Whatever happened to Wayne?

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swirlythingy
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Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by swirlythingy » 02 Sep 2011, 23:44

From here:

In early 2007 the Beano had a competition run on Blue Peter to design a new, eleventh, Bash Street Kid, with the winner destined to become a permanent member of the (admittedly large and mostly insignificant) regular cast.

The winner, announced some weeks later, was a character called "Wayne", a Calamity James-alike, albeit more sympathetic. He was formally introduced in the Bash Street Kids strip of issue #3379 (2007-05-05)... and then completely disappeared.

His last major role was also his first, and while, granted, for characters such as Spotty and Wilfred a gap of years between speaking parts is not wholly unusual, Wayne had somewhat more potential than they did, as proved by the number of non-scripted background gags David Sutherland drew him into. Although he continued to appear in crowd scenes, after a year, he was silently and completely removed from the strip. The last Beano in which I have spotted him during the course of a less than rigorous survey is issue #3424 (2008-03-22).

What happened to him?

Did the Beano never have any intention of keeping the reader submission longer than was polite? Was some policy changed at a later stage and a decision taken to order David to stop drawing him? Was, indeed, he simply overtaken by events?
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by AndyB » 03 Sep 2011, 07:57

I think they had every intention of making Wayne permanent, but I understand that he proved to be far too one-dimensional, so he was quietly forgotten about after a decent amount of time. He may have got a mention on the Beano Club page.

I dread to think how one-dimensional the other submissions must have been!

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Jonny Whizz
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Jonny Whizz » 03 Sep 2011, 08:14

I think the problem with Wayne that he was like Calamity James, but was less funny!In my opinion, anyone who disliked James as a character was unlikely to be keen on Wayne either, and readers who really liked James probably saw Wayne as an inferior substitute.

Also, Wayne was much more one-dimensional than James, as he was merely accident-prone rather than a walking disaster zone. Also, he didn't have any real personality, which may not have been helped by being created by a reader rather than a Beano writer. In my view part of what made James funny was that he could go from a state of seemingly perpetual misery, to ludicrous optimism that today was finally going to be his lucky day.
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Digifiend
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Digifiend » 03 Sep 2011, 11:10

Spotty has no real personality either, at least in the Dave Sutherland version. His only traits are his spots and his long tie. Of course, Kev F's long stories and Mike Pearse and Tom Paterson's Singled Out strips made him more of a practical joker, but that's never been shown in the main BSK strip.

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Tin Can Tommy
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Tin Can Tommy » 03 Sep 2011, 11:30

On an unrelated note i always thought Smudge would make a good Bash Street Kid.

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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by AndyB » 03 Sep 2011, 11:42

Spotty having two jokes means he has one more than most of the rest of the kids:

Danny - the leader
Toots - the girl
Sid - the twin with the pets and the hair (hey, three jokes!)
'Erbert - short-sighted, nay blind
Fatty - greedy
Plug - ugly (and tall)
Cuthbert - the swot
Smiffy - the thick one
Wilfrid - the chinless wonder

Wayne's other problem was that he needed to have an accident to have any point. 'Erbert has visual jokes such as facing the wrong way which mean that he can move with the group and still be funny.

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Digifiend
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Digifiend » 03 Sep 2011, 22:20

Some of those other gimmicks are a lot more versatile for storylines though (especially Sid's love of animals, which I'm surprised isn't used more often). Looking back to the early days, it's actually pretty obvious why Teddy, Jimmy and Ella were dropped. Teddy was simply outdated after a few years, his gimmick being that he was a "teddy boy". Toots wouldn't have had her "only girl" gimmick if Ella had stayed. And Jimmy simply had no extraordinary trait whatsoever. Spotty was introduced just before those three were axed I think.

If you notice, Cuthbert actually doesn't usually appear unless he has a speaking role. His niche, his swottiness and high intellect, doesn't make for good visual gags, but has plenty of plot versatility - the opposite of Wayne.

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Steve Henderson
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Steve Henderson » 04 Sep 2011, 14:57

Do you not think that having to draw 10 Kids in every story as well as extras such as Teacher, Cuthbert, Head, Olive etc etc might have something to do with it? I know Leo Baxendale had no worries filling a page with dozens upon dozens of characters each with their own gags like a sort of precursor to 'Wheres Wally' but todays comics have a different structure to them and a lot more story driven dialogue.

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Jonny Whizz
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Jonny Whizz » 04 Sep 2011, 15:54

When I was younger, I used to draw my own editions of the Beano (I rarely got that far into them, though), and I must admit I never really tried to draw the Bash Street Kids - I felt it would be too difficult to fit all the kids in, and it was tricky to decide which characters would feature. I found it easier to come up with story ideas for strips with a fairly small recurring cast, like Billy Whizz and Calamity James, where there is a clear focus on the main character.
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stevezodiac
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by stevezodiac » 04 Sep 2011, 22:33

I remember a similar thing in American comics where George Perez was quite happy to draw the New Teen Titans when other artists had declined due to too many characters. I think it was mentioned in the editorial pages.

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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Raven » 04 Sep 2011, 22:45

Steve Henderson wrote:Do you not think that having to draw 10 Kids in every story as well as extras such as Teacher, Cuthbert, Head, Olive etc etc might have something to do with it? I know Leo Baxendale had no worries filling a page with dozens upon dozens of characters each with their own gags like a sort of precursor to 'Wheres Wally' ...

He did by 1973 - he pulled out of Shiver and Shake's Match of the Week double-pager after the first two strips, due to the difficulty and pressure of creating twenty-two characters each week!

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TwoHeadedBoy
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by TwoHeadedBoy » 19 Feb 2012, 23:46

Techno was another one who was introduced then dropped about a year later. He was a new science teacher, mind, but still a "kid" - actually, I think he was a cyborg, wasn't he?

And when did Wilfrid stop being tall?
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Digifiend
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Re: Whatever happened to Wayne?

Post by Digifiend » 20 Feb 2012, 01:27

Yeah, Techno was a robot science teacher, and about the same height as Danny. His origin story was reprinted in a BSK annual a few years ago... in fact there were a few strips with him in that annual. I think he only lasted a few months.

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