Tuesday, November 17, 2015

On Sale November 04, 2015: DONALD DUCK # 7 from IDW.



"GET A HORSE!", as they used to say, not necessarily of the flying variety, and gallop (or fly) down to your friendly neighborhood comic book shop to pick up a copy of DONALD DUCK # 7 (Legacy Numbering # 374) from IDW. 


In it, you’ll find “Truth or Consequences”, originally from the German LUSTIGES TASCHENBUCH # 327 (2004) and “New to the USA”, written by Lars Jensen, drawn by Flemming Andersen, and dialogued by Jensen and our own Archival Editor David Gerstein.


Truth or Consequences” is a "TNT" story, in which Donald and his Cousin Fethry work for the secret agency known as the "Tamers of Nonhuman Threats", or "TNT".  "TNT" is a sort of "X-Files" meets "Men in Black" type of organization that keeps us safe and blissfully ignorant of all manner of supernatural threats.  


To digress: "TNT" is what I call a "subset series" of Disney comics, in that it is a "specialized" series of stories featuring mainstream and / or classic characters, but casting them in recurring roles "outside" of their normal place in the Disney comics realm.

There are "not so good" subset series, such as the infamous "Ultraheroes" and "Wizards of Mickey", inflicted on us by Boom! during the unpleasant early part of their run as a licensed Disney comic licensed publisher. 


Others were better (How could they NOT be?!) The subset of "Double Duck", though it dominated way too many of Boom!'s early issues of DONALD DUCK, fared better simply because the material was stronger and more in-character for Donald than the series mentioned above were for their respective characters.   

You might also add "MIA" (The "McDuck Intelligence Agency") to the list as it encompasses "Moldfinger" and the upcoming "Tycoonraker" or "From Zantaf with Lumps" to be seen in January, 2016's DONALD DUCK # 9.   


Other subset series, from the classic era would include MICKEY MOUSE SUPER SECRET AGENT and even SUPER GOOF.  End of digression. 



First appearing domestically in Gemstone's DONALD DUCK ADVENTURES # 4 (Cover Date: January, 2004)...


...David Gerstein nicely reintroduces IDW readers to the concept of "TNT" in both a splash page caption and details its origins in his regular "Crosstalk" column, at books' end. 

Click to enlarge! 

I feel that "TNT" would make a superb animated series - not that I'd ever expect to see a "superb animated series" that was comics-based ever again from today's Disney! Wouldn't Howard Morris have provided a perfect voice for Fethry? 



While I've enjoyed EVERY "TNT" story I've read thus far - and one or two I've been privileged to see that have not yet been published in the USA, this one has two "hiccups" for me that ultimately made it a lesser experience than the others. 

I enjoy Fethry in the "TNT" series, in the same way I enjoyed him in IDW's DONALD DUCK # 3 "The Siege of Nothing Atoll", in that he was not as darned annoying as he is in other stories.  He serves as a foil for Donald, but a helpful (and even valuable) one. 


Here, he falls back into "annoying" again with needless, but (alas) plot-driving stuff about never lying for any reason, even the greater good. 


The plot also turns on TNT's fears that the Internet-published thoughts n' theories of one crackpot researcher could undo ALL of TNT's good work, and throw the world into the grip of panic! 

...Really? 

If I, as a researcher and blogger, were to flip my lid and suddenly declare that Kay Wright was the greatest Disney comics artist ever - and that the infamous "Bird-Bothered Hero" is the greatest Disney comics story ever, you might move to have me committed to an asylum of some sort...  But none of YOU would change your thinking and suddenly feel the same way too!  


It's the freaking Internet, fer gosh sakes! You EXPECT to find outrageous crackpot things with every click of your mouse! (Except maybe here, at this Blog!) 


So, characterization and plot-wise, there are two definite weaknesses to “Truth or Consequences”, vs. your average (or more likely "above-average") "TNT" story!  (What? You want me to LIE?! Fethry wouldn't approve!) 

That said, there's still a lot to like, such as the appearance of a legendary "Water Horse", and the panic it causes.  


Donald and Fethry also get to visit Copenhagen, Denmark, the place where this story was created, and see landmarks and all kinds o' stuff like that there!  


It must have been great fun for that group of creators to do, and, if a similar story is ever set in New York, I'd love to be the one to dialogue it.  

Could "TNT" meet "IRT" and "BMT"? Could be? 
Also consider some nice little touches like a cameo by Launchpad Mc Quack, "talking shop" with the plane's pilot (LP's being a PASSENGER, is probably why they had a safe landing)...


...Here's Daisy's nieces April, May, and June...


...One, perhaps two, cameos by David Gerstein, his archival-editing-self.  [...Or, maybe not! See the UPDATE at the end of the post!] Perhaps other Egmont employees and freelancers are pictured in crowd scenes as well. 

Where's Waldo... er, David? 
...And, I believe this final panel may be of Egmont's office building. 


