Hot-Shot Hamish

Real Name: Hamish Balfour

Identity/Class: Normal (?) human

Occupation: Professional footballer, former sheep farmer, caber tosser

Affiliations: Princes Park, Glengow Rangers, Kevin “Mighty” Mouse

Enemies: Unknown

Known Relatives: "Daddie"

Aliases: Hamish La Foudre

Base of Operations: Glasgow, formerly Outer Hebrides

First Appearance: Scorcher (IPC, 25th August 1973)

Powers/Abilities: Hot-Shot possesses superhuman strength and durability (he can kick concrete spheres without injuring himself).

History: "Hot-Shot" Hamish Balfour was a gigantic (6 foot 10 inches tall) footballer from one of the Hebrides islands off the coast of Scotland who became a footballer renowned for his “hot shot,” a kick that sent a football flying so hard it would rip the net and break the goalposts.

While visiting the windy, rain-sodden Hebrides for a six day training holiday, the players of Scottish League club Princes Park encountered a gigantic local, former caber-tosser Hamish Balfour, who proved to not only be a naturally talented footballer but also possessed a devastating kick capable of sending the ball flying with more force than a cannonball, destroying a stone wall behind the football net. With Princes Park FC being near the bottom of the league, manager Ian McWhacker quickly signed Hamish, and took the naïve and amiable young man (and his psychotic “wee pet sheep” McMutton) from his quiet rural home to the big city. His signature kick earned him his nickname, “Hot Shot,” and swiftly became rightly feared by rival teams’ goalies. Hot Shot, always recognisable on the pitch because he wore shirts far too small for his hulking frame, leaving his midriff bare, won over the fans of his new club when he spotted a support beam starting to break during a game under the weight of the crowd in the stand above, and rushed to hold it up while the stand was evacuated, saving many lives. Hot Shot’s bad tempered "Daddie" would visit his son regularly, usually clashing with McWhacker, whose used a variety of bizarre stunts in an attempt to train and motivate his failing team.

Hot Shot managed to pull his team back from the brink, taking them within a season from the Second Division to winning the Scottish Cup for the first time in their history, and on into the European Cup. Hamish was subsequently signed to play for Scotland, working for national manager Mr. McBossy. He later befriended English player Kevin “Mighty” Mouse after Mouse was dropped from Tottenford Rovers, and convinced Mouse to sign for Princes Park. The two friends later transferred to Glengow Rangers, still under manager McWhacker.

Comments: Created by writer Fred Baker and usually illustrated by Julio Schiaffino. Hot Shot Hamish debuted in Scorcher’s August 25th 1973 issue. When Scorcher was cancelled and merged into Tiger, Hot Shot was one of the characters who transferred over to the new title, where he remained a constant fixture for over a decade until Tiger was finally cancelled and merged into Eagle. Unlike other strips, Hot Shot was neither cancelled nor moved to Eagle; instead, he shifted over to Roy of the Rovers, a football-themed comic built around a popular character whose strip had also originated in Tiger, where he joined an existing strip, Mighty Mouse, about the short, overweight and bespectacled, but nevertheless incredibly skillful footballer Kevin “Mighty” Mouse; while the strip was retitled Hot Shot Hamish and Mighty Mouse (and later just Hamish and Mouse), within the context of the story the two footballers met and befriended one another and ended up becoming teammates. The combined strip ran from 1985 to May 1990, skipped June, and then continued from July 1990 to January 1993, shortly before Roy of the Rovers was cancelled.

In 2008 a Hot Shot Hamish Annual was released, reprinting some of Hot Shot’s past stories. Hot Shot and Mouse were also reprinted in various European countries: for example, in France he turned up as Hamish La Foudre in the comic Trophée.


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