Tag Archives: 1977

Jinty and Lindy 16 April 1977

Jinty cover 16 April 1977

Stories in this issue:

  • Creepy Crawley (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Gypsy Rose: Fear In The Forest (artist Keith Robson)
  • Spell of the Spinning Wheel (artist Jim Baikie, writer Alison Christie)
  • Alley Cat
  • The Darkening Journey (artist José Casanovas)
  • Made-Up Mandy (artist Audrey Fawley) – last episode
  • Kerry In The Clouds (artist Emilia Prieto, writer Alan Davidson) – first episode
  • Mark of the Witch! (artist Phil Townsend)
  • Green Fingers are Fun! – feature

This is the last issue labeled with “Jinty and Lindy” – from next issue the title of the comic will revert back to being simply “Jinty”. It also marks a transition in cover styles – the previous issue’s cover had a design based on interior story panels but done in a rather boxy, rigid style. From this issue onwards, Jinty started to use a softer design style, based on interior panels but outlined with a loose line picked out in colour. The title of the comic is still put in a straight-edged box, but from next week this too changes, to a beautiful splash of blue behind the gold lettering. This is a cover that has great memories for me as heralding a fantastic run of the comic.

In “Creepy Crawley”, Jean is finding out the power of the scarab brooch, and how it will change her so that she can beat her rival, Mandy. Yes: it makes her lie, cheat, and risk injury to her rivals. Nice!

The Gypsy Rose story this issue is a werewolf story, drawn in the evocative style of Keith Robson. Gypsy Rose helps to solve the mystery of the savage wolf which has attacked sheep in the Black Forest.

“Spell of the Spinning Wheel” is in full flow: nasty rival Della has left Rowan asleep listening to the hum of her hair-dryer – but luckily it is a battery-powered one which runs down, letting Rowan wake up and join her in training. But the humming bees that Rowan comes across next won’t let her wake up as quickly – even when her head is hanging dangerously near to the fast-flowing stream!

It’s the last episode of “Made-Up Mandy” and all comes right in the end. Mandy remembers her adventures and mentors a new girl who may end up going down similar lines. Next week it will be replaced by “The Robot Who Cried!”

“Kerry In the Clouds” starts this week, replacing “Freda, False Friend!”. (As that latter story was drawn by Phil Gascoine and this new one is drawn by Spanish artist Prieto, this means that we are in a relatively rare issue without any Gascoine art.) We have recently found out the writer of this story – Alan Davidson – and I reprint the opening episode for your enjoyment. If you look at the recent post by Pat Davidson, you will also see the first type-written page of script for this story.

Kerry In The Clouds pg 1

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Jinty Annual 1977

Cover Jinty Annual 1977

Stories in this annual:

  • The Blue Daffodil
  • Noelle’s Ark (text story)
  • Herbs of Life (Uncle Pete spooky story; artist Shirley Bellwood) – originally printed in June & School Friend, 4 July 1970 (source here)
  • Jill In the Dark (artist Carlos Freixas)
  • Seal Summer
  • Spiky and Otis – gag strip
  • A Chip On Her Shoulder (Uncle Pete spooky story)
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • A Call for Help (text story)
  • Star Performance (text story, illustrated by Terry Aspin)
  • Heroes of the Wreck (prose non-fiction)
  • The Jinx From St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • The Pooh Stick Game (text story, written by Lindy Gale)
  • The Nodding Mandarin (Uncle Pete spooky story)
  • Curse of the Cat Goddess!
  • The Bells of Karlok (Uncle Pete spooky story, illustrated by John Armstrong)
  • The Truth… and Mandy Martin
  • Nurse, please help me! (text story)
  • Do-It-Yourself Dot (artist Alf Saporito)
  • A Christmas Dream (text story, illustrated by Trini Tinturé)

This doesn’t strike me as the strongest annual I’ve ever read, though some of that feeling may be down to the lack of many of the usual strong Jinty artists. There are a good number of strange stories, which I always like, and some solid text stories, but nothing very outstanding in any of it.

The first story, about a mystical plant that will bring happiness to the finder, has a desperate girl who wants to find it so as to make her mother well, and a rival bitchy girl who only wants to enrich herself. Of course the good end happily and the bad unhappily – but I do wonder what illness the girl’s mother could have that ‘only an expensive operation could cure’ that she wouldn’t be able to get on the NHS? It sounds rather like plot taken from the heyday of girls school stories rather than a 1970s story.

