Rees-Mogg accused of copying Beano character Walter the Softy
The children’s comic wrote to the Conservative MP asking him to ‘cease and desist’ his alleged impersonation of Dennis the Menace’s arch-enemy.
Jacob Rees-Mogg has got himself into bother with the Beano after being accused of copying Dennis the Menace’s arch-enemy Walter the Softy.
Beano Studios has written to the Conservative MP, warning that his distinctive style is a rip-off of Walter and calling on him to “cease and desist”.
The Beano’s Mike Stirling listed alleged infringements of the comic’s copyright including Walter’s hair parting, round glasses, spotty ties and vintage apparel, and enjoyment of classical music.
And he said the North East Somerset MP had copied Walter’s “snootiness” and his efforts to stop others having fun.
Accusing the prominent Eurosceptic backbencher of “masquerading as Walter Brown”, Mr Stirling wrote: “It is evident that there are numerous instances whereby you have adopted trademarked imagery and brand essences of the character to the benefit of enhancing your career and popularity.
“We firmly request that you cease and desist in your ongoing impersonation of the character, which remains the exclusive property of Beano Studios.
“A swift response on this matter would be greatly appreciated to avoid getting Teacher involved.”
Mr Stirling, who is head of Beano Studios Scotland, said that the similarities between Walter and Mr Rees-Mogg had been spotted by young readers of the comic and its beano.com website.
He said it was clear that Walter had devised his trademark style first, as he first appeared in the Beano in 1953, 16 years before Mr Rees-Mogg’s birth in 1969.
“We were flattered when we discovered that Jacob Rees-Mogg has dedicated his life to impersonating one of my favourite Beano characters, young Walter,” said Mr Stirling.
“Nonetheless, as a hard-working British media company, we would prefer the public gets its Walter fix in the pages of our comics and on Beano.com , rather than played out on the political stage. In other words, bog off Rees-Mogg!”