Bunty 1995

Text Story

The Comp    (Pages: 57-58)

There is only one text story in this annual and it’s narrated by Laura Brady of  “The Comp”. Mostly she is being annoyed by Hodge and Freddy, and declares that we’d be better off without boys. Hayley on the other hand is love struck and is delighted when fifth former Darren asks her out.  Hodge and Freddy, let Laura know that Darren is only using Hayley to get to another girl Marilyn. Together they all come up with a plan to humiliate Darren and put him in his place. It’s a fine story and it’s unusual to see a regular character like Laura, narrate directly to the reader acknowledging the reader’s presence.

Photo Stories

Wheels of Love    (Pages: 13-16)

Photo Stories were often just a cheaper, easier story mode. They do get a bit of a bashing sometimes. Often they didn’t seem very natural, there could be a lack of flow and situations seem very staged. While I agree I’d prefer good artwork over photos, still they weren’t all bad. This story is a bit of fun, it is narrated by a bike that tries to get it’s owner a boyfriend. It does this by breaking every time a boy shows up. After a few failed attempts Julie gets a date but she also decides to sell off the bike as it’s so unreliable!

Luv, Lisa     (Pages 42-47)

This was a long running photo story, basically its just the everyday life of Lisa and her family, I’m not sure when the strip ended in the comic, but presumably it was when it was Lisa started getting too old. Must be strange to see yourself grow up in comics. Wonder what happened to them! Here Lisa tries to get the family in the Christmas spirit as everyone seems a bit grumpy. They do end up having a good Christmas after all and Lisa is happy with her new typewriter.

luvlisa_B95

Features

Cover Story    (Pages: 40-41)

This is a photo feature showing the process of getting the cover girl ready for photo shoot. It also talks a bit about the cover girl who was Emma Griffiths-Malin, If the name sounds familiar she went on to act in various things including TVs The Forsythe Saga and House of Boys. It’s interesting both to see some of the behind the scenes production that goes into the annual and also seeing where that person is today.

The Best Best Friend?    (Page: 75)

The ‘best friend’ quiz was a very popular feature in the 90s and 00s, I already mentioned in the Judy 1993 annual, but  it would be interesting to see how many times they appeared  if I counted them all up. There isn’t much new or different in this quiz than previous ones.

Christmas Crackers     (Page: 90)

The traditional puzzle page, which were always enjoyable. One of the puzzles you have to guess who is the celebrity disguised with a Santa hat and beard. In this case it was Arnold Schwarzenegger, and I’m quite impressed that my younger self managed to only spell one letter wrong! (I spelled it Schwaizenegger).

Presenting Christmas    (Page: 114)

Hints to make Christmas wrapped presents look more special. Tips include making tags from cutting out pictures from old Christmas cards and sticking chocolate coins to brighten up wrapped presents for an extra treat.

Starring You!    (Pages: 124-125)

A nice little reader feature that does a little profile on 4 readers, it includes such questions as their favourite Bunty story and TV favourites, three wishes they have and their ambition. Interestingly favourite Bunty stories were either The Four Marys or Luv, Lisa.

 

Last Thoughts

Of course the usual reader favourites are there, The Four Marys, Luv Lisa and The Comp, there is a nice mix of other stories too. There is some fun and weirdness with Haunted Hotel and Pen Pal from Pluto, drama like Secret Schoolgirl and Storm, also spooky story and period drama to round it up . I would say it wouldn’t meet the heights of some other annuals but it is still is pretty decent, highlights for me would be Haunted Hotel, Carly’s Cats and Diary of Hate.

Regarding the features, I think the 90s was a transition period for the annual features, moving on from such things as Bunty’s cut out wardrobe, but not quite at the 2000s stage which actually became more feature heavy again with a more magazine feel to it.

The art throughout is good and the whole book is quite colourful and eye catching.

26 thoughts on “Bunty 1995

    1. My name is jim eldridge. I illustrated the four marys for the last 12 years of the bunty. Although my work was similar to Barry Mitchell. To my knowledge Barry never illustrated the four marys. It was my work in colour that updated and modernised the four marys. The editor at the time was jim Davie. And he told me at the time the kids wrote to him and regarded me as the best four marys artist. Hope this clears things up. I am still illustrating many educational books at present and I’m represented by beehive illustration agency.

