09 August, 2013

Dennis The Menace Double Trouble Coincidence

Two Dennis the Menace. UK and USA

Dennis the Menace, on the left of the image above, has been around for years in the UK I can remember him in the Beano when I was a child.

He actually first appeared in the Beano comic, dated the 17th of March 1951, but which was available in the shops from the 12th of March 1951.

Meanwhile in the USA, on the same 12th of March 1951, Hank Ketcham's very first Dennis the Menace comic strip appeared in American newspapers. But he was a different Dennis, as can be seen from the image above - he's on the right.

So we have two Dennis the Menace characters being released on the very same day on opposite sides of the Atlantic.

What's going on (or went on)? Plagiarism?

Beano annual 2005
No. it was pure synchronicity or, if you prefer, coincidence.

David Law in the UK and Hank Ketcham in the USA both thought up similar named comic characters and agreed to carry on regardless. The USA Dennis is better known internationally but the UK Dennis is much more popular in his own country.

The only problem was when the USA Dennis was made into a movie and was shown in the UK in 1993. The title had to be changed to just 'Dennis' instead of 'Dennis the Menace' to avoid any UK trademark infringements.

The creators simply both latched on to the same ribbons of thought and came up with the name Dennis the Menace - instead of Charlie, Lionel, Peter or whatever. Such things happen quite often with discoveries, themes for books and so on. It's interesting how people thinking along similar lines get connected.

Today Dennis the Menace is almost respectable in the UK. Even the Duchess of Cornwall (Prince Charles wife) appeared alongside him in a Beano comic strip.

Duchess of Cornwall and Dennis the Menace

Other Synchronicity or Coincidence Stories:
Amazing Coincidences Discovered Through A Television Show
Double Whammy Of A Coincidence From A Coincidence Story
The Lynmouth Flood Coincidence And The Town Today

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3 comments:

  1. Very strange. I remember Dennis the Menace from when a child. He's over sixty now, and hasn't changed a bit. Their smiles are the same.

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  2. Bonjour Mike,

    It seems that these coincidences happen with scientific discoveries. At the same time in the world, working on the same issue, scientists get their answer or result. Surely "gone with the wind" or rather "égrégore", stream of thought.

    Have a nice day !

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  3. These coincidences also happen with novels and books. I hadn't heard of this one, but it's a good one, for sure!

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