Tag Archives: Cinderella Smith

Jinty 12 April 1975

Jinty cover 12 April 1975

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Tricia’s Tragedy (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Jinty’s Favourite Spooky Stories: Her Lost Love (text story)
  • Merry at Misery House (writer Terence Magee; unknown artist – Merry)
  • Ten Polaroid Cameras Must be Won! – Competition
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • Monday’s Child is Fair of Face – first in seven-part series on the old rhyme (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Bet Gets the Bird! (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Daddy’s Darling (artist Phil Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Slave of the Mirror – final episode (artist Carlos Freixas)

Yee-ikes! Katie is experimenting in the school lab, and we can just imagine what trouble our jinx can get into in the name of science. Sure enough, that’s just what happens. Katie’s trying to make a perfume, but her efforts are more like stink bombs!

“Slave of the Mirror” concludes this week. Isabella, the spirit of the mirror, is having Mia trying to burn down the place. But then Isabella repents and shows herself to everyone to prove it’s not Mia’s fault before departing in peace and disappearing from the mirror. Thereafter, the mirror reflects normally like any other mirror. The replacement story next week is “Face the Music, Flo!

Cindy’s cousins sell all her clothes to make money (as if they don’t have plenty of it already). Worst of all, they also sell Cindy’s beloved pendant, especially as it contains a photo of her mother, whom they really hate for some reason. Cindy is determined to get her pendant back but strikes a problem – no money!

We have double helpings of parrot humour this week, in the Dora Dogsbody story as well as “Bet Gets the Bird!” We also get a double helping of Phil Gascoine, who is not only illustrating Bet but also the first episode of a seven-part serial based on the rhyme of “Monday’s Child”, “Tuesday’s Child” etc. Monday’s Child Christine Carter is very fair of face and because of this, she has always gotten her own way with everyone and overshadowed Mary Jennings. It looks like Christine will do the same with Mary again when they both audition for a drama school. But there is a twist in store that enables Mary to finally get her break and Christine’s charms to fail for once!

Tricia and her father have to creep around their unpleasant relatives to get her back in training in her old training ground of the quarry pool. Then all of a sudden cousin Diana appears at the pool, calling out for Tricia. Now how could she have gotten all the way there? She’s supposed to be blind! All those who suspect there is something fishy about this please raise their hands.

Daddy’s having real fits this week when he hardly needs to. First it’s over Lee being accidentally showered in food scraps and then trying to help the families of the two evacuees. But he really hits the roof when he finds Lee and Maggie sharing the same bed!

Merry’s getaway from Misery House has been stymied by amnesia. At last, she regains her memory when she sees her “wanted” posters. Unfortunately, doing a runner could be awkward because of the kindly family she fell in with while she had amnesia. And what of the nasty butler who hates Merry?

 

 

WTFometer VII: Cinderella Story

Comixminx has devised the WFTometer, the idea of which “was to give a framework for looking at how bonkers (or not) a story’s plot was, by comparing the story to an assumed ‘average reader’s situation’. This gives a structured way of comparing stories, including the possibility of finding patterns of oddity in seemingly different stories which are perhaps odd in similar ways”.

This seventh volume of the WTFometer will look at three Cinderella stories that already have entries on this blog. They are Cinderella Smith and Make-Believe Mandy from Jinty, and Bella at the Bar (original Bella story) from Tammy.

As the name suggests, the Cinderella story means a serial where the protagonist is treated like Cinderella by cruel parents, foster parents or other type of guardian. There is often a wicked stepsister type (though not always) who is spoiled and joins in the abuse of the protagonist. Most often the protagonist’s one hope of escape comes from a talent she has discovered or special secret, but the abusers throw all sorts of obstacles in the way.

When comparing the results on the WTFometer, the scores remain the same for agency in small/large things and emotional/physical/mental security. They remain “small difference”. One reason is that the emotional/physical/mental security issues are not serious enough to go into “big difference”. For example, the abuse the protagonist endures is not severe enough to put her at risk of death, so it remains “small difference”. The variations in scores are seen in the sections on household structures and standard real-life talents. This ties in with the Cinderella format, where family structure is the basis for establishing the abuse, and where a special talent/secret is often the key to freeing the protagonist from the abuse. None of the stories hit “extreme” in any category.

First: Cinderella Smith

Score: 10

wtfometer-cinderella-smith

Cindy Smith is sent to live with her two elder cousins while her father is away. They exploit and abuse her to the point of putting her in chains and making her eat out of the dog’s dish. Although they live a luxurious lifestyle they make Cindy live in mean conditions and put her in tattered clothes. Their abuse is prompted by stinginess and hatred towards Cindy’s mother, who is now dead. Cindy takes a secret modelling job. The cousins’ dog Woozums, initially hostile to Cindy, becomes her companion and co-modelling star. Cindy also gets help from her friends at school in working against her cousins’ abuse.

