Thursday, February 3, 2011

"Forget Me Not"

So I finally got my hot little hands on a copy of WDC 715, and I am just about as pleased as punch. IF NOT MORE SO. The first pleasant surprise was that it's printed on very high-quality, glossy, acid-free paper--by far the best I've ever seen in a non-prestige-format comic book. I know I've groused in the past about Boom's books providing less value for money than Gemstone's did, but that complaint is inoperative with this issue, at least. I don't know if Boom is upping the quality specifically in honor of their new "classic" format, or whether they've been doing this a while; all I know is that the only other individual Boom issue I own (WDC700, for the metafictional Van Horn story) is of much lower quality. I hope they keep this up.
I'm not going to say anything just yet about "70th Heaven," the Jippes story that opens the book, because I plan on giving it its own entry in a little while. Suffice to say it's a fantastic story.

Following "70th Heaven," there's a Li'l Bad Wolf Story that somebody or other has anachronistically titled "Villain in a Half-Shell" (we do all get that that's a Ninja Turtles reference, right? Okay.). Who comes up with things like this?

Man...Li'l Bad Wolf. Have I mentioned before how much I despise this character? Have I used the word "quisling" to describe him?" Okay, then have I noted how much I likewise despise those smug, obnoxious pigs? Or how I find the idea of a kid whose father is ceaselessly trying to slaughter and devour his friends just creepy, even in a non-threateningly cartoony context? Or how, even disregarding all this, the concept is just way too limited--every story is "Wolf tries to eat pigs; fails;" I may not be the world's biggest MM fan (okay, no "may" about it), but at least that character has all sorts of story potential?

Have I noted all this in the past? Just checking. Notwithstanding all that, however, I actually liked this particular story, surprisingly enough--it's a crossover featuring Donald, who gets on my good side by being pushy and obnoxious towards the pigs; also, it has a great ending: L'il just wants to--as usual--"teach his pa a [completely anodyne] lesson" for trying to eat the pigs and subsequently Donald; however Donald, reacting rather more proportionally to the threat, actually attempts to kill him. Good stuff.

Then there's a Barks Junior Woodchucks story, "Life Savers." I already own the Strobl version several times over; here of course we get the Jippes remake, though no remake was ever going to make this five-page story less insubstantial. About the most I can say for it is that having the Jippes version slightly bumps up my Barks completion percentage on inducks. Hey, did you know that a few of these Woodchucks stories have never been reprinted in the US in any form (not counting the black and white CBL)? And several more only in really crappy quality in Gladstone's old digests? Some no-brainers for Boom right there.

UPDATE TO ABOVE: My mistake; David points out that I'm conflating the publication histories of the Wright/Strobl originals and the Jippes remakes. Still, there's at least ONE that's never been reprinted stateside, and I believe my point about some having been reprinted only in digest form stands.

And I think that's about it. A good issue, and I look forward to more of a similar quality.



Wait, am I forgetting something…? Maybe, but what could it be…?

That's right! I was using foreshadowing, motherfuckers! The last story here is the three-page "Forget Me Not," drawn--but not written--in 1989 by Don Rosa. Truthfully, this feels a little cheap; Boom clearly wanted to be able to brag that this issue has both Barks AND Rosa, so they chose one of the least significant stories from each of them, just 'cause they're short (ya know, guys, if you'd go back to the prestige format, you wouldn't have these problems...). Honestly, "Forget Me Not" is basically a one-page gage stretched out to three pages. There's some nice early Rosa art, but that's about all there is to it. The most significant thing about the story is that it features Rosa's one and only depiction of Clara Cluck (a marginal character who frequently appeared in Daisy Duck's Diary stories). BEHOLD:



…well? Do you feel edified?

(You'll note that, me not having scans of the new version, these are from the old one of inferior quality.)

In any case, Daisy has a dilemma:



OH NOES. I will say that I am amused by the shit-eating grins that both Donald and Gladstone are effecting in these portraits.



I also like Crafty Daisy--she's depicted as kind of dopey in this story, but that image could definitely come from a better one.

Anyway, long story short, she scrambles around trying to find someone to get her off the hook, but she can't, AND IT'S BECAUSE IT'S HER BIRTHDAY! HOLY CRUD!



Nice group shot, I guess, though I can't help but note that--in spite of the fact that Daisy had talked to him on the phone earlier on--Gus is nowhere to be seen. The main takeaway from this story: DAISY HATES GUS GOOSE. Well, either that or Grandma is a brutal slave-driver who refuses to let her own flesh and blood have time off for a party. Take your pick!

Did I just use an entry on "Forget Me Not" as a flimsy excuse to talk about WDC715? Well, just look at what percentage of the text here is actually devoted to the story itself, and tell me what the hell you think. If I haven't made it clear by now, I am very excited about Boom's future. Now if only they could be convinced to go back to prestige format for US and WDC (and, what the hell, DD also! And, for my mouse-loving friends, MM as well! Might as well wield whatever influence this blog can muster and go for broke!)...

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13 Comments:

Blogger Erik said...

Agree 100% on the Rosa story, nice art on a nothing little story. I haven't read the other stories yet, but they look great. Ditto Uncle Scrooge 400

February 3, 2011 at 8:50 PM  
Blogger Chris Barat said...

Geo,

U$ 400 looks just as slickly produced as WDCS 715. I went "old-school" and chose the Barks painted cover (even WITH the strange "insignia on the back") over the "busy, busy world of Don Rosa" cover. And, no, I DO NOT buy multiple copies of the same comic just because said copies have different covers.

