Friday, January 4, 2019

Adventures in Comic-Boxing: Focusing on Fannish Flotsam!

It all started with a mouse!  ...Or, more precisely, someone who DREW a mouse for THIS POST!

The ever-inquiring (...and did I mention "intrepid") Debbie Anne Perry raised the question:

"Who would throw false teeth at someone?"

...To which I instinctively replied: "Someone who wanted to make a biting remark!" 

But, after filing that gag away for possible use in a future story (...or, one day, maybe even re-dialoguing this one), Deb's question prompted me to take a closer look at the furiously-flung flotsam, and come up with the following observations...

Looking closer at the illustration above, what is that thing (that appears to have NO COLOR OF ITS OWN, but assumes the background color of YELLOW) - toward the right side of the panel, surrounded clockwise by  Donald's hat, the pop bottle, the word "BOO!", and the apple?

  • A leaf, that has come off the stem of the apple?

  • A chandelier crystal?

  • An arrowhead? 

  • A "martial arts throwing thingie", that would have cut Donald's head off or caused him to bleed to death from the jugular?

  • A miniature yellow spaceship, manned by tiny yellow aliens who just wanna know what all the fuss is about? 

  • Maybe even a RIP in the panel?  Or, in the yellow backdrop Donald is posed in front of?  ...Or, maybe the very "time-space continuum" itself?  
The GUMS of the false teeth are completely white!  Do they belong to a skeleton?  

Finally, why doesn't Donald just grab that CAN OF SPINACH coming at him, and become impervious to the fannish assault directed at him? 

Deb answers that last question with: "King Features Syndicate would have sued Donald into next week if he ate the spinach (although he was a sailor!)"

Yeah, I probably gotta agree with that!  

For those wondering, this "barrage brought unto Donald" is from DONALD DUCK # 116 (Gold Key Comics, Cover Date: November, 1967)...

..."The Case of the Super Secret Mission", by Vic Lockman and Tony Strobl!

And if we all find ourselves suddenly sucked into "A World [We] Never Made", just like another famous "comic-book duck"...

...We'll know that thing was indeed a RIP in the very "time-space continuum" itself!  If so, sorry for letting it loose on the world, via this Blog!   

Naaah!  It's probably just MUTT AND JEFF celebrating another NEW YEAR!  ...I HOPE! 


Debbie Anne said...

Actually, I drew two mice in that post, Mickey and Mervin...who very seldom meet outside of rough drawings in my sketchbooks (which are usually not worth sharing). I have kinda cooled on creating my own Disney art, although I still draw the occasional Duck or Mouse.

Achille Talon said...

I would also wonder what is up with the pink bone. Who carries a random fuchsia femur with them and then throws it at someone?

(Concerning the arrow-head-shaped-thingie, my sober guess would be that it's indeed a leaf detaching from the stem of the appel due to momentum, and my raving-drunken guess would be that it's the lipstick-covered mouth of the Invisible Man, who's observing all this and wondering where it all went wrong.

Joe Torcivia said...


Of course you drew two mice, but that would not have worked with my opening line! So, I hope Mervin understands… You know, writer’s license, hyperbole, and all that tommyrot! And Disney’s kinda sorta” gotten a number of its comic devotees to “kinda cool” on them… precisely because the new comics are no longer even “kinda cool”!

But the old stuff is still "WAY cool", and will always be - in a "cool kinda" way!

..."Cool, man - kinda!"

Joe Torcivia said...


“I would also wonder what is up with the pink bone. Who carries a random fuchsia femur with them and then throws it at someone?”

Maybe the bone was freshly-ripped out of a momentarily-unpopular comics creator (who didn’t live long enough to see fannish opinion change back in his favor after he was replaced with someone worse) – and the color-coating was his still-fresh blood!

…As you know, fans CAN get that way, at times!

I’m rather partial to your “raving-drunken guess”! But, only if you make it an “Invisible Woman”!

scarecrow33 said...

