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The Beezer's Centre Pages Till Cracker Merger 
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Joined: 30 May 2012, 08:39
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I'm a bit curious about a few things regarding the centre page spread in the Beezer until that dreadful cracker merger ended it and spoiled things; this was when the Beezer was broadsheet size.

Can anyone tell me when Malcolm Judge's ace Dan McClue ran from and to? I love what I've seen of this strip with its machine gunning of gags! I'd like to collect some more editions with that in sometime (once I've sorted the budget -inc. saving for a new laptop and collecting other comics).

I remember McClue was replaced by Blubba. He had a mate called Fred, but I remember in later stories other aliens came to try & take the title character back to his planet. There was a blue one, a yellow one with a big appetite and an evil robot one. Can anyone name them?

Also regarding Blubba, he and Fred whilst escaping the robot, wound up in the desert. A teaser for the Next Week's edition said something about boiling oil. This turned out to be the last episode as - "Great News" as I saw advertised in my sister's Beano - it merged with Cracker the following week. The parents (boo! hiss!) found some excuse not to get me the Beezer that week, so I missed the final episode. Does anyone know how Blubba ended, if it had some sort of conclusion.

Out of curiosity - was The Iron Eaters on the centre pages before Dan McClue.

And whilst I'm on a roll - what other strips were on the centre pages of the broadsheet style Beezer and when before 1976?

Thanks


26 May 2018, 09:55
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Showboat Circus was one centre page strip I think we are all familiar with. I remember Uncle Dan the Medicine Man by Bill Holroyd but wondering if that was actually in Buzz? I couldn't stand Bubba and never read it - I just didn't like the art style which I considered too weak to warrant the centre pages.


26 May 2018, 17:44
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Hi David,
Dan McClue ran from No 940(19/1/74) to No 967(27/7/74), so not too many to collect there, and it was replaced by Blubba, drawn by Watson Kennedy from No 968 to No 1078(11/9/76) the issue before the merger with Cracker.
From memory, as I haven't got access to my Beezer index at the moment, the other strips which occupied the centre pages of the Beezer in the 1970's were reprints of the Showboat Circus and the Jellymen followed by two other Watson Kennedy strips The Gobblers and The Barkers.


29 May 2018, 12:15
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stevezodiac wrote:
Showboat Circus was one centre page strip I think we are all familiar with. I remember Uncle Dan the Medicine Man by Bill Holroyd but wondering if that was actually in Buzz? I couldn't stand Bubba and never read it - I just didn't like the art style which I considered too weak to warrant the centre pages.

Hi Steve,
Uncle Dan was in the Beezer centre pages from issue 526 to issue 576. Bill Holroyd drew it initially but it was taken over by his brother Albert during the run.


29 May 2018, 16:10
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Thanks for the info Kashgar.

Surprised Dan McClue had such a short run - my first proper read of Dan was in the Beezer Annual 1977, one of the best strips in it.

Have to agree I never really rated Blubba; I preferred the other strips it had. But Blubba was there when I started to really get into the Beezer, before the Cracker merger spoiled things. The centre colour spread was always good for artwork & expression, shame it got taken away.

Still am curious to see how Blubba ended.


03 Jun 2018, 11:22
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The Twitz from the Ritz was a superb tabloid centre pages strip. Drawn by Bill Ritchie and featured in Buzz. Very short run though.

Kashgar (Ray) can I pick your not inconsiderable brain? A current question in the Daily Mail asks about Jeremy the Sugar Puffs Bear. I have replied that it was first mentioned in comics in the mid sixties where readers were asked to come up with a name for the new Sugar Puffs bear. I wasn't sure if the competition was in Fleetway or Odhams comics. Can you help?


03 Jun 2018, 16:07
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I have just found an image online but no clue as to the comic.

Image


03 Jun 2018, 16:26
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Hi Steve, my brain might be not as inconsiderable as you might think but the Jeremy ads certainly ran in the Fleetway titles Lion, Tiger, Buster etc. It would be too early to have appeared in the Wham and Smash range of Odhams titles.


04 Jun 2018, 13:06
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Yes I noticed the advert has a 1961 closing date. I was trying to work out which comic that page is from by reading the back to front writing on the reverse side.

Just noticed the edge of the page is not serrated so could be Eagle, Girl or Swift?

Reverse side wording looks like it ends "of the **ad"


05 Jun 2018, 08:22
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Warriors of the road?

Just realised that the Eagle family comics also had serrated edges.


05 Jun 2018, 08:38
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There was a strip in Swift called 'Knights of the Road'.


05 Jun 2018, 16:06
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stevezodiac wrote:
Showboat Circus was one centre page strip I think we are all familiar with. I remember Uncle Dan the Medicine Man by Bill Holroyd but wondering if that was actually in Buzz? I couldn't stand Bubba and never read it - I just didn't like the art style which I considered too weak to warrant the centre pages.


Forget to mention this but you are quite right about Uncle Dan also appearing in Buzz, Steve. There were reprints from the original 1966 series in the last 13 issues of the comic.


05 Jun 2018, 16:47
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I'd love it if DC Thomson were to issue a Broons type book of Holroyd strips like Spunky and his Spider, Joe White and the Seven Dwarfs and Brassneck.

It could well be Knights of the Road, thanks, Ray.


05 Jun 2018, 22:26
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I agree with SteveZodiac that "The Twitz From The Ritz" was an excellent strip - it should have transferred over to "The Topper" when it merged with "Buzz"; unfortunately, some of the weaker strips from "Buzz" were given a home (in my view), such as "Nobby" (a rip-off from "Ginger").

"The Twitz..." would perhaps have been good in the centre spread of "The Beezer" - but then, Bill Ritchie already had the well established "Baby Crockett" and "Smiffy", plus occasional space filler strips such as "Dickie Bird" and "Hairy Dan - Football Fan", so it may have been too much Ritchie perhaps...not that I'd mind as Bill was a great artist.

Ah, and on Jeremy Bear, a real blast from the past that... I read somewhere that they did use a real live bear for the "Sugar Puffs" ads (is one on YouTube), but the animals rights lot of someone like them complained, so he has replaced with a cuddly cartoon bear (which I remember in my era).
I & my sister had one of the Jeremy Bear story books from 1970 - "Sports Day" - I rescued it from my mother's house a couple of years ago - now still in my collection. Must admit the artwork looks very 1970 of its time. I did once see in a charity shop years before another Jeremy story where we went by the sea - I passed on buying that then, but with hindsight should've.

On YouTube, I also recently saw the first Honey Monster advert with Henry McGhee ("I'm not his mummy!"). I noticed Jeremy was still on the box then, but about to be usurped...

However, around the time of Jeremy being dropped, John Inman recorded and released his own ultra camp take on the song "Teddy Bear's Picnic", released early 1976 (ref: 45cat website); at the end of the song Inman name checks other famous bears and says "Oh Jeremy, I don't know what you've done, but you've got Sugar Puffs everywhere!". This song was played a lot on "Junior Choice" with Stewpot (and later reluctantly by Tony Blackburn), for many years after the recording was made, so Jeremy did live on in memories for a few years more.


23 Jun 2018, 11:39
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I did email a reply to the Daily Mail Answers to Correspondents column but it hasn't appeared so I presume they have finished that topic.


23 Jun 2018, 20:12
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