Basic comic research fail

Campbell Live had an interesting piece about the inspiration behind Dennis the Menace, the much-loved British cartoon character from Britain’s Beano comic.

The problem is that there are two Dennis the Menaces. Both appeared in print for the first time in 1951, three days apart and on opposite sides of the Atlantic. The American version is a good natured but destructive blond 7 year-old who torments his elderly neighbour, Mr. Wilson. The British version is a dark-haired ragamuffin with a stripey jersey and dog named Gnasher. To avoid confusion, the British version was retitled Dennis and Gnasher for overseas consumption, while in Britain the American version is just called Dennis.

Unfortunately, no-one told Campbell Live about this basic distinction between two utterly different comic strips. They were interviewing the (very English) inspiration behind the British Dennis, but for some reason used clips from the cartoon and film adaptations of the comparatively insipid American Dennis, which made nonsense of the interview. To make things more confusing, they ended with a brief clip of the British version.

Did they not notice it’s a totally different character, or just not care?

(See this dreadful item here.)


3 Responses to “Basic comic research fail”

  1. That’s… quite astoundingly bad.

  2. Hopefully not many people will notice, but it makes me wonder about the quality of their researchers.

  3. I saw the trail for the show, and spazzed at the tv. “You *idiots*” I may have said.

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