Other readers may well be more interested than me to read “Jill In The Dark”, illustrated by Carlos Freixas who I know has many fans. I like his work in other stories, and it is very nicely done, but there is a preponderance of melodrama both in the plot (girl runner finds herself going blind at unpredictable points, has to struggle in the absence of friends and family) and in the art (lots of shots of the eponymous Jill staring in panic as she struck by sudden blindness).

Jill In The Dark
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There are at least a couple of good solid Jinty standbys in the shape of “Dora Dogsbody” and “The Jinx from St Jonah’s”. Dora sees household hijinks as Mrs and Mr Siddons dress up for a fancy dress ball as Dick Whittington and a cat respectively – including Mr Siddons being ordered by his missus to  get onto the floor and miaouw at the cheeky mouse who has frightened her! In the end Dora gets to go to the ball and Mrs and Mr stay at home, nursing nasty colds. And in Katy Jinks’s story, of course she is the one causing the upsets and shenanigans, if inadvertently as ever. There are lots of trips and spills, and much outrage is caused, only to end happily for all. They are both nicely-judged stories with a light touch and a feel-good factor.

As ever there are also various quizzes and articles about possible careers for the reader when she grows up, and things to make and do. I include a scan of one of the quizzes below because it is illustrated by an artist I am particularly fond of, who I would like to know more about. Does anyone know the name of this artist at all?

Quiz for Castaways
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Jinty 3 December 1977

Jinty 3 December 1977

Stories in this issue:

  • Come Into My Parlour (artist Douglas Perry)
  • Two Mothers for Maggie (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Guardian of White Horse Hill (artist Julian Vivas)
  • Stage Fright! (artist Phil Townsend)
  • Gypsy Rose: A Picture of the Past (artist and writer Keith Robson)
  • Alley Cat
  • Land of No Tears (artist Guy Peeters, writer Pat Mills)
  • Race for a Fortune

I got this issue out to scan the Gypsy Rose story for the Keith Robson interview, as it is the first script he wrote as well as being drawn by him. It’s a cool time-travel story with a twist, and one that I found memorable; it came to mind many years later when I visited Lacock Abbey where the inventor of photography, Fox Talbot, lived.

“Come Into My Parlour” is spooky: I find Douglas Perry’s artwork very atmospheric for this sort of thing. Evil old Mother Heggerty is proper creepy! She forces Jodie Marsh to be her slave, her literal cat’s-paw, to get revenge on a family called Saxton – and when Jodie tries to rebel, she is reminded of how under the spell she is as she can’t even take off the cat’s-paw necklace that binds her to the old witch…

“Two Mothers for Maggie” contrasts Maggie Jones’ glamorous role in a tv soap opera with her humdrum life in a house full of poverty and hard work: she tries to do her homework and instead has to help the kids with breakfast while her slobby stepfather gobbles down his full English. The whole story is Maggie being tugged between her family – especially her mother, who she dearly loves – and her exciting life in tv and the luxury of her telly mother’s home.

“Guardian of White Horse Hill” has runaway Janey finding out that her mysterious white horse is actually Epona, the Celtic horse goddess! No wonder when she gets on the horse’s back she is invisible – an easy task for a goddess presumably. Powerful beings like that have a habit of wanting something in return, and Janey starts to find out more as she is dragged back into Celtic times…

“Stage Fright!” is a thriller mystery based around a girl with amnesia and another girl who is being made to win an acting trophy, otherwise her father will lose his job. (Of course this sort of blackmail is hardly unusual in girls’ comics, as you have gathered by now!) Protagonist Linda has taken her new friend Melanie to be hypotised, hoping it will bring back her memory and even the voice that she lost in the same accident that made her amnesiac. It works, but reveals a greater threat at the house they both live in: Melanie’s aunt is a scheming murderess who caused the death of Melanie’s father and mother in a boating accident – yes, it’s rather melodramatic as a plot item but the scene is drawn beautifully by Phil Townsend. Can the two girls secretly work against the aunt?

Land of No Tears” is still at an early stage at this point, but Cassie already has a plan to get back at the bitchy Alpha girls in the dystopian world she has landed in: she will lead her pack of Gamma girls to win the Golden Girl trophy! It would be a hopeless task except that one of them turns out to be superb at gymnastics. Hmm, now what secret is Miranda hiding?

“Race for a Fortune” is a light-weight amusing comedy story with a scruffs-vs-snobs theme: Katie is up against her two posh cousins in a race to get to the Scottish ancestral land of their late grandfather, starting off with nothing in their pockets. Katie is clearly far more resourceful than the two poshos; it doesn’t always work out for her but this week she manages to get her cousins stuck in a medical research facility, being well-paid to help science by trying to catch a cold! And of course in the meantime Katie gets a few days’ head start, grinning as she goes… This is drawn by the same unknown artist who drew one of my favourite stories, “Concrete Surfer“.

