 Feature|
|$6,000,000 Dollar Gran|
|A Saw Point|
|April with Cheeky|
|August with Cheeky|
|Cheeky's Year of Puzzles|
|December with Cheeky|
|Disaster Des meets Bump-Bump Bernie|
|February with Cheeky|
|Flash Harry's Silly Christmas Snaps|
|January with Cheeky|
|July with Cheeky|
|June with Cheeky|
|March with Cheeky|
|May with Cheeky|
|November with Cheeky|
|October with Cheeky|
|Paddywack at Large|
|Puss an' Boots|
|September with Cheeky|
|Smile Along A Snail|
|Spot the Difference|
|The Cave Kids|
|This Book Belongs To|
Cheeky Annual 1982 Reprint Feature Elements by %
|Total Feature Elements||Original Feature Elements||Reprint Feature Elements||Reprint %|