'Beastenders' (Buster Book 1992).

Anthony Hutchings is a British comics artist, illustrator and greeting cards designer from Leigh-on-Sea, Essex. During the 1980s and 1990s, he worked for the IPC comics magazines, most notably Buster. His best remembered comics series was 'Beastenders' (1987-1990). He signs most of his work with simply "Anthony".

Early life
Anthony Hutchings was born in 1946. He studied commercial art at Southend College of Art, and became a freelance cartoonist and illustrator in 1977. He was a regular contributor to the comics magazines published by IPC, such as Whoopee!, Buster, Whizzer and Chips, School Fun, and Roy of the Rovers weekly. His strip 'Walt Teaser' appeared in School Fun, and was about a kid whose pranks always backfire. For Whizzer and Chips he drew comics like 'Neighbours', 'Puss and Pooch' and 'Bobby's Ghoul' in the late 1980s. Both magazines eventually merged with Buster, respectively in 1984 and 1990. Whoopee! had already merged with Whizzer and Chips in 1985. Hutchings also appeared in IPC's new title Nipper (1987), which already merged with Buster after only a couple months.


'Bobby's Ghoul' (Whizzer and Chips, 29 April 1989).

Buster
Hutchings was most notably part of a new wave of artists which filled the pages of Buster during the 1980s, alongside Steve Bright, Jerry Swaffield and Pete Dredge. For this magazine he continued 'Walt Teaser' until 1987, took over 'The Winners' (1988, previously drawn by Mike Lacey and Jimmy Hansen), and created 'Beastenders' (1987-1990) and 'Watch Out, Beagle's About' (1991). 'Beastenders' was based on the popular TV soap 'Eastenders', but featured horror characters in the starring roles, such as Arfur Growler and Pauline, Pete Brawl the pizza specialist, Dot Rotten the launderette owner, Dr. Legs the vampire, Lazy Len, Angry Angie Witts, Herman and Lizzy, Weeksy the cook and Lofty the midget bellboy and clerk. The gruesome inhabitants of Beastenders were in many ways similar to Charles Addams' 'The Addams Family' in that they may have looked scary but were harmless eccentrics in every other way. One person who couldn't stand them in the series was Mr. Grott, who wanted to turn their neighbourhood in a new building block. The first episodes of 'Beastenders' were drawn by Hutchings from 30 May 1987 on, after which Reginald Parlett took the series over from 1988 until 1990. The writer was Mike Knowles. 'Watch Out, Beagle's About' ran from 14 September until 28 December 1991 and was a parody of the hidden camera TV show 'Beadle's About' starring Jeremy Beadle, but now in the role of an anthropomorphic beagle.


'Walt Teaser' (Buster Book 1988).

Other work
Adults could read Hutchings' cartoons in Punch, Private Eye, The Daily Mail, The Daily Mirror, The Daily Star, The Sun, Club International, Men Only, Accountancy, Weekend, Fiesta and Knave. He is also co-author of a variety of cartoon books, including 'Columbus' with Les Lilley (Millbank Books, 1992), 'Chunky 'n' Hunky' (Powerfresh, 1996), 'Crinkled 'n Wrinkled: The Oldies Guide to Survival' with Cliff Carle (CCC Publishing, 1998). He worked as greeting card artist for Royle and Otter House and created advertising cartoons for ICI. In 1987 and 1989 he was voted CCGB Joke Cartoonist of the Year. From 1983 on he also illustrated various books by A. Gelman and M. Young's 'SuperTed' series.

He should not be confused with the British comics artist Tony Hutchings and the Birmingham-based concept artist and illustrator Anthony Hutchings.

Series and books by Anthony Hutchings in stock in the Lambiek Webshop:

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