Thursday, April 19, 2018

"Matchmaker"


It's time to write about what I can only describe as "some hella dumb shit." This entry is thanks to Debbie Anne, who posted a page from it on one of the Disney comics facebook groups. And now, you get to reap the benefit! Lucky you.
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Sunday, April 15, 2018

"A Mysterious Melody; or, How Mickey Met Minnie"


This one's long overdue, innit? This is the second in the Disney by Glenat series, where the French publisher got non-Disney artists and had them go nuts with the characters and the form, to absolutely enthralling effect (actually, I believe the first and second in the series were released on the same day; whatever). I absolutely fucking LOVE the ground-breaking innovation on display here, and the stories are none too shabby neither. Leastways, not the first two. We've looked at Mickey's Craziest Adventures, so now it's time for A Mysterious Melody. This is by Cosey, a prolific Swiss cartoonist who generally does much more serious work. According to that link, he had applied to work for Disney in 1978. It's interesting to imagine how his work there would have been. Presumably, we would've had to rein in his impulses to conform with the general house style (which he certainly doesn't here), but what would that have looked like? Would he have broken new ground? An intriguing counterfactual.
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Wednesday, April 4, 2018

"Astro Pooch"


Yes, it's Astro Pooch! A comic drawn (and, presumably, written--you probably don't need a Bill Walsh for something like this) by Gottfredson as background art for a little-remembered 1968 live-action Disney comedy, Never a Dull Moment.

But as far as I know, no one's ever really dug down deep into the Astro Pooch mythos until now, and that is a shame. So let's do it, yeah? Buckle up, mofos!
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Monday, March 26, 2018

"Hoosat from Another Planet"


It's been HOW long since I've written here?!?  My goodness!  Would you believe I was kidnapped by somewhat incoherently-drawn space people? And as evidence, I present: this, a late Gottfredson/Walsh effort, for your consideration. Consider it! I order you!

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Saturday, December 30, 2017

"The Fountain of Strength"

Well, we recently learned from Mark Evanier that Vic Lockman had died on June 1 of this year, at the age of ninety. I felt that I should write something in...I dunno. Tribute? Recognition? Acknowledgement?
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Wednesday, December 27, 2017

"The Hammy Camel"

Give them credit: that title may have been applied after the fact, but it sounds very much like something Barks would've come up with himself.

Yes, okay. I will now simultaneously drink an intensely hoppy IPA (this one, to be specific) and write this blog entry. Good times. I mean, not "simultaneously" in the sense that I'm drinking at the same moment I'm typing, but...WHATEVER. Happy Third Day of Christmas.

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Monday, December 25, 2017

"You Can't Guess"

And now, the climax of our Christmas series! I've never quite held this in the same regard as "Shacktown" and "Letter to Santa," but I've still always felt a great deal of affection for it. As I read it over with a critical eye for the purposes of this entry, I was actually surprised by how many issues and oddities it has, but none of them really impact my overall feelings towards it. Welp, let's go.



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Friday, December 22, 2017

"The Thrifty Spendthrift"

And now, a silly, frivolous story with no thematic weight and no notable Christmas spirit that we nonetheless find highly amusing. Seriously, this obviously is in some sense a Christmas story, but holy crud is it not. I mean, say like you like about "Silent Night;" at least it was reacting to the holiday in some way. This one...well, not so much. As we will quickly see.

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Tuesday, December 19, 2017

"Christmas Cheers"

I don't know about all y'all, but I've always gotten the impression that this is Barks' most obscure Christmas story. It's been reprinted in the US often enough, but for some reason I just never think of it, and recently reading through a bunch of ten-pagers, I was surprised to see it come up: an unfamiliar Christmas story? Goodness! It can't have been the first time I'd read it, but I had only the vaguest of memories of it which sort of came back as I was reading. Well, now it shall be immortalized...in blog form!

