Hallowe’en Countdown V, Day 1

« Dennis the Menace was probably the most realistic comic book ever done. No space aliens ever invaded! » — Gilbert Hernandez

Is it already October? So it is. Well, here we go again with our annual Hallowe’en Countdown. We’ll kick this edition off by featuring that pint-sized bundle of toxic toddler masculinity, Dennis the Menace (I can’t help but think that his French name, Denis la Malice, is a far more accurate description of his sociopathic essence).

Here at WOT?, we’re both (amble over to ds’ earlier DTM spotlight) huge fans of Hank Ketcham’s cartooning finesse… I mean, these are beautiful! But… drawing skill aside, the stuff is hard to take is large doses. To quote one frazzled babysitter to Dennis’ parents: « how can you stand it? »

And Dennis is still around, seemingly unchanged…

Dennis’ first Hallowe’en, from Oct. 31, 1951, the strip’s inaugural year.
October 30, 1952.
Just put yourself in Dennis’ parents’ shoes, and you get a better sense of the sheer magnitude of his malevolence. His poor folks don’t seem to have done anything to deserve being forever trapped in this relentless cycle of humiliation and injury. October 31, 1952.
The old lady didn’t think it was so silly. October 31, 1953.
This is Dennis the Menace Bonus Magazine Series no. 155 (July, 1976, Fawcett).
And a look inside…
Back in the day, you could *be* Dennis (more or less) for trick or treating, thanks to that fondly-remembered purveyor of cut-rate (but cool in their way) costumes, Ben Cooper, Inc.
A fuller look at the Dennis ensemble. And do check out this bit of Ben Cooper history!


2 thoughts on “Hallowe’en Countdown V, Day 1

  1. Geo. Raymond October 1, 2021 / 22:05

    I went through a big Dennis the Menace phase, probably around the same time as Making Movies (I recall picking up that particular issue at the Pinecrest General Store on our way to the cabin we were staying at) I definitely preferred reading the reprints from the early years. His level of menace was much higher in the 50s and 60s

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Matt Brunson October 2, 2021 / 15:15

    Oh, boy, time again for the Hallowe’en Countdown! Love all things All Hallows’ Eve, so looking forward to this year’s crop!

    Liked by 1 person

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