The issue is rounded out by a two-page Dutch Gyro story from 2002...

...And, the four-page "Flag Bragger" by Vic Lockman and Tony Strobl, from Dell Comics' DONALD DUCK # 81 (1962). 


Gotta love Strobl's version of a dragon in this story.  Looks real sixties - kinda Hanna-Barbera-ish! 


So, don't be "draggin'", and go pick up a copy of DONALD DUCK # 7 (Legacy Numbering: 374) from IDW, before YOU start believing every outrageous thing you read on the Internet!  


Just remember, I do not speak for IDW, or anyone in its employ.  I speak strictly for myself as both a long-time fan and as a dialogue creator – and those opinions are strictly my own. 

Then, unless the "Tamers of Nonhuman Threats" has taken over my Blog and redacted all content they deem dangerous, let’s all meet back here for another lively go at our Comments Section!


UPDATE: Per our friend and fellow "IDW-er" Thad Komorowski, here is the David Gerstein Cameo.  He's at lower right, wearing Mickey Mouse's shoes.  I'd expect those are other persons associated with Danish Publisher Egmont in that space with him!


49 comments:

Mark said...

Your problems with 'Truth or Consequnces' are pretty much the same as mine. Of course this doesn't mean i don't want to see more TNT stories published in the future, as i liked the ones published by Gemstone quite a bit. Heck,even this story wasn't exactly bad just not as good as the previous ones.

Joe Torcivia said...

Mark:

Glad to see I’m not alone in noticing the flaws of “Truth or Consequences”. And, like you, just because it may be a lesser effort of the “TNT” subset series (when compared to some of the really great ones that came before it), doesn’t mean I didn’t like it.

After all, you couldn’t be a fan of lots of the stuff I like – original Star Trek, Lost In Space, Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea, etc., and Silver Age comics in general – and not appreciate lesser efforts mixed among the gems!

I’m just glad to see “TNT” brought into the IDW mix! A great line of comics has just become that much greater!

Deb said...

I thought Fethry's issues with Donald lying were an interesting hook for the story. The internet angle does seem a bit hokey now that you point it out, though. I can't quite imagine Howard Morris as Fethry, but the voice that comes into my head already belongs to Fenton Crackshell.

Deb said...

A quick note on the covers for both the latest Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck issues: I loved the alternate gag covers so much I bought them over the story themed covers. They remind me of the Gold Key and Whitman covers (in a good way). With a Tony Strobl backup in this month's Donald Duck as well, to add to the nostalgic feel!

Joe Torcivia said...

Deb:

The “Fenton voice” would be perfect for Fethry, except that it already belongs to another Duck-Universe character.

As for Howard Morris, consider an amped-up, somewhat higher-pitched version of his “Breezly Bruin” (from “The Peter Potamus Show”) voice as what I kind of “hear” for Fethry. Or some variation on that type of voice.

I enjoy most, if not all, of the IDW covers, so I take one of each. That's why the variant always appears in these posts. And, I was never a supporter of variant covers before – always just choosing the one I liked. BTW, I never see the Disneyland variants anywhere. Where do they go, and who gets them, I wonder…

ramapith said...

In the story's defense (he said defensively...)

There was actually an important reason for Fethry to be as pesky as he got in the present situation—and it has a lot to do not only with this episode's plot, but also with future TNT stories ahead. See, *SPOILER ALSO AHEAD!* this is not the last time TNT's "fibbing for the greater good" will be a major theme—or a significant gray area for our heroes. But you never get a second chance to make a first impression; so an ongoing, intense debate between Donald and pest!Fethry seemed to us just the way to introduce the concept, and take an in-depth look at its nuances, right off the bat.

"Truth or Consequences" is also (SPOILER AGAIN!) not the last time Donald will meet Leo Van Cortex. Of him, you said "TNT fears that the Internet-published thoughts n' theories of one crackpot researcher [Leo] could undo ALL of TNT's good work..."

All? Eek! The Head may have been concerned, but we didn't see him leaping onto his desk and hollering that the world was ending, didja? Nah—we never meant to imply that Leo's theories could undo ALL of TNT's good work. But... Leo, significantly smarter than a true crackpot, is forever on the brink of moving beyond theory: acquiring and circulating irrefutable proof that, while still not likely to undo ALL of TNT's work, might undermine a small, but significant percentage of it. So that's definitely a threat worth tamping down.

As for Gerstein cameos in "Truth or Consequences," there indeed is one—but I'm not either of the mugs you picked out. The taller guy with combover hair was someone far more important than me—I can't find our notes, but likely the founder of Egmont.

As for Strobl's dragons—in both "Flag Bragger" and other stories, they seem to be most heavily influenced by Disney's 1941 Reluctant Dragon, right down to the ears that end in parsleylike tufts.

Joe Torcivia said...

David:

So, where exactly in the story are you? Point it out, and I’ll illustrate it.