This story scores a 10 on the WTFometer. This is because it is the most consistent with the patterns observed above. There is “small difference” in “standard pets” because of Woozums, which takes up the scoring slightly more. It would score higher if Cindy was an orphan, but she is not. Her father is still alive. The “standard friends” structure remains “standard”, but this is in fact unusual for a Cinderella serial, in which the protagonist tends to be more isolated from any friends to help her.

Second: Make-Believe Mandy

Score: 14

wtfometer-make-believe-mandy

Mandy Miller’s family hate her for some reason. The parents make her do all the housework and slave in their second hand clothes shop while they devote all their attention and money on their spoiled daughter Dinah. The parents always compare Mandy unfavourably with Dinah, calling her ugly, useless and not fit to be seen with her. Whenever Mandy threatens to go one better than Dinah, the parents get even more cruel with her.

Gradually Mandy realises their hatred stems from her not being related to them by blood. She is in fact a foreign princess who was left in their care when calamity struck the country. When payments for Mandy’s upkeep fell through the Millers were left stuck with her. But now officials from Mandy’s home country have located her whereabouts, and after a series of tests to determine her identity, they want her to reclaim her throne. The Millers try to stop this by locking Mandy in the coal cellar, and Mandy is making a seemingly impossible bid to escape through the coal chute.

The scoring is similar to “Cinderella Smith”. One difference that would make the scoring lower than Cindy is that the ticket out Mandy’s misery is her royal birthright, not a special talent, so standard real-life talents are ranked as “standard. However, Mandy scores “big difference” on the two-parent household category because the Millers are not Mandy’s real parents and it can be safely assumed her birth parents are dead, which would make her an “orphan”. So Mandy scores four points higher than Cindy.

Third: Bella at the Bar

Score: 24

wtfometer-bella-at-the-bar

Orphan Bella Barlow is exploited by her Uncle Jed and Aunt Gert, who wring as much money and work out of her as possible. They make her do all the housework, slave at Uncle Jed’s window cleaning business (without payment), don’t feed her properly and keep her off school.

Bella has a genius for gymnastics, but the Barlows either do not allow it because it will make no money for them or they take advantage of it if they do see a way to make money from it. This includes sending Bella to a seaside show where they will get money from her gymnastics acts. The seaside show manager exploits and abuses Bella as much as the Barlows do, and the acts she is being forced to do threaten her health.

Bella follows the same patterns as Cinderella Smith in the real-life talents and emotional/physical/mental security sections, but in other sections it scores higher. Unlike Cindy, Bella is an orphan, which means “big difference” in the two-parent category. The Barlows don’t let her go to school, which means “big difference” in the school category. There is “small difference” in the locality section because of the shift to the seaside show.

Cinderella Smith (1975)

Sample Images

cinderella-smith-pg-1cinderella-smith-pg-2cinderella-smith-pg-3

Published: 22 March – 30 August 1975 (24 episodes)

Artist: Trini Tinturé

Writer: Unknown

Translations/ reprints: None known

Plot

In all the years since Cindy Smith’s mother died, her life has been a succession of flats and hotels. This time, Dad means Cindy to have a settled home while he is away. So he sends Cindy to live with her cousins, Jemima and Agnes (presumably they are generation or two removed from her as they are much older than she is). They are two elderly ladies who are very rich, live in luxury, and have a pony and a dog. They sound like great relations to live with all right. The only snag Dad mentions is that they never took to Cindy’s mother and may have “funny little ways” as they are elderly. As it turns out, that is a forewarning of what is to come. From the moment Agnes and Jemima see Cindy, she gets the impression they are not taking to her either.

“Funny little ways” is the most misleading description of their ways too. Although the cousins live in luxury, they force Cindy to sleep in a shabby, miserable attic that has never even been installed with electric fittings as the rest of the house is. They flog all her clothes to make more money and make her wear tatty second hand clothes, which she has to wear to her new school as well. The cousins have the nerve to tell the headmistress that Cindy is wearing those clothes because she is poor! When the school insists on school uniform, Cindy has to go through the humiliation of the school kitting her out in a second hand one. The cousins don’t feed Cindy properly, and they even go as far as to give her leftovers from the dog’s dish. And of course they make her do all the work around the house. Even their spoiled dog Woozums joins the abuse (to begin with). The cousins threaten Cindy with canings to get her into line and they even chain her up while she’s working. When they catch Cindy trying to write to her father they lock her in the attic and torture her until she signs a contract that not only gives them the allowance she receives from her father but also makes her swear to silence about the abuse. Cindy tries to fight them, but she soon finds they are too strong, especially when they wield the cane against her.

At first it seems the reason for their mistreatment of Cindy is that they are real tightwads. Plus, they are too lazy to do any work around the house and are only to lumber her with it all. They won’t spare a penny on Cindy (or anything else) if they can help it. The only thing they spend any money on in earnest is themselves. They won’t call in professional help for jobs they can make Cindy do such as sweeping the chimney or painting the house. They sell Cindy’s pendant containing her mother’s picture when they don’t really need the money. All the while they receive money from Cindy’s dad for her upkeep. But of course they don’t use the money for her upkeep.

