Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Buster, Whizzer and Chips, Whoopee, Wham, Smash, you name it!

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Kashgar
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Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Kashgar »

Whizzer and Chips was the first comic to be produced under the IPC publishing banner and the first real attempt by Fleetway/IPC to publish a new, really viable comic title since the arrival of Buster a decade earlier, the short-lived broadsheet-sized Big One (1965) full of old AP reprints and Giggle (1967) awash with European reprints notwithstanding.
Whizzer and Chips was launched on 18th Oct 1969 with the simple but remarkably appealing gimmick of selling two seperate and staunchly partisan 16pg comics, one inside the other, for 6d.
In his 1978 autobiography 'A Very Funny Business' Leo Baxendale, who drew 'Champ' in the early issues of the comic, says that it was a breakthrough title in that it was exclusively devoted to comic strips. Leo is mistaken here as, in the early days, one quarter of the comics' 32pgs were devoted to adventure strips which may have been somewhat less of a page share than adventure strips had in Buster at the time but was certainly more than similar comic titles at D C Thomson were publishing.
So what did that premiere issue contain in Oct 1969 and who drew what?
Me and My Shadow - Terry Bave
Odd-Ball - Mike Lacey
Little Saver - Terry Bave
Kings of the Castle - Mario Capaldi
Give a Dog a Bone - Graham Allen
Sid's Snake - Mike Lacey
Space School - Mike Higgs
Batty Bat -
Angel Face and Dare Devil - Joe Lee (this is from the Denis Gifford listing in the British Comic Catalogue. I know of nothing else this artist drew)
Puddin' Tops - Terry Bave
Karate Kid - Terry Bave
Ginger's Tum - Terry Bave
Parker the Parky -
Harry's Haunted House - Reg Parlett
The Space Accident - John Armstrong ( Denis Gifford lists Roland 'Ron' Turner as the artist in the BCC but he didn't take over the strip till later)
Hetty's Horoscope - Terry Bave
Wear 'em out Wilf - Anon (Denis Gifford lists Norman Mansbridge in the BCC but again this is only true of later strips)
The Spectacular Adventures of Willie Bunk - Frank MacDiarmid
Aqua Lad - Terry Bave
Steadfast McStaunch - Denis Gifford
Hot Rod - Alf Saporito
The Mummy's Curse - Reg Parlett
The Stealer - Tom Kerr
Fred's Family Tree -
Slowcoach -
The Champ - Leo Baxendale
KooKooClub cartoons - Denis Gifford
Minnie's Mixer - Juan Rafart

Please feel free to add to, or argue with, any of the above identifications as I do not claim to have definitive knowledge, by any means, of any of the IPC comic titles.

Kashgar
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Kashgar »

Just realised that I listed 1965 as the publication date of The Big One when the first issue actually appeared in Oct 1964 with the title running for a scant 19 issues before merging with Buster in Feb 1965.

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Peter Gray
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Peter Gray »

do you think Norman Mansbridge drew Parker the Parky -

Batty Bat is that anther Terry Bave?

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ISPYSHHHGUY
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by ISPYSHHHGUY »

I definately was taken by 'WHIZZER and CHIPS' in the first couple of years of it's run, and looking at this list you have kindly provided, kashgar, a surprizingly high proportion of these strips are still memorable almost 4 decades later.

This comics seemed MASSIVE [in page-count, not sheet format] in comparison to the D C THOMSON titles in the shops at the time. Looking at E-BAY today, it is the earlier issues that appear to be actively-sought after, and I certainly would go along with this: the overall quality reflected a decent attempt to turn out a quality comic by the vast majority of artists and writers.

I personally hope to obtain a few early copies myself at some stage: 'COR!!' also was a decent title in the early editions.

However I often felt that IPC seemed to encounter problems sustaining quality within their characters over a long period, and after the initial novelty and early vitality had disippated, many IPC characters appeared to start getting churned-out on an almost 'HANNA-BARBERA' type basis, -----perhaps it was easier for DCT [who excelled in long-term durability within their strips] to keep control over their smaller pool of characters.

