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Now, had you come up to me in recent years, right there at the comic book shop, dollar bills in hand, and demanded that you be allowed, this very instant, to buy all of our copies of the comic based on 1992’s greatest movie starring a giant Saint Bernard named after a legendary composer and co-starring Charles “King Kong (1976)” Grodin, I could very well have said “I’m sorry to disappoint you sir and / or ma’am, but there ain’t no such animal,” — and I would have been totally wrong, because BEHOLD:
There I was, digging through one of about ten thousand boxes of funnybooks dumped on us from another comic shop that had downsized its stock, thus upsizing our own, when this comic appeared. I really, truly had forgotten this had ever existed. I mean, I remember other Harvey Comics licensed properties from around this time. Beetlejuice
, Back to the Future
, even The Incredible Crash Dummies
. But Beethoven
? Whatever brain cells I had devoted to remembering that comic had been published have since been overwritten by, well, more important information
, I guess.
This particular issue, dated May 1994, features two stories by Angelo DeCesare and Howard Bender in which our titular hero finds himself in a series of giant dog-related shenanigans, such as getting embroiled in a museum mystery:
Okay, there’s no actual “mystery” as such evident in that panel, but trust me, that image is fraught with foreboding for the terrifying and suspenseful twists and turns that are about infringe upon Beethoven’s idyllic doggie world.
But here, please enjoy Beethoven’s amazing doggie-mugging for the camera from that story, as he contemplates infringing the intellectual property of McGruff the Crime Dog:
Anyway, there were three issues total of this series, at least as far as I can tell. But perhaps it’s still being published today, disseminated via some shadowy network of comics distribution that’s even more
shadowy than the one that already exists, passing along copies of Beethoven
out of my sight, hidden from my knowledge.
Also, I have a hard time believing the scripts for the Beethoven movies were anywhere close to being this sophisticated:
…you’re gonna turn up your nose at this outfit:
…when you normally dress like this:
…you drive one of these:
…you talked your butler into joining you on this:
…and, as noted before
, you own one of these horrible things:
You sure draw the line at the oddest places, Richie Rich.
Also, you say stuff like this. I mean, what the hell.
(Some images “borrowed” from the Grand Comics Database.)
Some found art from the back cover of the Harvey Comics AstroComics 1973 airline giveaway:
“Little Dot” looks terrifying
, frankly. It’s those soulless coal-lump eyes, I think.
from Little Lotta #115 (May 1975)
image from Hot Stuff #98 (July 1970) – yeah, okay, I might have the genders reversed
So I don’t know which is more disturbing:
That 1) there was a comic book series devoted to the love life of Richie Rich…
…or 2) that Richie Rich is totally ripped:
I’m half-surprised Harvey didn’t put out a title called Richie Rich and His Manly Torso
, so long as they were putting out six dozen other
Richie Rich series.
BUT…BUT HE’S A GHOST
HOW CAN HE…HOW IS THAT EVEN….
from Spooky #144 (May 1975)
images from Tuff Ghosts Starring Spooky #40 (September 1971)
and Spooky Spooktown #66 (December 1976)
…and that would be THE LOVE LIFE OF RICHIE RICH:
…Well, Richie’s love life as Gloria is imagining it, but once seen, it cannot be unseen
Please enjoy the rest of your day. Thank you.
from Richie Rich Bank Book #12 (August 1974)
In the comments for yesterday’s post, both Tim and John comment on the “intense” adventure-oriented nature of the Richie Rich comic I presented. I’ve always thought this kind of Richie Rich comic, as common as it was, seemed a bit…peculiar, myself, contrasting the exceedingly cartoony nature of Richie with drama, action, and intrigue. Archie did it, too on occasion. I suppose ultimately it’s no more ridiculous than, say, Uncle Scrooge McDuck going on world-spanning and sometimes life-threatening adventures (though there are, I imagine, several reasons why Scrooge’s adventures feel less out of character than they do for Richie or Archie…perhaps a topic for another day).
I’ve presented these panels before, about five years ago, but this remains my favorite cognitively dissonant bit from one of the “adventure” Richie Rich comics…in this case Richie Rich Diamonds #56, where Richie is stranded in a foreign country and faces off against…um, the Vietcong, maybe?
Here’s another Harvey book I came across with a similarly out-of-character presentation:
Okay, not so much in the cover image but in the promises made in the blurbs: “shiver with fear..shake with laughter.” C’mon, it’s Casper…how much shivering in fear are we seriously expecting, here? (And the “shake with laughter” part…well, your mileage will vary, I guess.)
That’s about as scary as it gets. But it’s not as if we were realistically expecting “OH MY GOD! It’s Baby Huey…but where’s his head
!? AAAAIIIIEEEE!!!” I’d totally read that, of course, but alas, our actual Harvey scares are more gentle and friendly in nature.
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