Jinty and Lindy 5 March 1977

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Stories in this issue:

  • Gypsy Rose: The Doll’s Dark Secret (artist Terry Aspin)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Sceptre of the Toltecs (artist Emilia Prieto)
  • Spell of the Spinning Wheel (artist Jim Baikie; writer Alison Christie) – first episode
  • The Big Cat (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Made-Up Mandy (artist Audrey Fawley)
  • Freda, False Friend (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Mark of the Witch! (artist Phil Townsend)

I dug this issue out to send the first episode of “Spell of the Spinning Wheel” to Mistyfan, but the opening story is the one that first grabs your attention: it is a really creepy Gypsy Rose story with a deadly doll, haunted by a vengeful ghost. It is very nearly responsible for turning a loving sister into a cold-blooded murderess… Terry Aspin makes sure the reader gets the creeps, as ever.

“Sceptre of the Toltecs” aims to give you the creeps, too: the sinister uncle has persuaded a jealous schoolgirl to put his talisman into Malincha’s bag so that he can acquire the sceptre and ‘crush the world underfoot!’ The protagonists are seriously threatened by Uncle Telqotl’s dark power but we are told in the strap-line for next week’s episode that though his power is strong, so is Malincha’s.

“Spell of the Spinning Wheel” gets off to a dramatic start. Rowan Lindsay is out with her dad, a shepherd, when he falls down the side of a quarry and severely injures himself: he will always walk with a limp thereafter and has no chance to make his name as a famous runner, in the way he’d hoped. He’s also lost his job as he can’t be a shepherd without being fit and able, so the family are in financial difficulties. The evil spinning wheel has not yet made its appearance, but it’s foreshadowed in the advert for next week: ‘I wouldn’t take that spinning wheel for all the tea in China, lass!’.

In “Mark of the Witch!“, Emma Fielding saves a vicious, wild horse from being shot – because it has a dark streak in its hair just like she does, and she believes they were meant for each other. But she has to set out to tame it first, which means riding bareback as long as it takes – throughout the night if need be. In the meantime her mother is worried about her and wishes she knew where she’d disappeared to; and Alice Durrant knows Emma’s whereabouts but doesn’t know how she can possibly help her.

Jinty & Lindy 19 February 1977

Jinty cover 5.jpg

  • Hide and Seek with a Ghost! Gypsy Rose story (artist Maria Barrera)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Sceptre of the Toltecs (artist Emilia Prieto)
  • Made-Up Mandy (artist Audrey Fawley)
  • Freda, False Friend (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • The Big Cat (Ana Rodriguez)
  • The Mystery of Martine (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Is This Your Story? (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Mark of the Witch! (artist Phil Townsend)

Hide and seek with a ghost? Now how on earth can you do that? It would not be surprising if readers open the issue immediately to find out. And the story is on the first page, so they would be able to read it immediately.

In the other story profiled on the cover, Emma has finally had enough of all the persecution from the villagers who brand her a witch and an outcast. Her efforts to prove herself have got nowhere and now she going to strike back by becoming what they always say she is. Well, they asked for it. But where is it going to end?

The Mystery of Martine is now on its penultimate episode. Tessa has run out of moves to help Martine, and whatever is possessing Martine is now taking her to its ultimate conclusion – burning down the house she failed to get back from the woman she harassed. Something has to happen fast!

The cover says the issue is meant to be the Valentine’s Day issue. Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag does the honours with a sniffy teacher who confiscates “trashy Valentine cards”. Henrietta soon gets to work on her, of course. But where it ends up surprises even Henrietta, and it all ends happily and appropriately for Valentine’s Day.

In “Made-Up Mandy”, Mandy turns Balinese dancer to help a friend. It turns out that she is no Balinese dancer, but she wins plaudits for thinking on her feet. Her next disguise swings the pendulum to the other extreme – a “stiff and starchy governess”.

 

Jinty 13 August 1977

Jinty 13 August 1977

“The Robot Who Cried” is in full runaways mode right now, with robot Katy Fife trying hard – and unsuccessfully – to fool the kind doctor she is staying with. “Curtain of Silence” also has the protagonists trying to fool an adversary, also unsuccessfully, but the stakes feel much higher here as the the adversary is the villainous Madam Kapelski, who will have no compunction in putting Yvonne’s little brother out of harm’s way – forever!