However, Cindy eventually realises the cousins have deeper motives for their cruelty when she discovers they have cut out her mother’s face from her wedding photo. She realises Agnes and Jemima hate her mother for some reason and are projecting that same hatred onto her because she looks like her mother. Cindy never finds out why the cousins hate her mother.

School is Cindy’s only respite from the abuse. Cindy finds a new friend Kay, and tells her how her cousins are treating her. At first Kay finds this hard to believe, but she comes to realise it is true and becomes one of Cindy’s helpers against the cousins. So too is Kay’s mother, who gives Cindy a Saturday job to help her raise money and she also senses the abuse Cindy is going through. It is during this job that Cindy learns some innings about the fashion world and dressmaking, both of which foreshadow what is to come later. While working at her Saturday job and other jobs to buy back the pendant, more people grow concerned about Cindy’s welfare, as they notice she looks half starved but never steals any food while working at the market.

Then Cindy finds another outlet from the abuse when she is invited to a party, and has to put together an escape plan (crowbar for the window bars the cousins installed, skewers for picking locks, and an escape ladder) to get there. At the party, Kay’s father Mr Bates discovers how photogenic Cindy is after seeing her in the party photos he took, and proposes a modelling contract.

The modelling contract requires the cousins to sign their consent as legal guardians, which means a bit of cunning on Cindy’s part. Hence Cindy stuffs them with so much food in order to make them so sluggish that when she flashes the contract under their noses (slipped in among old documents appropriated from the school office), they just sign without reading first. Payback for tricking her into signing away her allowance!

So Cindy’s modelling job begins, but Cindy is now lumbered with the burden of having to go about it while keeping it secret from her cruel cousins. Kay and another school friend Susie lend a hand in helping Cindy, such as providing Cindy with suitable interview clothes and helping her go to modelling jobs in disguise. Mr Bates also does his bit to help Cindy along against her cousins. Cindy is further helped by the fact that her modelling image requires her to wear a wig, which helps keep her cousins from recognising her in any of the photos or modelling shows. All the same, Cindy has to take precautions such as disfiguring or destroying photos of herself in magazines before her cousins see them. When the cousins are set to go to a fashion show where Cindy will be modelling, it’s some fast thinking and help from Kay to make sure they don’t recognise her.

In order to have a pretext to get to a modelling job, Cindy offers to take Woozums for a walk. This leads to very unexpected consequences that change the face of the story. Up until now Woozums has been as hostile to Cindy as the cousins are. But when Cindy has to bring him to the modelling studio where he ends up sharing the shoot with her, he loves the attention so much that he behaves himself. As it turns out, this is the start of a friendship with Woozums. It cements when Woozums gets sick from rotten biscuits the cousins left out for Cindy to have (trust them!) and she gets treatment for him. From that point on, Woozums becomes a good doggie to Cindy and even makes his own escape so he can accompany Cindy on her new modelling shoot.

Unfortunately this causes another close call, and with consequences. The cousins spot Cindy and Woozums’s shoot on television. They don’t see through her disguise, but they do notice the dog looks like Woozums and then they realise he is not around. When Cindy and Woozums return, the cousins are full of hard questions and then hit Cindy. This prompts Woozums to growl at them, at which the cousins deem him a savage dog (or guess his change of heart?) and say they will have him destroyed. Cindy takes Woozums to Mr Bates’ office, and he is only too happy to have Woozums as he is now part of Cindy’s image. Woozums will now have a salary too – but he must earn it of course.

Cindy’s new shoot is at a stately home background, which would require the whole day away from the cousins. Mr Bates understands the situation and tricks the cousins into coming to the stately home on a line that they are connected with the duke who lives there. Cindy comes as their maid and is free to slip away to her shoot with Woozums.

Alas, the trick has an unexpected backfire. The cousins come home so super-snobby that they are determined to all determined to spruce up their home to reflect their high connections. But as usual, they are too mean to pay for getting it professionally done. Instead, they lumber poor Cindy with painting the whole house from top to bottom, and it’s all being paid for with the money they have cheated out of her. This enormous, gruelling job has all the girls at school now realising just how badly the cousins treat her. Cindy is so exhausted from it that when she and Woozums set off for their new shoot she falls asleep on the train.

While Cindy is out, the cousins’ miserliness explodes right in their faces. They have been too stingy to get the house rewired (and from the sound of it, the wiring hasn’t been looked at since grandfather’s time!). So, during the night the ancient and neglected wiring finally crumbles and starts a fire. The cousins escape, but the house burns to the ground. And guess what? The old skinflints had been too mean to get insurance! As a result they lose everything and are reduced to sleeping in their own barn. Now it’s their turn to sleep in miserable accommodation.

When Cindy comes back, she is surprised to find her cousins being chased by a lynch mob because everyone thinks they deliberately left her to die. That part is soon sorted out. Still, the whole story of their mistreatment of Cindy is splashed all over the papers, so now they are publicly disgraced as well as ruined and homeless. Cindy decides not to press charges as she feels prison would be too comfortable for them. She is much happier with the punishment her cousins have brought on themselves. This includes their having to work for a change – which is slogging in Cindy’s school canteen.

