Sunday, January 31, 2016

This Seinfeld/Dennis the Menace crossover might be the only important thing I've ever done

A portly, balding man named George who is constantly ranting about everything in his life? A freeloading, wisecracking neighbor who is forever showing up, uninvited, at inconvenient times? A focus on the mundane, minute details of daily life in America? Yes, in all these ways (and probably no others), Hank Ketcham's Dennis the Menace is a precursor to Seinfeld. Ketcham's creation started as -- and still exists as -- a daily newspaper comic, but from 1959 to 1963, it was also a live-action sitcom, starring Jay North in the title role. The "Kramer is basically a grown-up Dennis" thing was my starting-off point for this crossover parody, which takes its dialogue directly from a real-life Dennis Sunday strip and its visuals directly from a real-life Seinfeld episode. As this mashup shows, Dennis Mitchell was the original "pop-in guy." By the way, when you read this, I'd like you to do so out loud in your best Jason Alexander impression. Really bite down on words like "computers" and "fence."