Which of us hasn't found ourselves pondering thusly...
Cheeky Specials and Annuals continued to be published following Cheeky Weekly's merge into Whoopee! in February 1980 (Specials published from 1980 - 1982, and Annuals from 1980 to 1984 - the Annuals dated, of course a year ahead in each case). Whoopee! Specials and Annuals were also published in the same years (and beyond). What, if any, Cheeky-related material appeared in those Whoopee! Annuals and Specials?
...this series of posts aims to bring enlightenment.
Let's start, as has become the custom, with an analysis of publisher IPC's placement of ads for Specials and Annuals in the pages of the weekly Whoopee! during the year in question.
|Whoopee!||16-Apr-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Holiday Special|
|Whoopee!||30-Apr-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Holiday Special|
|Whoopee!||07-May-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Holiday Special|
|Whoopee!||21-May-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Holiday Special|
|Whoopee!||28-May-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Holiday Special|
|Whoopee!||04-Jun-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Holiday Special|
|Whoopee!||11-Jun-1983||IPC||Buster Puzzle Holiday Special|
|Whoopee!||11-Jun-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Holiday Special|
|Whoopee and Wow!||27-Aug-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Annual|
|Whoopee and Wow!||01-Oct-1983||IPC||Annuals|
|Whoopee and Wow!||19-Nov-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Annual|
|Whoopee and Wow!||26-Nov-1983||IPC||Annuals|
|Whoopee and Wow!||03-Dec-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Annual|
|Whoopee and Wow!||17-Dec-1983||IPC||Annuals|
|Whoopee and Wow!||17-Dec-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Annual|
|Whoopee and Wow!||24-Dec-1983||IPC||Annuals|
|Whoopee and Wow!||24-Dec-1983||IPC||Whoopee! Annual|
A further, and exclamation mark-dislodging, merge had occurred in July 1983 when survivors of failed title Wow! (it seems IPC felt that to feature two exclamations in a single masthead would whip readers into an unseemly frenzy) were welcomed into the senior title.
Of the years examined so far in this series, 1983 has the lowest number of Annual and Specials ads.
Whoopee! Holiday Special 1983
This year's Holiday Special was first advertised in the weekly Whoopee! dated 16 April 1983 so presumably copies were delivered to newsagents around that time of year, predating the July divestment of the weekly Whoopee!'s exclamation, and explains why the Special is still proudly sporting its punctuational adornment. The Bumpkins return to fulfil the front cover role, their desert island dilemma illustrated by Mike Lacey.
Despite the fact that there is no Cheeky Summer Special this year (1982's being the final one), there is no Cheeky-related material in this collection, so we can swiftly move on.
Whoopee Annual 1984
Mike Lacey and the Bumpkins are again on front cover duty. A better gag, and one more in keeping with the ethos of the notoriously money-averse agrarians, would surely have been to depict the Bumpkins showering the circus spectators with buckets of cash in the manner with which clowns have traditionally troubled big top audiences by means of confetti, rather than the wallowing-in-moolah, trouser-filling endeavours on display.
Since there's a Cheeky Annual this year, it's probably not surprising that no toothy-funster-related content is to be found in this book (although having said that, there was a cameo by two of Cheeky's pals in last year's Whoopee! Annual). However, this Annual does contain some work by Frank McDiarmid. The Spectacular Adventures of Willie Bunk date back to the first issue of Whizzer and Chips in 1969, where the strip was drawn by Frank. I'm not familiar with the history of the strip in the pages of W&C, but I do know that the character returned, but as a feature in Whoopee!, in 1981. The first 3 adventures of the returning glasses-wearing daydreamer's adventures were titled The Spectacular New Adventures of Willie Bunk (after that the strip was just called Willie Bunk, except in the case of reprints which reverted to the original W&C title, The Spectacular Adventures of Willie Bunk), and the strip was again drawn by Mr McDiarmid. The revived character continued to appear in Whoopee!, but lapsing on 4 occasions into the aforementioned reprints (3 of which weren't by Frank) sourced from, presumably, Whizzer and Chips. The final weekly Bunk of the Whoopee! era appeared in the issue dated 24 April 1982, over a year before this Annual appeared on newsagents' shelves.
However, let's enjoy Frank's rendition of Bunkery from the above Whoopee! Annual.
There is a second Bunk adventure among the same collection, but it's drawn by another artist.
Join me again soon when I continue my investigation.