Helpful Henry

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Helpful Henry was a comic strip appearing in both the UK and the USA. They were two different comic strips created by two different cartoonists.

UK[edit]

Helpful Henry was a comic strip in the UK comic The Beano. It first appeared in Beano issue 1, dated 30 July 1938. A similarly named character had also appeared in the first issue of The Wizard under the name 'Elpful 'Enery.

The central character is Henry, a young boy who attempts to be helpful but ends up doing more harm than good - usually as a result of a misunderstanding or misinterpretation.

He was also in The Dandy Monster Comic 1939,[1] which came out two months after Beano #1 - it is unknown whether the character moved comic or if this was a preview. However some characters, such as Marmaduke Mean the Miser, only appeared in the annuals, so that could be the explanation. As well as this some early Dandy characters such as Podge appeared in the 1940 Beano annual so this could be the case of minor characters just appearing in any DC Thomson annual.

Helpful Henry reappeared in Sparky in issue 211 (dated 1 February 1969) drawn by Hugh Morren this strip lasted in Sparky until issue 230.[2]

USA[edit]

Helpful Henry was also a comic strip in an American comic. It was created by cartoonist J. P. Arnot (Paul Arnot - Born: 9/16/1887 - Died: 12/2/1951). Arnot was the artist of several newspaper features in the 1910s and 1920s. One of his many creations was Helpful Henry.

Actor Oliver Hardy was known to have stated on many occasions, that after seeing the character Helpful Henry in a Georgia newspaper, it inspired him for his screen character. He described Helpful Henry as being big, fussy and self-important, but underneath it all, he was a very nice guy.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dandy Monster Comic No. 1. Dundee, Scotland: D.C. Thomson & Co. Ltd. in conjunction with Aurum Press Ltd. 2006. pp. 48,56,69,80,96,124. ISBN 1-84513-217-3. 
  2. ^ The Sparky File http://crikey.forumotion.com/t148-the-sparky-file