Cindy gets her father’s allowance back in addition to her salary and is staying with Kay until her father returns. There is an extra reward for Kay – she is coming on Cindy’s new shoot in the south of France.

Thoughts

At 24 episodes this is no doubt Jinty’s longest running Cinderella story. It makes no qualms about its parallels to Cinderella either. “Cinderella” is in the title itself, and the cousins are the archetypal wicked stepsisters: one is tall and thin, the other is shorter and fatter, and both are caricatures of ugliness, which is how the wicked stepsisters are always portrayed in Cinderella pantomimes. There is no wicked stepmother figure. Still, she isn’t needed in this case because the wicked stepsisters, er, cousins, are more than old enough to do it themselves.

Agnes and Jemima must rank as two of the most extreme and sadistic of wicked stepsister figures in Cinderella serials. To the best of our knowledge, even Cinderella herself was not put in chains, subjected to downright torture or being forced to eat from the dog’s dish. But this is what happens to Cindy. They are not merely out to wring cheap labour out of Cindy and take advantage of her to save on more pennies. They are also deliberately inflicting physical and psychological torture designed to break Cindy down completely, and it stems from their hatred of Cindy’s mother.

The reason they hate the mother is never explained. The way they defaced the photograph suggests they were jealous of the mother’s good looks. This would tie in with the Cinderella theme, but it cannot be said for certain that this was the reason for their hatred. Cindy wonders if the answer to the mystery lies in the house somewhere. But she never gets to investigate it further. Jinty must have either forgotten to follow it up or dropped the ball on it for some reason. Either way, this particular loose end is left dangling, which is annoying. It would have given more depth to the psychology of the cousins if we had learned the reason they hate Cindy’s mother and just what they are projecting onto the daughter. Is it jealousy? Is it disapproval of the marriage? Or is it something else entirely?

Even without their hatred of the mother, their stinginess and selfishness alone would have driven them to mistreat Cindy and wring every penny they can out of her. A lot of misers in girls’ comics are played to satirise stinginess such as “Jeanie and Her Uncle Meanie”. However, these two misers are definitely not played for laughs. In fact, their miserliness goes not only to callous levels but dangerous ones as well, such as leaving the house wiring neglected and in danger of starting a fire.

They must get their stinginess from grandfather. In the first episode they said he never bothered to get the attic level wired, saying young children made it dangerous to have light up there (yeah, riiight).

After their downfall, there is no sign of them expressing any remorse. Nor does the story go into whether or not they were shocked into changing their stingy ways. We only see them grumbling at the humiliation of slaving in the school canteen, right in front of the girl they used to mistreat.

Only the artwork from Trini Tinturé serves to add some dilution to the cousins’ villainy by giving them a somewhat caricatured look. In the hands of a more serious, straight artists they could have been really terrifying.

The story does take quite a while to find the outlet of the modelling job, which occurs around the middle of the story. Up until then it’s futile attempts to fight the cousins, finding ways to break free of the attic and shackles, and doing the odd jobs to raise the money to buy back the pendant before it’s sold. So the earlier episodes may be construed as lacking a bit of focus, while the later episodes go in a clear plot direction once Cindy becomes a secret model. On the other hand, the early episodes could be intended as groundwork for the plot, what with Cindy finding ways to get away from her cousins, make friends to help her against the cousins, and the early job of working in fashion and dressmaking, which is an ideal and foreshadowing lead-in to the modelling job. It’s the perfect foundation on which to build her secret life as a model against all the cousins’ abuse.

The turnaround of the dog Woozums is well handled and believable. Being included in the shoot appeals to his selfish nature and gets him lots of attention. So he’d only be too happy to come back for more and behave himself, if only for that. Gratitude for Cindy saving his life changing him for the better is also credible, even if we do have to wonder why Woozums didn’t smell out that the biscuit was rotten. Woozums still causes the odd problem, but these stem more from his doggie nature than his former attitude towards Cindy. One example is where he digs up the earnings Cindy hid in the garden before she could bank them, so the cousins spend all the money. On the whole, though, he becomes wonderful companion for Cindy on her modelling jobs. Where he truly redeems himself is where he growls at his mistresses for abusing Cindy. He has gone from being a fellow abuser to helping Cindy stand up against the cousins’ abuse. For his pains, the cousins turn against their own pet and having him put down as a “savage” dog. This is one of the moments where the cousins show just how spiteful they are, for it looks suspiciously like the real reason they are putting him down is because they sense he has gone over to Cindy’s side.

In the end of course, Woozums is rewarded with a much nicer owner, his own career, and even his own salary. This would be the final and fitting punishment for the cousins. While they have been ruined, made homeless and forced to sleep in substandard conditions, and slaving away at menial jobs that wouldn’t pay much, the girl and dog they abused are now rich and famous with high-paying salaries. And they brought it all in themselves through their own miserliness, cruelty and spite.

