Comic Book / Buster
was a long running British Anthology Comic
. A Spin-Off
of sorts of Andy Capp
, with Buster, the comic's eponymous main character supposedly being Andy's son, although the two characters rarely met in the comic and never in Andy Capp's Newspaper Comic
Buster ran for 40 years, starting in 1960. It merged
with a great many number of comics during it's run and was the last survivor of IPC's note
The comic's most popular strips included X-Ray Specs
, Ivor Lott and Tony Broke
, Mummy's Boy
, Sweeny Toddler
, Tom Thug
, Clever Dick
and School Belle
This comic (and its strips) provide examples of:
- Age-Inappropriate Dress: The boy in Mummy's Boy was dressed like a baby although he was obviously much older.
- Alpha Bitch: School Belle began as this (she actually started in the short lived comic School Fun before it was merged with Buster.) Originally she was entirely without redeeming qualities being spectacularly vain and underhanded and her strips always ended in humiliation. Somewhere along the way she was given a more likable characterisation and a nastier rival ('Grotty Glenda'), ending up a Lovable Alpha Bitch.
- Art Initiates Life: Almost done in the Chalky strip: His drawings, although they don't come to life, do appear indistinguishable from reality to anyone who sees them.
- Art Shift: During its early period, Buster included more realistic adventure strips alongside the cartoony strips, which eventually came to make up most of its content.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Odd Ball; a round, red floating ball with arms who could change shape. His race also had an illness which caused them to turn into cubes and could only be cured by drinking a huge amount of freshly boiled water (...or just waiting the illness out).
- The Bully: Tom Thug.
- Captain Ersatz: The Leopard from Lime Street was an obvious Ersatz version of Spiderman.
- Chameleon Camouflage: It wasn't the only thing he did with his powers, but Ricky Rainbow often used his colour-changing ability to this effect.
- Choose Your Own Adventure: Cliffhanger contained elements of this with readers being able to choose endings for the strip. note .
- Comics Merger: Buster merged with probably the largest number of comics during its run than any other comic; the final merger was with Whizzer and Chips in 1990. Many of the comics it merged with had already merged with other comics, especially Whizzer and Chips, which had merged with four comics during its lifetime one of those four (Whoopee!) had also merged with another three comics.
- Creator Cameo: Jack Edward Oliver used to insert himself into Vid Kid strips, which was lampshaded with weekly challenges to find him. Terry Bave would also occasionally insert himself (and occasionally his wife) into his Odd Ball and Melvyn's Mirror strips.
- Eagleland: Of the mixed variant; Several of the strips had arcs or one shot comics which involved the characters visiting America portrayed Americans as somewhat excitable but overall quite pleasant (aside from the odd villain).
- Despite being a parody of Dallas, Junior Rotter mostly averted the trope.
- Private Detective: Crowjack was a crow and a private detective.
- Distaff Counterpart: Martha's Monster Makeup and Faceache both involved Voluntary Shapeshifting and both were drawn by the same artist Ken Reid. Ivor Lott and Tony Broke and Milly O'Naire and Penny Less.
- Dumb Muscle: Tom Thug was a brainless bully who tended to brutalise other students, but generally got stymied by his own stupidity.
- Exactly What It Says on the Tin: X-Ray Specs was about a boy and his X-Ray Specs, which gave him X-Ray Vision.
- False Teeth Tomfoolery: Gums was a Threatening Shark with a pair of False Teeth which he always managed to lose.
- Forgetful Jones: This was the gimmick in the Memory Banks strip. In the last issue, the strip's main character forgot to breathe and died.
- Grand Finale: Somewhat unusually, the last issue featured a strip◊ showing the fates of some of the comic's characters (such as Sweet-Tooth's tooth going bad from all the sweets he'd eaten and the above-mentioned Bernie Banks's death) and the revelation of what Buster's hair is like under his cap - it's exactly like Dennis the Menace's spiky hair.
- Invisibility: This is what Val's Vanishing Cream did in the eponymous strip.
- Disappearing Trix also had this power. Normally her clothes vanished with her whenever she blinked, but on at least one occasion, she blinked to get something out of her eye, and accidentally became an Invisible Streaker.
- Lazy Bum: This was Lazy Bones' gimmick. He eventually got Insomnia in the last issue.
- Limited Wardrobe: Lampshaded in one Tom Thug strip, which notes that he even wears his boots in bed.
- Never Bareheaded: Buster himself. Fans did ask what was under the cap and, much like Fleetway's at the time stablemate Judge Dredd, they teased it out a lot. The finale did reveal that Buster had the same haircut as Dennis the Menace.
- Proud Beauty: Both School Belle and her archnemisis Grotty Glenda.
- Slobs vs. Snobs: Apart from Ivor Lott and Tony Broke (which featured a rich boy and a poor boy), there was also Store Wars, which featured Bloggs and Son's corner shop and Mr. Superstore's...superstore (and the latter's doomed efforts to get the community to love his shop as much as the former's).
- Voluntary Shapeshifting: Faceache could scrunge into any shape. Odd Ball was also capable of changing shape (although he always retained his bright red colour).
- Walking Armory: Parodied in Judge Dudd. Dudd grabs a hilarious number of BFGs and armour from the armoury with the intention of using them to improve his capability on the street. It turns out to be to heavy for him to even move. So heavy, in fact, that the street collapses underneath him and lands him in the middle of a gang's hideout.
- Wealth's in a Name: Pun example, with Ivor Lott and Milly O'Naire ("I've a lot" and "millionaire") who are wealthy. Conversely, Tony Broke (a pun on "stony broke") and Penny Less ("penniless") are poor.
- Wicked Toymaker: The Toymaker from the "Toys of Doom" strip. The Toymaker is a scientist who transformes toys into remote-controlled weapons of destruction. Ostracized by the rest of the scientific community, who think his ideas are inhuman, he vows revenge on humanity, and creates an army of killer toys in a remote Scottish castle. But his plans are stumbled on by Joe and Sandy Douglas, and in spite of initial skepticism, they manage to alert the suthorities to the plot. Thus begin several years of them battling against the Toymaker's evil plans.
- Wild Child: Fishboy, raised by fish and able to breathe underwater. He usually wears seaweed swimming trunks. Despite the absurdity of the concept, this was a 'serious' strip.
- X-Ray Vision: X-Ray Specs.
- You No Take Candle: Fishboy.