Thursday, November 24, 2011

"Turkey Trouble"

Today's story, from 1960 isn't all that interesting. In fact, the odds are very low that I would be writing at it, if not for the fact that it has personal importance for me: it's very likely the first Disney comic I ever read. My memory is a little fuzzy, of course--who knew at the time that it would lead to this here massive media conglomerate I'm running?--but I'm ninety percent sure it's either this or Barks' "Spicy Tale," and between the two of them, I would lay pretty heavy odds on this one. So even though it's not exactly in the top echelon of Barks stories (neither is "A Spicy Tale") it evidently did the trick, and for that I am thankful.

…and in a sort of inchoate way, I associate the ducks in the foreground with me and the house in the background with duck-comics-dom.

As you can see by the fact that it's called "Turkey Trouble," this story is called "Turkey Trouble." For some reason, however, this older story--in which HDL win a turkey in a raffle but then become too attached to it to kill it, so Donald wins another one in a turkey-shoot but then decides in turn that it has too much spirit to kill--is also referred to by that title, both by inducks and by the CBL in Color. Really, people. Your imaginations were so limited that you were entirely unable to come up with a title that wasn't already in use? Listen: "A Tale of Two Turkeys." See? I just now came up with that, and it's a perfectly serviceable title--substantially better, I would argue than the one you're using--and it would eliminate any confusion. Crikey! Okay okay, to be fair, it's probable that they were naming the stories in chronological order, and didn't realize the mistake until too late. But that has the disadvantage of not allowing me to assume the worst of people, so I prefer the idea that they were just kinda dumb.

The story feature this weird, low-grade misogyny that you sometimes see, in which the men are at the mercy of the wimminfolk with their crazy, arbitrary schemes.

Note well that Daisy is "the loudest talker"--reinforcing the idea that women talk more than men, even though not actually. HDL's floaty poses there are truly strange.

Oh man, my introduction to Gladstone Gander, also. This story alone was certainly enough for me to figure out what he was all about. I'll note that in spite of the fact that all the men of the town are apparently required to participate in this madness, only Donald and Gladstone appear to actually be doing it, and Gladstone seems to have only heard about it second-hand, since he didn't know that the turkeys had to be wild. Perhaps this suggests that nobody really takes "Daisy's Club"'s schemes all that seriously except Donald, who feels obligated because he's intermittently romantically involved with the president.

The idea is that they buy land from this swindler who tricks them by planting fake turkeys there. Note well: in Disney comics, even non-anthropomorphized animals wearing (what I can only assume are) really obvious disguises are enough to fool everyone.

So they come up with a scheme to foist the land off on Gladstone. I find quite odd the idea that the swindler dude has a whole bunch of fake turkeys that he just sort of leaves lying around in the woods for no clear reason.

But the scheme works, and Donald gets one over on Gladstone, at least momentarily. I really like Gladstone's posture and attitude in the second panel there. He seems to be accepting that, yeah, my luck gives me an unfair advantage that puts me over the top most of the time, but for once, I've been had, and whatareyagonnado? I also like the fact that Duckburg has a "dismal swamp" district. That'll go in the tourism brochures!

And so this happens. I believe I've noted in previous entries that the "ha ha she's so hideous" thing is pretty much my least favorite "joke" in the world. Note also the very clear implication that Donald's victory is all the sweeter because not only does he get to spend the evening with Daisy, but he doesn't have to listen to her talking all the time. Whee.

Anyway, that's about that. Happy Thanksgiving to people in the US. To people NOT in the US, happy regular-day. Coming fairly soon: something else.



Blogger Christopher said...

Look at Daisy's eyes in the next-to-last panel. They look crazy. Do you think that Donald slipped some kind of tranquilizer into the turkey soup?

November 25, 2011 at 2:48 AM  
Blogger GeoX, one of the GeoX boys. said...

They do, don't they? I guess that's one possible explanation. Or maybe she's just zonked out on pain medication. Either way, not the most romantic situation I can imagine...

November 25, 2011 at 2:51 AM  
Anonymous Elaine said...

Perhaps all the other men of Duckburg are gathering "wild fruits for the feast"--or possibly venison--and thus are not competing for turkeys.

November 25, 2011 at 8:59 AM  
Blogger GeoX, one of the GeoX boys. said...

Well, the comic DOES specify--albeit not in any panels I posted--that turkey is supposed to be the main meal and that getting to dine with the queen is contingent on finding the most turkeys--though it's not inconceivable that no one other than Donald and Gladstone would really be clamoring for that honor.

November 25, 2011 at 5:33 PM  
Blogger Chris Barat said...


Or perhaps Donald made the soup using "waters of Lethe" for broth.


November 25, 2011 at 9:08 PM  
Anonymous Elaine said...

"though it's not inconceivable that no one other than Donald and Gladstone would really be clamoring for that honor"--esp if the other guys were married/partnered, e.g. husbands of the other club members...

November 26, 2011 at 10:00 AM  
Anonymous Didier de France said...

Your look at the story is wonderful!I read the story for the first time a long long long time ago in French ;it was aptly called "le dindon de la farce" !!!as you are fluent in French ,you'll see the joke!

October 15, 2013 at 2:03 PM  

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