Nice to know that so many “future seeds” are planted here. And, I’ll bet that’s why you lead IDW’s TNT adventures off with thins one. Great editorial vision, as always!

And, even some love for Strobl! Wonderful!

Comicbookrehab said...

Your choice of Howard Morris is rather telling...the stories with Fethry remind me of Hanna-Barbara double-acts - Yogi Bear and Boo Boo, Fred Flintstone & Barney Rubble, Lippy the Lion & Hardy Har Har, Peter Potamus & So-So, etc..with Scrooge standing in as the straight man/authority figure/foil (like the king in the Goofy Guards cartoons)...

Morris was the voice of Wade Duck on "Garfield & Friends", so I can't help thinking that's what Fethry would've sounded like. Among recurring voice actors who played characters at HB, I could imagine Marvin Kaplan or Doug Young..or how about Paul Winchell or Jon Stephenson (using his Paul Lynde voice for Fethry...savage :) )?

Thad Komorowski said...

Excuse me, I LOVED Fethry's almost undying quest for a lie-free world. Totally in-character... which is why I love the character! (Don't get me started on my love for Moe... I'll save that for another time.)

As for "Where's Gern?": Page 26, panel 1, bottom right. Can't miss it.

Joe Torcivia said...

‘Rehab:

That sort of Hanna-Barbera character pairing was exactly what I had in mind (even if I didn’t fully realize it until you brought it up), with regard to Howard Morris doing Fethry’s voice.

…Though Marvin Kaplan would be way too “low-key”, and I don’t think I could possibly bear Fethry speaking with a Paul Lynde-like voice! It would certainly make me glad comic books are not equipped for sound!

Joe Torcivia said...

Thad:

Oh, I never said it wasn’t “in-character” for Fethry to be this annoying… just that he’s annoying! Quite the contrary, he’s PERFECTLY in-character! And, I’ll admit that “annoying” is funny but, like Donald, I wish he were just a tad less annoying.

Sure enough, I’ll be updating this post with an additional “Guide-to-Gerstein”. Thanks for pointing it out.

Deb said...

I didn't think that Fethry's distaste for dishonesty was annoying. Actually, that is one of the more endearing qualities I've seen in Fethry. I'm not sure that I agree with the point that this story is trying to make about lying being necessary sometimes, but I suspect it may be a running theme in future TNT stories. I wonder if there is any chance that IDW could collect the previous TNT stories into their own special book if this issue proves popular.

Joe Torcivia said...

Deb:

I also don’t think that Fethry’s distaste for dishonesty is annoying – but rather that I find *him* annoying as a whole – and his “Anti-Lying Kick” is just the equivalent of his more typical “Fad of the Week”! In-character, to be sure, but still annoying!

Shame on me for admitting it, but I feel that sometimes (and in very specific situations and circumstances) being less then truthful IS probably necessary sometimes. And, I’d certainly expect a secret agency like TNT to do so for the greater good. When viewed this way, it might be Fethry who is working AGAINST the greater good. …And he’s annoying about it, to boot!

A TNT collection with framing commentaries by our Archival Editor and co-creator, Mr. Gerstein, would be a welcome thing.

ramapith said...

Other Egmont refugees in the group with me: running clockwise from—well, ME—we have Anna Maria Vind (then Editor-in-Chief), Stefan Printz-Pahlson, and Byron Erickson (with a Mickey tie, if you look closely).

Love for Strobl? There be dragons. "Whoops—I'm reluctant!"

Joe Torcivia said...

David:

I had wondered if one of the other two male figures was Byron, as he’s the only other person associated with Egmont whose image I’ve seen. Though, if I remember correctly, Byron was tall and I would have figured him to be the “taller guy on the left”.

You’re leaving out one of the true unsung heroes of Egmont… “Bertram Butterfly” who is seen hovering just to the upper left of you. Bertram was responsible for all of those great Super Goof, Ludwig Von Drake, Moby Duck, and Dimwitty gang-team-ups that I keep asking that you reprint. Inducks seems to ignore Bertram’s contributions too, for reasons I’ve yet to understand.

I have a feeling that we will even see a reprint of “Bird-Bothered Hero” before we see any of Bertram’s fine work… Alas!

…Perhaps TNT has some interest in keeping Bertram and his work a myth? If only Fethry could aid me in revealing this “forgotten truth”?

Elaine said...

I'm not that much of a TNT fan--they feel to me like the sort of three-tier story that works OK in the smaller digest format, but not so much in a full-sized comic. But I did enjoy the water horse, especially its first appearance--I liked the horse itself on that page, and also liked the fact that the upper two panels on the page are superimposed on the sky background, thus giving the water horse the near-equivalent of a full-page splash panel. I liked Leo, and that actually made me sad that his scientific success had to be undermined, even in his own mind. We'll see what develops for his character in his next appearance!