Fran is acting cupid in another amusing episode of the fix-it story. She’s not a dodger like Roger and she always means well – for the people she likes! – but mayhem inevitably ensues. Right now she has a parrot and a talent for ventriloquism, and she’s not afraid to use them to make sure that her nice teacher Miss Harmony ends up with lovely boyfriend Michael instead of rotter Basil.

There are four pages in the initial episode of “Cursed To Be A Coward”, drawn beautifully by Mario Capaldi. They take us through the first few years of protagonist Marnie’s life; her chubby legs as a toddler are particularly delightful. She’s a pretty tragic heroine right from the start, though – her father is already dead in those initial panels of her as a baby, and in the next page or two her beloved older cousin is paralysed in an accident that starts off the persecution by a sinister fortune-teller.

“A Boy Like Bobby” shows us Phil Townsend back to one of his usual story themes: a small family unit down on their luck trying to stick together. This time it’s done differently, as the family unit in question consists of a tough older boy and a young brother, who touches protagonist Tessa’s heart because he looks just like her dead brother Bobby.

Stories in this issue:

  • The Robot Who Cried (artist Rodrigo Comos)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Who’s That In My Mirror?
  • Alley Cat
  • Curtain of Silence (artist Terry Aspin)
  • Fran’ll Fix It! (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Cursed To Be A Coward! (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • A Boy Like Bobby (artist Phil Townsend)
  • Battle of the Wills (artist Trini Tinturé)

Jinty 7 May 1977

Jinty 7 May 1977

“Curtain of Silence” is an excellent, tight take on the trope of a selfish athlete (here, a cyclist) who learns to change under adversity (in this case, being made mute via an accident which also leads to her cycling enslavement behind the Iron Curtain – yep, always a WTF take on it in girls’ comics!).

“The Darkening Journey” is an animal story beautifully-drawn by Casanovas; from the point of view of the dog and bird protagonists, we see an agonizingly long drawn-out attempt to return to the girl owner. Beautifully-drawn, yes, but sentimental and not my cup of tea.

I have a soft spot for “Kerry In The Clouds” but not for any very good reason that I can articulate: the main character is a head-in-the-air type who is flattered by the attention she receives from the famous Gail Terson, though Gail turns out to be a nasty sort underneath. I think the reason for my soft spot is the art, which is odd because in “Sceptre of the Toltecs” the same artist comes across as a bit stiff and upright to me. Perhaps it’s just that there are some covers with “Kerry” on them that I have a nostalgic fondness for, having looked at them many times over the years.

Stories in this issue:

  • Creepy Crawley (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Gypsy Rose, ‘A Storm of Vengeance’ (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Curtain of Silence (first episode) (artist Terry Aspin)
  • Alley Cat
  • The Robot Who Cried (writer Malcolm Shaw, artist Rodrigo Comos)
  • The Darkening Journey (artist José Casanovas)
  • Kerry In The Clouds (artist Emilia Prieto, writer Alan Davidson)
  • Spell of the Spinning Wheel (artist Jim Baikie, writer Alison Christie)

Jinty 1 October 1977

Jinty 1 October 1977

Back to being Jinty, not Jinty and Lindy, I see. (I also notice small page numbers in the corner of each page, which isn’t their usual practice.)

“Destiny Brown” is a slightly different “psychic powers” story – she can see the future but not surprisingly doesn’t get believed when she says what she can see, but this is mixed up in a strong and exciting story about bank robbery. Comos’ art is so nice and solid that it helps add to the realistic feel. “Who’s That In My Mirror” is more of a spooky morality tale and would have fitted well into Misty‘s run, for instance: Magda finds a strange mirror in which her reflection seems to prompt her into expressing the meanness that lurked behind her beautiful face. Like Wilde’s “Dorian Grey”, the mirror face grows uglier and uglier as she becomes wickeder in real life. In this final episode, the ugly face has escaped from the mirror entirely and threatens to approach Magda – who knows that the only way to dispell it is to tell the truth about all the lying and conniving she’s done. The cover competition involves finding a nurse’s watch hidden in the pages of the comic and I remember well that one of the watches was hidden in the folds of clothing worn by the evil escaped reflection.

“Cursed to be a Coward” is one of the relatively few Mario Capaldi non-humour stories (of course he drew The Jinx From St Jonah’s for quite some time). In this episode, the thoughtlessness of the swimming teacher puts Marnie Miles in serious danger from the vengeful fortune-teller who has it in for her – and who is not beyond trying a bit of drowning, too.