Jinty 26 April 1975

Cover 26 April 1975

Stories in this issue

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Tricia’s Tragedy (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Jinty Makes It: Table mats – Feature
  • Merry at Misery House (unknown artist – Merry; writer Terence Magee)
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • Do-It-Yourself Dot (artist Alf Saporito)
  • Wednesday’s Child is Full of Woe… – complete story (unknown artist – Merry)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Bet Gets the Bird! (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Face the Music, Flo! (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Daddy’s Darling (artist Philip Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Jinty’s Favourite Spooky Stories – The Fair Rosaleen (text story)

Katie helps the local greengrocer out with deliveries, and finds out what goes on behind the doors of a health farm. Eating a huge serving of lovely greasy fish and chips in front of a bunch of people trying to lose weight isn’t a great idea though! Shame about the stereotypical fat people all running after her trying to nab the food off her – amusing though it will have been at the time.

Tricia is being followed in town by her cousin Diana. But how can Diana find her way round so effectively, if she’s blind? Her horrible cousin and family are tricking her – nowadays we call that emotional abuse and gaslighting. Trisha has made her mind up to stand her ground, even though she hasn’t yet realised what lies they’re telling her.

On a craft page, Jinty shows you how to make a set of table mats out of stout card and string. They look like the sort of thing that might well come out looking rather effective.

Merry has recovered her memory, but evil butler Haig is trying to blackmail her as he also knows her secret. Merry has no choice but to run away so that the blackmail doesn’t work. The same unknown artist who drew Merry is also drawing “Wednesday’s Child” in this issue – a complete story based around the rhyme. Moira is always grumbling, but she doesn’t realise that her mother really has something to worry about – the father of the family is on a fishing boat that is well overdue on its return. Moira snaps out of her grumbling and is able to be some help for once.

The cousins are after Cindy Smith, who is trying to post a plea for help to her father. They stop her from sending it, beat her, tie her up, and deprive her of food and water until she signs away her money to them.

In “Face the Music, Flo!”, the twins are at loggerheads. Greg is trying out his act on stage and doing well, but Flo thinks it is bound to all end unhappily and wants to prevent him from breaking his heart seeking the unobtainable. Greg’s manager is happy to keep them apart, too. Greg is still trying to please his sister, but somehow I don’t think that’s going to last for long.

“Daddy’s Darling” Lee is still trying to defend her friends Joe and Maggie from her uncaring father. Maggie has won a school prize for writing a great essay; will this change the heartless father’s mind about the two evacuees?

There is a spooky prose story this issue: I suspect it is an Irish folk or traditional tale, retold. The Fair Rosaleen has a hard-hearted father; as she lay dying she asked him to make sure he looked after the poor people nearby, so that she can rest peacefully. Of course he breaks his vow and the ghost returns to remind him of his promise – which he then keeps faithfully thereafter.

Jinty 5 April 1975

Cover 5 April 1975

Stories in this issue:

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Tricia’s Tragedy (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Merry at Misery House (unknown artist – Merry, writer Terence Magee)
  • The Kat and Mouse Game (artist Jim Baikie) – last episode
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Bet Gets the Bird! (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Daddy’s Darling (artist Philip Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Slave of the Mirror (artist Carlos Freixas)

Katie Jinks gets her hands on a gorilla costume, in a way that is very similar to some hi-jinks that Fran gets up to some years later – as Mistyfan has wondered recently, I also now wonder if the two stories shared a writer. In this case, pal Liz is the one togged up in a gorilla suit, and the gorilla is rather friendlier than one might have guessed.

Tricia is being made to look after her cousin Diana, through the emotional blackmail of being told it’s her fault for blinding her cousin. She is made to use all her time to teach Diana to swim well enough to be able to win the Lloyd Trophy, and is forbidden to use her cousin’s pool to do her own training in. What will happen when she goes home to see her parents – will she withdraw from the Lloyd trophy, as her uncle expects?

Merry has lost her memory – she escaped from the reformatory in order to bring help to the others, but had an accident in the street. A kindly – and posh – family have taken her in, but cruel butler Haig hates her because she battles injustice  such as when he tries to beat a local kid for taking some vegetables. Haig catches Merry unawares and locks her in the dark shed. Maybe the similarity between this predicament and her reformatory experiences will bring her memory back? After all, she’s still not managed to bring help to the other girls in Misery House…

It’s the last episode of “The Kat and Mouse Game”. Mistyfan has got a story post coming up soon, so I won’t describe the ending in detail. Suffice it to say that Kat gets her comeuppance – after trying to land Mouse in it one last time, of course – and Mouse gets the career of her dreams. Satisfyingly, Kat even confesses at the end, once she realises it’s all gone wrong for her (and it’s all her own fault too).

There’s a story post coming up on “Cinderella Smith” too, I understand. Cindy is sent to school without the correct uniform and has to use old clothes left behind by others – she finds it embarrassing and humiliating but comes across as snobbish rather than apologetic for her change of circumstance. But wearing old clothes will be the least of it, very soon: Cindy’s cousins are some of the meanest abusers in these stories.

