Today’s Dennis

Today’s Dennis The Menace panel. Is this a swipe at prime time and cable cartoon shows?

My caption would’ve been: “I remember when Cartoon Network ran Cartoons!


  • Rick

    Yes, your caption is better!

  • http://www.animationinsider.net/ Aaron H. Bynum

    Interesting. In a recent conversation with a producer at Warner Bros. Animation, an individual recently communicated the same to me, but in reference to comic books.

  • ask

    Actually for today’s day and age, I’d switch their roles, having his dad walk of saying, “I remember when cartoons were for adults!”

  • http://nicknadel.tumblr.com Nick Nadel

    Is that supposed to be a cartoon Papa Menace is watching? Perhaps he’s watching the hot new Fox animated series “Bringing Up Father”? What exactly is “adult” about two dapper parents toasting over a baby’s head? Is this Hank Ketcham’s assistants’ take on “Family Guy”? Do they even own a TV?

    The Comics Curmudgeon is going to have a field day with this one.

  • http://beesbuzz.biz/ fluffy

    Yes, I, too, remember a time before Betty Boop.

    Wait what?

  • Marc Baker

    I hope this isn’t a knee jerk response to the many inroads that animation has made in expanding beyond the kid audience. I think the ‘I remember when Cartoon Network ran cartoons’ caption, and would be far more fitting for how things are. Having said that, i also find that comics have been largely aimed at adults since Frank Miller, and Alan Moore shook things up back in the mid 80′s, and while there are still comics aimed at kids, they usually get ignored by the masses.

  • http://zeteos.blogspot.com/ mick

    how about

    ‘He has narcolepsy accompanied by galloping incontenance let’s get out of here’

  • http://www.frankpanucci.com FP

    I remember when Hank Ketcham’s ghosts drew better.

    Dennis has fetal alcohol syndrome! Joey has scurvy! Dennis’ dad has become Asian! There’s even a bonsai tree on the old school CRT TV.

  • http://davidessman.com david essman

    I remember a time when comics were funny…

  • fishmorgjp

    Huh? How can you tell they’re cartoon characters on the tube — they look like goofy actors contiguous with the ‘real’ characters in the living room.

  • Dock Miles

    Some pretty funny comments, folks.

    What bugs me is that Dennis is trapped in some weird time-warp where he’s wearing the same outfit he’s had on since Ike was President while Joey sports a crude approximation of current garb. Then again, Joey is doing some screwy thing with his hands that’s probably a gang signal …

  • Lucky Jim

    Why does the guy on TV look like a fatter version of Dennis’s dad?

  • http://goldenagecartoons.com Matthew Hunter

    And I remember when Dennis the Menace was funny. Oh…wait…no, it never WAS funny, was it?

  • Thad

    “I remember when this comic strip didn’t suck!”

  • http://www.animationfestival.ca J. Zaroski

    +1 to Thad

  • Gerard de Souza

    Dennis is the perpetual 6 year old. So when exactly does he remember cartoons being for kids? 6 months ago?
    They could have made the cartoon on the TV better; more stylized/minimalistic. Henry could be watching live action for all we know. We only know dad is watching cartoons becasue the caption says he’s supposed to be. I haven’t read Dennis in ages but if the other modern gags are like this, I’d say the panel’s on cruise.

  • sporridge

    Yes, Nick, The Comics Curmudgeon saw it and sayeth:

    http://joshreads.com/?p=4621

    Fittingly served between slices of those other golden moldies “Mark Trail” and “Apartment 3-G.”

  • David

    No “ghosts,” as such, on DENNIS THE MENACE, at least not in the sense that others are drawing the cartoon while Hank Ketchum continues to sign his name to it. Ketchum died in 2001 and since then the daily strip has been openly credited to Marcus Hamilton. (The Sunday DENNIS strip has been drawn for many years by Ron Ferdinand.)

    Some of Ketchum’s 1950s DENNIS panels are funny stuff, produced back in a day when the kid was allowed to live up to his nickname.

  • Karma

    I’m just going to come right out and say what needs to be said, bluntly and evidently.

    This comic is ignorant and off base. If I hear from one more misled idiot who thinks that animation is inherently for children, i’m going to lose my mind.

    This comic’s current writers Ron Ferdinand and Marcus Hamilton have proven themselves out of touch with the topic addressed here and are guilty of baseless ignorance on a subject they know nothing about.

    This particular date’s strip is moronic, insulting and would have been much better off never having been produced. Shame on them attempting to pass this off as funny, or even based in amy kind of reality.

  • Graham

    In response to Nick Nadel’s comment:

    I don’t think the caption is referring to the age difference between “for kids” and “for adults.” I think Dennis is referring to animation between “for kids” and “for the family.” He’s trying to say that cartoons meant for kids should be catered and exclusive to those of his age group.

  • Francis

    Dennis needs an Uncle Grandpa.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-LvIG7MDSys
    This was produced at Cartoon Network and it’s a CARTOON!

  • s.w.a.c.

    Joey kinda looks like a Nazi skinhead, with the shaved scalp and what looks like a Hitler moustache. Or maybe he just likes the keyboardist from Sparks.

  • Mister D

    Washington Post columnist Tom Shales goes off on The Cleveland Show as “the mass-media equivalent of peddling smut to kids”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/09/28/AR2009092804049.html

  • http://www.frankpanucci.com FP

    Shales’ cluelss, stuffy review of CLEVELAND makes it sound hilarious, which I don’t think was his point. Wait – maybe he’s being clever and he actually loves the show and wants us to watch it.

  • Daniel J. Drazen

    “Man, this is worse than that time Mom wouldn’t let me run through the sprinkler naked.”

  • vzk

    “I remember when cartoons were for kids.”

    Yes, I remember Eveready Harton.

  • http://www,SuperTrainStationH.com SuperTrainStationH

    This comic was so un-funny I thought it was Family Circus at first.

  • Trevor

    Another example of why comic strips should be killed off after 40 years.

  • Mike Tiefenbacher

    I consider the daily DENNIS THE MENACE panel to be a genuine piece of art, and I believe Marcus Hamilton is every bit the equal of Hank Ketcham. DENNIS–whose target audience is and has always been pre-teen kids–is set in a netherworld–it always has been, by the way–set somewhere in the ’50s-’60s (Dennis still idolizes Cowboy Bob!) in which all of the design elements must fit together. I believe the caption refers to the non-kid-friendly primetime cartoons (mostly Fox, but including all recent animated series from other networks) which are animated only in the sense that they are not live action, designed only in the sense that the characters have black holding lines around them so the colors don’t all run together, and written only in the hope of causing the 17-29 year olds watching to snort beer through their noses. Had Hamilon actually chosen to draw, say, Simpsons or Family Guy characters on the screen, it would have been jarring for both reasons: it would place DENNIS in the real world, and it would violate the homogenous design of the panel. For me, Hamilton’s DENNIS as well as BLONDIE (moreso under Stan Drake, but to some extent to Drake’s successors Jim Raymond, Denis LeBrun and John Marshall as well) can justifiably bear comparison to the artistic beauty of those strips’ originators (Ketcham and Chic Young, respectively–and respectfully as well). Precious little on today’s comics pages–where the likes of DILBERT and its ilk pollute the waters–deserves close examination as drawing, and I for one am glad that “comic strips should be killed off after 40 years” remains only the smartass reaction of somebody who’d enjoy seeing his readers snort beer through their noses.