Disney-comics digest #485.
9475609 at arran.sms.edinburgh.ac.uk
Tue Nov 8 13:08:40 CET 1994
Jorgen Bangor referred to a story where "Mickey is running a
cafe. One day the famous pirate Peg Leg Pete comes to the place ...
Gyro hires a ship, whose cook is Captain Crook." First, Jorgen, I'm
sorry to draw attention to this but I think you mean Captain Hook.
Then, second, I actually know this story -- just reread it last
month, in fact. It's "Treasure Island A-Yo-Ho", and is a parody of the
book _Treasure Island_. It was made in 1965 as one of a series, "The
Walt Disney Theatre." In this series, famous stories were spoofed
with Disney characters in the leading roles. I am sure that this
series was what inspired, in the 1970s, those Goofy history stories
that Gladstone is running now.
I'm totally stunned to see that all _Treasure Island_
references were removed, though, from the story when it was presented
in Middle Europe! If anything, this WAS one of the better parodies.
But as a sign of the times, Whitman was afraid to make any references to
death or to liquor, so we had Pete singing "Sixteen men on a
blighter's chest -- yo-ho-ho and a motley crew." Or "sixteen men and
a ship fulla fun" (I really didn't like that one!).
Other famous-story parodies in this series included "The Two
Musketeers+1" (reprinted in GOOFY ADVS. #7), "A Lad 'n' His Lamp"
(reprinted in WDC&S #584), "The Swiss Family Mouse 'n' Sons", "Rip
Van Goofy," etc. Characters from the features continuously appeared
in these stories -- most of them were just really awful and, at least
in the American versions, VERY obviously "talking down to child
readers" (as is obvious from the titles, and their constant 'cute'
use of that " 'n' "). No one seems to have any personality. If I'm
going to do a rehash of a famous story with my star character, it
should be (IMHO) appropriate to the character, and the original
things that I add to the plot shouldn't be needless use of
"features" characters like Captain Hook, but little things that
reflect my character's personality shining through the role he's
supposed to be playing. For example, as far as I'm concerned, you
don't get better than Floyd Gottfredson's "Rumplewatt the Giant"
(1934). We have two famous stories -- "Jack and the Beanstalk" and
"Childe Roland" -- mixed together, and the parts of the story that
have been changed, have had those changes made so we can see what
Mickey, with his individual personality, would do in the hero's
situation (often, something different than the hero would do). And
it's all EXPLAINED not as an impossibly lavish PLAY, but as Mickey's
own retelling of the story, as presented to Morty, Ferdie, and a
handful of other neighborhood mice-kids.
> A story which I'm quite sure never will see a reprint in the U.S. is a
> story featuring Goofy and Davy Crocket.
The character you refer to is a character Bill Walsh created
for the MM comic strip (at that point only drawn by FG). He's called
"Li'l Davy" -- I can't even begin to understand why there was a
decision to create a character who was like Davy Crockett, but in
modern times, and a kid. I can't imagine Gottfredson himself would
have created that character if he were writing the strip, too, at
There were apparently several stories pairing Goofy and Li'l
Davy, because the one you describe isn't the one I remember. In
fact, the one I remember was reprinted by Gladstone, in their
DISNEYLAND BIRTHDAY PARTY special of 1985. I imagine that they
couldn't get away with reprinting that story now. Again, the Indians
are pathetically stupid -- I don't like to see stories banned, but
this one is just unbelievably bigoted... One good pun, though:
Davy: "Watch out, Pardner! Them Indians is hostile!"
Goofy: "'Hoss-tail Indians'! What a yoo-nique name they
The story you mentioned with MM and Goofy in with real people
was one of three "MM: Super Secret Agent" stories done in 1965. In
my own opinion, the less said about these, the better, even though
they were an interesting experiment.
Per asked about what Dave Rawson had written for Egmont. Well,
he wrote the lead story in DDA 29 -- "Tour de Jour", which was
published earlier by Egmont in mid-1993 (I don't know in which
issue). I've actually read the original script for this story, and
all those characters on the bus have quite imaginative names, even
when the story's dialogue itself never names them. That crabby
chicken-fellow is named Red O'Ruckus, and I like that name so much, I
might use the character in one of my own Duck stories (if it's okay
with you, Dave). I was planning to include him in my Fethry story,
simply because it seemed to me he'd be the ideal chap for the
"classic" S-code Fethry to drive completely nuts. If you think
Donald has a bad temper, Red O'Ruckus seems to complain about damn
near EVERYTHING. Glad you're on board, Dave! Can you tell us about
some of your Mickey tales?
> In one story Fethry wants to get famous quickly. He wants to
> be the first one to ride down a big waterfall in a barrel.
This story is -- ahem -- STOLEN from a 1957 Woody Woodpecker
cartoon film, "Niagara Fools." Same exact situation, with someone
trying to stop Woody (who in his cartoon incarnation isn't so unlike
Fethry) from going over the falls, and that someone keeps falling
over in the barrel, himself. And every time he goes over, the
onlookers in their rainjackets cheer. Perhaps the only good Woody
cartoon to be made after 1952.
I'm guessing that the park ranger in the Donald version is J.
Audubon Woodlore, the same old geezer who appears with Humphrey the
Bear in the cartoons (and a few comics). Always nit-picky about
rules, and with a very good voice in the cartoons. One of the few
highlights of the 1950s Disney cartoons.
The white cat you mention in the Donald-journalist stories is,
I believe, the same cat from WDC&S 65, who appeared again in that Mau
Heymans story about animal imitations a few weeks ago. This cat is
named Tabby in English. Apparently the cat is a regular character,
but only appears once in eons.
And ONE Scrooge-as-newseditor story HAS appeared in the U. S.
-- Disney published it. But it wasn't a typical one, as it was made
by Egmont. It was titled "News Flash" and I believe, appeared in the
first year of DDAD. No Fethry though, just HDL. But I SURE wondered
what Scrooge was doing running a newspaper. I believe that it was
explained by the rewriter (Byron Erickson, I think) that this was
just one of the many businesses Scrooge owned, and that he'd
occasionally spend a while supervising it.
Speaking of alternate universes, next fall Disney offers a
daily TV series titled "Duck Daze." I've mentioned it before, but
now I've heard that Daisy has been completely redesigned for the
series... that the nephews are to be teenagers (imagine them with
their caps worn backwards)... that "Goof Troop" characters may also
appear in the series... No matter how good the writing or animation
is in the series, the concept itself could never have come from
anyone who held the comics in any very high regard. Don Rosa's
mentioned to me that the series will probably come and go as
DuckTales did, but do you notice something? Scrooge and the Beagle
Boys are always depicted now, in Disney Studio merchandise, in their
DuckTales versions, even with that show a thing of the past. And
while this is stretching it a bit, all Chip 'n' Dale items now dress
them as Rescue Rangers, even though that series is also long out of
the spotlight. What I'm worried about is that this show will change
Disney's own concept of Daisy and HDL for good. Sure, they'll always
be their real selves to us. But face it, even with the disrespect
that the comics have in the States, at least people recognize Daisy
and HDL in their traditional appearances. Five years from now, will
people look at a Disney comic and say, "Those aren't the real HDL"?
Disney's idea that the characters really live in Toontown, and
that everything outside of that are only roles they play, REALLY
irritates me in its disrespect for all continuity up until now.
That's all for today... and I think I've nattered on much more
than usual, so I'd better bid you adieu.
<9475609 at arran.sms.ed.ac.uk>
More information about the DCML