February 21, 2008


When I was still very young, my cousin presented me and my brother with two garbage bags full of comic books. Having outgrown them, himself, he thought the two of us might enjoy them. The bags were chock full of diferent comic book titles, but it was the "Richie Rich" comics that plucked my heart strings ever so pliantly. Each issue was dripping with the kind of largess and impossible displays of wealth that can only be conveyed through a comic book. For some reason, I found myself thinking back to some of those "Richie Rich" comics, and I wondered if I could Google zing some of the old covers I used to read with a near religious fervor.


Ah, yes, I remember this cover well. The precursor to the air conditioned doghouse of Jim and Tammy Faye, this is. You'd think you'd stop and pause at some point if you're a kid and you have to don protective eyewear to save your orbs from the gleam coming off Fido's digs. Hell, Fido himself has to wear Elton John shades to protect himself from his own house. Talk about impractical. But, this was Richie Rich! This was nothing compared to what else that "Rich" family could afford to throw money away on. Incidentally, Richie's actual dog was a "Dollarmation" named. . . Dollar, which was an exceedingly rare breed that had dollar signs instead of spot, so I'm not sure who this mutt interloper is.

Also, as a kid, the tagline "The Poor Little Rich Boy" pretty much confused me until I was 13 or so.


Richie's best friend in the whole wide world was his wretchedly poor friend, Freckles Friendly and his little brother, Pee-Wee. Richie always seemed to give lip service to somehow assisting Freckles and his brother so they could lift themselves out of their poverty-stricken existence. I can't remember if the status quo remained the same because of Freckles' insistence on not taking charity, or because Richie was a just a dick, or what. Whatever the case, Freckles routinely showed up at the Rich estate to smile happily and enjoy vicariously the next big gratuitous display of wealth procured by the Riches. Sure, Freckles has to go home to an empty plate and an abusive father, but at least he doesn't have to wear an oversize bowtie, for crying out loud.


This was, quite possibly, one of the creepiest Richie Rich covers I remember. I actually ended up tearing the cover off, because it was just so entirely UNNATURAL. You have the aforementioned Dollar, sitting cross-legged, a la "Basic Instinct," just waiting for the right time to show off his neutered glory. I can understand why Richie was surprised by the unnecessarily expensive and shiny dental work, but you have to wonder why the dentist looks so nonplussed. I mean, he did the work, didn't he? He had to have SOME idea what to expect, right?


Yes, one of Richie's dad's little guilty pleasures in life was to sequester himself in one of his many vaults with a bottle of Mad Dog 20/20 and laugh about all the poverty in the world. Of course, it was only a matter of time before the devil booze turned him into a constipated version of the father from "Eight is Enough." I didn't actually own this issue, but I encountered it while Google search and just COULDN'T let it pass without comment.

More later. Maybe.

Posted by Ryan at February 21, 2008 04:14 PM | TrackBack
StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble It!