The kids at school are making Lee’s life a misery because her father is himself being so ungenerous to evacuees Joe and Maggie. Bowing to public pressure, he sends the evacuee kids to school in a posh car – but a different one from the one his daughter travels in.

It is nearing the ending of “Slave of the Mirror”. The Spanish au pair girl Inez tells Mia the story of the girl in the mirror, who is an ancestor of Inez’. Isabella lived as a servant in the house, some two hundred years previously; she was treated so cruelly by her master that she died unhappily and vowed her revenge. Now, through Mia, she is trying one last act of revenge – burning down the house!

Jinty 16 August 1975

Jinty cover 16 August 1975

Stories in this issue:

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Blind Ballerina (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Merry at Misery House (unknown artist – Merry; writer Terry Magee)
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • A Journey Through Time! Jinty’s Favourite Spooky Stories – text story
  • The Valley of Shining Mist – (artist Carlos Freixas, writer Alan Davidson)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • “The Green People” (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Daddy’s Darling – final episode (artist Philip Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Face the Music, Flo! (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Jinty Makes…Easy Cool Drinks!

After a break of several weeks, Jinty’s favourite spooky tales are back. This one teaches a girl a creepy lesson about not dithering so long in bed that she runs late for school.

Katie the jinx is on holiday, but Clarence, the boy her cousin Janice is expected to pair up with because they are neighbours, is really spoiling things. He’s such a snob and a prig who always makes put-down remarks about everything Katie does, and he never loosens up. Dora’s not having much fun on holiday either. Even then, Ma Siddons makes her the dogsbody – especially when she wants Dora’s help in winning a talent contest.

It’s the final episode of “Daddy’s Darling”. Daddy, having finally seen the light in the previous episode, makes up for things in a big way to deliver a happy ending. Next week we see the start of “Barracuda Bay”, which promises us adventure, mystery, the Bahamas, a sunken ship and disappearing scientists. Sounds like an exciting mixture already!

Debbie finds the courage to stand up to bully Tracey and finally gets the brooch off her. But then Debbie realises that she stole the brooch when she promised Mrs Maynard she would not steal again. So the Valley of Shining Mist may not take her back unless she can sort out this tangle.

Hilda agrees to come back to Misery House to keep the peace with the Warden and release Merry from punishment. The gypsy’s herbs have made her so fighting fit that she’s strong enough to stand up to Adolfa the bullying toady. Something may catch on from this because the blurb for next week says: “‘Up with the barricades! Down with Misery House!’”.

Woozums the dog is suddenly standing up bullies too. In this week’s episode of “Cinderella Smith” he’s taking a growl at the nasty cousins on Cindy’s behalf.

In “Blind Ballerina” a tipster provides the lead to Daisy’s whereabouts. But now it’s Barbie who’s disappeared!

Flo gets the worst birthday ever. Greg is so busy that all he can do is send her a bunch of flowers. And then Flo is so shocked when she finds out Greg’s off on an American tour that she blunders into the road and gets hit by a truck!

Julie and Mary finally deliver the message to Moura that her Aunt Zella is a traitor and in league with Mr Blackburn. Moura believes it, but Zella is making sure she can’t convince her father and stop the soldiers who are on the verge of planting explosives that will destroy their world.

 

Jinty 26 July 1975

Jinty 26 July 1975

Stories in this issue:

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Blind Ballerina (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Merry at Misery House (unknown artist – Merry; writer Terry Magee)
  • Quickie Quiz!
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • The Valley of Shining Mist – (artist Carlos Freixas, writer Alan Davidson)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • “The Green People” (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Daddy’s Darling (artist Philip Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Face the Music, Flo! (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Jinty Makes…a Sideshow (feature)

 

Katie’s trying to get an amateur circus act going because the circus is offering a big cash prize for the best one. She should stick to doing what happens to her all the time – getting into all sorts of oafish scrapes – because it makes her a natural clown. Which is of course what gets her the prize in the end.

Wouldn’t you know it – the lead part in Barbie’s new ballet requires the lead to dance like a blind girl! If only they knew they had a real “Blind Ballerina”.

Merry succeeds in alerting the gypsies to Miss Ball and the Warden, who are out to burn their camp down – and the gypsies give the two misery-makers a jolly good soaking into the bargain (the panels of it are in the panel gallery). Hilda is now safe in the medical care of the gypsies. Then, it looks like Jessie the gypsy girl has broken into the reformatory once too often. Miss Ball is about to make a grab on her!

Ma Siddons lumbers Dora with the job of flag day seller for the Down and Out Dogs League – and then the rotten cheat steals the credit for all the money collected when the organiser returns for it. Occasionally Dora does not score a total victory over Ma Siddons, and this is one of those times.

Debbie passes the test in obtaining the mug from the poetry reading competition – not because she won but because the winner thought she deserved it more. Unfortunately Debbie’s nasty cousin Elaine is getting hotter on the trail, to the point where she tries to follow Debbie into the Valley of Shining Mist.

Cinderella Smith has to disguise herself to keep her secret from her nasty cousins – who have turned up to watch her first fashion show!