Chris

February 3, 2011 at 9:26 PM  
Blogger Faster, Harder, More Challenging GeoX said...

Can I confess that I actually shelled out for the limited-edition Jippes cover of this one? NOT THAT I'M GOING TO BE MAKING A HABIT OF THIS, Boom people--I just liked it SO much better than the Van Horn version. I certainly disapprove in principle of this habit of releasing multiple covers, though, and I definitely would never buy more than one copy of an issue either.

February 3, 2011 at 9:57 PM  
Blogger ramapith said...

"...a Li'l Bad Wolf Story that somebody or other has anachronistically titled "Villain in a Half-Shell" (we do all get that that's a Ninja Turtles reference, right? Okay.) Who comes up with things like this?"

This time—me! But then, I've named other stories "You Vindaloo, You Lose a Few," "Way Out of Africa," and "Brother From Another Earth." No bad pun or unused pop culture reference is safe—nyah hah hah! (-:<

"Hey, did you know that a few of these Woodchucks stories have never been reprinted in the US in any form..."

Open question: do you (or anyone) really want to see Key Wright-drawn Barks Woodchucks when the same stories' frankly better, more "authentic" Jippes versions exist?
Of the three stories you listed, two have appeared here in Jippes redraws.

"The [BBW] concept is just way too limited--every story is 'Wolf tries to eat pigs; fails;'..."

Hmm, let's look at a list of the last twenty Gemstone-published Wolf stories. Then I'll asterisk the ones that featured a Zeke pig-catching attempt as a major theme:

WDC 665: "Moving Day"*
WDC 667: "Musical Eggs"
WDC 668: "Big Bad Beauty Contest"*
WDC 669: "Zeke Takes the Cake"
WDC 671: "Heat Wave Wolf"
WDC 672: "The Lamb Chaps"
WDC 674: "Case of the Hovering Wolf"
WDC 677: "Judgment Day"
WDC 679: "Blow Me Down"*
WDC 682: "Oops, Wrong Story"
WDC 683: "The Secrut Hideout"*
WDC 685: "Halloween Hogtie"*
WDC 686: "When I Was a Lad"*
WDC 688: "Red Riding Hoodwinked"
WDC 689: "The No-Good-Deeder"
WDC 690: "Ailin' Optics"*
WDC 692: "Pork Pirates"
WDC 693: "Cluck and the Beanstalk"
WDC 696: "Three Little Votes"*
WDC 697: "So Bad He's Good"*

That's 55% non-pig-hunting stories. (And of those that did feature pig-hunting, some were unpredictable: try "When I Was a Lad" for a wonderful, overblown portrayal of blustery villainy that I can't read without smiling.)

February 4, 2011 at 1:32 AM  
Blogger ramapith said...

Oops! That shoulda been Kay Wright, not ("Gold") Key Wright.

February 4, 2011 at 1:33 AM  
Blogger Faster, Harder, More Challenging GeoX said...

I kinda figured you or someone else would dispute my characterization of the BBW (using that abbreviation may get me some unusual google hits) stories. Point conceded, to an extent, but I still maintain that there's much less you can do with the characters than you can with ducks or mice--globetrotting adventures seem to be right out.

As for the JW stories: mistake on my part. I was conflating the two different versions of the stories, completely forgetting that Inducks (naturally) catalogues them separately. No, I really don't care about having both versions readily at hand (as I've noted before, I have no strong preference between the two).

February 4, 2011 at 2:59 AM  
Blogger Chris Barat said...

Geo,

U$ 400 DID turn out to be a gem. The "Barks as dogface" story was clever (though it does raise all sorts of interesting philosophical questions -- should make for a good blog post!) and the Erickson-Jippes "Obsession" was even better. Toss in some vintage Barks gags for seasoning and this was a first-rate package.

And... this week's PREVIEWS solicits volume 1 of the Fantagraphics Gottfredson collection!!! (Plus, Boom! is releasing an April one-shot reprinting Walsh-Gottfredson's original "Rhyming Man" story from the late 40s.) So these are good times for "old-school" fans.

Chris

February 5, 2011 at 8:52 AM  
Blogger Faster, Harder, More Challenging GeoX said...

Great to hear about US400--my copy just now arrived, and I'm super-keen to dig in.

February 5, 2011 at 3:37 PM  
Anonymous Milus said...

Hum! Is it me or is it the only Rosa story which involve Gladstone hiting on Daisy? (bearly but this is as far as he went with it)

July 31, 2011 at 3:41 PM  
Blogger Pan Miluś said...

I wish Rosa use more Clara Cluck in his stories. She's among my
favorite characters....

March 10, 2013 at 6:11 PM  
Blogger Leprotti Grassi said...

Hi,
I'm desperate! I'm trying to remember in which "nothing little story" Daisy keeps on baking cakes for Donald. At a certain point Donald goes into the kitchen and says he has a gift for her. It's just a clothes peg where to clip the cake recipe. Donald says "It's a time-saver Daisy!" Or I suppose he says that. In Italian it was "È un risparmia-tempo, Paperina!".
Anyone has a faint idea of which story was that?
Thank you so much!

March 17, 2013 at 12:37 PM  
Blogger Regular GeoX said...

You might have better luck asking that question on the Disney Comics Forum. I don't think an old post like this is getting too much traffic.

March 17, 2013 at 4:08 PM  
Blogger Achille Talon said...

About Gus Goose being missing… Isn't it his silhouette we see in black on the far right of the picture ? I always figured it was.

December 2, 2015 at 12:06 PM  

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