Disney-comics digest #492.
9475609 at arran.sms.edinburgh.ac.uk
Tue Nov 15 16:31:18 CET 1994
Many things to talk about today.
So Bob Ingersoll wrote "Temper Fugit," then. All I remembered
was that one of the Egmont writers who spoke at the Disney comics
Comic-Con panel last August, had done the story, and told me about it
over dinner. I believe both Dave Rawson and Bob Ingersoll were at
the dinner. I just remembered the wrong Duck man, mainly because
someone spoke of Bob lately as only writing Mickey stuff. That was
in regard to getting him on the list. Why don't we?
BTW, I saw no script or art for "Temper Fugit" at the Con. Bob
told me about the story over dinner (and I erroneously remembered
this as Dave doing the telling).
JAMES: Vic Lockman wrote Dell comics in the '50s, Gold Key
comics in the '60s, Whitman in the 70s-80s (although all of these,
remember, were really PRODUCED by Western Publishing). At least one
of the Disney Studio (Jaime Diaz-drawn) DuckTales stories which
Gladstone published in 1989 was by him. And then he did a lot of
writing for Disney Comics comics, as well. I hate to say this, but
I'm not especially keen on his writing. It just has too much of that
kids-only feeling, and the characters are, in my opinion, often
AUGIE mentioned that Ducktales "didn't redefine the characters
the way everyone (including me) fears DuckDaze will. Did it?"
Nope. Scrooge was unfortunately characterized as his kinder, gentler
1960s self in most episodes, but since that was based on some comic
version of him, I don't call it uncanonical. The addition of new
characters to the series included some moves I'd not have taken, but
at least that didn't affect the personalities of the regular
characters. But things have changed since 1987. A new manager at
Disney TV, and his cost-cutting procedures, caused most of the
writers there to defect to Warner Bros. and other places. Jymn
Magon, the fellow who originated DuckTales, has left too at some
point, at least so I've heard. The new writers there have
obvious talent -- the shows from Disney are still well-written, for
TV cartoons -- but they subscribe to this "Toontown" mythology of all
cartoon characters having no real existence but as actors. When
Bambi appeared in the film "Bambi," then, that wasn't his real
existence. He really lives in wacky, zany Toontown. I purposely
cite Bambi because he seems so unlikely, but the recent show
"Bonkers" -- as well as the earlier "Raw Toonage" -- both subscribe
to this ethos. For example, there have been cartoons about Sebastian
the crab living in Hollywood, racing to work at the studio while
pursued by a chef (the same one as in the original film). "Bonkers"
has had at least one episode featuring Donald Duck, pointing out that
he lives in Toontown.
From this it's only a small step to declaring that the entire
comic book Duck universe is just another thing that Toontown-Donald
acts in. So all things carefully constructed fall apart, and
"recasting" is just taken lightly. As I once posted on
rec.arts.disney, it's like taking Huck Finn and putting him in a
futuristic outer space series. The character's world matters as much
as his personality.
Remember, this is just MY opinion -- I don't mean to offend anyone
who writes for these shows, who may be reading this. But to me,
the characters have one 'real' existence, and it isn't in Toontown.
DAVE RAWSON: Don't worry about your MM long adventures never
appearing here. Did you notice Dwight telling about how a 64-page DM
next year contains that 40-page "which-way" Italian MM story? If
there are other 64-pagers next year, maybe you could get John to use
one of them there. What's standing in the way are those Jaime Diaz
Goofy stories. When DM began, Egmont's MM stuff was almost never
worth reprinting here. But there's good stuff now, and we really
should have the chance to see it.
Regarding the name Harpy; the DuckTales version of "The Golden
Fleecing" called the Harpies... Harpies. AND -- here's the amazing
thing -- an above average Danish story drawn by Vicar, titled
"Daisy's Dress" (this was in the Disney period, when Danish stories
didn't get improved titles very often), involved Donald outwitting a
crook while dressed in drag. The crook said to him, "Let me loose,
yuh harpy." Guess which version of the word THAT was.
DWIGHT on the Disney Channel said that it showed "outside
properties that fit [its] format. I've seen Lucky Luke, Asterix, and
Tom Poes..." Tom Poes? When?
The Disney Channel does show two very good half-hour cartoon
shows daily (one of them twice) with its vintage cartoons (including
MANY black-and-white Mickeys, some of them colorized), but it
sandwiches two of those half hours between showings of... "The Care
Bears" and "My Little Pony," two cartoon shows aimed at babies!
(Which Disney bought from a toy manufacturer which had made them)
That's the only airtime the vintage cartoons ever have, since Disney
wants to keep them exclusive to the Channel. But given what they're
shown between, no kid over four will ever watch them. I think that
if the vintage characters are to survive as personalities, they need
exposure in something besides merchandise and the unfortunate TV
exposure they have now. The way Disney sells MM and DD products
now is like putting out one of their gigantic animated feature
marketing campaigns when the feature itself is not in release or
available on video.
"Duck Daze" will be the first animated push for Donald in about
five years (since the last DD home video release), so it can very
easily slip into that slot of being the "definitive" Donald. (The
appearance of "Duck Daze" will, BTW, also make Donald into the
lead character in Marvel's Disney Afternoon book, now that I think
about it. I wonder how that affects Gladstone.)
One thing I'm glad Disney did. They have a page in
Disney ADVENTURES which discusses the latest in comics; normally,
they discuss super heroes (as everyone might have guessed). In
September, just before I left the U. S., they did a feature on the
Gladstone comics (which were the only comics discussed in that
month's issue). Under the heading "Get $crooged" it discussed the
contents of all the comics, mentioning the LO$ -- it pointed out the
upcoming first meeting of US and Glomgold -- and reprinting a small
replica of Don's cover to USA 27. In keeping with this DA page's
contents in the past, though, it mentioned nothing about artists or
writers of the comics it blabbered about. Interestingly, while DA
touted the MM stories in WDC&S, it didn't even mention DM (the
only Gladstone comic that wasn't described).
I'm guessing that the cat in this week's GD story is Lucifer,
also from "Cinderella." Lucifer also appeared in the GD story of
WDC&S 123. Before anyone cries heresy, Lucifer is ALSO in
the BARKS DD 10-pager about putting that shell of plastic
around US's money (from WDC 172, or wherever).
EVERYONE: Gladstone seems to have SKIPPED "Race to the South
Seas" and "Darkest Africa" in preparing its CBL DDA albums. John
told me in 1993 that the album would appear Xmas '94. The albums as
scheduled are now up to the stories from mid-1950, and they've been
presented in chronological order -- EXCEPT for those two MOCs.
You don't suppose Disney has banned these stories from being used in
albums, all of a sudden? After THEY were the last folks to print
each one of them, in the regular comics?
(Don, do you know anything about this?)
>Gasp< My fountain runneth dry for today. But I'll be back!
<9475609 at arran.sms.ed.ac.uk>
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