Nasty Mr Blackburn and Miss Berridge are so suspicious of Julie now that they’ve had her grounded at home and escorted to and from school until she tells them what she’s up to. Of course Julie can’t tell them about the “Green People”. At least she has a new pendant to contact them with, so that should help.

The evacuees run off in London in search of their mother after a huge air raid bombing. “Daddy’s Darling” goes to London to search for them – something her father hasn’t bothered to do.

Flo’s finding it difficult to keep in touch with Greg this week because his nasty manager and mobs of fans keep coming between them. Could her misgivings about him becoming a pop star be right?

Jinty 28 June 1975

JInty cover 28 June 1975

Stories in this issue:

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Blind Ballerina (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Merry at Misery House (unknown artist – Merry; writer Terry Magee)
  • Do-It-Yourself Dot (artist Alf Saporito)
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • The Valley of Shining Mist – (artist Carlos Freixas, writer Alan Davidson)
  • “The Green People” (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Daddy’s Darling (artist Philip Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Face the Music, Flo! (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Jinty Makes…a Jewelled Collar (feature)

Katie’s teacher Miss Dean has excluded her from a visit to a VIP’s houseboat – only to discover she is a jinx herself and aggravating the very VIP she wanted to impress. Not to be outdone, here comes Katie the Jinx herself in a souped-up motorboat she was given by mistake.

Blind Ballerina creates more problems for herself this week because she just won’t explain that she is blind after it got Daisy taken from her. And as if that wasn’t enough, Barbie’s jealous rival Sylvia is getting suspicious.

Merry’s call to the children’s welfare officer pays off and saves Barry from being forced into handing over his farm to his horrible stepfather. The stepfather then gets an uproarious send-off and won’t be back. Unfortunately the call does not save Merry and Co, who get carted back to Misery House, because Barry didn’t get the name of the reformatory! Oh well, perhaps a seed has been sown that will sprout into something later on.

Meanwhile, it was too close for comfort for Miss Ball and the Warden, so they are not going to risk any more of those deals. Well, that’s something. However, we now know how corrupt they really are, so what else will they get up to? And would it have anything to do with exposing Misery House, which Merry has been trying to do all along?

Dora is sent to collect a dog named Tiny. Now why is it that when an animal is called Tiny, it always turns out to be enormous? As it turns out, there was a tiny mixup; Dora received the wrong dog and Tiny really is tiny after all.

Cinderella Smith’s got her modelling contract, but there’s a snag – she needs to get her nasty cousins to sign as they are her legal guardians. Cindy’s trying to stuff them with so much food they will be in a state to sign without reading the document. We will have to wait until next week to see if Cindy’s trick works.

Debbie’s going to dangerous lengths to return the brush she stole to the Valley of Shining Mist after spiteful Elaine throws it down a collapsed mine. Now Debbie has to risk life and limb to retrieve it. In the end it’s worth it because the Valley opens up for her again. But after that hairbrush incident, Debbie’s horrible relatives now suspect she’s up to something. And there is a blooper here: Debbie hurts her left knee while climbing down the mine – but in one panel the injury appears on her right knee.

Workers on the new motorway are surprised to find emeralds Julie planted, courtesy of the Green People. As hoped, it has put work on hold. Unfortunately, Julie’s brother is about to do some investigating after the enemy teacher, Miss Berridge, sees the entrance to the world of the Green People.

Daddy hires a new maid, Mrs Watkins, but only because she was the only applicant. Personally, Mrs Watkins does not meet his snobby approval – which means she gets on famously with his darling and the evacuees!

Snobbery now seems to be coming between Greg and Flo too. Greg wants his sister to start enjoying the high living as the sister of a pop star, but the humbler life the twins used to lead has rubbed off on her. And she still feels uneasy about Greg pursuing a career as a pop star.

This week’s issue advertises the second issue of Lindy and her second free gift: Lindy’s favourite perfume. Wonder what scent it was?

Jinty 14 June 1975

Jinty cover 14 June 1975

Stories in this issue:

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Blind Ballerina (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Merry at Misery House (unknown artist – Merry; writer Terry Magee)
  • Cuckoo Clock Competition
  • The Valley of Shining Mist – (artist Carlos Freixas, writer Alan Davidson)
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • “The Green People” (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Daddy’s Darling (artist Philip Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Face the Music, Flo! (artist Jim Baikie)

Katie the Jinx breaks the school goldfish bowl (she would) and has to replace it. Trouble is, she’s broke and has to use her brains to find a replacement – while going through her usual scrapes, of course.

Ana Rodriguez had quite a track record in drawing ballet stories, and now she’s illustrating “Blind Ballerina”. Our blind ballerina has a very bad run this week, and it’s only part two of her story. She’s had a road accident, can’t find her sister Daisy, her blindness leads to disaster at her new circus job, and the circus boss has turned so nasty that he’s threatening to set a dog on her.

