Stories in this issue:
- The Jinx From St Jonah’s (artist Mike White)
- Always Together… (artist Phil Townsend)
- Wenna the Witch (artist Carlos Freixas)
- Jackie’s Two Lives (artist Ana Rodriguez)
- Pony Parade: Loser Takes All! [text story]
- Do-It-Yourself Dot (artist Alf Saporito)
- Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
- Bird-Girl Brenda (artist Phil Gascoine)
- The Hostess with the Mostest (artist Stanley Houghton)
- Merry at Misery House (writer Terence Magee)
- Left-Out Linda (artist Jim Baikie)
- Wild Horse Summer
- Angela’s Angels (artist Leo Davy)
I thought I would go back to the earliest issues I have and pick up from where I left off previously – a year ago and more now, when I was last looking at issues from this very early stage of Jinty.
Previously I’ve been a little harsh on the Jinx stories of this run, as they don’t feature the lovely Mario Capaldi art of other times. Mike White still does a very good serviceable job though, and it is very readable story-wise. This episode is relatively stand-alone: Katie has become convinced she has hypnotic powers, predictable hijinks ensue! I think the previous episode leads into her conviction about her powers so it’s not entirely self-contained, but reads absolutely fine without necessarily having that lead-in to hand.
“Always Together” is in full flight: the young Harvey family, who have vowed to always stay together despite being orphans, are being treated as gypsies even though they aren’t really. That’s bad when they are chased after by prejudiced bullies, but good when the Salvation Army looks after them and tries to help. It is their own wits and talents that are needed to get them out of their rough sleeping situation though – eldest girl Jill uses her artistic ability to try to earn money for the family.
“Wenna the Witch”, drawn by Carlos Freixas, continues the is-she isn’t-she theme of the earlier episodes – is Wenna a witch or just massively unlucky? And in “Jackie’s Two Lives“, the protagonist feels very lucky, with the riches and glamour that Mrs Mandell offers her, but we know that it will turn into something rather more sinister, especially as Mrs Mandell comes to Jackie’s mum and dad to offer – a proposition.
“Left-Out Linda” is one of those stories where the main character is emotionally screwed up and confused, meaning that she makes all sorts of bad choices. It can be quite excruciating to read, but the denouement of this story (still some way away here) is well done and much more psychologically realistic than many are. At this point however Linda is still screwing up massively, in a way that potentially has big financial repercussions for her family.
There’s plenty of misery in “Merry at Misery House” – all the inmates have caught some sort of very contagious disease – and even one of the warders is thrown into the same spartan quarantine, too! Merry is the only one left standing, and has her work cut out for her – but also, as she thinks, “If they can be so heartless to Miss Ball – what hope is there for the rest of us?”
“Wild Horse Summer” is so beautifully drawn. Can anyone identify the artist?