Roll up! Roll up!
Welcome to the circus of Colonel Crackpot, the ringleader,
circus owner, and total skinflint, who would try any trick to avoid
paying the circus's stars what they were worth - try and usually
Amongst the circus acts
regularly foiling the Colonel's miserly schemes, were Cynthia, the
Fat Lady, who had a big heart to match her big appetite, and
Charlie, the strongman - his full name, Charlie Globes, being a
play on the name of real-life strongman and body-building expert,
Charles Atlas - as well as numerous animal acts, rubber men, knife
throwers, and clowns.
This single page strip
marked the Beano debut of Mal Judge, who had already found sucess
as a newspaper cartoon artist but had tried long and hard to break
into the comics market - he'd begun submitting try out strips to
The Beano as far back as the 1940s to little success... but that
success would come after his debut with Crackpot and his circus
company in 1960.
Among the strips Mal would
originate between that debut and his death in 1989 were The Beano's
own Ball Boy and
Billy Whizz, as
well as those crackpot criminals, The Badd Lads, and the original
Numskulls in 'The Beezer' - a marvellous comic legacy.