Saturday, February 06, 2010

Princess Tina Diary

by Jeremy Briggs

It is the time of year for new calendars and new diaries. While there have been many calendars tying into comics over the years, including this year's Broons and retro Beano calendars, diary tie-ins with comics have always been uncommon. Letts TV 21 Diary for 1971 is perhaps the best known but in 1972 Collins produced this little pocket diary to tie-in with Fleetway's Princess Tina comic.

Princess Tina began in September 1967 as an amalgamation of the long running Princess comic magazine which had been around for more than 7 years and the Tina comic, an abortive attempt at a pan-European weekly publication, which lasted only 30 weekly issues in the UK. Just over a year later the title absorbed Lady Penelope comic, by then simply known as Penelope, and it continued on until December 1973 when it was amalgamated into the magazine Pink. As such this diary dates from the later years of the comic.

The diary itself has few tie-ins to the comic however the crown design repeated on the cover was the logo of the comic and was also used in the design of the comic’s club badge. Internally the diary has an extensive run of articles and information at the beginning before the date pages appear. While these include the inevitable London Underground map as well as dates and geographical information, it also includes photos of various child actresses, the winners of the Crufts Dog Show from 1964 to 1971 and, most bizarrely, a complete knitting pattern for a “smart knitted jacket”.

The only true tie-in to the comic inside the diary is an editorial page written by "Linda and Jeffy" the comic's fictional editorial characters who promote the comic and its club on a single page. The address that they give for the club couldn't be more appropriate for this blog.

With thanks to the young Lesley Wallace who, in 1974, decided not to throw this away.

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