With stamp images from Royal Mail
The Dandy is 75 years old. I remember reading the comic as a child and Desperate Dan looks as good now as he did all those years ago. My favorite, of all the old comics, was The Beano but I liked the bigger, broadsheet style, Topper and Beezer too. I read them all when I could, but we could rarely afford them in those days. I even read the Bunty, with the Four Marys (without my sister’s knowledge, of course). It wasn’t the norm for a boy to read a girl’s comic but many boys read their sisters comics. We never admitted to doing so, of course, and would die of embarrassment if another boy saw us even glancing at a Twinkle or a Bunty. We had to stick to Roy of the Rovers in The Tiger or Steel Claw in The Valiant.
The famous DANDY & BEANO ANNUALS are all on Amazon.
All of these comics were printed on poor quality newsprint, with none too vivid, colored inks used. I preferred them to their modern, too stylish, too perfect, glossy magazine appearance that exists today. A collectible postage stamp has been issued for each of my chosen 3 British comics.
The Dandy is one of the world's longest running comics and was innovative in that it used speech balloons instead of printing under each frame. Everyone’s favorite character was Desperate Dan, but Korky the Cat was popular and I remember liking Jimmy's Pocket Grandpa and Swallowed by a Whale. I have fond memories of reading the Dandy Summer Specials each year when on holiday. The Dandy is still in print and is the oldest British comic that you can still buy today.
The Beano is not as old as The Dandy but more of its characters are better known, or at least as well known as the Dandy’s Desperate Dan. The 3 best Beano ones are Dennis the Menace, Roger the Dodger and a female mix of these two characters, in the form of Minnie the Minx. Not only that, but The Bash Street Kids in the middle two pages were very likeable and everyone who read them seemed to be able to associate themselves with one of the school kids. My own favorite Beano character was the speedy Billy Whizz.
The Bunty was for girls and the best remembered, longest, comic book storyline was in the adventures of The Four Marys. The four girls went to a boarding school (St. Elmo’s) but they were from different backgrounds in society. Despite this, they got on famously and there were so many adventures for them and their readers to experience together. In case you have forgotten their names, the girls were called Mary Cotter, Mary Radleigh, Mary Simpson and Mary Field. They distinguished themselves from one another by their nicknames which were, Cotty, Raddy, Simpy and Fieldy.
To celebrate these comics the postal authority of the UK issued a stamp for each comic classic. The 3 featured in the article are part of a set of 10 comics that have had a postage stamp issued in the World of Comics series this year. The others honored are The Eagle, The Topper, The Tiger, The Valiant, The Buster, Twinkle and 2000AD. The stamp set was issued by Royal Mail on 20 March 2012 and is of interest to philatelists and comic book memorabilia collectors alike. Several years ago the USPS issued stamp sets for DC Comics which proved to be popular. This success then led them to issue a further 10 stamps of Marvel comic book superheroes.
Gift for comic book collector
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(price as of Jun 3, 2016)