A new collection of Andy Capp strips is on its way, six years after Titan Books published the last assembly of tales starring Britain’s best-known layabout.
Created by Reg Smythe for the Daily Mirror, Andy Capp first appeared in the paper 60 years ago on 5th August 1957 and the strip has recently been the focus of a great exhibition in the artist’s home town, which runs until the end of this month.
Andy is, for his many fans across the globe, a lovable rogue who over the decades has evolved to match the ever-mutating society around him, without changing too dramatically himself. As attitudes altered, so did the cartoon strip. Over the years, Andy’s character has mellowed somewhat from the hard-nosed man of old to a more sympathetic sort. But he still has a quick wit and a tongue that can bring down anyone on their high horse faster than an Apache arrow.
While the Andy Capp retains the same setting and many of the situations that were so brilliantly crafted by Reg Smythe, there’s now more in-frame action with slapstick and knockabout humour, resulting in highly visual displays and a wide range of expressions expertly crafted by Roger Mahoney.
Despite its North East origins, the comic strip has been syndicated in 50 countries and appears in some 1500 newspapers worldwide.
The strip used to be collected regularly, starting in 1958, at a rate of two a year for several years.
“The collections proved to be a success with young and old alike,” notes cartoonist Lew Stringer on his blog, who broke news of the collection to fans earlier today. “My grandad was reading them in his 70s.”
“As with most newspaper collections in the UK, the Andy Capp books have appeared less and less in recent times,” he continues, “even though the strip continues in the Daily Mirror seven days a week.”
Andy Capp: 60 Years of Thinking About the Big Issues is a collection of strips from the current team of Roger Mahoney, Lawrence Goldsmith and Sean Garnett, who have been involved in several other Andy Capp book projects down the years, and this should prove a welcome addition.
As soon as we have a confirmed on sale date we’ll let you know.
• 60 Years of Andy Capp 3rd June – 27th August 2017, the Museum of Hartlepool (aka Hartlepool’s Maritime Experience), Jackson Dock/ Maritime Avenue Hartlepool TS24 0SX Web: www.hartlepoolsmaritimeexperience.com
• Cigarettes and Alcohol: Andy Capp By Paul Slade
An extensive feature on the character. Reg Smythe was the greatest British newspaper strip cartoonist of the 20th Century – and second only to Peanuts’ Charles Schulz on a global scale. So why don’t we treat him that way, Paul asks?
Andy Capp copyright Daily Mirror. Item with thanks to Lew Stringer