The Beano is one of the longest running comic series in the world, having surpassed the issue 4000 milestone. Taking its name from now outdated and mostly forgotten slang for a party or a celebration, Beano debuted on the week of 30th July 1938. It has been a weekly title for most of its run, though wartime paper shortages forced it go bi-weekly, alternating with its elder sister title, The Dandy, through much of the 1940s.
The Beano has produced numerous characters who have become British comics icons. In the early issues the ostrich Big Eggo was the cover star, but his reign ended with the 10th January 1948's issue 326, and a fortnight later, with issue 327, Biffo the Bear took over the front cover. After a lengthy run on the cover, Biffo too was moved into the interior pages with 7th September 1974's issue 1677, to be replaced a week later by Dennis the Menace, a character originally introduced back in 1951, who has retained the cover position almost every issue since.
Other notable humour strips include Lord Snooty, Minnie the Minx, Roger the Dodger, and The Bash Street Kids (originally titled When the Bell Rings).
Until the 1970s the Beano regularly featured both humour and adventure strips, but the latter gradually dwindled from the comic, until only the former remained, apart from the occasional brief flirtation with reviving one of the past adventure series, such as when Billy the Cat briefly returned in the 2000s, or General Jumbo's appearances in the Beano Annuals. Other notable adventure strips include Jack Flash, The Iron Fish and the Q-Bikes.