Typical! Just as you go on holiday, some big news breaks about British comics and now we’re playing catch up… but it’s surely good news that one of DC Thomson’s best-known characters, Bananaman, looks set to star in his own movie.
Created by Steve Bright and writer and editor Dave Donaldson (best known for his work on The Broons) and initially drawn by the late John Geering for Nutty, the official Beano web site describes the quintessentially British Bananaman as the superhero with “the muscles of twenty men, and the brains of twenty mussels”. He’s brave, he’s bold… but he’s not very bright!
Bananaman’s secret identity, when he’s not out flying into action and foiling crafty criminals, is Little Eric Wimp. But, after a ‘nana… FOOM, Bananaman’s ready for action!
As a baby ‘nana, Eric, whose powers include flying, super-strength, super-duper-speed, the ability to fly through space (and the ability to look only slightly stupid in a tight blue leotard)was rocketed to Earth from the moon. His lunar origins cause his amazing banana powers.
(What? Haven’t you noticed that a crescent moon looks a bit like a banana?)
Bananaman’s not the only banana-powered hero to appear in The Beano. His little cousin, Bananagirl, is a pupil at Super School. His many foes include General Blight, Doctor Gloom, Appleman, the Nerks, Eddie the Gent and Auntie.
While there’s not much to see on the official web site – BananamanMovie.com – other than a hashtag, #peelthepower and an indication the movie will be released in 2015, we do know that the project involves Elstree Studio Productions. And of course, that this isn’t the first time the Big Yellow has jumped media: in 1983 the BBC screened an animated series featuring the voices of The Goodies, produced by 101 Film Productions (later Flicks Films).
Bananaman first appeared in Nutty in 1980 before moving to The Dandy and, now, The Beano. In addition to Steve Bright (who says he is waiting for the call to do a ‘Stan Lee’ cameo appearance) and John Geering, other creators involved in the strip down the years include Barrie Appleby, Tom Paterson and Chris McGhie.