To celebrate its 85th birthday, Beano has published a collectable anniversary edition, packed with the nation’s favourite celebrities, as chosen by children. Available to purchase today (26 July), the magazine “commemorates everything that’s great about being a kid in 2023”, with issues also being donated to UK schools, a press release details. The magazine is the UK’s longest running comic and was first launched on 30 July 1938, with the collectible edition being its 4,195th issue. Since its creation, it has created a number of household children’s characters, most notably Dennis the Menace and his dog Gnasher.
The magazine was made in collaboration with thousands of children, with Beano carrying out a survey of young people aged 7-14 to find out which celebrities children find most inspiring, who they would want to be their best friend and who they would most want at their birthday party. For the ‘inspiring’ category, footballer Marcus Rashford came out on top, both for his footballing abilities and his work fighting for a fairer society and free school meals across the UK. Taking both the best friend and birthday spot was entertainment duo Ant and Dec. Also featured close behind are the likes of David Attenborough, Tom Holland, Stormzy, Dua Lipa and Adele, with celebrity buyers of Watford FC Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenny even making an appearance. All of these figures have been illustrated by Beano artist Nigel Parkinson and feature on the magazine’s front cover, resulting in a hectic who’s who.
Throughout, you’ll also find a comic strip also illustrated by Nigel which sees the celebrities help Beanotown kids from preventing Mayor Brown from carving his own face into Mount Beano, and an eight-page mini-mag Beanow ‘edited’ by Dennis the Menace himself. The magazine has been created entirely with the words, thoughts and pictures of children on the topic of "why it’s great to be a kid in 2023", with highlights including dancing, rapping and catapults, a press release states.
On the comic, Mike Stirling, 'director of mischief’ at Beano says, “As Beano proudly celebrates its 85th anniversary, it continues to champion the power and joy of childhood by doing what it’s always done, showing kids being kids. Here’s to the next 85 years, and we dedicate this birthday issue to every child out there, because being a kid never gets old.”
Front and back cover (Copyright © Beano, 2023)
About the Author
Olivia (she/her) joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in November 2021 and soon became staff writer. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English literature and history, she’s particularly interested in photography, publications and type design.