Publisher: DC Thomson
Publication Dates: 23 January 1965 – 9 July 1977
Number of Issues Published: 652 (#1 – #652)
Color: Colour Cover; Black & White Interior
Paper Stock: Newsprint
Information thanks to the Grand Comics Database
Sparky was a British comic published weekly by DC Thomson, that ran from (issue dates) 23 January 1965 to 9 July 1977 when it merged with The Topper after 652 issues. From 1965-1980 the comic published an annual entitled The Sparky Book. It was a DC Thomson comic, originally aimed at a slightly younger audience to The Beano and The Dandy later it was aimed at the same audience. It changed its name to The Sparky Comic in 1973.
List of comic strips
Strips which featured in Sparky at some point during the course of its 12-year run included.
The adventures of a black boy who wore a grass skirt. Sparky was the original cover story until replaced with The Moonsters.
The Moonsters by Artist Bill Ritchie. Green aliens living on the moon. Originally on the back page, but soon became the cover story.
Dreamy Dave and Dozy Dora by Artist Pamela Chapaeu. A brother and sister who constantly dozed off and shared the same bizarre but vivid fantasy dreams.
Hungry Horace by Artist George Drysdale. (originally from The Dandy) A boy who thought of nothing but eating.
Keyhole Kate by Artist George Drysdale. (originally from The Dandy) She was a nosey girl with pigtails and glasses who spied through keyholes. Later moved back to The Dandy.
Joe Bann and his Big Banjo
Freddie the Fearless Fly (Originally in The Dandy.)
Jeff ye Jolly Jester
Hairy Dan. This strip was originally in The Beano.
Pansy Potter by Artist John Geering. Revival of a strip from The Beano.
Frosty McNab. Revival of a strip from The Beano.
Cuckoo in the Clock
Black Jack the Chimney Sweep
Grandma Jolly and her Brolly
Peter Piper. A boy with magic pipes which could make objects and pictures alive, revival of story from The Magic Comic.
Winnie the Witch. A strip with the same name appeared in The Beano.
The Slowdown Express
Granny Cupp and her Flying Saucer
My Grockle and Me by Artist George Drysdale. Revival of a strip from The Rover and later The Dandy
Meddlesome Matty. (Originally in The Dandy.) A girl whose meddling always got her into trouble.
Charlie Chutney. (Originally a 1940s Dandy Character.)
Big Billy Bigg Belgian import, known as Jerom. Drawn by Eduard De Rop.
The Snooks Belgian Import, known as De Familie Snoek. Drawn by Eduard De Rop.
Clever Claire Belgian Import, drawn by Jean Roba. Studio of Willy Vandersteen.
John Bulldog/Barney Bulldog by Artist Bill Ritchie. Similar to Biffo the Bear and the third cover strip. Name changed to Barney Bulldog in issue 211 [1st February 1969.]
L-Cars by Artist Bill Hill. Two incompetent policemen named Cedric and Frederic (the name comes from the contemporary show Z-Cars, but with a pun on learning ‘L-plates’)
Spoofer McGraw by Artist Gordon Bell. “He tells tall tales”, who continually gave outrageous explanations for the origins of tractors, mummies etc. to his gullible duffelcoat-wearing friend Bo. 643–652 were reprints.
Esky Mo. An Eskimo boy living at the North Pole.
Harry Presto. The Conjuror’s son – a boy who uses his magician dad’s hat to pull out assorted objects.
Sparky People. A semi-fictional office staff who produced Sparky. 647–652 are reprints.
Wyatt Twerp by Artist Ron Spencer. The inept Wild West sheriff.
Helpful Henry by Artist Hugh Morren. Revival of a strip from The Wizard, Dandy Monster Comic and The Beano. Male version of Meddlesome Matty.
I-Spy by Artists Les Barton 1969–70. Brian Walker 1970–1972. John Fox 1974–1976. He was a secret agent with a long coat which concealed hundreds of weapons and gadgets. Similar to a character from Smash! called The Cloak.
Cap’n Hood and his Merry Men
Kings of the Castle. The Kings lived in a castle and the `Dirty Rascals` were forever trying to get in.
Puss ‘n’ Boots by Artist John Geering. “they fight like cat and dog”, an eternally warring cat and dog duo.
Ali’s Baba by Artist Mal Judge. Early strips were called Ali and his Baba. An invisible guardian angel Ali, who lived on a cloud and wore a cape, following an unknowing toddler Baba at all times and protected him from harm. Continued in The Topper and reprinted in The Dandy as Jimmy’s Green Genie in 2004.
Rudolph the Red Coat Mountie. All the other mounties in the force had failed to catch master of disguise dangerous Dan McGurk, and so it fell to assistant cook Rudolph to get his man! Reprinted in 603–626
Ma Kelly’s Telly Only ever drawn by Les Barton. Jim Petrie had nothing to do with strip!
