Saturday, March 2, 2013

Reading A Comic Inside A Comic

Here's an interesting theme - a character reading the comic they appeared in! It has undoubtedly appeared in just about every comic you can name since they were first created - with a character reading it in the classroom or buying a copy and saying something along the lines of "Ho! Ho! Dennis is good this week!". Before I get stuck in showing you some of these I'll show you a twist of the theme in a Bookworm strip. I don't know where it originally appeared, but I found this strip in the February 1988 edition of The Best Of Whoopee Monthly.

Moving on, the first one I dug out was a Tom Tum strip from The Dandy issue dated 4th August 1984. Tom Tum was a spin-off from Tom Thum, the only difference is size - this version of Tom is incredibly fat and thinks of nothing but food, and it was illustrated by Keith Reynolds.

We head back from the 1980's to the 1960's, and dive straight into the 1967 Beezer book. Although not as good as the rest I'm going to show, there are several pages I'll highlight, and the other two are at the bottom of this post! The second is in a Little Mo strip, and whilst her pie is cooling she takes a read of her copy of The Beezer. You might also notice that the comic has her name at the top.

Staying in the 1960's, this next one appeared on the front cover of The Beano, #1355 dated 6th July 1968. This strip is about Biffo the Bear trying to get his copy of The Beano Summer Special 1968, but, typically, all the stores are sold out! The only thing I don't like about this cover is that Biffo looks more like a puppet than a living bear in the last panel

We are also reminded of the summer special in a half page advertisement inside.

Back in the 1980's, issue six of Nipper had not one, not two, but three cases of characters reading the comics they appeared in. The best one is Roy Mitchell's Wonder Boy, who begins to wonder what it would be like to be the editor of the comic.

At the start of Brad Break brad is seen reading a copy of Nipper in the first 3 panels. This strip was illustrated by Steve Bright in the style of Davy Law.

And finally, The Savers are seen with a collection of comics, including a Nipper and a Buster. This was illustrated by Mark Bennington.

Coming forwards to a very recent issue of The Beano, a man is seen reading a copy of The Beano in a newsagents, but things could get very confusing, so I will say no more!

And finally, here is the two two-page spreads from the front and back of the 1967 Beezer book.


Andy Boal said...

Tom Tum was by Keith Reynolds, who drew the entire original series. He was also the third and longest-serving artist on Tom Dick and Sally, besides taking over from Tom Patterson on School Belle.

Keith also drew a lot of Beano Comic Libraries, particularly the Bash Street Kids and ensemble stories such as the Beano Marathon.

George Shiers said...

Thanks for that, I can definitely see a similarity between Tom, Dick and Sally and this now!