This theory is backed up by later IPC entries 'SHIVER and SHAKE/MONSTER FUN' [1973/75] both of which shone brightly over their short [but very memorable] runs.

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stevezodiac
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by stevezodiac »

I really liked Whizzer and Chips - it had a warmth to it that didn't exist in Whoopee or Cor. It's funny but in every comic I have ever bought there are always a few strips that I never read and in W&C Space School was one of them. I think Slowcoach was drawn by Peter Maddocks at some point. Maybe from issue 1.

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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Raven »

Ah, Whizzer and Chips - a great, packed comic in its early days, though some nonsense is talked about it sometimes nowadays. Wasn't it explained in Comics Britannia that you were supposed to throw away the comic you didn't like and keep the other? Surely nobody did that! Nor were they supposed to - it would have made it half a comic rather than the much-mooted two comics in one.

Peter - didn't you say that you had no interest in collecting early Whizzer and Chips? I was surprised by that because its early years (and I think it was especially strong through to 1972) really *was* IPC humour at its best. One of the nice things in the early issues is the great variety of different art styles which all complemented each other.

Me and My Shadow was peak Terry Bave, and Aqua Lad, though seemingly not too well remembered, was one of his most creative strips for me. For Jimmy Jeckle and Master Hide he was on top form, too.

Harry's Haunted House and The Mummy's Curse were two of Reg Parlett's best 70s strips, too, for me - though both were taken over by different artists after a while.

Fred's Family Tree, Space School, Scribbler's Page, The Scarey's of St. Mary's were all odd, energetic, freaky little strips which added to its appeal. The comic certainly seemed to become more conventional as the 70s progressed and this kind of strip was replaced by the more formulaic likes of Sweet Tooth, Lazy Bones and Lucky Dick. Those early strips, and Alfie in Africa, The Backwood Boys, Hot Rod, Monkey Nutts, Why, Dad, Why?, Knight School, etc. seem to represent a lost, forgotten Whizzer and Chips now as people probably mostly remember the comic post its merger with Knockout.

Stevezodiac, I think W and C did become 'warmer' in its later years, though I think those early issues do present a rather freaky and aggressive world full of meanies, scrapping kids, and quite abrasive characters. Even Sid's Snake could have a fair bit of conflict in its early days! Cor!! did seem to have more than its fair share of trouble making and downtrodden types but maybe those at-odds-with-the-world type characters particularly appealed to children.

ISPYSHHHGUY - as we've said before, IPC always seemed to have a thing for launching new titles; they often seemed to siphon off the best artists to work on the latest new launches which seemed to get the best new story ideas, too, so the long running titles did seem to lose something after a while.

Joining up with Knockout did give W and C a little boost - Pete's Pockets, Beat Your Neighbour and Joker were decent additions, but the overall content is decidely much lesser by 1974. I remember the increasing number of ads, too. But there'd always be good new ideas like Super Store cropping up.

But what was everyone? Whiz Kid or Chip-ite? I was a Chip-ite myself.

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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Kremmen »

(Harry Hiil mode)

Whiz Kid? Or Chip-Ite? Which was better?

There's only one way to find out...

FIIIGGHHHHTTTT!!!! :lol:

Raven
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Raven »

Kremmen wrote:(Harry Hiil mode)

Whiz Kid? Or Chip-Ite? Which was better?

There's only one way to find out...

FIIIGGHHHHTTTT!!!! :lol:


My money would probably be on Shiner if it came to fisticuffs.

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Peter Gray
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Peter Gray »

Well I bought Whizzer and chips in the 80's so thats the main reason I prefer that era..nostalgia...aaahhh!!

