“Willa on Wheels” and “Bridey Below the Breadline” are the two ‘new’ stories here that have not been included in earlier posts about individual issues. In the first of these two stories, Willa was a student nurse who bravely saved lives in an accident but was herself left in a wheelchair as a result. In this episode, she leaves hospital and goes to stay with the family of the children she saved; she is depressed and bitter about her disability and unwilling to battle for improvement. The mother of the family tries ‘tough love’ to get her to snap out of it, but (not surprisingly perhaps) is not immediately successful. Of course, this being a girls’ comic story, she does eventually stir herself and decide to fight her situation.
“Bridey Below The Breadline” is one of Ken Houghton’s historical stories. Her challenge is to get her father well again and to avoid capture by the many people who think she and her father, as bakers, caused the Great Fire of London.
This is the first episode of “Champion In Hiding” and by the end of it the poor protagonist has lost her father, her home, and nearly her mother too (who is in hospital very ill); the aunt who takes her in is clearly a bad lot and only thinks of selling off the champion dog who is her only consolation. These first episodes drawn by Mario Capaldi are really beautiful, but sadly he didn’t stay the course as the story’s artist. The other first episode in the issue, “Snobby Shirl”, is also drawn by a classic artist – José Casanovas – though it’s not one of the top stories he worked on.
Stories in this issue:
- Willa On Wheels (artist Jim Baikie)
- The Jinx From St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
- For Peter’s Sake! (artist Ana Rodriguez)
- Fran of the Floods (artist Phil Gascoine)
- Champion In Hiding (artist Mario Capaldi)
- The Slave of Form 3B (artist Trini Tinturé)
- Horse From The Sea (artist Rodrigo Comos)
- Snobby Shirl the Shoeshine Girl! (artist José Casanovas)
- Bridey Below The Breadline (artist Ken Houghton)