Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

Discuss all the girls comics that have appeared over the years. Excellent titles like Bunty, Misty, Spellbound, Tammy and June, amongst many others, can all be remembered here.

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Phoenix
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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

Post by Phoenix »

Audiate wrote:I was also puzzled to see a story I remembered in a Judy dated from after I’d stopped reading them. Did they re-run stories? I wonder if they did this to cut costs when the girl comics began their demise…? There’d be no reason *not* to re-run stories, I suppose, given how many they’d have in their archives, and the fact that their readership would fully change every seven years or so. Does anyone know?
I can only speak about the DC Thomson titles, but I have to say that it was standard practice from at least the Thirties for serials to be rerun, either in their text story papers or in the later picture papers for boys, and it was equally the case in those for girls. Indeed some of Thomsons' more popular serials were repeated several times, and text stories were frequently converted into a picture strip format. If you also include those serials that spawned other stories with a similar plot or theme, not even necessarily in the same paper, you will be able to see just how inventive and resourceful Thomsons' writers were. There is a reasonable amount of evidence of serials in the boys' papers appearing later in girls' papers in a different guise, with a gender change for the protagonist. The reason for repeating stories was almost certainly a financial one and, to judge by the repeats that I can remember offhand, Thomsons seemed to believe that the normal period for a changeover of readership was five years rather than seven.

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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STARBOY wrote:Well to a certain extent Audiate we do have comic librarys in the UK- Glasgow's Mitchel Library and The British Library in London (to name at least 2) have large amounts of old comics that you can go and look at (from 1800 - present day).
Really???
Oh, oh... I've never before felt so deprived by living in Canada!

Have you been to either? Was it wondeful beyond belief?

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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phoenix4ever wrote: I can only speak about the DC Thomson titles, but I have to say that it was standard practice from at least the Thirties for serials to be rerun, either in their text story papers or in the later picture papers for boys, and it was equally the case in those for girls. Indeed some of Thomsons' more popular serials were repeated several times, and text stories were frequently converted into a picture strip format. If you also include those serials that spawned other stories with a similar plot or theme, not even necessarily in the same paper, you will be able to see just how inventive and resourceful Thomsons' writers were. There is a reasonable amount of evidence of serials in the boys' papers appearing later in girls' papers in a different guise, with a gender change for the protagonist. The reason for repeating stories was almost certainly a financial one and, to judge by the repeats that I can remember offhand, Thomsons seemed to believe that the normal period for a changeover of readership was five years rather than seven.
Wow, fantastic info! Can I ask, how do you know all this? - inside contacts at DC Thomson? I'm particularly fascinated by the boy-stories that became girl-stories! Do you have any examples of this?

The story repeats would also explain why many seemed dated!
And five years does make more sense; I suppose most girls who started comic-buying at, say, age 8 would move on to other things by age 13 (unless they were like me and kept buying comics WHILE starting to read everything from Cosmopolitan to Herman Hesse!)

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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Audiate wrote:
phoenix4ever wrote: I can only speak about the DC Thomson titles, but I have to say that it was standard practice from at least the Thirties for serials to be rerun, either in their text story papers or in the later picture papers for boys, and it was equally the case in those for girls. Indeed some of Thomsons' more popular serials were repeated several times, and text stories were frequently converted into a picture strip format. If you also include those serials that spawned other stories with a similar plot or theme, not even necessarily in the same paper, you will be able to see just how inventive and resourceful Thomsons' writers were. There is a reasonable amount of evidence of serials in the boys' papers appearing later in girls' papers in a different guise, with a gender change for the protagonist. The reason for repeating stories was almost certainly a financial one and, to judge by the repeats that I can remember offhand, Thomsons seemed to believe that the normal period for a changeover of readership was five years rather than seven.
Wow, fantastic info! Can I ask, how do you know all this? - inside contacts at DC Thomson? I'm particularly fascinated by the boy-stories that became girl-stories! Do you have any examples of this?

The story repeats would also explain why many seemed dated!
And five years does make more sense; I suppose most girls who started comic-buying at, say, age 8 would move on to other things by age 13 (unless they were like me and kept buying comics WHILE starting to read everything from Cosmopolitan to Herman Hesse!)
The reprint of DCT stories is fairly obvious once you start to build up runs of a comic. I know that I have commented on how disconcerting it is to buy two comics 6 to 8 years apart and find that the serial that you have been following avidly in one era is actually a reprint from several years before.

Some styles date faster than other, so that might explain why you find one serial feeling dated and others feeling fresh and new. While I have not got a large collection of the girls comics, I would be surprised to find that DCT had not cut the same costs on the girls comics as they had on the boys comics.
I started to say something sensible but my parents took over my brain!