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Friday, December 15, 2017

"Silent Night"

I know what you're thinking: "Did he sing six Christmas carols or only five?" Well to tell you the truth, in all this merriment I kinda lost track myself. But being that this here is a candy cane, the most festive treat in the world, and would fill your heart with holiday joy, you've gotta ask yourself one question: "Do I feel jolly?" Well, do ya, punk?
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Saturday, December 9, 2017

"Wintertime Wager"


When I said I was going to write about the five Barks Christmas stories I hadn't yet covered, I kind of KNEW that someone was going to make my life harder by pointing out something I'd forgotten. And so, thanks to Pan Miluś: voila. He noted that a lot of people forget that this story takes place on Christmas, and it's true: I had forgotten. And for obvious reasons! Because if there's any story about which you could make the argument that just because it's set on Christmas it's not actually a Christmas story, it's this one. If "Weemite" is only tangentially Christmas-related, this is substantially more so. It doesn't even feint at being vaguely festive in any way. There aren't even any incidental holiday decorations in sight. BUT THAT'S OKAY! It's cold outside. The inside of the ducks' house DOES look pretty darned cozy, I must say.
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Wednesday, December 6, 2017

"Weemite"

Hello, children young and old! Time for some Holiday cheer. We bloody well need it after the year we've had. This year's theme is: "Barks stories I haven't covered yet." There are five such, unless I'm forgetting some. And guess what? We're going to cover them, at irregular intervals starting now and leading up to the twenty-fifth. Good for us.


We begin with one of those stories that uses Christmas as a setting but isn't really about the holiday in any significant way. That's a pretty festive opening panel there, but it's really just the jumping-off point. Let's not waste any time talking about how it's weird that ducks eat turkeys. That's just covering old territory.
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Tuesday, October 31, 2017

"The Strange Shipwrecks"

Happy Halloween! I've been kinda busy with grad school and social life stuff and whatnot, but I am goddamned if I will let this holiday pass by without commemoration. Well do I remember last Halloween: I posted entries on two OTHER ghost-pirate-themed stories. Little did I know that the true horror was coming a scant week later. Urgh.
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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

"Donald Duck Meets Princess Oona" and "Oona's Shopping Maul"

Of the many things the IDW foax deserve credit for, one of them is their determination to introduce hitherto-unknown-in-English recurring characters to an Anglophone audience: Gideon McDuck, Eurasia Toft, Charlie Doublejoke, Portis, Belle Duck, Reginella, Garvey Gull (okay, so I could live without ever having known of Garvey Gull--WHATEVER). Add to that list: Princess Oona the Caveduck, a character introduced by Egmont in 1995, who continues to appear semi-regularly to this day. We've already seen her first two stories published, and I believe more are on the way. I have heard intimations that certain individuals may not be huge fans of the character, but I would like to take this opportunity to place myself--based on these two, at least firmly on the pro-Oona side of the divide. Today, we'll be covering both her first and second appearances! Two stories in one means two times the fun! Maybe.  I refuse to take responsibility if two times the fun is not had.  But we'll do our best.
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Wednesday, August 9, 2017

"The Art of Security"

And now, as an exercise in...something, we will see if we can write one thousand words about a randomly-chosen Barks one-pager ("randomly-chosen" in the sense that I opened the CBR file of an issue of Uncle $crooge at random and chose the first one-pager in sight, on the inside front cover). As it happens, we ended up with one called "The Art of Security," initially published in 1956 in U$ 13, along with "Land Beneath the Ground." I'm not going to guarantee that my words will be GOOD words, but they'll definitely be words. Assuming I'm successful at this. And if I'm not, you'll never see it, so that's neither here nor there. Do THESE words of metacommentary on the entry count to the thousand-word goal? NO THEY DO NOT. THAT WOULD BE CHEATING. And I made it square etc. Word count doesn't start 'til after the first image.
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Wednesday, August 2, 2017

"The Atombrella and the Rhyming Man"

And now...the story you've all been waiting for! Perhaps. I've been reading the most recent Gottfredson collections on and off since I've been back in the States, and this story just screamed for me to cover it. It's not actually the first time I'd read it--previously I'd done so on the late lamented Beru's Disney Comics; yes, I KNOW it was legally dubious at best, but it was a great resource and HELLA convenient for yer Disney comics bloggers. Alas, today it's long gone. Beru I hardly knew ye.