Also it got better when Krazy joined Whizzer and chips...I mostly collect from there onwards...(Though I do have quit a few from the early period...they are fun as well)
Buytonic boy...Strange Hill...Junior Rotter...The Champ drawn by Jack...the great posters..
http://www.toonhound.com/poster-23.htm
.Grim Gym...Freddy 3D...World wide school..Guy Gorilla...The drips...Watford Gapp...loved Belinda Bewitched..

and that is without mentioning the usual favourites...Joker..Oddball...Sweet tooth..Sid's Snake....Shiner...Lazy Bones...
Sweeny later on..

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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Kashgar »

Re artist Joe Lee who drew Angel Face and Dare Devil, on looking through my own Beano Diaries I find he did draw at least one other comic strip, Jungle Jim in the 1971 Beano Book.

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stevezodiac
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by stevezodiac »

I can't remember the actual name of the magazine - something like "TV Nostalgia" but the latest issue which is on sale in Smiths has a two page article about Whizzer and Chips. Cover blurb asks "were you a whizz kid or a chip-ite?"

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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Raven »

These may well remain a mystery but does anyone have any idea who the artists were for these two strips, running in Whizzer and Chips in 1971 - and of anything else they may have drawn?

THE BACKWOOD BOYS - a packed half-page humour strip about P.C. 1 of the Canadian Mounties which ran for quite a while. It had a very distinctive cartoony style and I can't think of any IPC strip of the time I'd immediately think was by the same artist. Could it have been a reprint?

ALFIE IN AFRICA - a nicely drawn adventure series about a boy staying at a zoo ranch in East Africa, and getting mixed up with villainous types. Lots of lions and monkeys and that.

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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Lew Stringer »

Raven wrote: THE BACKWOOD BOYS - a packed half-page humour strip about P.C. 1 of the Canadian Mounties which ran for quite a while. It had a very distinctive cartoony style and I can't think of any IPC strip of the time I'd immediately think was by the same artist. Could it have been a reprint?
It was written and drawn by Roy Davis (1921-2004) and I think it was a reprint from Wham! c.1966. (Some of the later ones may not have been by Roy, I can't remember offhand. He also did The Good Sports for Wham!, which definitely was drawn by someone else after Roy's initial strips.)

Roy Davis wrote many humour scripts for IPC. Rather than send in a script he sketched the page out in rough pencil on an A3 sheet. His gags were always very visual, due to his work in the animation field in the 1950s.

He supplied many of the later Vampire Brats scripts this way, which I drew for Buster in the 1990s.

http://tinyurl.com/6kox57

Lew
The blog of British comics: http://lewstringer.blogspot.com
My website: http://www.lewstringer.com
Blog about my own work: http://lewstringercomics.blogspot.com/

Raven
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by Raven »

Lew Stringer wrote:
It was written and drawn by Roy Davis (1921-2004) and I think it was a reprint from Wham! c.1966. (Some of the later ones may not have been by Roy, I can't remember offhand. He also did The Good Sports for Wham!, which definitely was drawn by someone else after Roy's initial strips.)

Roy Davis wrote many humour scripts for IPC. Rather than send in a script he sketched the page out in rough pencil on an A3 sheet. His gags were always very visual, due to his work in the animation field in the 1950s.

He supplied many of the later Vampire Brats scripts this way, which I drew for Buster in the 1990s.

http://tinyurl.com/6kox57

Lew

Thanks for that, Lew; I'd often wondered. The animation background is interesting as the style reminded me more of animated cartoons - especially those stylish 1950s UPA releases - than a traditional UK comic style. The scripts had quite an individual style, too.

I'm not familiar with Vampire Brats, but it sounds good!
Last edited by Raven on 01 Sep 2008, 21:53, edited 1 time in total.

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philcom55
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Re: Whizzer and Chips - IPC's definitive comic.

Post by philcom55 »

I haven't got any 1971 Whizzers to check but I would guess that 'The Backwood Boys' is a reprint of Roy Davis' similarly titled strip (later called PC1 of the Mounties) which ran in Lion from 1962-64.

- Phil R.

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