Exactly 75 years to the day it first hit newsstands, the print edition of famed British comic The Dandy has bowed out with its last ever issue. The 3,610th issue is packed with strips featuring 75 of the title's most memorable characters and a pull-out replica of the very first edition, published on 4 December 1937.
But this is not the end of The Dandy. As one format disappears another is born, with publisher DC Thompson simultaneously launching a digital version of the comic along with the last print issue. Issue 0 is online now, free, and gives you a sample of what the dedicated iPad, iPhone and Android app will offer from issue 1 on.
Available on PC and Mac this week, tablet and smartphone devices later, The Digital Dandy is being billed as much more than the original comic with it featuring animation in strips, voice acting on classics including Desperate Dan, mini-games that readers can play as part of a strip's story, and video sections.
The editorial team has even reached out to creators and artists from the comic's history to help aid its evolutionary transition. And as well as featuring classic comedy characters, such as Bananaman, The Numskulls, Blinky and Brassneck, a new serial called Retro-Active has been introduced. It takes some of the British super-heroes from DC Thompson's past and brings them up to date in a new super-team.
The launch issue features a Bananaman game that's similar to running platformer Canabalt, and Dandy Dollop, a digital pet to feed, dance and play with.
The free issue 0 will be available on www.Dandy.com, while issue 1 and there-on will be accessible through dedicated apps for the iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Android devices. These will soon appear on iTunes and Google Play.
Prices for each issue will be £1.49 when bought individually (50p less than the regular print edition), £29.99 for a year's subscription (working out at around 59p per issue).
The "Last Ever Issue" is on sale now for £3.99 and realises Sir Paul McCartney's life-long ambition of appearing in the comic. It will also probably appear on eBay for years to come.