Slave to Love!

  • Slave to Love! – Mandy:  #1252 (12 January 1991) – #1261 (16 March 1991)

Plot/Thoughts

In the later years of girl comics, romance/boy drama stories became a more popular feature.  I suppose it was a sign of changing times, when fashion and pop stars were also becoming more common features. There is nothing wrong with some boy related plots, some were quite enjoyable but others didn’t exactly feature the most inspiring role models.

This story has an uninspiring, un-relatable, unsympathetic protagonist in my opinion.  Gail Somers gets a crush on a boy Justin. Justin has a horrible lazy sister Andrea who decides to take advantage of Gail’s crush. She makes a deal to get Gail and Justin together if Gail becomes her slave for a month and a day.

slave to love 1

 

Gail is somewhat under the delusion that the guy will take his younger sister’s advice on love. She blows off her friends gets in tons of trouble and doesn’t realise what an idiot she has been until the end.  At this stage Justin has met a girl he actually talks to and has started dating her. Her friends are totally understanding of the situation afterwards.

slave to love 2
Seriously they take that as a reasonable explanation for blowing them off. Oh it was all for guy well then of course everything’s okay, trying to get a boyfriend is way more important than our friendship!

None of the characters are that likeable. While there are a lot of stories where girls are being blackmailed or manipulated by nasty girls. Usually these girls are black mailed under the threat of their father getting fired or a family secret getting revealed or something, so it’s easy to sympathise with these characters.  This is why I really find it hard to sympathise with the protagonist in this story, because it’s her own stupid choice.

The antagonist Andrea isn’t likeable but she’s just taking advantage of the situation. She laughs about how gullible Gail is, but turns out she’s not too bright herself. When she meets Gail’s cousin and falls for him she agrees to become Gail’s slave for a month and a day.

slave to love

Seems Gail has a bit of a malicious streak in her as well and is enjoying taking her revenge on Andrea.  As for Andrea… really what does she expect the outcome to be she was just in this situation with her brother, does she really see this ending with Gail’s cousin as her boyfriend!

3 thoughts on “Slave to Love!

  1. Ah, the girl who is so desperate to win a boy that she foolishly allows herself to get into scrapes with the boy’s unpleasant sister (or kid brother). It’s her own fault because she tried to use them to win her boy in the first place. I know two other Mandy serials, “Little Horror!” and “Claire Loves Steve – but She Hates Elaine!” had this theme, and there must have been more. So the formula must have been popular despite its shortcomings.

    Incidentally, Claire actually succeeds in winning her boy. Perhaps this is because she does become a sympathetic character in the final episode. Elaine discovers Claire’s feelings for Steve and uses it to blackmail Claire into helping her cheat in an exam. Claire can’t do this and has to make a decision. She does, but we never find out what it was because a teacher unknowingly prevents the cheating in the exam room. Elaine retaliates by spilling the beans over Claire’s crush for Steve – but it backfires when she brings them together instead! It turns out Steve felt the same way about Claire but didn’t know how to tell her.

  2. A common blackmail theme was a heroine who is blackmailed into being “nice” to a horrible, unpopular girl, and as a result become just as unpopular. Stories with this theme include: Dear Diary – I Hate You! (Tammy), Be Nice to Nancy (Judy), reprinted as Be Nice to Nikki in M&J, and It’s a Dog’s Life! (M&J). Ironically, It’s a Dog’s Life! started in the same issue that Be Nice to Nikki ended in.

    And let us not forget the mainstay in blackmailers – The Honourable SJ from Judy. In every story she appears she blackmails Ann Smith because Ann’s father works for SJ’s. At the end of each story SJ is exposed and expelled – but then she meets up with Ann Smith again in the next story and the whole process starts all over again.

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