I enjoyed "Flag Bragger" more than I expected to (low expectations linked to Lockman, not to Strobl). I thought the two-panel joke at the bottom of the second page was pretty good--where Donald anticipates more glory from Sir Sooth "when it comes to using his sword" and the following panel shows Sir Sooth using his sword to cut bologna. And the ending was funny, showing Donald to be a true descendant of Sooth. Or Soothiness. It did seem odd, though, that Donald wasn't wearing his time machine jacket in the past! Though if he had been, he wouldn't have gotten a dragon footprint on his regular jacket. Maybe it would have made more sense for the time machine to be an amulet or bracelet or something....

Joe Torcivia said...

Elaine:

Even if I felt “Truth or Consequences” had some flaws, I still like the TNT “subset series” very much, in the same way I liked KOLCHAK THE NIGHT STALKER and THE X FILES. And, it’s the only place where I enjoy Fethry, save occasional anomalies like “The Siege of Nothing Atoll”.

Clearly, I loved the appearance of the Water Horse, and am glad to learn that Leo will be a future threat to TNT and the World at Large. I think TNT looks fine in the larger format, showing off even more of the craziness of Flemming Andersen, like that panel with David and Bertram Butterfly.

I, too, enjoyed “Flag Bragger” very much. I think Vic Lockman has an admittedly deserved “lesser reputation” because of all the sausage-work he ground-out in the later sixties thru the end of Whitman. But, I also think that two factors worked against him.

One: The increasing restrictions on content that were imposed by Western Publishing. That made it difficult for all writers. Don R. Christensen told me that it was one reason why he retired from Western in 1981. Though Mark Evanier found ways to be clever, in his seventies work, around all that.

Two: Lockman was asked to carry WAY too much of the load, in writing new material. There are just so many “good ideas” ANYONE can have, and I feel he ventured way beyond his limitations. In both cases, his editors are probably just as much (if not more) at fault than he was.

Yes, his Scrooge, for instance, became way too “childish and emotionally reactive”, but isn’t that also the hallmark of the Italian Scrooge that we’re now seeing regularly? I even had Rockerduck comment on that in UNCLE SCROOGE # 7, and called it out in my post on “The Siege of Nothing Atoll”. In the story slated for UNCLE SCROOGE # 11, I have Scrooge explicitly “shake that” and transform into something more resembling the “Barks / Rosa Scrooge”… assuming that sequence of dialogue survives the various levels of editing.

Lockman became very creative in the way he “phrased things” with alliteration. That remains an influence on my own work to this day. He also wrote some pretty decent material earlier on that I highlighted in one of my old Fanzine TIAH pieces. I may rework that for the Blog someday. (Most likely, if and when I will need to do an R.I.P. post.)

As for the “time Jacket” not traveling back with Donald, Gyro probably needed to control it to bring him back… or sumpthin’. When Gyro and Vic Lockman team up, anything can happen!

Mark said...

Speaking of Scrooge #11 the solicit was released last Wednesday: http://www.previewsworld.com/Catalog/DEC150509
First,The Beagle Boys look pretty weird on that cover. Second,Giovan Battista Carpi is credited as writer and artist on the story but he was only the artist. Giorgio Pezzin (of 'The Bigger Operator' and 'The Siege Of Nothing Atoll') actually wrote this story. http://coa.inducks.org/story.php?c=I+AT++273-A
Though i'm sure it will be fixed by the time the issue is actually published.

Joe Torcivia said...

Mark:

I saw that solicit earlier this week. HERE IT IS for ease of reading.

While the Beagle Boys DO look like a strange cross between Barks’ early Beagles and William Van Horn’s versions, I think Scrooge looks extraordinarily good – leading up to that moment I hinted at, and that I hope remains intact.

The credits I have on that story are as follows:
Story— Giorgio Pezzin
Art— Giovan Battista Carpi
Translation— Joe Torcivia
Dialogue— Joe Torcivia

I’m certain this will be fixed on the cover before publication.

Jonathan Gray said...

I really wish my translation/dialogue of Wizards of Mickey had seen print at Boom. I swear on everything that I'm not patting myself on the back but I almost guarantee it would not have been anywhere near as ill-recieved and dull as it ultimately wound up being.

Every other country its been printed in seems to have loved it but thats because they took care with it and did it right but... well, I could go on a page long diatribe about how Boom handled THAT aspect of all the comics.

I will agree though that no matter how you spin it, Ultraheroes was the Disney Comics equivalent of a poo-poo platter.

**whispers** But Mickey Mouse Super Secret Agent will always be gaarrrrbaaaaggeee.....~~~~**
**flies back into the blog lurking ether**


PS Of the subset series TNT is always great and a little more grounded in the duck reality than most which is why its always been well recieved. I wish we could collect some of Doubleduck and retranslate it right but that is neither here nor there, I suppose. Still, I think what most ppl I've seen on the internet WANT to see is PKNA. lol

Jonathan Gray said...

Hey Joe. Why havent you done a blog on Zodiac Stone yet? >8|

You should do one when it reaches its halfway point on part 6. Don't make me come over there and...

