Here's a Stanley Stories first--a story with no John Stanley involvement! It's the first outright ripoff of John Stanley's characters and style that I've found.
None other than Stan Lee is responsible for this. Artist David Gantz did the pictures. It's an obvious attempt to imitate the early Stanley Little Lulu comics. Just as Stan Lee pilfered Chic Young's Blondie for the execrable "Rusty" (grudgingly illustrated by a young Harvey Kurtzman), he crocheted a simulacra "Lulu" for this "Comedy Features Syndicate" offering.
In fact, there may be more "Nancy" than "Lulu" here. That the story is a narrative, and not just a string of stand-alone gags, ties it to Stanley's Lulu work. Gantz's drawings straddle the Ernie Bushmiller and John Stanley-Irving Tripp styles (which have, themselves, some obvious kinship).
This is fascinating for so many reasons:
a) its brazen. shameless imitation
b) how thoroughly it fails to emulate John Stanley's style of writing
c) its weird, lackadaisical pacing, and the use of "Y-I-I-I-I-I!" in place of Stanley's "YOW!"
I present this train wreck for your unjoyment. All aboaaaaaaaaaaard!
Whew. This thing lasted for five issues--and was revived in 1953. Lee also cranked out Little Lana and Little Lenny titles, which I'd assume were similarly derivative. Marvel reprinted some of this material in the early 1970s. Timely humor titles of the post-war years had other "Little" characters such as "Little Vinegar" (Li'l Iodine rip-off) and "Little Aspirin" (a sorta steal of the Kayo character from Frank Willard's Moon Mullins).
Artist Gantz at least tries to do his job neatly--as did Kurtzman, with the woebegone "Rusty." Imitations and cash-ins have been part of the comic-book fabric since Day One. Newspaper comics have had their share of shameless knock-offs. There have been many sincere flatterers in comics history...
If you know of other Stanley knock-offs (not including series on which he worked), please share them with us.