On this day, 16 May 1981: Whoopee! and Cheeky
On this day, 16 May 1981 … I know I have quite a few Irish readers, so I apologise to all of them for today’s front page, featuring the infamous Paddywack in Whoopee! Lazy national stereotyping is not endorsed by Great News For All Readers, which probably needs to be stressed every now and then for a blog celebrating British comics of the 1970s and 1980s. Paddywack started out in Cheeky, initially as one of the cartoons drawn for Cheeky by one of the pals he met on his weekly rounds, Doodle Doug. Niblet has the full story, and earlier pics, on his lovely Cheeky blog here.
This was an era of Whoopee! which carried a strong Cheeky influence (gratifyingly, as this was more than a year after the two comics merged). Cheeky was run as a comic-within-a-comic (in the tradition of Chips, Shake and Score, and its own The Mystery Comic), with its own full-colour front page, although the ex-Whoopee! and ex-Cheeky strips were not placed logically within the two separate sections: the Whoopee! section contains Paddywack, Stage School and Calculator Kid, while the Cheeky section contained Chip, Frankie Stein and Smiler. I suppose that’s not that significant in the big scheme of things, but mildly annoying to obsessives like myself.
Minor gripes aside, this is a good comic with a solid line-up of strips, some very funny characters, lovely artwork and (for 1981) some nice splashes of colour.