welcome and enjoy!

Hi and welcome to my blog about comics from other people’s childhood! It is dedicated primarily to British humour comics of the 60s and 70s. The reason they are not from my childhood is simply because I didn’t live in the UK back then (nor do I live there now). I knew next to nothing about them until fairly recently but since then I’ve developed a strong liking for the medium and amassed a large collection, including a number of complete or near complete sets. My intention is to use this blog as a channel for sharing my humble knowledge about different titles, favourite characters and creators as I slowly research my collection.

QUICK TIP: this blog is a sequence of posts covering one particular comic at a time. The sequence follows a certain logic, so for maximum results it is recommended that the blog is read from the oldest post up.

Copyright of all images and quotations used here is with their respective owners. Any such copyrighted material is used exclusively for educational purposes and will be removed at first notice. All other text copyright Irmantas P.

Sunday, August 23, 2020


Here’s the Scream Inn guestbook for 1976, documenting who called and when. All 52 weekly episodes in WHOOPEE! comic were by the regular artist Brian Walker.

January 3, 1976         · Sleeping Rip Van Winkle. A nice episode with Innkeeper giving a toast to 1976:

January 10, 1976       · Little Jack Horner, super-star of the nursery rhyme world

January 17, 1976       · Manmoon

January 24, 1976       · Abominable Snowman

January 31, 1976       · Berty Blubber - the fattest man in the World

February 7, 1976       · Figure-skating champion

February 14, 1976     · Wally the Woodworm

February 21, 1976     · Scarecrow

February 28, 1976     · Simple Simon. This episode is special because of two reasons: resident spooks often got desperate when the guest turned out to be indifferent to their best efforts, but it was the first - and the only - time that the whole crowd of WHOOPEE! characters showed up to help them. Secondly, the caller actually wins and collects the prize, but then returns it – the lad is really simple minded… 

March 6, 1976            · Innkeeper's Twin. I like this panel with the old mirror trick; note that the two pairs of eyes are also playing the mirror game in the background… 

March 13, 1976          · Dr. Livingstone

March 20, 1976          · Mysto the great mind-reader. The coffin-shaped TV set in the first panel is a nice example of cool industrial design :)

March 27, 1976          · Jack-Of-All-Trades

April 3, 1976              · Fireman. Check out the creepy-crawlies in the foreground:

April 10, 1976            · Rugby player

April 17, 1976            · Dancing bear

April 24, 1976            · Old King Neptune

May 1, 1976               · Cat-Man, American-type comic book super-hero. This one is really full of sound effects, and resident spooks put on their Comic-Con outfits:

May 8, 1976               · Blackbeard the Pirate

May 15, 1976             · Archaeologist

May 22, 1976             · Old King Cole

May 29, 1976             · Demolition Expert

June 5, 1976               · The Great Flyin' Fred - Trapeze Artiste Extraordinaire

June 12, 1976             · Golfer (Brigadier Bunkerton)

June 19, 1976             · Painter. From time to time the artist embellished the strip with nice page-wide panels. Page two of this episode had the first example of that:

June 26, 1976             · Der Red Baron - famous WWI Air Ace. This episode also had a page-wide panel:

July 3, 1976                · Clock maker

July 10, 1976              · A Whoopee! reader. I like the ending of this story and how it smoothly leads to call to action:

July 17, 1976              · Newspaper seller

July 24, 1976              · Cobbler

July 31, 1976              · Toffee-nosed kid. Here the spooks are desperate again, so they summon the ghosts from the mansion of the caller’s Dad:


August 7, 1976           · Coalman. Other WHOOPEE! stars made quite a few guest-appearances in the strip in the previous years, but this was only the second time when this happened in 1976 (the first one was in issue of 28th Feb.). Of course, the Bumpkin Billionaires were the least-likely candidates to call at Scream Inn to win some money because their greatest desire was to get rid of the cash they already owned. As could be expected, their scheme to waste a million in this episode didn’t work – see the full episode HERE. 

August 14, 1976         · Lolipop man

August 21, 1976         · Jockey

August 28, 1976         · Toy Boy – The only episode in 1976 when a fellow star from WHOOPEE! tried to win the prize at the suggestion of a reader. The episode also features characters of The Ghost Train – the strip that Brian Walker illustrated in WHOOPEE! before the arrival of Scream Inn. See the full episode HERE. 

