Friday, June 27, 2014

Whizzer and Chips on the London Underground

I've just come across the above photograph on the Daily Mail site, one of many taken by Bob Mazzer on the London underground in the 1970's and 1980's. The young boy on the left is seen with an issue of Whizzer and Chips on his lap, that particular issue is the very first 'Best of Monthly' issue from November 1984.

More of Bob's photographs can be viewed here:

Thursday, June 26, 2014

6th September 1986 (#871)

Today it's time to look at the issue of Whizzer and Chips dated 6th September 1986. The cover star is, it as had been for about a year (on and off with Sid's Snake), Sweeny Toddler, with lovely artwork by Tom Paterson. I just love the way it is Sweeny's mum who is hiding behind the armchair in the first panel, and not Sweeny. Great stuff and it is continued over the page.

On the chat pages there are interesting announcements from both Sid and Shiner, both asking readers to send in any birthday wishes they wanted printing in the November issues. Readers could write in and messages would be written in the strips, on walls and fences etc. - a fantastic feature that makes Whizzer and Chips that little bit better than other comics (in my opinion, of course!). It also shows how far ahead they worked on the comics, roughly two months (I believe it was about six weeks in advance).

Be sure to read the letter by Shiner's announcement as well; one reader had written in asking which characters had appeared in the very first Chips section from 1969, and Shiner lies by including himself in the list when in truth he didn't appear until issue two.

Moving on, the Sweet Tooth strip had an interesting script, I can't help but feel that whoever wrote it might have been suggesting something here - after all, Sweet Tooth had been in the comic since 1972 and coming up with new ideas must be tricky!

There's plenty more to show but not enough room to fit it al in, but I can't miss out this Phil Fitt strip. From a great (ahem) pun in the first panel to a guest appearance from Mike Lacey, this strip's got it all!

I'll wrap up this post with this nice full-colour advert for The Best of Monthly comics for Whizzer and Chips and Whoopee. Buster didn't have one yet; it arrived in May 1987.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

15th November 1975 (#315)

I can make no promises, and indeed I do doubt, that every single issue of Whizzer and Chips will receive an individual post on this blog; it would be nice, but I can't see it happening (at least, not any time soon). I did cover the first three issues in detail, writing a summary of every strip back in 2012 but each of these posts took 1 - 2 days to write and comics are made up of artwork as well as stories, which these posts sort of abandoned. Anyway, those posts are still up there but no more will be produced in that format, and this is, I hope, the first of many that will be in the more familiar format I use on my other blog. Anyway, on to the comic, and at first glance it does not appear to be a particularly significant issue so you might question as to why I chose it for this first post in a new format. Well, first of all it has a great competition for readers to win one of '200 Matchbox Action Toys'. Sid and Shiner were very excited about this, as they expressed in their letters to the readers.

And here is the page with all the details.

On to the strips, and there are two of particular interest in this comic, one in Whizzer and the other in Chips. We'll look at the one in Chips first, it being Pete's Pockets. Usually illustrated by Mike Lacey, it's possible this particular episode is drawn by a ghost artist. The reason it's interesting is because it features a visit from a Whizz Kid - Joker on an unofficial raid.

There is no mention of the raid on Joker's page.

The other strip of interest also features a crossover, this time from one Whizz Kid to another, when Odd Ball pays a visit to Timothy Tester (and Nobby also appears). The artist here is definitely Cliff Brown, and the strip is followed by an advert for Mickey Mouse comic.

Like with Joker's crossover, there is no mention of Odd Ball's visit to Timothy in his strip.