Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Boom! jumps in with both feet

So it seems that Boom! isn't messing around: they really do intend to bring back the classics with a vengeance, as can be seen from their planned Februrary releases and these mouth-watering trade paperbacks slated for Summer releases. Good show. Great show, even. Some miscellaneous observations:
It looks like the "Walk Disney's Comics and Stories Archive" is going to overlap with the Fantagraphics MM collections, and it raises the question: does Boom! now also have permission to print the formerly-verboten strips? If so, it just goes to show: it never rains racist Mickey Mouse comics but it pours.

I wonder how closely this archive is going to try to reproduce the actual WDCs from the forties. I REALLY hope they respect the history as much as possible and don't lard the books up with ads as has been their unfortunate wont in the past.

It has to be said, they ARE a bit overly obsessed with giving us Jippes redraws of Barks scripts previously done by others. They've positively fetishized the phrase "the classic Barks style." I can see where this comes from--it's a way of sorta kinda pretending we're dealing with new Barks material even though not really. But it's also kind of absurd, because, look people, I like Jippes fine, but HIS ART IS NOT THE SAME AS BARKS,' and wouldn't it be boring if it were? Crikey.

On that note, I REALLY, REALLY PROFOUNDLY take exception to the fact that there's a Jippes redrawing of "Somewhere in Nowhere" which is now apparently going to become the "official" version. According to the Gemstone printing of the story, Jippes was originally slated to be the artist, but he wasn't available at the time, so Pat Block (who had a personal relationship with Barks) did the job. You can legitimately object to the drawings of Barks' scripts by Tony Strobl or Kay Wright; I don't really have a problem with them, but I can see why you might. That does not apply here, though: Block is just a great duck artist; even if he wasn't the first choice, his work on the story leaves nothing to be desired. Given that; given that, if anything, his art looks MORE Barksian than Jippes;' and given how tragically little duck artwork he's done, there's just no good reason whatsoever to sweep his work under the rug in this fashion. Or any fashion. I'm calling bullshit, like so: Bullshit. Bullshit! BULLSHIT!

UPDATE TO ABOVE: Joakim Gunnarsson on the Disney Comics Forum clarifies that--contrary to what the Boom! post indicates--this isn't actually a redrawing of the Lustig script; it's a whole new thing based on the Barks outline. That's a bit less egregious in some sense, but I still have to vigorously question the purpose of such a thing, which still seems designed to render the original version obsolete. This scramble on Jippes' part to make his mark on every last Barks-related thing strikes me as a bit unseemly!

A US printing of Geoffrey Blum's "Saga of Captain Duckburg!" Sweet! I remember well seeing that on inducks and thinking, meh. Now we'll NEVER get it. Wrong, was I, and glad to be. I'll write about some of Blum's handful of duck stories one of these days; some of them are quite good and some of them (his imagining of "Race for the Golden Apples," eg) are pretty dreadful, but the man deserves big-time RESPEK for all his critical work on Barks. If not for him, this blog would not exist.

Those Don Rosa TPBs: okay, yeah, I'll probably buy them, even though I already own every Rosa story, but I have to say it: WOW, do you ever get shafted if you're Don Rosa. Given the massive popularity and many, many reprints of his work, the man ought to be rich. But--correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think I'm wrong--you don't GET royalties if you're a Disney artist. You sell your work to a publisher, and that's that as far as you're concerned. Which might not be so bad if you can churn stuff out and if you're not so well-loved that your work is reprinted all over creation, but when (per Don himself) you're not naturally artistically inclined and your work is obsessively, meticulously detailed and your name gets trotted out endlessly to sell stuff without you making a penny from it--man, that must be truly galling. I don't mean to devalue anyone else's work here, but it really seems to me that Rosa is in a uniquely unfortunate situation. If you're reading this, Don, know that I keenly feel for you.

I don't think we have to worry anymore about seeing new Van Horn in English. I just wish they'd get on with it so I could know for SURE.

I'm the most excited about Disney's Four-Color Adventures. SO MUCH AWESOMENESS.

Overall, this is just great stuff. I wasn't into Disney during the interregnum between Gladstone and Gemstone, so I haven't until now had the dry-spell experience that a lot of people had. But I'm very excited that Boom! seems to finally be getting it, and I will definitely be supporting them with my dollar.


Anonymous Kevin Johnson said...

Wow, that Four-Color Volume sounds amazing! Looks like you're getting a solid mix of Disney comics in the future! By any chance, are you familiar with the newer comics that were released (or planned to be released) about Darkwing Duck or Rescue Rangers?


And I don't mean to spam the comments section here, but there was a commenter before who asked for this, so I'm posting a link if you (and that commenter) is interested:


I worked on it during the Thanksgiving break - the first of a review of the 1990 Valiant Comic run of Super Mario Bros.

November 30, 2010 at 9:57 AM  
Blogger Erik said...

Figures...just when I was planning on cutting my comics spending for budgetary reasons. DAMN YOU BOOM!

December 1, 2010 at 9:47 PM  
Blogger Mike Matei said...

The only thing I care about them reprinting is the censored Barks comics that never got a proper reprint in the United States such as "Darkest Africa" & "Voodoo Hoodoo". Also nice reprints of the March of comics would be nice.

December 3, 2010 at 12:42 AM  
Anonymous Shaun K said...

You're absolutely correct about the royalty system, or lack thereof. You get paid *once*, and then Disney and the licensee network owns your work forever, free to reprint and reprint to their bank account's desire.

And if I recall correctly, it's for this reason that Don actually had his name trademarked-- so at least when publishers look to rub out another book of his work for a quick buck, they'll have to think twice when doing so just to profit on his name.

The accompanying story commentary he supplied in latter years is also solely his property as well.

All that said, a high-quality/comprehensive English collection of Don's work is hideously overdue (there's a surprising amount of his work that's only seen print over here once, and in varying production quality), and I'd pay the royalties to Don myself to get it.

And I'd also like to say, I also find the retread of "Somewhere in/beyond Nowhere" to be somewhat dubious, despite my curiosity for the results.

-Shaun K ("Argonaut" on DCF / longtime reader, first-time poster)

December 8, 2010 at 1:45 AM  
Blogger GeoX, one of the GeoX boys. said...

Thanks for that, Shaun. Good to see you here.

December 8, 2010 at 2:37 AM  
Blogger Pan Miluś said...

How ironic...

February 15, 2013 at 3:08 PM  

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