September 4, 1976     · Cricketer

September 11, 1976   · Al Capone the notorious gangster:

September 18, 1976   · Queen's guard

September 25, 1976   · King Kong

October 2, 1976         · Little Miss Muffet

October 9, 1976         · Sheepdog

October 16, 1976       · Piglet. This episode was reprinted in full and received a couple of paragraphs in the book “Comics: Ideology, Power and the Critics” that I mentioned in the previous post: 

October 23, 1976       · Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland

October 30, 1976       · Million Dollar Man - a Bionic Bloke

November 6, 1976     · Auctioneer 

November 13, 1976   · Little Boy Blue

November 20, 1976   · Stuntman 

November 27, 1976   · Parachutist

December 4, 1976      · Boxing kangaroo

December 11, 1976    · Disc Jockey

December 18, 1976    · Doctor Doolittle

December 25, 1976    · Fairy – Xmas episode


Come back soon for the last part covering the year 1977...

Characters are © Rebellion Publishing Ltd



Monday, August 17, 2020


The recent passing of Brian Walker reminded me to cover the WHOOPEE! run of Scream Inn. The strip started in SHIVER AND SHAKE comic in March 1973 and continued there throughout the 79-week run of the paper, ending on 5th October 1974. I covered the SHIVER AND SHAKE run of this highly entertaining feature in a series of posts, starting HERE

Innkeeper was one of the characters shown marching to meet the crowd of WHOOPEE! stars on the centrespread of the  ‘Big News’ issue of SHIVER AND SHAKE:

An inverted version of the same drawing was used on the centrespread of that week’s WHOOPEE!:


The transfer of Scream Inn to the new combined comic resulted in the cancellation of The Ghost Train – another spook-dominated comedy horror strip that Brian Walker drew since the first issue of WHOOPEE! Here is how it ended in the last pre-merger issue of the magazine:


The issue of WHOOPEE AND SHIVER & SHAKE cover-dated 12th October 1974 marked the start of the strip’s thrill-filled run that lasted nearly three years till 1st October, 1977. The strip was part of the ‘haunted’ Shiver section of the combined paper. Scream Inn picked up exactly where it had left off in SHIVER AND SHAKE – it was a reader participation feature where readers could win a pound for suggesting a character who’d venture to spend a night in the haunted bedroom of the creepy establishment and win a million quid! 



The strip was given a new gloomy masthead, showing the inn and its uninviting surroundings, complete with the ‘We’re Only Here for the Fear’ sign, as someone rightly noted on Twitter – undoubtedly inspired by Double Diamond ad campaign slogan in the 70s…

The Scream Inn poster in WHOOPEE! cover-dated 13th September, 1975 (so nearly a year after the strip made the jump to WHOOPEE!) offers a perfect summary of what it was about, and introduces the resident spooks:


A closer look reveals that the poster features not just all the humanoid characters but also the other regulars, including the centipede with the Union Jack attached to its tail (first seen in the issue of 21st June 1975), the Father and Son duo of spiders Cyril and Sid, and even the two mystery creatures whose eyes shine out from the dark corners in nearly every indoors panel of the strip. The snake that was another regular is not featured in the poster, for some reason…

Scream Inn is one of the very few humour strips in British comics (if not the only one) that was covered in a scientific analysis: it received as many as 30 pages in the book “Comics: Ideology, Power and the Critics” by Martin Barker published by Manchester University Press in 1989. The book offers some interesting insights and findings of the researcher, and I can thoroughly recommend it to fans of Scream Inn. Here is the cover of the book and a little extract from the Scream Inn chapter:


I have reconstructed the Scream Inn guest book, ‘documenting’ who and when called at the ghastly establishment and tried to win the prize. Below is the list of the callers, starting from the first combined WHOOPEE AND SHIVER & SHAKE in 1974, till the end of 1975, with a few complete episodes. The next two posts will cover the years 1976 and 1977. 


October 12, 1974        · Ron Rain, the Famous Western Film Star. I decided to show it here because it was the first episode in WHOOPEE! The menu board in the opening panel was a fun little feature in the vast majority of the episodes. Brian Walker and Cliff Brown (the scriptwriter) probably had lots of fun inventing the names of the dishes...


