Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Talk here about just about anything associated with British comics or story papers and the industry that does not fit in any other forum.
There are separate fora open to registered members for discussing specific comics, artists, websites etc.

Moderators: AndyB, colcool007

Post Reply
matrix
Posts: 817
Joined: 03 Sep 2011, 12:37

Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by matrix »

Most of my 'Jack and Jill' comics are from the 50s and 60s, I previously ignored these Womble examples from the mid seventies, I think it was more the subject matter than anything else! But over time they have grown on me and on closer inspection I now like the work Blasco has done on these covers. I read somewhere that Antonio Lupatelli, Bert Felstead, and Hugh Mcneill worked on the Wombles as well.

Would anyone like to comment on the Blasco examples? I realise it's probably not his best work as per the 'Playhour' centrespreads that he produced? But the Wombles, not the easist subject matter to work on!

Anyone have any of the other artists work on the Wombles?
Attachments
Womble.1.jpg
Womble.2.jpg
Womble.3.jpg

User avatar
ISPYSHHHGUY
Posts: 4275
Joined: 14 Oct 2007, 13:05
Location: BLITZVILLE, USA

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by ISPYSHHHGUY »

great stuff, Matrix: I love the quirkier, more personal style of the artists' work in these comics---unlike today, where the look of all the TV characters seem to be pre-approved by a committee which usually leads to very bland material indeed.

User avatar
philcom55
Posts: 5170
Joined: 14 Jun 2006, 11:56

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by philcom55 »

I agree that from the 1970s both Playhour and Jack & Jill became a pale shadow of what they'd been during their glory days of the 1950s and 1960s. As you say, though, the cover strips tended to be an exception to this - even if the Magic Roundabout and the Wombles were licensed properties and not original creations.

As far as I can tell Jesus Blasco stopped drawing the Wombles towards the end of 1974, after which Bert Felstead and one other unidentified artist appear to have handled the lion's share of the strips.

Of the examples shown below I'm pretty sure that the first is by Felstead (his interior Fliptail stories being made up of reprints), while the second is by 'regular artist 2'.

Image

Image

- Phil Rushton

matrix
Posts: 817
Joined: 03 Sep 2011, 12:37

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by matrix »

Thanks Rab, who would have ever thought all those years ago, that at this time we would be discussing how good 'Wombles' look!

Good to see those examples to compare, they all look good.

Interesting that the Illustration art gallery have some 'Womble' original artwork, in the same style as shown on your two examples Phil, but all credited to Blasco.

The Cambridge book and print gallery also have original Womble artwork for sale, with as far as I can see no credits, they also quote the artists that worked on the strip.

http://www.cambridgeprints.com/illustra ... MBLES.html

matrix
Posts: 817
Joined: 03 Sep 2011, 12:37

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by matrix »

Another character that ran in 'Jack and Jill' from April 1967 is 'Fliptail the Otter', as mentioned by Phil on the earlier post.

The scans below are from mid 67 just after it debuted, so possibly by Bert Felstead? Two are from a midweek 'Jack and Jill' and the larger illustration is from the 1967 holiday special.

According to 'Look and learn' again! Langhammer, and Bernard Long, also worked on the strip, can anyone add dates to the artists?

Thanks.
Attachments
Fliptail.1.jpg
Fliptail.2.jpg
Fliptail.3.jpg

User avatar
ISPYSHHHGUY
Posts: 4275
Joined: 14 Oct 2007, 13:05
Location: BLITZVILLE, USA

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by ISPYSHHHGUY »

A similarly-themed-and-looking comic [a glossy] from this earlier era I used to devour visually was HAROLD HARE [or maybe this was the name of his strip, hopefully someone can clarify].

Extremely good full-colour values throughout, with a very 'storybook' look, these comics kept my spirits up during my stays in 1960s hospitals.

Another character from this comic that still stalks my memory [in the nicest possible way] was called Walter Hot Water Bottle, an absolute surrealist gem!

User avatar
philcom55
Posts: 5170
Joined: 14 Jun 2006, 11:56

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by philcom55 »

matrix wrote:Interesting that the Illustration art gallery have some 'Womble' original artwork, in the same style as shown on your two examples Phil, but all credited to Blasco.
I must admit I wondered about the reliability of that attribution too. I think part of the problem is that some people have been identifying Blasco's Womble strips by his tendency to draw panel borders with a distinctively wavy line - as can be seen in the example below.

Image

While this peculiarity does indeed distinguish his work from Bert Felstead and most of the other Wombles artists, it unfortunately doesn't work with 'Regular Artist 2' who seems to have liked the effect so much he started using it himself - as can be seen in this example:

Image

To my mind, in spite of the similar panel borders, one only as to look at the way in which the Wombles' faces are drawn in these examples to realize that the strips were actually drawn by two artists with very different styles!


