In May 1977 Posy Simmonds, an unknown young illustrator, started drawing a weekly comic strip for the Guardian, initially titled The Silent Three of St Botolph’s as a tribute to the 1950s strip The Silent Three by Evelyn Flinders. It began as a silly parody of girls’ adventure stories making satirical comments about contemporary life. The strip soon focused on three 1950s school friends in their later middle-class and nearly middle-aged lives: Wendy Weber, a former nurse married to polytechnic sociology lecturer George with a larger brood of children; Jo Heep, married to whisky salesman Edmund with two rebellious teenagers; and Trish Wright, married to philandering advertising executive Stanhope and with a young baby. The strip, which was latterly untitled and usually known just as ‘Posy’, ran until the late 1980s.
Collected here for the first time are the complete strips which originally appeared in the collections Mrs Weber’s Diary, Pick of Posy, Very Posy, Pure Posy, True Love and Musn’t Grumble. Although celebrated for pinpointing the concerns of Guardian readers in the 1980s and their constant struggle to remain true to the ideals of the 1960s, these strips are in fact remarkably undated. They show one of Britain’s favourite cartoonists maturing into genius.
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