Desperate Dan

    Character » Desperate Dan appears in 1622 issues.

    The world's strongest man and star of The Dandy.

    Short summary describing this character.

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    Hailing from Cactusville, Texas, Desperate Dan is the strongest man in the world.


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    Desperate Dan is one of the longest running comic strips in the world having appeared in issue 1 of The Dandy in 1937 and continues to appear in The Dandy today. Desperate Dan was created by artist Dudley D. Watkins and Dandy editor Albert Barnes, the latter of whom also provided the inspiration for Dan's massive chin and who wrote the strip for the first several years.

    Watkins drew the strip until 1969 and his sudden demise from a heart attack while at his drawing board; as a mark of respect, Barnes, then still editing the Dandy, refused to let another artist take over the strip, and for the next fourteen years Dan's adventures consisted of reprints of earlier, Watkins-drawn, stories. Barnes retired in 1982, and a year later the new editor finally commissioned new Desperate Dan strips. In 1984 Desperate Dan replaced Korky the Cat as the cover star.

    Character Development

    Dan's statue in Dundee, Scotland
    Dan's statue in Dundee, Scotland

    Dan hails from the wild west town of Cactusville. He was originally a bit of a desperado on the wrong side of the law hence his name, Desperate Dan. He later on became a friendlier character helping his fellow town folk and even becoming deputy and sheriff of Cactusville from time to time. Dan is arguably the strongest and toughest man in the world. Examples of his strength have been lifting whole buildings and using a crane to fish. He also uses a blow torch and chisel to shave. He like's nothing more than to tuck into a huge cow-pie which seems to be made of a whole cow with even its horns and tail sticking out of the pastry.

    Desperate Dan's family includes his Aunt Aggie, who makes him his cow-pies, and his nephew and niece, Danny and Katey. He has a pet dog called Dawg, the hardiest hound around.


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