Wednesday 28 December 2022

The Humorous Art of Diving - Crowther in Trouble

Look-in, the "Junior TV Times", was a children's magazine that ran from 1971-1994.  In addition to interviews, features and competitions, comic strips based on popular TV shows were an important part of its success. For the first two years of publication, the strip that greeted readers each issue was Crowther in Trouble. Instead of being based on a specific TV show, it featured popular TV presenter/actor/comedian Leslie Crowther and his accident-prone adventures, often featuring his real-life wife Jean and their children. Crowther had spent most of the sixties in the children's variety show Crackerjack and so was a popular face with younger viewers as well as adults. Going into the seventies he featured in The Leslie Crowther Show, followed by the sitcom My Good Woman.

During 1972, several issues of the Look-in strip featured the Crowthers on holiday in Spain. I recently acquired the original artwork for issues 15, 16 and 17 (Look-in reset the numbering each year). My motive for buying them was the strip for issue 17 which is presented here. (Click for a larger image).

The art is by Tom Kerr whose worked graced many publications. He was equally adept at adventure or humour strips and his style was easily recognisable in both. Fleetway/IPC sometimes used him as a fill-in artist and he was able to evoke the look of the regular artists while still retaining his own style. I have fond memories of Kit Carter's Clarks Commandos, an advertising strip that he drew from 1969-1972. A new story would appear every few months and would be published in multiple titles at the same time. Unfortunately, not a lot is known about Kerr but you can read a bit more about him here.

Finally, here's a look at the strip as published:

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