The Dandy #3552


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The Dandy #3552


  • Words: Various
  • Art: Various
  • Publisher: DC Thomson
  • Price: £1.50
  • Release Date: Sep 14, 2011

After nearly 75 years of publication, British humour anthology The Dandy has successfully reinvented itself for a whole new generation of readers with a host of engaging characters and satirical mischief.

Just under a year ago, The Dandy, the venerable weekly comic that debuted back in 1937, underwent a high-profile relaunch. Headlined by a strip featuring the adventures of popular British TV comedian Harry Hill, it combined new takes on old characters with topical parodies of television personalities and pop culture, and added a whole new batch of outrageous protagonists to its pages.

The multitude of comic strips in issue #3552 reflect the usual glorious mix of anti-authoritarian hilarity and self-indulgent tomfoolery to be found on a weekly basis in The Dandy's pages. Flagship feature Harry Hill’s Real-Life Adventures in TV Land is as uncompromising as ever in its fond mocking of the cult of celebrity while Wilbur Dawbarn’s Mr. Meecher, the Uncool Teacher’s appeal continues to lie in its slightly rebellious tone towards the school classroom’s common enemy.

Jamie Smart is in particularly fine form this issue with his self-explanatorily entitled Pre-Skool Prime Minister. There’s a remarkable energy and vibrancy to Smart’s work that never fails to appeal. Visually, Smart’s Desperate Dan may be a radical departure from the style of Dan creator Dudley D. Watkins, but the artist loses none of our favourite man-child’s juvenile innocence or his larger-than-life exploits in his portrayal of this classic British character. Life in Cactusville is the same slapstick fun it always was!

Old favourites, like superhero Bananaman and Korky the Cat, sit well with the likes of Lew Stringer’s incompetent mailman Postman Prat and the grossness of the mucus-based escapades of The Bogies. Elsewhere, Stu Munro’s Tiny’s Temper extrapolates that old standby of the childhood “imaginary friend” to wonderful extremes. The Dandy’s current incarnation feels very much like a spiritual successor to Krazy, the infamously anarchic humour weekly of the 1970s. They share that sense of naughtiness, that feeling that you never quite know what’s coming next and that same unpredictable, wacky wit.

Fast-paced, frenetic, and fun, The Dandy may have reinvented itself for a new generation of readers but it still upholds all the well-loved traditions of British weekly comics. Not only is it a perfect entry point into comics for the uninitiated but it’s a publication that works on so many levels that it can be enjoyed by both parents and kids together. Whether you’re part of the target audience of children or a lapsed reader from decades past, The Dandy’s humungous heapings of  hebdomadal humour are a treat that no British comics fan should be without. For this growing child of 42 years, Wednesdays wouldn’t be complete without Desperate Dan, George Vs. Dragon, Yore!, The Sea Dogs, and the rest of the gang.

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