70 years of Desperate Dan

Discuss or comment on anything relating to Britain's longest running comic. The home of Korky the Cat and Desperate Dan. Has been running since 1937.

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Peter Gray
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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Peter Gray »

Amazing achievement for a character to be in every Dandy comic...

Been reading a lot of Dandy's recently...also wrote a list of missing issues to fill gaps...which is many..

There have been many longer Desperate Dan stories in the 40's and 50's what was the longest and a bit about what happened..?

I've always wondered what was in the 1950's Desperate Dan book I have the 1979 book which is great....shame they didn't do more reprints of Desperate Dan in annual form...

On the cover of the Dandy Extreem comix they should have a reprint of Korky the cat another character who stayed a long time...instead of a contents page...

on a quick side note who drew Peter's Pocket Grandpa?

Lets hope Ken H can draw some more Desperate Dan ...

Discuss Desperate Dan here- :)

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Re: 70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Lew Stringer »

Peter Gray wrote:Amazing achievement for a character to be in every Dandy comic...

Pedantic hat on but I'm sure he missed one or two issues in recent years.

Lew

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Steve Bright
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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Steve Bright »

Peter's Pocket Grandpa was drawn by Ron Spencer if my memory serves me well, Peter.
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Peter Gray
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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Peter Gray »

No Desperate Dan has been in every issue except for the story when he left...But was still his story of him missing...

though lots of reprints...

thanks Steve.....yeh it looks like Ron...what a lovely strip...

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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Conor B »

I know theres one from 2006/2005 when there was no strip but a new poster was there instead.
Comic Genius Runner Up 2006

Kashgar
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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Kashgar »

The original Dan serial stories began in earnest in 1946 and continued without too many breaks until DDW's demise in 1969. I'm working from memory here but I'm pretty sure the longest series' were the Jumbo the elephant series that ran for about six months in 1959 and a series featuring a 'Black Bob' type border collie, whose name escapes me at the moment, which ran for a similar time in the mid 1960's.
The serials have included some really classic encounters for Dan over the years, including the brilliant 'family tree' series in the late 1940's, two series featuring 'the unluckiest guy in the world' Jonah Jinx and two personal favourites from my own childhood, 'The Man from Mars' series and Dans encounter with the 'guy that can hear a pin drop a mile away, Dog Ears Montana. Weird and wonderful stuff and wonderfully funny too.
I produced a list of all Dan's serial adventures as a seperate section in the Dandy Monster Index where you'll also find details of the contents of the 1954 Desperate Dan Book.

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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by felneymike »

I think there was one long serial in the 40's or 50's in which he was falsely suspected of a crime and had to avoid the police using many disguises, including a very stereotyped Chinese one, an ill-fitting schoolboy one and even became a police officer himself

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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Kashgar »

On checking there were 90 Desperate Dan serials published between 1946-1969 and, as I suspected, by far the longest was the 'Jumbo the Elelphant' series which ran for 44 weeks (900-943) in 1959. The other series I mentioned the 'Blackie the Collie' series was actually nowhere near as long, running for a relatively paltry 18 weeks (1285-1302) in 1966.

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Peter Gray
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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Peter Gray »

Thanks for all the info.....hope I do get one of those indexes one day... 8)

'The Man from Mars' series

Was that about an alien!!! 8) :) ?

When Desperate Dan was repeated what year did they start with....also it seemed to repeat again in the 80's...

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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Kashgar »

Not wishing to give anything away but you did ask. In 'The Man from Mars' series ( I hasten to add here that most of these titles are only ones that I gave them myself when I was compiling the index as, originally, they were untitled when published) let us just say that Dan's nephew Danny, wearing a suit made of cardboard boxes, plays a leading role.
Re the reprinting of the Dan strips 1969-1983 they only ever went back as far as the early 1960's and, as a result, within the time period some strips were indeed reprinted twice. There were two basic reasons for this decision to delve no further back into the archive
1) The 1960's strips, stylistically, were more in keeping with the Dan strip as Watkins was drawing it at the time of his death and when reprinted wouldn't have jarred with the then current readership as looking dated.
2) It was only in 1960 that Thomsons began to store their artwork on film and this made the post 1960 material easier to source than having to haul out files of original artwork. For the same reason today Classics from the Comics rarely reprints material from the pre 1960 period.
Re the Dan reprints I did do a complete catalogue of these in 'The Desperate Dan Index' an A4 8pg booklet published by the lads at BCW, which also included a complete stripography of Dudley Watkins' annual work.

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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Kashgar »

On checking Peter the earliest strip reprinted in the 1969-1983 period was that from Dandy No 965 published in May 1960.

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Peter Gray
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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Peter Gray »

Thanks for the info Kashgar...so all Desperate Dan strips before May 1960 are not reprinted......thought I'd collect the 70's Dandy to get hold of the 1960's Desperate Dan as it is cheaper..

I remember the robot one now so you havn't spoiled it :wink:

maybe I saw it in Classics...can't remember where I saw it...Desperate Dan is lovebale gulliable :lol:

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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by MikeC »

Well, the early ones are in the Dandy right now. This was in another thread somewhere.

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Peter Gray
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70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Peter Gray »

I don't think we've seen the last of Desperate Dan...he is so ingrained with the Dandy...I can see him there until the end of The Dandy

lets hope a new comic artist or Ken will draw new adventures for him...
after seeing Ken's work in the Independant he should be asked to draw it again...unless he is semi-retired...

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Re: 70 years of Desperate Dan

Post by Lew Stringer »

Peter Gray wrote:I don't think we've seen the last of Desperate Dan...he is so ingrained with the Dandy...I can see him there until the end of The Dandy

lets hope a new comic artist or Ken will draw new adventures for him...
after seeing Ken's work in the Independant he should be asked to draw it again...unless he is semi-retired...

I don't mind Desperate Dan going reprint, as long as Ken H is kept busy on other strips. Charlie Grigg, Ken Harrison and others did wonderful work on the strip but I think all would agree that Dudley Watkins was the master. Those 1940s reprints are "new" to most readers and they are incredibly funny. I hear they're even popular with the kids, which is interesting but should be expected really as they contain really good slapstick sequential art.

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