“Merry at Misery House” and her friends find the mean farmer is abusing his stepson Barry as much as he is abusing them, and is trying to force Barry to sign over the farm to him. Merry and Co step in to help, and also take an opportunity to phone a children’s welfare officer about Misery House. So will there be help at last for the abused inmates? Or will their enemies foil them again, as they have so many times before?

Cinderella Smith’s off to the ball – er, friend Susie’s birthday party – this week. It turns out better than expected when Susie’s Dad spots how photogenic she looks in the party photos and wants to sign her up with a modelling contract. Wow, Prince Charming already! Unfortunately, Cindy’s still in the clutches of those abusive cousins and we can be certain they will do everything they can to stop her.

Debbie comes back from the Valley of Shining Mist with a new ambition to take up violin – and a silver hairbrush she’s stolen from the Valley. Her abusive family notice both the hairbrush and the new violin Debbie buys and are not impressed. Their abuse drives Debbie to run off. But will the Valley emerge from the ruins it dissolved into earlier and take her in again?

The dogs’ hotel is taking in Susi Sparkle, a famous pop star dog this week. The dog is not top of the pops with Ma Siddons after she breaks Ma Siddons’ new colour TV, pinches the food (in her sleep), and causes Ma Siddons to get a black eye!

This week Flo turns pop star herself. Greg won’t perform at a charity show at the children’s hospital – too much under the influence of his mean-looking manager. So Flo dresses up as Greg and performs in his place. Unfortunately Flo did not count on a newspaper photographer being there, and it’s all going to be all on the front page tomorrow! What’s Greg going to say when he finds out his estranged sister has been impersonating him?

The evacuee children liven things up for Lee when they help her get rid of the old dragon of a tutor that Daddy hired for her. However, Daddy gets even worse than usual when the anniversary of his wife’s death approaches, and takes it out on the poor evacuees.

Julie’s efforts to help the Green People unwittingly get her brother Chris into trouble; the company thinks he’s been leaking information about the new motorway. The Green People soon tell Julie the real reason why the company wanted it kept top secret – people will protest against it. Which is precisely what they do after the Green People discreetly spread the word around – telepathically!

The issue also advertises the first issue of Lindy, which is out next Saturday. The free gift is a charm bracelet. The ad doesn’t entice you with descriptions of the stories. Instead, it tells you that there is a pin-up of the Bay City Rollers waiting for you if you buy the first issue.

And Jinty has a new competition where the prize is a cuckoo clock. Unscramble the names of some birds and you go into a draw to win.

Jinty 19 April 1975

Jinty cover 19 April 1975

 

  • The Jinx from St Jonah’s (artist Mario Capaldi)
  • Tricia’s Tragedy (artist Ana Rodriguez)
  • Jinty Makes It: A Sunflower Banner – Feature
  • Merry at Misery House (unknown artist – Merry; writer Terry Magee)
  • Tee-Shirts Are Tops! – Competition
  • Dora Dogsbody (artist José Casanovas)
  • Do-It-Yourself Dot (artist Alf Saporito)
  • Tuesday’s Child is Full of Grace… – complete story (artist Jim Baikie)
  • Cinderella Smith (artist Trini Tinturé)
  • Bet Gets the Bird! (artist Phil Gascoine)
  • Daddy’s Darling (artist Philip Townsend, writer Alison Christie)
  • Face the Music, Flo! – first episode (artist Jim Baikie)

 

Katie is helping her Aunt Lucy out at her small hotel while on holiday. Oh, dear – we all know what help from Katie the Jinx can turn into!

Tricia finds her blinded cousin Diana is following her around and thinks she’s being haunted by guilt. More likely she’s being haunted by something more fishy. Diana seems to have learned to walk around town blind in a remarkably short length of time. And how does she always know where to find Tricia if she’s blind?

Merry gets her memory back in the most shocking way possible – she sees her wanted poster, which tells everyone she’s on the run from a reformatory! Now she remembers, how long can she hide it from the family who are looking after her, especially as they now want to adopt her?

There is more parrot trouble than usual with this issue, because Ma Siddons is lumbered with a parrot at the hotel this week. He’s given her husband a good nip on the nose and loves a good nip himself – of rum! And in “Bet Gets the Bird!”, Rosy Posy needs a pick-me-up, but Bet can’t figure out what. And it isn’t rum.

“Face the Music, Flo!” starts this week. It has a twist on the theme where the protagonist wants to pursue a dream, but the parent does not want them to because either they got burned by something similar or they want to decide the career. Instead of a parent it’s an interfering sister, Flo, who tries to stop her brother Greg pursuing a show-business career because their late father tried the same but it didn’t work out. But Greg’s going ahead all the same. Is Flo right to stop him or will she find out she should have stayed out of it – even if she did promise her late mother she would make sure Greg got a steady job instead of going into show business?

Daddy shows his darling that he still has eyes only for her. Maggie collapses but Daddy won’t get a doctor. Lee has to do it.

Meanwhile, Cindy’s scored a small triumph over her nasty cousins. But it looks like things are going to get even worse for her next week now they’ve caught her writing a letter to her father. And it begins with Cindy suddenly being absent from school the next day and nobody knows why.