Well here it is, Merry Christmas, everybody’s having fun – or so Seventies sideburned seasonal songsters Slade once sang. And they were right, everybody WILL be having fun once they get their hands on the slew of festive funnies coming your way from D.C Thomson this year!
Firstly, we have the Beano Christmas Special, which isn’t to be confused with the weekly comic’s Christmas issue (more of which in a mo). This is a one-off, 68-page special (with 29 free stickers!) that’s been out in the shops since September. Inside you’ll find all of your Beano faves, including the Bash Street Kids in a four-page story I wrote, with art by legendary Lew Stringer, marking the first time we’ve collaborated, a fact of which I’m very excited as I’ve been a huge fan of Lew’s work ever since the days of Oink! and Buster in the 1980s. Hurrah! The Beano Christmas Special is out now, priced £4.99.
Secondly, we have yer actual Christmas issue of the Beano, which this year comes bagged with 12 ‘prank gifts’ should you wish to go out causing mischief this Christmas. Inside the comic itself you’ll find all the Beano regulars, including another Bash Street Kids story scripted by me, and illustrated by Mychailo Kazybrid and Bambos Georgiou. Again, it’s a great thrill for me to work with Mychailo and Bambos, as I’ve been great fans of their work since I fist chanced upon them in Marvel’s horror-themed comedy comic, It’s Wicked! So yeah, that’s wicked, too!
Meanwhile, there’s also some snow-based silliness with Minnie the Minx, in a 2-page story penned by my own fair hand and illustrated by the even fairer hand of Paul Palmer. So that’s TWO festive funnies I’ve written for this year’s Christmas issue, for two of the Beano’s most iconic series! To say that I’m geeking out and feeling a little bit pleased would be an understatement. The Beano Christmas issue is out now, priced £4.50.
Firstly, I’ve written a 2-page Roger the Dodger story for the Beano annual, in which Roger tries to dodge out of going to school by trying to get himself snowed in at home, the cheeky chappie. Art by the brilliant Barrie Appleby!
And finally, I’ve both written AND drawn four new Bad Grandad strips for the Dandy Annual (see preview at the very top of this post!) Bad Grandad was a co-creation between me and then Dandy deputy Michelle O’Donnell, and he appeared in the Dandy comic during its last couple of years. It’s genuinely great to see the old codger return for another batch of badness, and let’s hope this doesn’t signal his actual retirement!
Both The Beano and Dandy annuals are in shops now, priced £7.99 each (although there are deals for cheap annuals all over the place in the run up to Christmas, so act quick and grab yourself a bargain!)
WHEW! So, there you go – four Christmassy comic books to brighten up your Yuletide, and four publications in which I see print (which I hope won’t mar the merriment). Get ‘em got and have yourselves a very, VERY merry Christmas!