Thursday, March 31, 2011

Mickey Mouse Annual 11

Boom June Roundup

Monday, March 28, 2011

"The Beauty Business"

Thanks to reader N.N., who gave money for Japan and asked me to write about--I kid you not--"the most post-modern duck comic [I] know." Obviously, this dovetails with my interests. Several questions emerge, however: first, what do we mean by "postmodern?" Everyone seems to have a different opinion on what the word means--or even whether it connotes something that actually exists--so trying to synthesize all this stuff to find one story that stands out from the pack isn't too easy. I suppose if I had to subjectively pinpoint a single one (for the purposes of this, we're sticking with Barks), it would be "Have Gun, Will Dance," which I've already written about. Other good candidates that I've already done: "Oddball Odyssey," "The Loony Lunar Gold Rush," "Queen of the Wild Dog Pack," The Doom Diamond." All late stories, naturally. But then it hit me like a .44: Barks' second-to-last ten-pager, "The Beauty Business." I might not call it his most postmodern, but it certainly fits very comfortably in that category. As a bonus, it is also surely the most cynical thing that the man ever wrote. I mean, admittedly, there are a few of his stories of which I have not yet had the pleasure, but it's difficult to imagine how any story could possibly be more jaundiced than this one.
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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Happy 110th Birthday to Carl Barks

I feel like I should have some sort of special tribute, but really, this entire blog was essentially founded as such, so I think I'm covered. He's the reason we're all here. The fact that Google has not prepared a special logo for the occasion is a travesty.

"Search for the Cuspidoria"

Big thanks to Chris Barat for donating to Japan relief. If you haven't done this yet, I highly encourage it; the media tends to create a sort of "out of sight, out of mind" mentality; if there's no single big, new, telegenic thing they can report, they'll just sort of ignore the situation, but it's an ongoing thing nonetheless. As I realized when a Dutch reader emailed with his donation (and his request will also be coming up in the near future), I've been a bit Americentric about this--it's not something I try for, but it happens, and it shouldn't, especially given that most Disney comics readers are not Americans. So if it's better for you to give to an aid organization in your own country, that will also be acceptable for my purposes here.
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Thursday, March 24, 2011

"The Salmon Derby"

Thanks to DCR reader My Dad for donating money to Japan. He asked me to write about the Barks ten-pager known as "The Salmon Derby," partially because he's a rather fanatical fisherman, and partially because, well…he remembered it. A scientific study (scientific study's sample size: me, my brothers, my dad) indicates that even if they don't remember the particulars of this story, everyone nonetheless recalls the concluding panel.
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Sunday, March 20, 2011

"Island in the Sky"

Big thanks to David Gerstein for donating to Japan relief. David is trying to indoctrinate me into the world of mouse comics, so he asked me to write about a Gottfredson continuity, "Island in the Sky." Once again, I find myself doing something that falls well outside this blog's purview. But it's cool; I don't mind.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Duckblogging for Japan

Feeling irritated that I've ignored your favorite duck story for so long? Well guess what: here's your chance to rectify that problem while simultaneously giving to a very important cause. Win-win situation, right? I'm still honestly not quite sure how much of an audience I have here, but this seems like the natural time to use whatever power I may have for good.
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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

"A Day in a Duck's Life"

I may in the past have expressed indifference about Daan Jippes' Barks re-draws, but I recently read the new version of "A Day in a Duck's Life" (Barks' last DD story, I believe, from 1971) as recently published in Boom's WDC716, and, well...I read it side-by-side with the original, Kay Wright version (as reprinted in WDC632), and I can't deny it: the difference is pretty stunning. The story itself may be one of Barks' weakest efforts, but the new art helps it immensely, making it far more fun to read than it really has any right to be.
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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

"The Secret of Mars"

Listen to my words, Boom people: you need to go back to prestige format for your Disney comics. I would understand why you would want to stay the course if your books were selling better than Gemstone's did, but that just ain't the case. And from an aesthetic standpoint, there are particular reasons why regular-length books are a bad idea for Disney comics in particular: if you're writing a superhero story, you can tailor it to the book's length requirements. No problem. But Disney comics are a little different: they rely more or less exclusively on a mixture of reprints of old stories (from when comic books had more pages of actual comics) and European imports (which don't run on the same page-number system as US comics do). Therefore, more flexibility is called for, lengthwise. I have said on numerous occasions that I really appreciate your new direction, but let's face facts: until you go back to prestige format--at least for US and WDC, but even better for DD and MM as well--you're simply not gonna be able to hit Gemstonian heights.

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Saturday, March 5, 2011

"70th Heaven"

"70th Heaven" is the marquee story from WDC715, as you likely all know. It was originally published in the Netherlands in 1992 to commemorate the fortieth anniversary of Dutch DD comics. However, the dialogue in the US edition has been rejiggered to recognize the seventieth anniversary of Walt Disney's Comics [and Stories]. Well, technically, the seventy-first, but hey, you know…close enough. It was originally scheduled to appear in Gemstone's never-published WDC700, as "700th Heaven." I do like the fact that they were able to maintain the "seven" business.
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