Fliptail appears to have been particularly popular with readers since most of the strips were apparently reprinted several times over a relatively short space of time. Comparing these reprints from 1976 and 1978 with the original Felstead art from my own collection I think it's possible to see that the cheaper paper used in later issues of Jack & Jill resulted in much less satisfactory reproduction than the old, glossy pages.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

(According to the boards these strips originally appeared in 1969 and 1968)

- Phil Rushton
Last edited by philcom55 on 14 Jun 2013, 11:28, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
stevezodiac
Posts: 4805
Joined: 23 May 2006, 20:43
Location: space city

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by stevezodiac »

I have quite a few Harold Hare's Own Weekly, it was TV21 sized and on ordinary paper. The early forerunners of these titles were Chick's Own, Tiny Tots and Bubbles. The captions had the words hyphenated syll-a-ble by syll-a-ble.

User avatar
ISPYSHHHGUY
Posts: 4275
Joined: 14 Oct 2007, 13:05
Location: BLITZVILLE, USA

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by ISPYSHHHGUY »

Fantastic work!

matrix
Posts: 817
Joined: 03 Sep 2011, 12:37

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by matrix »

Agree with that, how much nursery art do you have Phil? They would look good framed or maybe together spaced in one big frame? What size are they, six by four?
stevezodiac wrote:I have quite a few Harold Hare's Own Weekly, it was TV21 sized and on ordinary paper. The early forerunners of these titles were Chick's Own, Tiny Tots and Bubbles. The captions had the words hyphenated syll-a-ble by syll-a-ble.
What about 'Rainbow', where does that fit in the mix? Was it any good?

User avatar
philcom55
Posts: 5170
Joined: 14 Jun 2006, 11:56

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by philcom55 »

I've got quite a lot of original art from Playhour, Jack & Jill and Harold Hare - including about two dozen 'Freddie Frog' pages by Douglas Turnbull. In fact it was acquiring some of these at near-giveaway prices a few years ago that sparked my current interest in those titles. For the most part they were remounted on boards about twice the size of the printed area.

Funnily enough I'm hoping to pick up some more pieces tomorrow! :xfingers:

With the exception of Tiny Tots, which was briefly revamped towards the end of its run, I tend to find the earlier AP nursery titles like Rainbow, Playbox and Chick's Own to be considerably less interesting than Leonard Matthews' new publications. In fact they barely seem to have changed at all since the 1920s, which means that by the 1950s they already looked hopelessly old-fashioned to me.

- Phil Rushton

User avatar
Peter Gray
Posts: 4222
Joined: 28 Feb 2006, 00:07
Location: Surrey Guildford
Contact:

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by Peter Gray »

love seeing all this and especially the original artwork..
so the otter strip how many years did it last before reprints took over?

1967-

User avatar
stevezodiac
Posts: 4805
Joined: 23 May 2006, 20:43
Location: space city

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by stevezodiac »

There was another title called Bo-Peep. Yes Tiny Tots went over to slightly glossy paper with the covers having a yellow background.

User avatar
philcom55
Posts: 5170
Joined: 14 Jun 2006, 11:56

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by philcom55 »

Peter Gray wrote:love seeing all this and especially the original artwork..
so the otter strip how many years did it last before reprints took over?

1967-
According to Denis Gifford the first Fliptail episode was dated 15th April 1967 (Funnily enough I'd assumed it was inspired by the popularity of the film version of Gavin Maxwell's 'Ring of Bright Water', but that wasn't released until early 1969!). I'm not sure when the last new strip was drawn, though it's possible that reprints and original material may have alternated for a time. The general rule seems to have been that stories weren't re-used until about five years had elapsed - so maybe about 1972? (they were definitely being reprinted by 1974)

I only managed to pick up one new page of Fliptail artwork yesterday - not too bad for just £2 though! Sadly, vast quantities of British artwork were dumped on skips and lost forever during the 1970s and 1980s - interestingly this particular piece from June 1969 seems to have been singled out and preserved as a style guide so that other artists could check how Fliptail, Debbie and her house were supposed to be drawn.

Here's the splash panel:

Image

Felstead again, of course!

- Phil Rushton

User avatar
Peter Gray
Posts: 4222
Joined: 28 Feb 2006, 00:07
Location: Surrey Guildford
Contact:

Re: Jack and Jill (Teddy Bear)

Post by Peter Gray »

Its great you are collecting all these gems..
thanks for a good guess when it ended..
Was most strips in Jack and Jill and Playhour reprints from 1974..except covers and back pages..

Post Reply