Friday, 30 January 2015


If I recall correctly, LEO BAXENDALE never made any
secret  of the fact that GRIMLY FEENDISH (brilliant name) was
based on cartoonist CHAS ADDAMS' UNCLE FESTER, from the
ADDAMS FAMILY.  Perhaps that's why he never took legal action
over copyright of the character (like he did with D.C. THOMSON) -
he'd surely have been on shaky ground if he'd tried.  Grimly was one
of the strips that appeared in the ODHAMS PRESS weekly comic
periodical named SMASH! back in the '60s, and he was the in-
spiration for the song Grimly Fiendish by punk band
THE DAMNED in 1985.

As you'll doubtless have noticed, bald baddie GRU in the
movie DESPICABLE ME bears an uncanny resemblance to
Grimly, but he's more likely to be based on Uncle Fester than he is
on Feendish himself.  Anyway, I don't think the accompanying four-
page strip from the 1967 SMASH! Annual is by Leo Baxendale,
but it'll give you a fair idea of the kind of shenanigans that "The
Rottenest Crook in the World" usually got up to in his
weekly criminal expeditions.

Any fond reminiscences of reading Grimly as a boy?
(You, not him.)  Then let's hear them, O fellow followers
from fandom.  (It's good to share!)


B Smith said...

You ought to do an item about the colouring in annuals; it really does seem to bear no relation to its other print cousins.

Kid said...

Do you mean it's better or worse, BS?

Paul McScotty -Muir said...

When I saw the promos for "Despicable me" I immediately thought about the resemblance to "Grimly Fiendish" and thought there was going to be a mention of Baxendales influence in the credits (I also thought that some of the characters in "Monsters Inc" bore a resemblance to Baxendales creatures) -

Do you know if Grimly initially appear as the main villain in Leo's "Eagle Eye Junior Spy" strip before getting his own strip? Grimly and Leos work especially at Odhams (along with Ken Reids) are my lasting memories of UK comics and every time I see their work Im taken right back to being a kid in Rutherglen eagerly rushing home from the newsagents with my comics to read their latest work (even although Im pretty sure this is not Leos work) -

Personally I don't think the colouring in annuals at this time was very good as it always appeared to me to be a bit harsh / bright.

Kid said...

Do I know 'if'? Ah, you mean do I know 'that' - yup, I did, McScotty. Like you, I also don't think it's Leo's work, which I mentioned in the post. I usually slightly increase the contrast on my scans to make the pages appear cleaner and brighter, so I'm wondering if that's giving the impression of the colour being more garish than it was. I actually liked the colour on the Eagle Eye strip in the previous but one post. (And would that newsagent's have been Johnny's, or did you use others as well?)

Paul McScotty -Muir said...

Actually I meant (though I asked very poorly, sorry about that) if you knew if Grimly first appeared as a villain in Eagle eye before getting his own strip ( which it seems he did).

That newsagents (in most cases) would indeed have been Johnny's Kid :)

Kid said...

Yes, Grimly appeared in Wham! #1, the complete issue of which is somewhere on my blog (unlike inferior blogs that only give you the odd page or two - no, of course I don't have any specific site in mind, hee hee), in the Eagle Eye strip. I thought you knew that, and were asking me if I knew it too. Now we both do, McScotty. Result!

Ken said...

Separated at birth...Grimly Fiendish and Dara O'Briain?


Kid said...

Well spotted, Ken. Give him a scarf and he'd be able to play Grimly in a movie.

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