Dennis Q&A

16 August 2023
Beano Great Escape book cover. Dennis and friends are trying to climb up a rope ladder surrounded by sweets.

Beano's editors, Craig Graham and Mike Stirling, take you on a behind-the-scenes tour of Beanotown's greatest escapades as the comic celebrates its 85th anniversary.

For Beano’s 85th anniversary, we’ll have a special celebratory event – Two Beano Editor’s Make Mega Mischief – presented by the magnificent Craig Graham and Mike Stirling. Even though Dennis and Gnasher won’t be there themselves, we asked if we could have a chat. We really should have known better as Dennis ended up telling us about the power of Abyssinian wire-haired tripe hound wee and zombies.

So Dennis, why did you like the sound of a Beano event in Wigtown?

At first, it was all about the wigs. Then Mum told me that’s not why Wigtown got its name, so I had to do a bit of Googling.

I really want to visit sometime and see the stone domino rally at Torhousekie, and I’m going to find a smuggler’s cave filled with loot, and probably ghost smugglers too. Then there’s the quidditch team – maybe I can teach them how to play Super Epic Turbo Cricket, which is a much better game. And I’d like to meet the lady who sends books into outer space with rockets. Maybe she has a rocket that’s big enough for an awesome boy and his dog to make it to space?

Craig Graham and Mike Stirling will be running an event all about Beano - revealing all its secrets - what'll they say about you?

Mike and Craig are pretty smart (for grown-ups), so I’m sure they’ll tell everyone how kind, intelligent, creative and helpful I am. And then hopefully they might point out that I haven’t had a rise in my pocket money for ages, and have you seen the rate of inflation, Dad?

Who gets in more trouble, you (Dennis) or Minnie?

Ha, this is definitely me! I was born with a note home from school in my mouth. Most days I get up in the morning and find out I’m in trouble for stuff I’ve forgotten I did the day before!

Minnie always says she’s too smart to get caught, but that’s just an excuse. For losing. In your face, cuz!

How's your friend Walter?

Ah, my “friend”, Walter. He’s fine, I think. I haven’t seen him since he told my Dad it was me who got Gnasher to wee the word “BUM” on the lawn. Abyssinian wire-haired tripe hound wee is powerful stuff - Dad reckons there will be a bum on his lawn until 2025.

If you could play a prank on anyone in the world, who would it be and what would you do?

I couldn’t single out just one person for such an honour. I would prank everybody by announcing that from tomorrow the world will be run by 10-year-olds. We’ll give everybody the same amount of pocket money every week, settle arguments with conker battles, and work out how to power the world with green energy (from uneaten brussels sprouts, hopefully). Grown-ups will lose their minds, ha ha!

There are going to be lots of people looking for great things to read at the festival - what would you recommend?

It’s hard to do that because everybody likes reading different things. My dad reads the Beanotown Gazette every morning because he likes to be angry, which is one of the reasons he loves me so much. My mum likes audiobooks that she can listen to while she’s driving or before she goes to sleep. My baby sister Bea likes fairy tales. I read them to her at bedtime. They’re a bit boring, so I skip all the soppy stuff and just add in as many zombies as I can. Snow Zombie and the Seven Little Zombies is her favourite, followed by Zombie and the Zombie Beast.

I like books that make me laugh, like the boomics Mike and Craig write, or books that have lots of cool facts I can tell other people. Did you know that polar bears have black skin? Or that crocodiles can’t stick their tongues out? I didn’t either until I read Earth’s Most Epic Creatures by Annie Malls...