Johan & Peewit

It was 23rd October 1958 — 60 years ago that the world first encountered the Smurfs, in the Belgian comic magazine Spirou. Spirou was a weekly comic magazine that was produced out of Belgium. The comic stripe was called La Flute à six trous (The Flute with Six Holes). In the beginning the smurfs were given minor roles to the main characters of Johan and Peewit. Who would have thought that the smurfs would soon become one of the world’s most recognised characters.

When I first began collecting smurfs, I had no idea who were Johan and Peewit as I didn’t grow up reading the comics or watching the cartoon series on television. It wasn’t until I started to learn about the different smurf figurines that I began to understand the importance of Johan and Peewit.

Johan in the taller of the two human characters and has brown hair and carries a silver sword in his right hand. Peewit is the smaller blond hair boy playing his instrument.

Johan and Peewit were first made by Bully around 1975. These can be found with Bully © Peyo hand etched markings under their feet. They also have their name hand etched onto the side of their foot – Johan and Pirlouit.

Johan and Peewit were also sold by Schleich between 1980 to 1986. Between 1980 to 1984 Schleich had to continue use Bully markings on their figurines. Around 1984 Schleich started adding their own markings to Johan and Peewit – Schleich S © Peyo 1978. The year 1978 must be something to do when the mould was originally made. But I am not really sure!

Wallace Berrie also sold Johan and Pewit between 1983 to 1985. These can be found with the markings Made in Hong Kong W. Berrie Co Schleich S © 1978 Peyo under their feet.

Like the smurfs that were produced in the 1980’s different paint colours can be found. Johan’s vest for example can be found from mustard to green to orange. The skin colour can also vary. The Bully ones were produced with a softer skin coloured pvc material where as W.Berrie produced ones had a darker skin colour.

Later a movie was produced in 1976 based on the comic stripe – The Flute with Six Holes. When this movie was translated into English in 1979 instead of using their Belgian names they were given the names John and William. Luckily for us the figurines have always been referred to as Johan and Peewit.

Happy 60th Birthday Smurfs!!!

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B


Hobby Horse Super Smurf

Wearing a red riding jacket and black horse riding helmet, this smurf shows us how to ride a hobby horse. What stands out for me, with this super smurf is the clever design that in corporates the smurf figurine and the stick together. 

First released by Schleich in 1980 to 1986 and then again in 1994 to 1996, with 40214 as the article number. Very little changed in the design over the years Hobby Horse was produced, though little differences can be found depending where it was painted. When Hobby Horse was first sold in the UK by National Petrol these ones were painted out of Portugal and can be found with matte colours. 

It was also produced out of Hong Kong for Wallace Berrie and possibly sold in other countries. It was sold by Wallace Berrie in the USA between 1981 to 1983. The same design was used, but shinier paint colours were used on the horse and the smurf figurine. 

The design of Hobby Horse is simple and effective. The smurf has been designed in almost a sitting like position and between it’s legs a slot has been created for the stick of the hobby horse to sit in. The arms on the smurfs are stretched out in front of him with the hands coming together to create a slot. This is for the stick to be slotted into. The end of the hobby horse stick has a removable horse tail that  is inserted into the end of the stick. This allows you to swivel the horse tail to help you to display the Hobby Horse without it falling over.

Smurfs are foremost created as toys for children to play with. The design of Hobby Horse allows this happen still today even though it has been over twenty years since it was last released.  It is also not overly complicated to construct which is also a bonus. 

For those of you, who like to display their smurfs is a great one if you have limited space as it is not much bigger than your average smurf. It can be found with up to five different super smurf boxes and is still easy to pick up today. 

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B


School Patrol Smurf

We first see the School Patrol Smurf in the 1983 Schleich catalogue. Wearing his customary white trousers & hat, with a white plastic stop sign inserted into the hands. Schleich gave School Patrol, 20154 article number and this smurf is also sometimes referred to as Patrol Crossing. It is quite likely that they released Traffic Crossing (#20155) around the same time. Traffic crossing can be found holding a plastic triangle crosswalk sign with both hands.

