It's Dennis' birthday! The comic only costs £1.35, it's all about the menace, so how can it be a bad issue? Well, that's easy to answer... First of all, let's see the contents...
PG 1: Front Cover - Barrie Appleby
PG 2: Advertisement: Star Wars Figurines
PG 3: Contents
PG 4: Dennis and Gnasher - Barrie Appleby
PG 6: Minnie the Minx - Ken Harrison
PG 8: BFG (Britain's Funniest Gag)
PG 9: Lego City - Diego Jourdan
PG 10: The Numskulls - Barry Glennard
PG 12: A 'short' history on the Menace! (Reprinted material)
PG 13: First Appearance - David Law
PG 14: Add a touch of Red - David Law
PG 15: More colour - David Law
PG 16: Front Cover action - David Law
PG 17: Meeting Gnasher - David Law
PG 18: An end of an era - David Law (For the last time)
PG 19: A new era begins! - David Sutherland
PG 20: And at last Beano's new cover star - David Sutherland
PG 22: The Bash Street Kids - David Sutherland
PG 24: Beano Subscription Page
PG 25: Competition: Win a Beano Laptop and Advertisement for WWE Kids
PG 26: Beano VIP
PG 28: Roger the Dodger - Barrie Appleby
PG 30: Advertisement: The Dandy: Korky the Cat - Phil Corbett
PG 31: Advertisement: Beano Shop and Dennis the Menace figurines
PG 32: Back Page: 60 Second Dennis - Nigel Parkinson
What a load of rubbish, on the Beano Forum, fellow member swirlythingy said the following:
"With the Beano's publication schedule, the comic must have been and gone from the printers by now... so I wonder what's in store?
Maybe they're going to stop calling him 'Dennis and Gnasher' and return him to his rightful title?
Maybe they're going to comission a 32- (or even 48-) page story, with laughs every other panel, good writing and proper humour, as opposed to the recent politically correct drivel?
Maybe they're going to run a crude reprint of the Mike Pearse full-length story drawn for his 50th birthday, with the text carefully edited to remove anything which was considered socially acceptable in 2001 but is no longer appropriate for the much more highly evolved, aware and sensitive readers of 2011? And probably bits lopped off the beginning and end to make it fit into a standard comic with room to spare for standard stories for everyone else? I mean, it's his only major work which they haven't actually reprinted in some form yet, and doubtless that's only because they couldn't think of a good excuse. (And this - which looks suspiciously like that very same story - smacks of desperation.)
Maybe they'll comission a new, not-all-that-long story (almost certainly drawn by Nigel Parkinson) with tepid jokes and little in the way of a plot structure?
Maybe they'll just reprint the same old stuff from their extremely narrow archive of past Dennis stories, which get trotted out in just about every retro collection? (Examples: the first ever, the one with the stagecoach, Mike Read's part in the 'missing Gnasher' storyline.)
Maybe they'll ignore it altogether, like they did with Roger's and Minnie's 50th birthdays in 2003? Or print one gimmicky standard-length story, like with Bash Street's 50th in 2004?"
Well, looks like they went with the one we all didn't want, lots of reprinted rubbish...
If I was the editor here's what my idea for a Dennis the Menace 60 year special:
PG 1: Front Cover
(Something that actually had effort put into it rather than a re-used picture of Dennis and Gnasher added to a ripped background plus Plug being used from Dave Sutherland's Bash Street Kids for that week...)
PG 2: Contents
PG 3: Dennis the Menace - Tom Paterson
(No more Dennis and Gnasher, back to the original title.)
(A story in which Dennis sneaks under Fred's Bed and goes back in time and sees all the past Dennis the Menace stories from before, here he meets Biffo the Bear and we see the punch up for the front cover position, rather like the 70 year anniversary when Fred meets Nick Park as a kid)
PG 8: Minnie the Minx - Ken Harrison
(Keep it the same, it was great!)
PG 10: BFG
(If they really need it)
PG 11: Ball Boy - Dave Eastbury
PG 12: The Numskulls - Barry Glennard
PG 14: Dennis' Birthday!
(A long story drawn by a good artist like Tom Paterson or Barrie Appleby)
PG 24: The Bash Street Kids - David Sutherland
PG 26: Little Plum - Hunt Emerson
PG 28: Beano VIP
PG 30: Fred's Bed - Tom Paterson
(Carried on from Dennis the Menace)
PG 34: Ivy the Terrible - Diego Jourdan
PG 36: Billy Whizz - Nick Brennan
PG 37: Biffo the Bear - Andy Fanton
(A sort of welcome back because this is a special one I think Biffo should've featured for some reason...)
PG 38: Roger the Dodger - Barrie Appleby
PG 40: Meebo and Zuky - Laura Howell
PG 41: Super School - Lew Stringer
PG 42: Beano Subscription Page
PG 43: Advertisement: The Dandy - Korky the Cat
PG 44: A Brief History - Barrie Appleby
(In comic strip form)
PG 48: Back Page: 60 Second Dennis - Nigel Parkinson
So yeah, that's what I think, maybe make the comic about £1.50 as it's a special and also have a free gift inside which is a small booklet containing reprinted Dennis the Menace material.
Anyway, on with the review...
This week's wasn't amazing, I'll do a quick rating on the stories inside (new stories not reprints)
Dennis and Gnasher - 10/10
A bit short perhaps but still good, I liked the ending with Dennis catapulting everyone, great to see the menace is back!
Minnie the Minx - 10/10
Very funny, the story was great and the ending actually made me laugh! :D
Lego City - 7/10
Lovely artwork but the story wasn't very funny...
The Numskulls - 5/10
Poor story... Very poor indeed...
The Bash Street Kids - 8/10
Good story minus the ending which wasn't funny...
Roger the Dodger - 8/10
I got very confused with all the Roger lookalikes on page 2, was it really needed?
60 Second Dennis - 9.5/10
I liked it, the new title looks great plus the story was good!
So yeah, it wasn't amazing, certainly not terrible but no where near as good as the Beano's 70th anniversary issue, that issue was amazing...