**thinks long and hard about things that might annoy you**

Don't make me come over there and say "Great Squeak" repeatedly over and over. :)

Clapton said...

Joe:
You're right in an alternate universe where Western excepted new talent and foreign materials with open arms, Vic Lockman may have reguarly produced some truly inspired stories. Heck, he may have became a fan favorite. Just wondering what is your favorite Vic Lickman story (Disney or otherwise)?

scarecrow33 said...

Hooray! For once I have read the issue ahead of your posting about it!

It's news to me that there is a whole subset of these TNT stories, which seemed a one-off when I read it. I'm glad to know there is more to come. Donald and Fethry make a pretty decent team--again, size-wise they match up similarly to the way Mickey and Eega Beeva do.

As for the premise--yes, I questioned it myself when I first read the story--how could you stop all the zillions of people who post on the Internet every day? And surely someone is bound to come up with something that could be detrimental to somebody else's interests. It's just part of all of the information that's out there. Policing one person's research seems like an over-reach. However, it's not without precedent in Disney. Professor Einmug's secret formulas had to be kept hush-hush from the general public. Likewise with Captain Nemo--he even went to a watery grave to preserve his secrets. And when Zorro discovered gold in California he felt compelled to keep that a secret, too, otherwise there might have been a gold rush--and goodness knows what would have happened to California if that had ever occurred! So although it's a far-fetched premise that a little piece of knowledge must be kept contained or disaster might follow--it's a well-worn, time-honored one.

I'm thinking Paul Frees could have come up with a good voice for Fethry...after all, he provided the voice for at least 2 other Disney ducks that I can recall--Ludwig Von Drake and Moby Duck. Fethry was in the comics (just not so much in the American ones) back in those days when Frees was still in his prime.

I think part of Fethry's appeal is that he IS so doggone annoying! His "honesty kick" isn't something one can fully believe in, because the moment another virtue or another fad comes along, he will jump on that. He's like one of these people who suddenly become self-righteous when confronted with blatant corruption or even small vices--all at once the person is beyond reproach and would NEVER do anything wrong like cheat on a test or forget to return a borrowed book. So the honesty thing with Fethry is of course a phase like everything else--but it makes for an interesting moral edge for the story to play around with. And a self-righteous Fethry becomes quite humorous, especially in light of all of his usual crazy antics.

I'm enjoying the tantalizing references to stuff that is ahead. It's great to know that there are many more such goodies to come forth...and it's not even Christmas yet!

Joe Torcivia said...

Jonathan:

Always a treat to see you stop by!

I, too, really wish your translation/dialogue of Wizards of Mickey had seen print at Boom! Honestly, the series would never have been a big favorite with me because I don’t care for all that sorcery stuff, but there’s NO QUESTION I would have enjoyed it far more, for your having done it.

There’s really only one primary reason I haven’t done a full post on “Zodiac Stone” (aside from a general lack of time once IDW kicked into a full four books per month) and that is called “Scrooge’s Quest”. Some of you may recall that utter fiasco from the “Disney Interregnum” (Thanks, Elaine!) version of DUCKTALES. Well, I kinda liked it in its early chapters and, if I’d done a review based upon those, it would have come off as positive. As we all know, the bottom fell out in the final chapter – and we ended up with perhaps the “worst-ever-ending” in the history of Disney comics! So, I remain reluctant to do so with ANY story I don’t possess as a whole. Never mind that I really liked parts of “Zodiac Stone” like Part One, the Scotland chapter (especially), and the Circus chapter!

But, I should go back and do at least one. Most likely Part One, because you did something there that I found to be absolutely wonderful! (You know what that is!) …Oh, wait! You called MICKEY MOUSE SUPER SECRET AGENT “gaarrrrbaaaaggeee”. Hmmmm! Weeellll… Maybe if you answer my questions below, and top it off by saying some nice things about Paul Murry! And never again use “Great Squeak!” in another story!

“PKNA”? Is that anything like “Bone Tractor”? …And, what’s “Bone Tractor”, anyway! :-)

Joe Torcivia said...

Clapton:

Favorite Vic Lockman stories? Without thinking too hard this late at night, I would suggest the 4-part Mickey Mouse serial from WDC&S # 323-326 “Trapped in Time” (which, unlike “Scrooge’s Quest”, has a great ending – beginning and middle, too) and the untitled lead story from Gold Key’s THE JETSONS # 2, which I wrote about in THIS POST.

…and, I can only DREAM of a “…universe where Western accepted new talent and foreign materials with open arms”! (Sigh!)

Joe Torcivia said...

Scarecrow:

With my severe lack of free time of late, you may very well “… read MANY issues ahead of my posting about them!”

You’ll find a few TNT stories in Gemstone’s DONALD DUCK ADVENTURES digest. They were always a welcome treat!