October 19, 1974        · Super-store lift attendant

October 26, 1974        · Secret Agent (looks like I-Spy from SPARKY comic). This is one of very few examples in British comics when a character appeared in a publication produced by the competitor. Brian Walker illustrated 'I-Spy' in DC Thomson’s SPARKY comic, so the inclusion of a look-alike in a paper published by IPC was a cheeky experiment on his part. Check it out HERE

November 2, 1974      · Vacuum Chimney Sweep

November 9, 1974      · Chap with stew pot on his head so that he can't see Scream Inn ghosts and thus won't be frightened by them

November 16, 1974    · Boy Scout

November 23, 1974    · Frankie Stein – the big star in SHIVER AND SHAKE and later WHOOPEE! See the full episode HERE

November 30, 1974    · Road Hole Night Watchman 


December 7, 1974       · Donny Dazzle, the great singing star of stage, screen, TV and radio

December 14, 1974     · ACME vacuum cleaner company representative

December 21, 1974     · Maximus Bulge, the Strongest Man in the World

(NOTE: The paper was affected by industrial action and missed three issues at the junction of 1974 and 1975)

January 18, 1975         · Burglar

January 25, 1975         · Postman

February 1, 1975         · Florence Nightingale, the famous nurse

February 8, 1975         · Ghoul Getters Ltd. – fellow WHOOPEE! stars; interestingly, the episode also gives a nod to Fun Fear – another horror comedy strip in WHOOPEE! See the whole episode HERE

February 15, 1975       · Bud Gee the Birdman - lad who thinks he should have been born a bird

February 22, 1975       · Robot

March 1, 1975             · Mesmeraldi, the finest hypnotist in the world

March 8, 1975             · Indian snake-charmer

March 15, 1975           · Laughing policeman

March 22, 1975           · Septimus Moneyshuffle, the Miser

March 29, 1975           · Kung Fu Man

April 5, 1975               · Frank the Frogman - shark hunter

April 12, 1975             · Bravest Redskin Chief

April 19, 1975             · Vaxo the Ventriloquist

April 26, 1975             · Mr. Cannon Ball- human cannon ball from the circus

May 3, 1975                · Orrible Hole – fellow WHOOPEE! star, see the full episode HERE

May 10, 1975              · Dick Turpentine - the famous rough highwayman


May 17, 1975              · Old Mother Hubbard

May 24, 1975              · Tax Inspector

May 31, 1975              · Retired ghost

June 7, 1975                · Caveman

June 14, 1975              · Circus Clown

June 21, 1975              · Walter Tapp the plumber

June 28, 1975              · Willie Wipem the  window cleaner

July 5, 1975                 · Bully from nearby school

July 12, 1975               · Astronaut

July 19, 1975               · Little green man

July 26, 1975               · Farmer Blewett


August 2, 1975             · Scared Stiff Sam – fellow star from WHOOPEE! See the full episode HERE 

August 9, 1975           · Gas meter reader from the gas board

August 16, 1975         · Head waiter at the "Hotel de Plush"

August 23, 1975         · Fearless Fernando the lion tamer

August 30, 1975         · Evil Eye - fellow-character from WHOOPEE! See the full episode HERE 

September 6, 1975      · Harry Knockitt, the carpenter

September 13, 1975    · Owner of humble Chinese take away food shop

September 20, 1975    · Motorcycle scramble rider

September 27, 1975    · Telephone engineer (hopes to spend the night in a phone booth)

October 4, 1975          · Whoopee! office boy. An interesting example of a strip involving a member of WHOOPEE! staff. The office boy’s name was Ossie and he was in charge of the Letters section of the paper. Many readers addressed their letters directly to him:


October 11, 1975        · Antique dealer

October 18, 1975        · Wriggletto the great Escapologist

October 25, 1975        · Optician

November 1, 1975      · Sailor

November 8, 1975      · Beefeater from the Tower of London


November 15, 1975    · Thor, the Mighty Norse God of Thunder

November 22, 1975    · Fred Fizzog, the rubber-faced man

November 29, 1975    · Motorist

December 6, 1975       · Sweeny Toddler – Fellow WHOOPEE! star. See the full episode HERE 

December 13, 1975     · Writer of Ghost Stories

December 20, 1975     · Deep-sea diver

December 27, 1975     · Cinderella (X-mas episode)

  Characters are © Rebellion Publishing Ltd