Archive: Dennis the Menace

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Dennis the Menace, 1/29/23

True story: when I saw today’s Dennis the Menace title panel, my immediate thought was “Ha ha, surely this isn’t lovable scamp Dennis the Menace actually digging a grave, this is just illustrating a play on words like they sometimes do.” But, nope, turns out he is, in fact, digging a grave, and I gotta say, as far as comics about children digging graves go, this one, which is about a kid preparing a decent burial for the littlest member of his household, even when nobody else in his family will, contains as little menace as possible.

Gasoline Alley, 1/29/23

Have you ever wondered where, exactly, the syndicated newspaper comic strip Gasoline Alley takes place? Well, today’s strip doesn’t answer the question, exactly, but it does eliminate a lot of possibilities, mostly the area where people use dialect terms that can be spun into “fun facts.” Also it’s someplace where animals can talk, I guess.

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Family Circus, 1/27/23

One thing that’s always pleasant in reading a longstanding feature like the Family Circus is a sense of real surprise! Normally, for instance, you’d expect Grandma Keane to be scandalized by how poorly the local public school is teaching her grandchildren to love the American flag, and, by extension, the republic for which it stands, but here she seems positively delighted that Dolly can’t tell the difference between a patriotic oath and a jingle created by a megacorporation to promote processed beef purchases. “That’s right dear,” she says, “American ideology is a hollow shell! Finally, you’re starting to recognize it!”

Dennis the Menace, 1/27/23

Oh, sorry, I guess I called this post “One-panel Friday” even though Dennis the Menace is trying to wedge multiple panels into its traditional one-panel structure, which I frankly don’t care for. They’re even jamming a word balloon in there, jeez! What do you think you are, Blondie? Anyway, it’s kind of funny — and frankly telling — that Mrs. Wilson was planning on casually going out and dropping three to four figures on a major piece of living room furniture without even asking her husband what he thinks. But I guess the second (sigh) panel proves that he cares about one thing and one thing only: his eternal war against Dennis Mitchell. Her facial expression shows that she’s not looking forward to the awkward and embarrassing conversation with a furniture salesman about a seven-year-old that she’s going to have to listen to.

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Dennis the Menace, 1/22/23

One of the biggest transformations in American life over the last generation is that children — including ones who are surprisingly old, or at least surprisingly old to me, a non-parent — have to be strapped into car seats in order to go anywhere. I remember being kind of smug when hearing that the Kids Today can’t go a long car ride without being entertained by a screen of some sort, but then I realized that unlike me at that age, these kids are essentially immobilized for hours at a time, so what can you expect? Anyway, newspaper comics are created by and/or cater to the aesthetic tastes and nostalgia of Boomers and older Gen Xers, so it makes sense that Dennis, a child who is absolutely small enough be in a car seat, is not in a car seat in this comic, even though Henry’s phone places the scene squarely in the present. At least he’s in the back seat, so he won’t be killed instantly by the airbag triggered when Henry inevitably drives into a tree while futzing with the GPS.

Shoe, 1/22/23

Shoe and the Perfersser make up the entirety of the Treetops Tattler’s editorial staff, so it seems a little weird that they’re both in court to cover this story. But it’s not every day you get to see an old man sentenced to die in prison, I guess.

Family Circus, 1/22/23

Literacy, everyone! It’s what transforms you from the idiot dipshit in the first two panels to the smug little fucker in the final one. Learn to read, why don’t ya!