“Fran’ll Fix It!” is one of my favourite stories, a really zingy problem-fixer (and problem-causer!) silly schoolgirl humour strip that still has an internal narrative arc and is not just interchangeable episode after episode. I feel like surely artist Jim Baikie must either have been involved in writing it, or at least been given a very free hand creatively. And finally, science fiction/gymnastics/ballet story “Battle of the Wills” concludes in this issue – Kate Wills used a replicator to make a copy of herself so that one of her could do the hated ballet that her grandmother required, and the other one could do gymnastics, her actual main interest. Not that this final episode has any science fiction in it at all; at this point it’s all gymnastics and a happy ending.

Stories in this issue:

  • Destiny Brown (artist Rodrigo Comos)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Who’s That In My Mirror? (artist Tom Hurst)
  • Alley Cat
  • The Goose Girl (artist Keith Robson)
  • Stage Fright! (artist Phil Townsend)
  • Cursed To Be A Coward! (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Fran’ll Fix It! (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Battle of the Wills (last episode) (artist Trini Tinturé)

Jinty and Lindy 9 April 1977

Jinty and Lindy 9 April 1977

“Creepy Crawley” starts this issue; this is one of the best of Jinty‘s spooky stories in my opinion, with Trini Tinturé’s gorgeous artwork powering it along. Jean Crawley is a winner at everything in life, but when a rival comes along who threatens to take it all, she’s not good at handling defeat gracefully. A mysterious scarab brooch seems to offer the chance to get back on top… but of course there is always a price.

Spooky stories are the domain of Gypsy Rose, whose tales of mystery and magic have started being published in Jinty by this point. (This one is clearly drawn for this comic rather than having been reprinted from elsewhere with Gypsy Rose hastily drawn in afterwards, as happened towards the end of the run.) This whole issue is pretty heavy on the spookiness, in fact, as the next story (“Spell of the Spinning Wheel”) is another tale of a cursed object with an unwanted effect on a girl who comes in contact with it – Rowan Lindsay’s mother relies on her new spinning wheel to spin wool for the shop, but Rowan hates it because ever since she pricked her finger on it, she gets irresistibly sent to sleep by any loud humming noise. Having said that, “Mark of the Witch!” is not really a story of the supernatural, but of a girl who is made into a local outcast because of her bad temper and her dark streak in her blonde hair – a scapegoat.

Stories in this issue:

  • Creepy Crawley (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Gypsy Rose: The Bells
  • Spell of the Spinning Wheel (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Alley Cat
  • The Darkening Journey (artist José Casanovas)
  • Made-Up Mandy (artist Audrey Fawley)
  • Freda, False Friend (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Mark of the Witch! (artist Phil Townsend)

Jinty 12 November 1977

Jinty cover 12 November 1977

A panel from the Celtic-influenced “Guardian of White Horse Hill”, and a terror-struck face from a spooky Gypsy Rose story, done by the dependable Guy Peeters. This era features some of my favourite stories; I suppose this is part of a two-year golden time for Jinty, as far as I am concerned.

Finishing in this issue is “Destiny Brown”, a story combining adventure, deception, and the second sight traditionally attributed to the seventh child. “Guardian of White Horse Hill” is reaching its peak as protagonist Janey is starting to find out what the mysterious white horse actually is, how it comes to be that she is invisible to other people when riding the white horse, and what the white horse wants her to do. Janey doesn’t know it yet, but she has been chosen to function as a priestess of the horse goddess Epona! While, in a change of pace, zany Fran (a Roger the Dodger only more so) has fixed her last dodge for now – this humour strip came to a temporary end. Jim Baikie returned in the next issue, though, with a reality-based story, “Two Mothers for Maggie”.

Key Jinty story “Land of No Tears” had recently started: this was only the second episode. This science fiction tale of perfect Alpha girls and second-class Gamma rejects, written by Pat Mills, is the subject of a forthcoming post covering it in detail.

Stories in this issue:

  • Destiny Brown (artist Rodrigo Comos)
  • Sue’s Fantastic Fun-Bag! (artist Hugh Thornton-Jones)
  • Alley Cat
  • Guardian of White Horse Hill (artist Julian Vivas)
  • Stage Fright! (artist Phil Townsend)
  • The Carnival of Flowers (Gypsy Rose) (artist Guy Peeters)
  • Land of No Tears (artist Guy Peeters, writer Pat Mills)
  • Fran’ll Fix It! (artist Jim Baikie)

(I notice that there is, astoundingly, no Phil Gascoine story in this story or the ones immediately before and after. I had understood from Phil that he was in Jinty from the first issue to the last one, and certainly he was in almost all of them, if not with a 100% strike rate as it turns out.)