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Welcome to the Cheeky Weekly blog!
Cheeky Weekly ™ REBELLION PUBLISHING LTD, COPYRIGHT ©  REBELLION PUBLISHING LTD, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED was a British children's comic with cover dates spanning 22 October 1977 to 02 February 1980.

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Thursday, 9 August 2012

Profile - Commissionaire

Cheeky's trips to the Saturday morning pictures were a memorable feature of the first 59 issues of Cheeky Weekly. In 51 of those comics, we witnessed the cinema commissionaire's vain attempts to impose order on the toothy funster and his unruly pals as they stormed the cinema entrance. His tremulous attempt to announce "The doors are open!" would be cut off by a strangulated gurgle as he disappeared beneath the thundering juvenile footwear of the patrons piling in to secure the best seats.

Commissionaire's first appearance
Art: Frank McDiarmid
The long-suffering Commissionaire strove to avoid injury during his Saturday morning duty by various means - wearing armour, hiding inside a dustbin and concealing himself in a pillar box to name but three ploys.

In the comic dated 17 December 1977, Commisionaire was relieved to see Teacher approaching the cinema entrance at speed, expecting the podgy pedagogue to discipline the kids into forming an orderly queue. He didn't realise that Teacher was being pursued by his mother in law and, seeing the cinema as a refuge, the dandruff-ridden schoolmaster trampled the downtrodden doorman in his rush to safety.

Art: Frank McDiarmid
A footprint-covered Commissionaire appeared on the Interval page in Cheeky Weekly dated 25 February 1978, gleefully watching Yikky-Boo being forcefully propelled from the cinema by Ursula's boot.

Commissionaire was not only trampled, but also slimed.
Art: Dick Millington
Commissionaire made it onto the front cover on one occasion; he appeared as Cheeky's stooge in the What A Cheek cover strip on 29 July 1978.

Revenge in the 01 April 1978 issue
Art: Frank McDiarmid pencils

Crafty Commissionaire appeared from a hatch above the cinema doors to avoid being trampled in the 29 July and 05 August 1978 issues, but his supposedly impregnable lair was breached the following week as the kids played leapfrog in order to reach him.

In the 04 November 1978 comic, Commissionaire follows Bubblegum Boy's example and is seen suspended from a gum bubble above the cinema doors.

Commissionaire made his final Saturday appearance in Cheeky Weekly dated 02 December 1978. This was the last comic to feature Cheeky's visit to the Saturday morning picture show. Unlike Ursula, the other cinema employee to be featured in the comic, Commissionaire did not feature in any subsequent Cheeky's Week pages. However, he was seen clinging for his life to the sign above the cinema door as a torrent of kids pour into the picture show below him, on the Pin-Up Pal poster in Cheeky Weekly dated 17 March 1979, 15 weeks after he was last seen on a Saturday page.

The Commissionaire's grandson appeared in Cheeky Weekly dated 19 August 1978, the issue in which the toothy funster was propelled 60 years into his future.

In 4 issues of Cheeky Weekly, Commissionaire made an additional post-show appearance on the second Saturday page, as Cheeky and pals exited the cinema. However, 3 of his post-show appearances used the same artwork.
Variations on a theme by Frank McDiarmid
Commissionaire made one Krazy appearance, in that comic's last issue dated 15 April 1978 where, in the final panel of the 'Ello, It's Cheeky strip, his head appears to be among the cakes on Baker's Boy's tray.

Snail makes a prediction
Art: Mike Lacey

Apart from missing an 'A', Snail was right - Cheeky Weekly 01 July 1978.
Art: Frank McDiarmid

Commissionaire was absent from Cheeky Weekly's first birthday issue dated 21 October 1978. OR WAS HE? See my speculation on this topic here.


Chit-Chat 27 October 1979

UPDATE 14 September 2012: It seems Saturday morning picture shows were in existence much earlier than I guessed, as this footage from Saturday 03 October 1914 (early in World War 1) shows. Nice clips of the commissionaires.


Character Total Issues First Appearance Final Appearance
Commissionaire5122-Oct-197702-Dec-1978


Count of elements by artist
Character Artist Total Elements

Commissionaire
Frank McDiarmid
19
Commissionaire
Frank McDiarmid pencils
16
Commissionaire
Mike Lacey
7
Commissionaire
Unknown Cheeky Artist 1
5
Commissionaire
Jim Watson
4
Commissionaire
Barrie Appleby
4
Commissionaire
Dick Millington
2
Commissionaire
Cut and Paste
1







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