When we were growing up my sister and I used to enjoy reading our weekly comic very much. Â I tended to flit between the Beano, Dandy, Nutty and Wow, basically the funny comics, depending on which had the most interesting piece of free plastic tat sellotaped to the front cover. Â My sister on the other hand tended to stick with her favourite, which was Twinkle.
Twinkle was published by D.C. Thompson (better known for The Beano) and was aimed squarely at young girls, being dubbed “the picture paper especially for little girls”. Â Twinkle was also the name of the little girl who graced the front cover of every issue, where she would be seen doing something fun but incredibly sweet and good, such as bathing a puppy in her dolly bath, or dancing round a May Pole. Â Remember the May Pole at the school fete, with all its ribbons that got twisted together when the kids skipped round it? Â When was the last time you saw a May Pole? Â Sorry, gone off topic…
I always thought it was a little odd having a girl named Twinkle. Â Since when was Twinkle a girls name, I thought, since the word Twinkle usually conjures up thoughts of nursery rhymes about stars up above the world so high. Â Funny then that with some of the names celebrities choose for their kids these days Twinkle now sounds like a rather dull and ordinary name. Â How times change.
Each issue was full of games, puzzles and of course comic strips which were perfect girlie fare. Â There was Nurse Nancy, who ran a doll’s hospital with her grandad, Silly Milly, who had the best of intentions but often got things wrong, and Molly and Her Dollies, which was about a girl called Molly and her dollies (surprise). Â And if you’re wondering how I managed to remember all these, then thank Wikipedia!
Twinkle ran for a staggering 1612 issues, with the first issue appearing in 1968 and the run continuing through to 1999 when it’s mix of wholesome activities and use of the word “gay” to mean “happy” were sadly no longer seen as relevant when the childrens comic shelves in the newsagent are ruled by Tellytubbies, Disney Princesses and countless other TV tie-in comics.