Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Comics: BIMBO (1961)


Remaining in 1961 for now here's a blog post on Bimbo comic celebrating its first Christmas (unless the previous week's issue was also seasonal, as had been the case with TV Express). Bimbo was DC Thomson's comic for early readers, preparing them for The Beano when they were a little older. (Personally I rarely bothered with "nursery comics" as they were known, going straight to The Dandy and TV Century 21 instead).


The front and back covers were by the great Dudley D. Watkins, artist of Desperate Dan and The Broons amongst many others. With a skilled, adaptable style he could turn his hand to comics for any ages and was perfect for the Tom Thumb strip.

Only 6 of Bimbo's 20 pages were in full colour. Here's the Cinderella centrespread strip, expanding on the original fairytale with Cinders meeting other fairytale folk. I don't know who the artist is unfortunately but it's a nice job.


Here's Bimbo himself, yes it's a boy, back in the days before the name took on another meaning. Artwork by Bob Dewar...


Bill Ritchie had two pages in the comic. One was Baby Crockett and the other was Pip the Penguin. Most of you are familiar with the former character, so here's Pip...



Next: Forward in time... but to when?

6 comments:

Mark said...

I love the art style on those colour pages. It looks visually wonderful.

Lew Stringer said...

The artists are all top of the league of course but the superb 'photogravure' printing helps too. Bimbo had the same type of printing as the original Eagle, TV Century 21, and TV Express, and it really brought out the richness of the colours.

Diego Jourdan said...

Bob Dewar's work is so good! I wish there were still "nursery comics" out there, as they published exactly the sort of material that suits me best as an artist...

Anonymous said...

Those Dudley Watkins and Bill Ritchie pages are beautiful; thanks for sharing them with us.

David Simpson

Lew Stringer said...

Hi Diego,
You'd think it'd be a no-brainer for publishers to produce more nursery comics to help children learn to read. Unfortunately it's far cheaper to publish activity mags instead and also such 'make and do' mags are welcomed by education experts because they stimulate thinking. Now WE know that comics also stimulate the imagination, but as it's more subtle than colouring a picture it's not seen to be as important.

Diego Jourdan said...

Indeed!

However, i do not mind "activity mags", as they also provide work for illustrators such as ourselves ^_^

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