Willie Getaway or will he not by Artist Phillip Milar. A man who thinks he is a wanted criminal as he can’t read the small print on the ‘wanted’ posters that he has in fact inherited a large fortune, spending each strip trying to escape ‘capture’ by people wanting the reward for finding him.
Captain Cutler and his Butler. A Victorian era explorer Egbert Cutler searching for the source of the river Bongo, and his polite but long-suffering manservant Crumbs. This strip was notable for including the writer and artist as off-panel characters; Crumbs would interact with them and request changes to the strip in order to assist the clueless Cutler.
Snip and Snap. Two dogs eternally conspiring to bite the visiting postman. Reprinted as “The Red Hot Chilli Dogs” in the Dandy Xtreme as of August 2007.
Dreamy Daniel. A boy with a rich internal fantasy life who easily confused his imagination with reality
Jumbo and Jet. Adventures of a mouse and an elephant.
Baron Von Reichs-Pudding. The flying Hun from vorld var von!
Thingummyblob by Artist Albert Holroyd. A strip with the same title has recently been in The Dandy.
Minnie the Tea Lady by Artist Jim Petrie.
Some Mummies Do ‘Ave ‘Em. The final cover story. Title is a play on the sitcom Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em.
Planet of the Nirdles
The Circus of P. T. Bimbo
List of Sparky Adventure Strips
As well as featuring comic strips featured Adventurous strips, however fewer and fewer of these appeared later in the comic’s life.
The Young Castaways
Wee Tusky. Two series. First (1–22). Second (35–42). A text story of the same name also featuring an elephant appeared in the first Dandy Monster Comic.
The Kidnapped Kidds
The Palace of Secrets. This was a prose story with a few illustrations not a comic strip.
Will O’ the Well. Two series. First (15–25) was a text story. The Second (53–59) was a comic strip.
McGinty the Goat
Riddle of the Roughlands
Lonely Wood. Two series. First (26–34). Second (57–59).
Raiders from the Red Planet
Glipin the Lost, Lost Boy
Year of the Vanaks
The Flood that Mother Remembers
Floating Along, Singing A Song
The Downside Donkeys
Lost Children of the Forest
Quest of the Wandering Wingates
Seven at One Blow
Huffy, Muffy and Tuffy
City under the Sea
Children of the Secret Pool
Rory, the Horse of Many Masters
Boy in the Forest of Fear
Klanky by Artist Bob Webster. Five Series. First (75–87) called Big Klanky. From Second (141–160) onwards called Klanky. Third (211–239). Fourth (280–299) called Around the World with Klanky. Fifth (377–499) called Klanky. An alien robot who is befriended on earth by Ernie and Sue Huggins.
Police Horse Hadrian
Balloon Family Robinson. Two Series. First (77–85). Second (138–139).
Prentice Pete. Two Series. First One-off in 84. Second (123–140),
Willy the Woeful Wizard
Terry had a Little Pig
Nine Hundred Years Ago
The Horse with Wings
Davey Spacer. Three Series. First (95–107) called Little Davey Spacer. Second (140–157) and called Davey Spacer in Giantland. Third (227–240) called Davey Spacer.
The Island from the Past
Keepers of the Dancing Drums
Invisible Dick by Artist Tony Speer. Three Series. First (108–123). Second (182–499). Third (563–652) which were reprints. Originated in Rover comic in 1922 and was in first Dandy comic 1938. Sparky comic version changed the origin of Dicks invisibility from a Jar with invisible solution to a Torch with black beam that makes all it shines on invisible for a period of time.
The Lost Ponies of Thor
The Cave Kids
The Lonely lad of Blue Lagoon
Titch, the Pup that Grew and Grew
David Copperfield. Adaptation of the book of the same name.
The Magic Sword
The Floating Farrells
Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Adaptation of the book of the same name.
Blonderl the Wandering Minstrel
South Seas Suzie
The Old Curiosity Shop. Adaptation of Charles Dickens story of same name
The Captive Kidds. Unrelated to the earlier Kidnapped Kidds
Sacramento here we come
Sailor Brown’s Schooldays
The Boyhood of Deadwood Dick
The Coral Island. Adaptation of R. M. Ballantyne book of same name
The Jungle Ark
Mr Bubbles by Artists Pamela Chapaeu & James Fox. A ‘bubble imp’ living in a plastic bottle similar to washing-up liquid. Each strip someone would squeeze it and he would grant three wishes. Two series first (240–546) and second was reprints from (627–652)
The Jungle Walkers
The Misery King
Bushboy. Two Series. First (261–275). Second (346–359).
Four Legged Fred
Tess of the Taoki
The Wild West Kids
North Sea Oyl
(Information on the strips thanks to Ian)
645,647,650, Book 1968,1972,1974