Disney-comics digest #473.
9475609 at arran.sms.edinburgh.ac.uk
Wed Oct 26 12:52:46 CET 1994
Several things to talk about today. First, Br'er Rabbit: The
stories really go a LONG way back before Joel Chandler Harris. I got
my own wellspring of information in perhaps the most unusual
sourcebook you'd ever imagine it to be in: the book _Bugs Bunny:
Fifty Years And Only One Gray Hare_ (1990). This history book on WB
cartoons views Br'er Rabbit as Bugs' principal ancestor (there are a
lot of similarities!), and so spends several pages talking about that
character's history. It's that book that tells about the stories'
origins in Africa, although I can't believe that's the only one that
has that stuff in it.
Br'er Rabbit is, as far as I know, still quite popular in the
States -- at least to those who *read*. Not long ago there was a
series of books called "Jump," "Jump Again," and "Jump On Over",
which contained Br'er Rabbit tales shorn of dialect; these were
bestselling children's books, with excellent production values.
There are three Disney Br'er Rabbit books in print, none of them
using dialect. There are at least two of the original Harris books
still in print (with dialect). And although Disney has banned the
film "Song of the South" from U. S. re-release (that's the film with
the BR sequences in it), they do show the BR shorts by themselves,
sometimes, on the Disney Channel's two cartoon shows.
Last year there was a great musical "Br'er Rabbit" at my
college, directed by our regular drama coach (who is black, by the
way, and noted the stories' origins in black folklore; also
confirmed my own questions about the name Zomo). The story was
narrated by a character named Sis Owl, who was written with slight
Next, AUGIE DeBLIECK -- Huzzah! Glad to hear you're around
here making your mark at last. It's about time! Feel free to drop
into my mailbox and chat sometime (my E-Mail address is at the end of
JORGEN: The Madam Mim story doesn't sound half bad. I guess I
haven't read enough of these to find this particular plot a rehash of
something that has gone before... There's always the old Barks story
where Scrooge tries to get Donald to give up his house (WDC 159), but
Scrooge is no magician, so how similar can the stories be?
Sounds like that Mickey story with Dustibones is another one of
the "new" Mickey stories. Particularly if the artist is the same guy
who did the Remuda Triangle story -- that's Ferioli. I'm guessing
that the writer could be Byron Erickson himself, here.
JAMES WILLIAMS: I was laughing just at the first panel of your
US rodeo story! Are you doing all these original stories for
Gladstone? That's the impression I got from a past letter. And who
is drawing them? I wouldn't mind reading one of your entire
HARRY: I'm amazed that you found a good-looking US 289... but
one thing's certain, DD 288 (which has just come out) is lacking any
kind of problems whatsoever. The cover stock is different,
indicating that this was published by the OTHER color press that
Gladstone uses (they use two of them, I've been told); that being
the one which was responsible, as far as I can tell, for most of
their comics in the first six months of their "new" period. The
black ink is JET black, the colors are all bright and clear and not a
SINGLE page is the LEAST bit off-register. This is a magnificent
issue. I hope that Gladstone sticks with this printer as often as
The strips in DD 288 sure highlight Bolivar and Basil Burro a
lot. Never realized how often that burro appeared in the strip,
although he kept showing up until the 1950s at least. And damn, the
Bolivar strips are probably the best of all AT material, in my
opinion. I will use Bolivar a lot in my coming Duck stories...
We should get Mark Evanier on this list, by the way -- someone
was just asking about him. His E-Mail address is
<MARKEVANIER at delphi.com> Why don't we put him on the list right now?
He can always cancel it if he doesn't like it...
And did someone mention DON AULT coming on? I've been trying to
find some way to get through to him for years. You see, I have a
copy of OS 348 ("The Crocodile Collector") with his name handwritten
in childish writing on the cover, and have always wanted to get it
back to him. I guess his Mom must have sold his comics when he grew
up. Poor fellow. I also have a WDC&S 126 with Mike Barrier's
childish signature on it.
And I've ALWAYS wanted to get some kind of transcripts of his
course lectures. I myself gave an animation history course over
winter quarter last year (titled "The Mickey Mouse Course of
Animation History"). Emphasis on Disney/WB cartoons, with many rare
or banned cartoons shown. I'd sure like to "trade" cartoons with Mr.
Ault -- I bet we each have some the other lacks.
Last: The only Duck story I've ever done for anyone besides
Egmont is being sent in -- with the corrections Disney and Gladstone
wanted me to make, made -- for the final time today. "Return to
Morgan's Island," to be illustrated (as of this writing) by my artist
friend Craig Deeley, is a rip-roaring 26-page pirate adventure
reuniting the Ducks with Old Yellow Beak as well as a whole tag
team of classic villains. (It's a sequel to Four Color #9, if any of
you don't know: "Donald Duck Finds Pirate Gold.") It's all
researched and historically accurate, too. When it's drawn and
published (late '95, I guess) you're going to love it, folks! And
remember -- you heard it on disney-comics at minsk.DoCS.UU.SE!!!
Best to all of you,
"By the Gorgon's cracked cackle! It's too *impossible* to be real!"
<9475609 at arran.sms.ed.ac.uk>
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