The Tandy Computer Whiz Kids series was a series of promotional comics made by Radio Shack from 1982 to 1991. In them, the two titular Whiz Kids, Alec and Shanna, teach their class (and by extension, the audience) about Tandy computer products and occasionally other topics (substance abuse, child kidnappers, environmentalism, etc.) Eight issues were made for the main series by Tandy, along with three tie-ins with DC Comics featuring Superman, Supergirl, and Wonder Woman.
Tandy Computer Whiz Kids contains examples of:
- Arc Words: The comics often start with Ms. Wilson asking the children how their summer vacation went. This leads Alec and/or Shanna to kickstart the educational portion of the comic.
- Early Installment Weirdness: In the earlier issues, "Superman and the TRS-80 Whiz Kids: The Computers that Saved Metropolis" and "Tandy Computer Whiz Kids: The Computer Masters of Metropolis" to cite some examples, Alec actually wasn't that interested in computers. "The Computers that Saved Metropolis" not only has him outright state that the only thing he'd care less about is "the history of Brussels sprouts", and even when Superman shows up to give his lecture, it's:Alec: (eyes closed) Someone wake me up when he's finished! History and computers are boring enough by themselves, but together? Good night!
- Drugs Are Bad: A common message in many of the comics. It let Radio Shack claim that they have educational value, and thus make them available in schools.
- Hollywood Nerd / Incredibly Lame Fun: Alec and Shanna seem more interested in the educational software for the computers they promote than any videogames that the computers have.
- Product Placement: Tandy and Radio Shack products, of course!
- Seasonal Rot: They're all cheesy, but there is a world - nay, a galaxy - of difference between the DC crossovers (written by comic book writers) and the later standalone ones (written by computer salesmen.)
- Strictly Formula: The standard story for pretty much every issue is as follows; an A plot involving criminals and/or illegal activity, and a B plot involving the Whiz Kids' class getting new Tandy/Radio Shack computers and equipment; by the end, the two plots converge with the Tandy products stopping the criminals.