Tam's Tall Tales

- The Jackie Takes to The Stage

The Jackie Takes to The Stage
D C Thomson, the publisher of The Sunday Post, has a knack of tapping into trends that strike a chord in Scotland and often further afield. Think Oor Willie and The Broons.

In the 1970s it appeared that just about every adolescent girl, swots excepted, pored over the Jackie to get tips on clothes, make-up and just about every detail relating to Donny Osmond.

Now the magazine, which stopped in 1993, is centre stage the boards with Jackie the Musical which will start a national tour in March, after a premiere in Dundee,

D C Thomson launched Jackie in 1964 with Gordon Small as editor. He had made the transition from being an aero engine fitter in the RAF and guided the magazine to great success.

In its heyday, 'the Jackie' was selling 600,000 copies a week and attracted up to 400 letters a week – all of which were answered. That was back in the days when girls didn’t have iPads, laptops or mobiles. There was no TV in their bedroom and the family TV had a choice of just three channels – a far cry from today's high tech world.

The magazine offered advice to teenage girls in the throes of adolescence, but avoided any heavy sexual references and in the end lost out to less buttoned-up rivals. D C Thomson, typically, preferred to let the thing go rather than compromise its family-friendly ethos.

Jackie the Musical relates the fortunes of a woman called, you guessed it, Jackie. Divorced, in her fifties, disappointed by how her life turned out, she draws on the spirit of her younger, optimistic and idealistic , Jackie-reading self.

Good luck the show and would Oor Wullie not provide a great backdrop to a wonderful children's show? I am still mourning the break-up of Fife's wonderful Singing Kettle – Cilla Fisher and her pals could drive my kids' generation to near ecstasy with their singalongs and corny jokes. Far better than any Osmond!

Please give me whatever feedback comes to mind via tamfromrampant@gmail.com.

Tam O'Ranter
March 2016

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