  1. Such an interesting (and thorough!) post – I don’t remember seeing a Bunty annual with a double dose of Four Marys. Thank you for your discussions of the stories. I know I was always disappointed that toward the end of the ’80s, and into the nineties, there were increasing photo stories – I loved the stories with memorable and attractive illustration – some of these look great!

    1. I was never too impressed with photo stories either. So often they look just like what they are – posed. And they are a limited storytelling media because they don’t lend themselves to SF or fantasy stories.

  2. I do have the final episode of Luv Lisa somewhere. If I remember correctly, it ends with their moving to Australia. Of course the real reason is that they are getting too old. A photo-story regular cannot escape ageing, unlike a picture-story one.

  3. I used to subscribe the girls pictures stories until the publication stopped. Do you somehow published it on website some of the old stories? I still read the old comics from time to time even now I’m half century old.
    MJ

    1. I blog about the stories, but I don’t own any copyrights…so no publishing full comics. Unfortunately D.C. Thomson haven’t any digital girls comics available and there is currently only one Misty short story collection available from Egmont.

      If you are interested in collecting the comics, there are some specialised shops like 30thcentury comics and some second-hand shops sell annuals. Other than that ebay is a good place to find them.

  4. there was this story in bunty annual (cant remember whch one ) about a girl called pat andshe kept blackin outand the doctor said something about her going to die. anyone have any ideas on which annual this was in??

    1. That story sounds like No Time For Pat which appeared originally as a serial in the June comic and was then reprinted in the 1980 Jinty Annual – so an IPC story, not D C Thomson.

  5. Hi. I really like the site. I used to write Luv Lisa and the story ended when Lisa became too old. It was great fun to do, especially writing so far in advance. I was writing Christmas scripts in sunny July in the garden!

    1. Luv, Lisa was certainly a fan favourite! On the ComicsUk forum it made the list of “100 greatest serials in girls comics”. Always great to hear from people behind the scenes, particularly writers as sometimes it’s possible to identify artists but writers are more difficult! Were there any other stories you wrote for D.C. Thomson?

  6. Can someone please tell me what luv lisa real name is or is that her real name, would be interested to see what she was doing now

    1. I got in contact with Linda, she told me that Lisa’s real name was Amber but she didn’t have any other information as once she’d written the script the editorial team at DC Thomson did all the rest.

  7. My name is jim eldridge. I illustrated the four marys for the last 12 years of the bunny. Although my work is similar to Barry Mitchell. To my knowledge Barry never illustrated the four marys. The editor at the time was jim Davie. He told me that many of bunty readers wrote to him to say they thought I was the best four marys artist. And he gave me many of their hand written letters. I am still illustrating many educational books at present . My agent is Paul beebee at beehive illustration.

    1. Thank you for the correction, I believe the mis-credited Barrie Mitchell has been going around some forums for a while so it is good to get clarification and of course give you your deserved credit!

      You certainly defined the Four Marys of the late 80s and 90s, I’m not surprised you were a favourite of readers.

      Were there other stories you drew for girls comics, I would love to assign credit where it’s due?

    2. It would appear that Jim is here putting himself in the frame as the best artist ever to draw the Four Marys. However, he fails to explain in what ways he was better than the other artists who drew the strip from 1958 to the point when he was given the job, nor does he allow for the possibility that the vast majority of the Bunty readers who did not write in to comment on his contribution might well not have agreed with those that did. This kind of judgement is very subjective anyway so even expressing one is pointless. All we are left with really is likes and dislikes. One wonders why he wrote the post at all until reaching his final sentence, where he does rather give the impression that he is moving in the general direction of applying for a job. But who to, and in any case wouldn’t that be his agent’s responsibility?

  8. The colour artwork of the four marys above on this page is MY artwork JIM ELDRIDGE NOT barrie Mitchell as stated in UPDATE. Please correct as this is false information. Thanks jim eldridge. I illustrated the four marys for the last 12 years of the bunty until it closed.

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