AT ANY RATE, having read it in the Fantagraphics book, I definitely got more out of it. So here it is.
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Tuesday, July 18, 2017

"The Think Box Bollix"

Hi, we're going to look at a Barks story today! It's been a long time! But I was randomly rereading some Barks ten-pagers, and as often happens, I was struck by some things that I kind of wanted to say on the internet! So, here they are. This is 1952's retroactively-named "Think Box Bollix."
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Monday, July 10, 2017

"Captain Donaldo, the Black Corsair"

HEY HAVE YOU HEARD? Italians are HELLA fans of pirates. Or at least, those of them who make Disney comics. Like, for instance, this one, by Luciano Bottaro and our ol' frenemy Guido Martina. Also, sometimes I like to translate Italian Disney comics, so what the hell, you can download my version here.
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Friday, June 2, 2017

"The Blot's Double Mystery"

JEEZ. Sorry for the lack of posts in May; I was on vacation for half the month (I saw hella wild orangutans, but unfortunately, I forgot about the "reading Disney comics while ignoring the wildlife" photo tradition--alas!), and otherwise I was preoccupied with this and that.
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Wednesday, April 19, 2017

"Mickey's Craziest Adventures"


...so apparently, we're on a one-a-month schedule now? Well, we'll how that holds up. Could go up, could go down, the future is uncertain. But what's NOT uncertain is that I recently read "Mickey's Craziest Adventures," and it was very obvious that this was going to have to be the subject of a post. So here we are.
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Saturday, March 25, 2017

"The Stone Money Mystery"

My place in the Sun: I got an email the other day informing me that Duck Comics Revue is the internet's fifty-ninth-best comics blog. I am humbled and honored by this, uh, honor. They gave me one of those tacky little gifs of a medal to put up, but I must humbly decline on the basis that coming in fifty-ninth isn't actually very impressive, and also on the basis that feedspot is just a skeevy spam/email harvesting operation. Still, it was an honor to be nominated, or something.
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Saturday, February 18, 2017

"The Miner's Granddaughter"

Well, it's been a while, but if you think I'm going to let the fact that my country's president is an angry, evil baby stop me from writing about duck comics--and, furthermore, that I'm going to let him thoroughly ruin the good name of our favorite duck--you have another goddamn think coming. This shit just got PERSONAL.  So LET'S FUCKING DO THIS.
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Friday, February 17, 2017

NEW POSTS COMING SOON

So my silence hasn't been because I'm mourning the death of America...well, that's not the only reason.  The fact is, I had a kinda bad computer meltdown a month back.  But now I'm back (KNOCK ON WOOD) and raring to go.  LOOK FORWARD TO IT.

Saturday, December 31, 2016

"His Majesty, McDuck"

Sometimes I feel like I don't give Don Rosa his due. Would someone jumping into this blog blind conclude that I even like him? Undetermined. I've definitely spent plenty of time criticizing him. Still, if there weren't a lot to criticize, there probably wouldn't be a lot to like, either, and let's be clear: even if I'm not a big fan of some of his stories, I fucking love Don Rosa, and the time has come to demonstrate that. So to close out the year on a positive note, it's time to spotlight "His Majesty, McDuck," one of the very best of his stories and also the only one with a comma in the title. True fact!

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Sunday, December 25, 2016

"Another Christmas on Bear Mountain"

That's right...ANOTHER Bear Mountain story! Collect five of 'em and send 'em in with your shiny tin dime to become a member of the Junior Birdmen of America! In the US, this 2007 tale was part of last year's extremely welcome onslaught of Italian Christmas stories, and without it, there wouldn't be enough to do a Bear-Mountain-themed series, so you can thank your lucky stars for that. It's written by one Tito Faraci, who is new to this blog. He hasn't been widely published in the US, but most of what has been is...Ultraheroes stories. That doesn't necessarily bode well! On the other hand, he's also credited as co-author of "River of Time," that rather cool Steamboat Willy "sequel," which bodes somewhat better! So we will charge into this one with an open mind!