Of course the secrets of Dr. Einmug, Captain Nemo, and Zorro would have been far easier to keep than anything today. Why people are even talking about UNCLE SCROOGE # 11, mere days after I turned in a first draft! …Durn that Internet, anyway!

On Fethry, you write: “His ‘honesty kick’ isn't something one can fully believe in, because the moment another virtue or another fad comes along, he will jump on that. He's like one of these people who suddenly become self-righteous when confronted with blatant corruption or even small vices--all at once the person is beyond reproach and would NEVER do anything wrong like cheat on a test or forget to return a borrowed book. So the honesty thing with Fethry is of course a phase like everything else-”

Um, has the analysis ever come from you that isn’t perfectly right on? …No! No, it has not! Your unblemished record remains well intact! Well done!

And, glad you enjoy the “tantalizing references to stuff that is ahead”. You wouldn’t get info like that out Dr. Einmug, Captain Nemo, and Zorro, wouldja?

Elaine said...

Inducks lists the writer of "Trapped in Time" as "?"--so if there's evidence that it's Vic Lockman, Inducks should be informed of that fact! For what it's worth, though, the story has a quite high rating.

Lockman's JW story "The Gold Hound" (Disney Interregnum JW 3), in contrast, has no rating at all on Inducks, but I did appreciate the character Lockman created for that story, the prospector Pyrite Jenny living happily in her cabin with her dog. She has moved into the outskirts of my mental Duckburg to stay, wearing more practical and less pink clothes than the artist and colorist gave her.

Joe Torcivia said...

Elaine:

Inducks may say that, and perhaps Inducks may be right. In many such cases, there will never be any indisputable proof. And, if I operated a research site, rather than spoke as an individual historian, I might not have made the claim on the site as well.

But, my decades of research, speaking with persons who actually worked on these comics, and noticing certain patterns, have caused me to arrive at many such conclusions – and Vic Lockman being the author of “Trapped in Time” is but one such conclusion.

And, though I do regard my “guesses” to be “educated” in such matters, it is not my place to update a research site such as Inducks. As I say in all these posts, I speak only for myself.

But, I DO believe that story was by Lockman. His “patterns” are easier to discern than most of Western’s uncredited writers. But I do have “patterns” on a number of them, upon which I base my “guesses”.

Ultimately, none will ever prove or disprove this definitively. But, it’s a story worth reading, regardless of who wrote it.

Now, Lockman creating a good non-stereotypical female character… THAT’S worthy of note!

Elaine said...

Oh, don't get me wrong, educated guesses are fine things, when one is so well informed as yourself. I just wondered what you knew that Inducks did not--thanks for explaining.

The Lockman/Strobl stories that stick in my mind (positively) from childhood are "Og's Iron Bed" and "The Hound of Basketville". Both fine examples of Strobl art, too, IMO.

Joe Torcivia said...

Those are both favorites of mine too… Especially “Og’s Iron Bed”. From that period of DONALD DUCK, I also liked “The Battle at Hadrian’s Wall”. Even though it is now contradicted by Don Rosa’s “The Sign of the Triple Distlefink”.

Pan Miluś said...

TNT stories are fun, but I enjoyable the series with Donald and Fethry working for Scrooge's secret organisation a bit more (while no paranormal stuff, there where much more crazy scenarios)

I like Fethry when he's totally insane character in TNT he felt much, much more grounded.
On another note I always had in my head Fethry voice but I can never point out cartoon character that's sounds the way I imagine him.
The closes I can describe It's like something between voice of actor Josh Gad and more energetic Cho-Cho from Top Cat with touch of Gusto Gummie...

Joe Torcivia said...

Pan:

I just saw Josh Gad on TALKING DEAD (the follow-up discussion show to THE WALKING DEAD), and yeah… he could work as Fethry.

ramapith said...

In my addled brain, Fethry sounds something like Terrance and Phillip of SOUTH PARK. Imagine a breezy, slightly overcheerful voice that could be sympathetic in certain situations, but at times makes your heart sink when you hear it coming...

Joe Torcivia said...

David:

I’m not much of a SOUTH PARK fan, and have only seen the show very sparingly, but “ a breezy, slightly overcheerful voice that could be sympathetic in certain situations, but at times makes your heart sink when you hear it coming” probably WOULD be perfect for Fethry.

Deb said...

That description makes me think of the voice of Ned Flanders more than Terrance and Phillip, whose voices could best be described as irritating (but that applies to most of the South Park voices, actually). Fethry sounding like Ned Flanders would be surreal...

Joe Torcivia said...

Deb:

Fethry with Ned Flanders’ voice? That WOULD be surreal… and inspired!

TheKKM said...

@Joe - quick mention, the PKNA Jon mentioned is the Italian spin-off pitting Donald's Duck Avenger as a full-on superhero fighting an alien race. Very Marvel-esque in tone, and a cult classic, but so violently against expectations of Disney comics in the US that I admit, I'd love to see it published over there just for the reaction! For comparison, Doubleduck is by much the same team, but a lot more light-hearted compared to PKNA.