The School Patrol smurf was first released by Schleich from 1983 to 1986 the 1992 to 1993 and 1999 to 2000. I do not believe this smurf was ever released by Wallace Berrie into the USA. Perhaps they thought that the stop sign was a child hazard. 

The first version produced can be found with the markings West Germany Schleich S © Peyo under its feet. West Germany in circle. Schleich S © Peyo printed markings. The old Bully marking has been blocked out with a white stripe. 

The figurine used for School Patrol was also the same one used on Fisherman (#20101) . So sometimes School Patrol can be found with West Germany Bully © Peyo markings. Though this is mentioned as a variation in the Der Schlumpf Katalog IV, I do not believe this is technically correct. 

Later the markings, possibly after 1984 were changed to just W.Germany Schleich S © Peyo. This version was only sold until 1986.

In the early 1990s new child safety laws forced the discontinuation of many smurf figurines which included a seperate or removable parts. So this meant when School Patrol was re-released in 1992 by Schleich the stop sign had to be redesigned to make sure it meant new child safety laws.  This was achieved by adding in a thicker handle with a stopper at the end.

There are two different marking versions that can be found with this new stop sign. The first one is Made in Germany Schleich S Germany © 79 Peyo CE and the last one produced Made in China Schleich S Germany © 79 Peyo CE. 

For some of you, School Patrol smurf is a little plain and lacks imagination. For others, it can really complement their display by showing it with their car driving super smurfs. Both versions can be still be found today, though can be a little harder in places like the USA where it was never originally sold.  

I have a soft spot for both School Patrol and Traffic Crossing smurfs as I believe they could be a great tool to teach children about road safety. 

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B

Guitarist Smurf

We often talk about the different colour and marking variations that can be found on a particular smurf. But rarely do we talk about the different names a smurf has been given in its life time….. Until now! Let’s have a look at Guitarist Smurf, article number 20023. 

Guitarist could be found playing an electric guitar, with his mouth wide open and his eyes shut while wearing his customary white trousers and hat. In the beginning it was produced with a small leg stance though overtime the leg stance became wider. It can also be found with many different colour variations, from peach coloured guitar to a dark red guitar. The chords on the guitar can also vary from yellow to brown.

Markings: W.Germany Schleich emblem © Peyo and a mustard paint dot.

When Guitarist smurf was first released by Schleich it was referred to as Beat Schlumpf. It was referred to as Beat Schlumpf from 1977 to 1994 in the Schleich catalogues. Even in Der Schlumpf Katalog IV which was published in 20013 they still referred to it as Beat Schlumpf.

In 1978 when National Benzole started selling smurfs in the UK, they gave it the name Rocker.  They sold a couple different colour versions, light pinkish orange guitar with yellow chords and a red electric guitar with brown chords.

When Wallace Berrie started selling Guitarist in 1979 they referred to it as Bass Guitar. This may have something to do with Lute smurf being referred to as Guitar. By 1982 Lute was no longer being sold in the USA and Guitarist is now referred to as Guitar in the collector’s booklets but in the Dealer catalogues they still referred to it as Bass Guitar. This appears to be the case right through to 1985 when they stopped selling smurfs in the USA.

Markings: Made in Hong Kong Schleich S © 1977 Peyo

BP Australia also sold Guitarist and used the name Bass Guitar on their posters. Like the ones sold in the USA these were made out of Hong Kong with a red electric guitar with yellow chords.

In France, MAFI who was the main distributor smurfs in 1984 used the name Rock n Roll for Guitarist.

In Brazil when Hering were making smurfs sometime between 1984 to 1986 they referred to as Guitarrista. These look very similar to the ones produced for Wallace Berrie in the USA. 

In Spain during the 1980s they referred to as Guitarra. It is unclear whether these were licensed or not.

In 1996 McDonalds was celebrating it’s 25th anniversary in Germany and The Netherlands. Guitarist was included in Series 1. These smurfs had the ‘M’ and the golden arches embossed onto back of their head. 

In 2013 when Gian & Davi Collezioni published The Smurfs Official Collector’s Guide they referred to as Guitarist. On the Toydreamer website it has been given the name of Rock n Roll. 

So I guess it really doesn’t matter what you call your smurfs, as long as you know that’s all that matters. Rock on!!!

Keep on Smurfin

Kath B