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Friday, December 23, 2016

"Return to Bear Mountain"

So I had this great idea: a Bear-Mountain-themed Christmas! What fun! But then the time came to reread "Return to Bear Mountain," and I realized: huh. This story's kinda bad, and not in a way that makes me feel hopefully-entertainingly-ranty. Just kind of blah-bad. WHAT HAVE I DONE? Still, I DO like the idea of this blog being a repository for all Bear Mountain stories, and if nothing else it's interesting to see a rare non-Rosa sequel to a Barks story, so HERE WE GO. I guess.
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Wednesday, December 21, 2016

"Christmas on Bear Mountain"

When ya think about it, we can probably indirectly credit the Disney Company with inspiring this story. In what sense? In the sense that Fantasia brought Mussorgsky's "Night on Bald [or, ha ha, "Bare"] Mountain" into the public consciousness, and it seems eminently plausible that, as he was casting around for a story idea, that's why Barks was able to call the piece to mind and thus where his inspiration came from. Mind you, I do wish the movie had been released a few years later to more neatly dovetail with the story. But: what the hell! I'll say it anyway!
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Sunday, December 4, 2016

Comic ID-ing

I received an email asking the following:

Sorry to bother you -- my mother has loved Carl Barks comics ever since she was young, but there is one story she remembers from her youth that she's never been able to find since.  I don't know anything about it except that Huey, Dewey, and Louie all paint their faces, or possibly their heads.  It probably would have appeared in the later 1950s or the early 1960s, but I'm not certain about that.  

Does this ring any bells?  I'm writing because you clearly love these comics too, and my mother would very much enjoy reading it again; the other lost comic from her youth was the one with the skiploaders, which we found a few years back . . .

Can anyone help this dude?  Let it be noted that it's not even necessarily a Barks story, inasmuch as people familiar with fifties Western material may remember "the one with the skiploaders" as being non-Barks.  Seems like one should be able to find all KINDS of stories that fit this vague recollection, but I'm having trouble!  Help out, people!

Monday, October 31, 2016

"The Flying Dutchman"

A TERRIFYING HALLOWEEN TO ALL AND SUNDRY!  I was going to leave it at "The Flying Scot," but I just couldn't resist covering this other "Flying" story--it is an interesting coincidence that they were released so near to one another, even if there was no influence of the one on the other. Also, with "The Flying Horse" and "The Flying Farm Hand," I've now written about FOUR stories that start with "The Flying." In the future, I shall diligently endeavor to expand this list.
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Sunday, October 30, 2016

"The Flying Scot"

Happy Halloween! Is today's story a Halloween story? Well, it involves a GHOST PIRATE, doesn't it?

...okay okay, it's pushing it to call it a "Halloween story" per se. But the thing is, your seasonal options are: some forgettable Egmont thing, or a vintage Scarpa story. WHICH DO YOU CHOOSE?!? Yeah, that's what I thought (also, I'm pretty sure this one has been requested a few times). Am I keen to read IDW's "Halloween Hex" thing? Sure--but NEED I REMIND YOU that I am living thousands of miles away from the nearest IDW comics right now? It's a true fact. So we must endure. And in enduring, grow strong.

Well, you know my conflicted feelings about Scarpa (ambivalence: the SPOOOOOKIEST feeling of all!). He could be really, really good, and his best mouse stories capture the spirit of Gottfredson better than anyone else. And yet...especially in duck stories, he could just be unfathomably bad, and I'm always confused by the fact (I know I'm repeating what I've said, probably several times, before) that Italian people laud ALL of his work to the skies, apparently lacking the critical faculties to differentiate between the good and the bad. So does "The Flying Scot" fall in the good or bad range? Honestly, if you know anything about my sensibilities, that's probably not a hard question to answer. BUT WE WILL TRY TO MAINTAIN SUSPENSE! BECAUSE HALLOWEEN SPOOKY WHOOO!
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Saturday, September 24, 2016

And now, a musical interlude.

I don't know WHY I recorded this dirge-like tribute to France's Disney digest, but I did.  And now I'm inflicting it on all of you.  Please enjoy, to the extent that such a thing is possible.