As for personal thoughts on it? I enjoyed reading it, it's been nearly all published over here. Still prefer the more traditional take on the Duck Avenger, though. Of those late 90's Italian "super-serious" spinoffs on traditional Disney fare, Mickey Mouse Mystery Magazine definitely comes out on top.

Joe Torcivia said...

KKM:

Full disclosure: I do not care for Duck Avenger. Perhaps that’s because I’ve read very few of the stories, and have yet to come across one I really like. Perhaps it’s because I feel that Super Goof is the better “super-hero concept”, if we must have one at all. Frankly, Super Goof is the “super-hero concept” I grew up with and favor, because of my background in the Gold Key Comics era.

I certainly didn’t like the story IDW printed a few months back, because everyone behaved in such an unpleasant manner that there was no one to “root for”.

I didn’t care for “Doubleduck” either – but that’s because Boom! published it at the exclusion of anything else that could have been done with Donald – and that their scripting and dialoguing was so terrible at the start of their license period. Art-wise, however, I thought it was very good.

I’d welcome a republishing of “Doubleduck”, as dialogued by Jonathan Gray or David Gerstein. I’m certain I’d like it MUCH more!

TheKKM said...

Hoe:

I can understand that, though I do believe, if you'll allow me, that's more likely to be due to unfamiliarity with the character than anything else- you guys are, after all, about 50 years behind on that, whereas here the character's had time to be the unpleasant petty avenger shown in the recent IDW story (and most other stories, if IDW is planning to go through them in production order!), then to mellow into a slightly-more-competent-in-terms-of-super-heroics-version-of-Super-Goof (say THAT five times fast!), then to be reinvented as a Marvel-style superhero in the late 90's (the aforementioned PKNA), then to be re-reinvented in that Marvel-style line, then RE-RE-REinvented, and meanwhile raised enough interest to have more stories of the "traditional" one, the one that's a fun super-hero Donald. It's a woozy, but an important part of the comics mythology, so I'm wondering if you'll still feel this way in, say, 5 or so years (assuming IDW keeps importing DA stories).

Whew, that was a mouth(text?)ful.

I don't remember where I read the comparison, but I imagine Doubleduck won't fall easily in your tastes if you're used to the more, er "Barks-like" Donald stories and suddenly get forced months on end of Donald super spy. The format of the comics definitely influences this- the smallest magazine we have here is 130 pages, definitely enough space for a serving of "normal" Duck stories AND "genre" Duck stories. In that sense, I quite enjoyed DoubleDuck, must say, as it wasn't coming at the cost of anything else for me.

Joe Torcivia said...

KKM:

I suspect that, over time – AND if we get good stories with superb IDW-style American English scripting – I will warm up to Duck Avenger.

I simply didn’t care for the tone of the first one. It was neither funny, nor adventurous… and that’s what I look for in these stories. Best case, a combination of the two. It just seemed mean-spirited for the sake of being mean-spirited. But, as I say, I speak for myself in these posts, and not my editors and publisher.

IDW also published a more modern Duck Avenger story in DONALD DUCK # 9 (the one with my lead story “Tycoonraker”), apparently from 2009, and I can’t honestly say I liked that one either. Though it was immensely better than the origin story!

From your description, the history of Duck Avenger, was made as inconsistent, convoluted, and arbitrary as that of a typical Marvel or DC super hero that has been around for decades. Contrast that with Super Goof who, save his unfortunate detour into “Ultraheroes”, remains remarkably consistent and true to what originally made the character great.

True, all sorts of things may have happened with Super Goof outside the USA over the years as well but, if the Italian story I scripted for IDW’s MICKEY AND DONALD CHRISTMAS PARADE (from 2008) is any indication, the consistency I like remains!

My gripes with Doubleduck are two-fold.

ONE: Boom!, in their horrible early period, published it to the exclusion of all else that could be done with a great character like Donald.

TWO: Boom!’s early scripting, before they finally turned to some of us “Future-IDW Guys”, was horrible! I’ve said before, if it were done by David Gerstein, Jonathan Gray, Thad Komorowski, or myself, I’m certain I would enjoy it more.

In your case, just knowing that it wasn’t the “only” Donald Duck you got, would make a world of difference.

Comicbookrehab said...

Kudos to IDW however, for at least reprinting the Paperinik origin, as awkward as it was ("Gladstone was trapped in a house that exploded!...uh..Yay!?"). Even with an "Americanized" script that clearly tried to make it sound like this is the same cast of characters decsended from the stories by Barks, it still felt like bowdlerized versions of the ducks. The 2009 back-up in issue #9 does show that was some attempt to reconcile things by presenting D.A. as something akin to Barks' "Mastery" stories, where Donald is shown at being good at something..I'm not turned off by it, but it does make me wonder if there are any particular "Best of" lists of Duck Avenger tales out there that would be handing for IDW to reprint.

