OF THE BABY NAME DENNIS
Dennis “The Menace” Mitchell is the eponymous character in the comic strip created by Hank Ketcham in 1951, and was subsequently adapted to movies and television series. Based upon Ketcham’s own son, Dennis is a delightfully mischievous, freckle-faced little five year old boy, whose antics and outspokenness always lead him into trouble. Much of the strip’s humor derives from the other characters’ reactions to him, particularly his gruff but secretly lovable neighbor, Mr. Wilson. Dennis genuinely likes Mr. Wilson’s company, along with Mrs. Wilson’s baking. His behaviour often exasperates his long-suffering parents, but they devotedly persevere. With his dog, Ruff, in tow, Dennis rules the neighborhood, showing the ropes to his adoring sidekick, Joey, trading barbs with the self-important Margaret (who wants to marry him) and showing off for Gina (whom he secretly loves). Dennis will probably never celebrate that long-delayed sixth birthday – long may he live!
Dennis Barlow is the main character in Evelyn Waugh’s 1948 satirical novella, The Loved One: An Anglo-American Tragedy, about the funeral business and Hollywood film community. It was made into a 1965 movie starring Robert Morse as Dennis Barlow. Dennis is a young British poet in Hollywood to write a script. Losing his job, he goes to work as a pet cemetery employee, incurring the horror of his fellow British expatriates. Falling in love with a funeral home cosmetician, he woos her with “borrowed” poetry he infers is his own and asks her to marry him after she receives a promotion, so that she can support him. Dennis is not a particularly high-principled person, it appears. After the suicide of his “loved one”, he presides over her cremation at his place of work, all the while reading a novel. But let’s not be too hard on him – he is an anti-hero at his author’s behest, and as such, he does a pretty darn good job.
Margaret is the little nemesis of “Dennis the Menace”, Hank Ketcham’s comic series that was begun in 1951. She is a little know-it-all who reigns supreme in the neighborhood, queening it over the other kids with her glasses and her ubiquitous doll carriage. Although she is a source of great annoyance to Dennis, she is sublimely confident in her plan to marry him one day. In the meantime, it is her sworn duty to correct his grammar, his manners, his habits and, in general, his existence.