Social Icons

The Unofficial Greek
Roy of the Rovers
fan club

Τετάρτη, 24 Σεπτεμβρίου 2014

Roy of the Rovers would be loved today as much as he has ever been!


It's 60 years since the first Roy of the Rovers cartoon, and although he may be long gone, I think he would be popular now - by Neil Cameron
Last week brought up a football milestone and an unwelcome revelation.

Thursday was the 60th anniversary of the very first appearance of the Roy of the Rovers strip, brought to us in the brilliantly named Tiger comic.

Once this was brought to my attention, I wasn’t writing this column on anything else.

I loved Roy Race and Melchester Rovers. Although Roy was always a bit too nice for me.

My favourite was Blackie Gray, called that because he had dark hair, as you may remember.

It had been a while since Roy was in my life so I had no idea what had happened to him.

Turns out back in 1993, our hero crashed a helicopter and readers were left wondering whether he had survived or not.

They had to wait for months – there was a break in the strip – to discover Roy had managed to pull himself out of the wreck, of course he did, but his famous left foot, or Roy’s rocket, had to be amputated.

Did everyone know this? I have been left traumatised.

There has been no Roy of the Rovers for 21 years now and that’s a shame. Actually, all my comic strip heroes have been retired and this makes me sadder than I can say. The kids of today don’t know what they are missing.

I mean, Roy was kidnapped at least five times during his long career. You don’t get that in real life.

The editor of the actual Roy of the Rovers comic, a man called Barrie Tomlinson, tried to explain at the time why British football’s greatest player was no more.

He said: “Everyone seemed to be growing up a bit more quickly, and they wanted stories that were more realistic.”

What’s not realistic about Martin Kemp and Steve Norman, of 1980s rubbish pop group Spandau Ballet, being signed mid-season?

And the fact, and it was fact, that Geoff Boycott served as Melchester chairman for many years.

What do the kids want now? I suppose it would be one of those reality strips to go along with reality telly.

So there is Alan of the Albion who knocked up the club secretary and was forced to take out a super injuction.

“And in this week’s strip, Alan fakes an injury to get him out of England duty so he can get back into the missus’ good books by taking her to Dubai for a couple of days?”

Do kids today really want to read that? There were some great characters, all more unrealistic than the other. That’s what made it fun.

Jon Stark was a striker for hire. As a nod towards the increasingly important role money was playing in football, clubs would pay him to play for them for one game.

Then there was Mighty Mouse, a wee guy who happened to be carrying some extra pounds and was short sighted. Giving bullies a wonderfully cruel nickname to bestow on any fat kid who worse glasses.

His team-mate was Hotshot Hamish. It was always hinted, but never substantiated, that he had some deep personal issues. A drinking or gambling habit, perhaps.

I didn’t like Billy’s Boots. Some kid wore a pair of old football boots of a dead former player and that magically made him play like the legendary Charlie “Dead Shot” Keen. To me, that was cheating.

However, my all-time favourite was the runner Alf Tupper.

Alf was ace. From the wrong side of the tracks and he lived on chips. He ate nothing else. Still, he won just about every race he entered.

But then tragedy struck. He contacted some illness that only one man could cure. This bloke just so happened to live on the top of Mount Kilimanjaro. Are you trying to tell me the 10-year-olds of 2014 wouldn’t lap that up?

Δεν υπάρχουν σχόλια: