the artists speak!
a gallery of
comic strips and
puppets in the UK
Duke was the owner of a vast crumbling estate
(complete with Longleat-style mini zoo!) and the Spook
was Shiver - a phantom with an ever-rumbling tum who
haunted the stately rooms and corridors. In the way
Shiver's hungry tum was the Duke's Right-hand, Grimes,
a ne'er-do-well Butler with a portly belly and
dinner suit who was constantly thieving, scheming and
undercutting the Duke's requests.
Grimes would do his uppermost to berate poor Shiver,
and Shiver sought to redress Grime's scheming
e'er he could...
But it didn't really make much sense. How could
spirit possibly gain sustenance from all those platters
those cakes, or indeed, physically eat the stuff
first place? And how come the Duke wore a crown all
the time? (Only a King would do that!). And why
never see any other staff in such a massive estate...?
And - oh, never mind - what's important is that ol'
was the selfsame Shiver from the comic title, who was
originally called Shake, and you can read all
past and future here...
Interesting to see how, in the first panel of the first ever strip
(ShSh #1), Shiver is seen happily serving the Duke breakfast
in bed. Then in the second panel, the spook spies a note
on the front door
advertising for a butler. So what gives?
The Duke appeared delighted with the sevice Shiver was
offering. What a two-faced, back-stabbing old ninny!
Although Shiver survived the merger with Whoopee! in
October 1974, the Duke and Grimes did not. The last Duke's
Spook weekly strip - October 5th 1974 - ended with the
chasing his bolshy butler around the estate, enraged. That
left Shiver free to tuck in to a hearty supper at last
Though there weere no more weekly strips, the Duke and
his Spook reappeared annually, as a regular in the
Shiver & Shake Annuals...