Comicbookrehab said...

For the sake of clarity: "PKNA" stands for "Paperinik: New Adventures", although when the videogame "Disney's PK: Out of The Shadows" for Nintendo Game Cube & Playstation 2 in 2002, created a new origin in which "Paperinik" was now reffered to as "PK"/"Playtrhinos Kineticus" ("Energized Duck"), which led me to wonder if "Energized Duck" is a more-interesting superhero name than "Duck Avenger" which was created because it shared the same initials as "Disney Adventures" Magazine - which initially planned to print new stories with the character. *phew*

And then there's a second volume of stories called "PK2"..and an unrelated brand of chewing gum called "PK"..and that fansite where this fan prefers referring to him as "Phantom Duck"... *double 'phew!'*

Joe Torcivia said...

‘Rehab:

In all the recent craziness, I realize I failed to respond to these comments. Sorry!

Don’t get me completely wrong. I’m glad Duck Avenger finally got a “proper” introduction in the United States… I’m just sorry it was such a bad story. As you so perfectly put it: “Gladstone was trapped in a house that exploded!...uh..Yay!?”

And the 2009 back-up in issue #9 certainly does fare better, but not better enough to negate the head-shakingly unpleasant origin story. As I say, maybe with time – and a string of better stories – I may come to think differently. But, not just yet!

BTW, I’d truly hate to think that "Duck Avenger" was so named because it shared the same initials as "Disney Adventures" Magazine! But, it sounds sad enough to be true!

Comicbookrehab said...

No problem! Hopefully it's a 'good' craziness! :)

I recall when Steven drew that story for Disney Adventures Magazine, the initials"D.A" were added to the belt buckle on Donald's costume. I don't presume they were going to reprint any of the old stories, since the new origin incorporated the Ducklair Tower and the Evronians from PKNA, swapped out Globus/One/Uno with Ludwig von Drake in the mentor/advisor role and added Spike the bumblebee as Donald's sidekick..I have no idea where they would've gone with it, but the execution resembled the Buzz Lightyear tv series..

TheKKM said...

It probably is true, but I don't think it's a bad thing in this case- it's honestly the best name the character has, as far as I know, outside of the original, and maybe above it. It sounds properly alter-ego, isn't bland like most language's choices of "Super Duck", and does point to him being a bit less of just another hero, and more of a mischievous avenger at least at the start. Something I have to say, I think fits perfectly at least Cartoon Donald- angry at people, he dons himself with gadgets and a mask, and goes off having his revenge before in the end of the short probably ending with the gadgets backfiring on him!

Joe Torcivia said...

‘Rehab:

As with most “craziness”, some of it is good, some of it is not. However, that which is associated with this Blog, is decidedly good! The rest of it, not so much...

I’m amazed to see such creativity emerge from the pages of Disney Adventures which, considering its specifically-designed childish nature vs. “mainstream Disney comics” (I just realized how strange that must sound to “civilians”), seems like such a waste.

It’s certainly the reason *I* never saw any of this. If it’s any good, maybe IDW can use it as a backup someday?

Joe Torcivia said...

KKM:

“Super Duck”, if I’m not mistaken, is the name of a very minor existing character copyrighted by Archie Comics. So, “blandness” is probably not the only reason for not using that name. Though, I’d never go near it in any case.

To me, “Duck Avenger” sounds too much like something Plucky Duck would call himself in an episode of Warner Bros. TINY TOON ADVENTURES! A series I really LIKED, BTW. I just can’t shake that thought, whenever I read the name.

But, I think you have a point about the “cartoon Donald”! If superhero identities and techo-gadgets were more the norm as plot elements when the original Donald Duck cartoons were being produced, I could certainly see that!

Comicbookrehab said...

I had meant to credit Steve Butler for the art on that Duck Avenger story published in Disney Adventures Magazine and I wound up with a typo in that comment..*sheesh*. He was/still is best-known for his art on "Web of Spider-Man" for Marvel Comics in the 1990s, knee deep in the storylines involving clones and such (best to go back to talking about ducks, really). The script was by Steven Murphy & Michael Stewart. I don't see why IDW couldn't reprint it - particularly since Boom opted to reprint the origin of Fethry Duck's superhero guise The Red Bat and never printing a Duck Avenger origin at all!

I like the idea that DA suits the animated Donald better than the Barks Donald (it supports my theory that if Donald is going to be a regular in the new "Ducktales" episodes, I would love to see some Duck Avenger - Gizmoduck "World's Finest"-style stories), but I like how they incorporated DA into the Zodiac Stone arc, so it's not like Donald's superhero guise isn't some kind of parallel universe subseries set on Earth-Q or something...but does this mean Super Goof will appear in a later chapter? Fairs fair and all..

Joe Torcivia said...

‘Rehab:

An appearance by Super Goof couldn't hurt “Zodiac Stone”…and never compare early Boom! with IDW! They are not even in the same universe! :-)