On this day, 8 November 1975: Jinty and Lindy
On this day, 8 November 1975 … This Jinty and Lindy merger issue – to provide a useful point of reference given recent merger discussions on this blog – bears a loose similarity to the merger between 2000AD and Starlord in 1978. Lindy had run for only 20 issues before being subsumed into Jinty, while Starlord fared only a little better at 22 issues before it was taken over by 2000AD. Jinty was only eighteen months old at the point of this, her first merger; 2000AD was only twenty months old at the point of hers. There the similarities end, however, as I think it’s fair to say that the introduction of Starlord characters Strontium Dog and Ro-busters made a significant and lasting impression on the profile of 2000AD, while it’s hard to see much change brought by Lindy to Jinty.
Three strips transferred from the discontinued Lindy: two serials, Finleg the Fox and Hettie High and Mighty, and one humour strip, Penny Crayon. None of them lasted for too long in their new home (Finleg ran for seven more episodes, Hettie for six and Penny – sporadically – for eight; for context, take a look at this comprehensive list on the Resource on Jinty website), and neither do they seem to me to be particularly different in style and tone from what was already on offer in Jinty. Lindy had a very particular character, offering a strong mix of pop music posters and features alongside its comic strips, but little of this transferred into Jinty (although there is a two-thirds of a page ‘Poparound’ column offering anecdotes on Elton John, Donny Osmond and Gary Glitter which are interesting to read forty-one years later; who could have predicted the paths their various lives would follow?).
I find it slightly underwhelming as a merger issue but I write that as someone for whom this comic was never aimed and suspect I’m judging it on the basis of the fanfare I came to expect from comic mergers among the titles I read as a boy. I’m aware that considering it against 2000AD and Starlord isn’t quite a like-for-like comparison. Lindy announced the merger in the previous week’s issue with a full-page ad that must have seemed quite exciting, but Jinty’s previous week’s announcement seemed a little downbeat and neglected to mention the names of the serials that would be joining from Lindy. None of the three are mentioned on the cover of the merger issue either. The content of the merger issue is strong, as one comes to expect from Jinty, but it does seem a shame that the poptastic styles of Lindy are hardly there anymore.
Elsewhere in this issue, there are two stories begin which are new to both Jinty and Lindy readers. Slaves of the Candle follows a Victorian maidservant who uncovers a sinister plot run by a candle-manufacturing crone, and Too Old to Cry! is a pre-war tale of a tough girl in an orphanage. A number of regular serials continue: slapstick capers in The Jinx of St Jonah’s, high adventure in Barracuda Bay, wartime heartache in Song of the Fir Tree, modern-day school and family trauma in Ping-pong Paula and two stories with a supernatural twist, The Haunting of Hazel and the deliciously-titled Golden Dolly, Death Dust!