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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Audiate wrote:Wow, fantastic info! Can I ask, how do you know all this? - inside contacts at DC Thomson? I'm particularly fascinated by the boy-stories that became girl-stories! Do you have any examples of this?
How does anybody get such information? I'm sure most people on comicsuk would answer in a broadly similar way. I didn't set out to acquire it as a child. I got some issues of a comic or story paper and I read them. I discovered that I enjoyed them so I got some more. Then I tried other titles on the same basis, and then some more titles etc. I don't think I set out at that age to learn anything. It must have happened through osmosis allied to curiosity. As an adult I did make research more of an issue and consequently I spent most of my holidays over roughly ten years in The British Library reading Thomsons' pre-war boys' story papers and taking copious notes. However, I knew nothing much about Thomsons' girls' papers before the Nineties. Then I bought some. On the same principles as I outlined above, I bought some more. Over the last three years I have acquired thousands of Thomsons' picture papers for boys and girls via eBay. I'm posting some scans which will give you some idea of the crossover and linked stories that I spoke about earlier. As I am only allowed to post three images at a time, I think I will need three posts to do it justice so please be patient. There are three pairs altogether and one individual one. Chained To His Bat is from The Rover in 1956, Chained To Her Racket is from Judy in 1971, although this image is from a repeat in 1978. The second pairing consists of The Gaunt Hounds Are Out from The Wizard in 1935, Heather And The Hounds Of Revenge is from Mandy in 1969. The final pairing is The Whispering Shadow from The Rover in 1946, the girls' story with the same title is from Mandy in 1970. The individual scan is Jenny's Magic Patch from Mandy in 1974. I cannot post an example of Jimmy And His Magic Patch because I only have one issue of The Beano and I don't know what exactly I've done with it.
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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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This is the second batch.
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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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And to finish off, Audiate.
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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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WONDERFUL - thank you so much for sharing! Fascinating stuff.

Do you ever plan to do anything with all that research? Like write a book?
(If you do, I'll certainly buy it!) :)

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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Pheonix, the International Hero website has two frames taken from a Magic Patch story in one of the Beano-Dandy sixty years books - from a storyline where Jimmy ended up on a slave galley, although that isn't obvious from the stills. http://www.internationalhero.co.uk/m/magpatch.htm

Can't scan any examples myself, my scanner's broken. :(

Interesting to discover that Jimmy has a female counterpart - which is also the most recent Magic Patch series as it happens, not counting when Dennis the Menace borrowed Jimmy's pants (which were in the possession of his Granny) in the Beano 65th anniversary issue.

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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Audiate - Yes I booked some time in the Mitchell Library in Glasgow in th eearly 90s to look out their late 50/60s Beanos and some of the old Odhams books (Pow, Wham, Smash, Fantstic)- mostly to drool over Leo Baxendale, Dudley Watkins and Ken Reids work - was pretty much fanboy heaven for me lol.

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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Digifiend wrote:...not counting when Dennis the Menace borrowed Jimmy's pants (which were in the possession of his Granny) in the Beano 65th anniversary issue.
ROFL! Oh, WISH I'd known about that, and bought it...

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

Post by tony ingram »

Come to think of it, recycling basic concepts but altering the genders involved was not unknown at Fleetway, either. Two examples that spring to mind are Ken Reid's Faceache and Martha's Monster Make-up, both of which dealt with kids who could assume monstrous forms, and equally obviously Ivor Lott & Tony Broke and Milly O'Naire & Penny Less, both about a rich snob being constantly outsmarted by their poor but resourceful 'friend'!

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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In between their publication as text stories in the boys papers and their revival as girls picture stories at least two of the examples cited above had already been turned into picture strips in the boys picture papers 'The Gaunt Hounds are Out' in the very first issues of Victor and 'Chained to his Bat' in the pages of Hornet. Roast on Sunday, cold cuts on Monday and soup on Tuesday, Thomsons certainly knew how to get the best out of a good story!

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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Audiate wrote:
Digifiend wrote:...not counting when Dennis the Menace borrowed Jimmy's pants (which were in the possession of his Granny) in the Beano 65th anniversary issue.
ROFL! Oh, WISH I'd known about that, and bought it...
He used them to bring former Beano stars from the past to meet their present day counterparts. Tim Traveller or Fred's Bed could serve the same role five years earlier/later, but The Beano had no time travel strip at the time.

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Re: Looking for Judy comics from the early 80s... or information

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tony ingram wrote:Ivor Lott & Tony Broke and Milly O'Naire & Penny Less, both about a rich snob being constantly outsmarted by their poor but resourceful 'friend'!
When their comics merged so did the strips, the girls becoming the boys' girlfriends. That's how similar they were!

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