Time for another look at a comic that was published by DC Thomson. The Topper ran for 37 years from February 1953 to September 1990, at which point it merged with The Beezer. Again this is a review of an issue that I found in a charity shop (No. 1869, 26 November 1988, which seems to prefer to call itself a paper rather than a comic), so here’s a look at the strips that appeared in this 24-page issue.
Pages 1, 12 & 13: Beryl The Peril. The main mischievous character in The Topper who first appeared on the cover in 1986 and stayed there until the end, this is a character that I remember enjoying in The Beezer And Topper which I did read regularly, and after that closed Beryl moved to The Dandy.
Page 2: Willie Fixit. A boy who is always trying to help out people, but ends up causing chaos and is rather accident prone, sort-of like The Dandy‘s Smasher.
Page 3: Square Eyes The TV Fan. This is a boy called Jack O’Nory who is always watching nonsense on the television much to the irritation of his father.
Page 4: Two adverts; one for the 1989 Dandy, Bash Street Kids and Beano annuals, and one for the two latest Dandy Comic Libraries No. 135 and No. 136. “Kelly’s Corner will be back next week”.
Page 5: Pearl. A rather daft dog.
Pages 6 & 7: Send For Kelly And His Assistant Cedric In The Case Of The Big Freeze! A secret agent called Nick Kelly alongside Cedric tries to solve another case. His stories were in multi parts and ran over several weeks.
Pages 8, 9 & 24. Tricky Dicky. A character who always liked playing crazy pranks on people. Some rather terrific exclamations in this strip. “Glooshle!” “Drooble!” “Twibble!” Dicky also returns on the back page with his Big Gag!
Page 10: Smart Art’s Sketchbook. A chap with a beret and moustache who draws things that come to life called Smart Art? Now where have I seen that before?
Page 11: Jimmy Jinx And What He Thinks. A boy who runs into problems by having an angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other who advise him on things and cause him lots of trouble.
Page 14: Potty Inventions: Another Barmy Batch! Some characters who try to create things, but none of them work properly.
Page 15: Peter Piper. A boy with a magical panpipe. Every strip started with a rhyme. “You’ve got a cheek…” “Chomp, chomp, squeak!”
Pages 16 & 17: Kuckoo Komedy. Two pages of silly short strips.
Pages 18 & 19. The Video Kid. A boy who enjoyed acting out parodies of TV shows, including “Halty Towers”.
Page 20: Hungry Horace. A boy with a big appetite who likes to eat.
Page 21: The Skratch Squad. A bunch of cats have adventures, seemingly a feline version of The Beano‘s Pup Parade.
Page 22: Tom And Terry. A pair of boys who are always fighting one another. This page also features an advert for the 1989 Topper Book.
Page 23: Ali’s Baba. A small boy whose life is aided by a guardian angel-type character. Somewhat surprisingly Mickey The Monkey who was the original Topper cover star and one of the most famous longest-serving characters doesn’t feature in this issue and seems to have been pensioned off from the comic by this point.