"The Case of the Super Secret Mission" is one of the better Donald Duck stories from this era. As a kid, I was endlessly intrigued by this one--the various cyphers and how the ducks figured them out seemed ingenious and the overall story seemed like sophisticated stuff for a DD comic book (I was only marginally aware of Barks at the time, and of course had no idea of his identity, and so I didn't have much of a measure to go by, only the other Duck stories of that period, which were mainly Strobl-drawn.) As Strobl's efforts go, this one is pretty impressively drawn and realized overall, and Lockman's writing on this story was quite engaging for me as a child reader.

If I recall correctly, this story has been discussed before on this blog, but it is always a worthwhile one to re-visit.

Joe Torcivia said...


That was not only a great issue of DONALD DUCK for its time, but was part of a great 1967 run! It was preceded by # 115 (“The Goat with the Long Silky Hair”), and followed by 117 (the Carl Barks-written “Pawns of the Loup Garou”) – and earlier in that year were the two issues that introduced Moby Duck!

My new mantra is: Some of the very best comics of my lifetime and before are “just upstairs” (not Heaven, but my top floor comics storeroom – but it’s close!) so, if some of today’s product is “less to my liking” (that covers multiple publishers, I might add – not just one) , so what?

And, there are always new discoveries awaiting you in older comics! With few exceptions like SCOOBY-DOO TEAM-UP, and Fantagraphics “Disney Masters”, your money’s better spent on the classics!

Achille Talon said...

“just upstairs” (not Heaven, but my top floor comics storeroom – but it’s close!)

Probably coincidental, but that reminds me of a rather funny sketch I watched a few months ago, built on the quiproquo of two small-time gangsters in debt to a mob boss who lives higher in the same apartment building, and whom they refer to as "the man upstairs", being visited by a priest.

Oh, and speaking of the Disney Masters, I have located the Uncle Scrooge's Money Rocket novelization from the 1970's I was telling you about. Much as I remembered it, it's a very fine piece of children's literature, which adds to what we know of the characters' motivations and thought processes (as is the usual draw of novelization). For example, we are told that the Saturnians' belief in their superiority and in rulership of the universe being their birthright stems from how proud they are that their planet has such beautiful rings — which they liken to the Gods themselves having crowned the planet monarch of the entire galaxy.

An excellent literary pun which translates perfectly into English: while Gyro is explaining the minutiae rocket's trajectory to Scrooge and Donald, he talks of its planned parabolic cours which is becoming hyperbolic due to the extra weight, sending them careening towards Jupiter. Scrooge angrily tells him to lay off with the parabols an hyperboles and metaphors, and just talk straight.

The sequence where Donald is analyzed with the scientists is as funny in words as it was in comic form, but altered to some extent. (It's a Veterinary School, here, for no particular reason I can fathom.) The scientists, far from accepting that Donald is an alien, eventually come to the conclusion that Donald is the last surviving specimen of an extinct species of Jovian parrot. Hence why they put him in the zoo. Later, HDL are led to him by the Jovian children not because they think the new weird monster in the zoo will be of interest, but because HDL were sent out by Scrooge to look for a parrot, because Scrooge somehow got it into his head that the only way to be sure whether the giant mushrooms are edible is to get a parrot to taste them. (I think that must be a reference to something.)

Scrooge in Space has glorious illustrations that are all the more interesting for the fact that the illustrator, unlike the writer (Jacques Roche), clearly didn't have access to Bottaro's original. So they created their own interpretation of what the Jovians, Rebo, or the giant worm look like, and it's completely different from the original version. For example, Roche's text describes the Jovians as "four-limbed eggs", due to their ovoid bodies in Bottaro's art; the illustrator drew a literal metal egg with a face, and, clearly misunderstanding "four-limbed", gave them four tiny legs, plus two arms. The automaton Donald builds for Rebo, despite the text mentioning that it's supposed to have Donald's face, isn't particularly Donald-like and has an original design. As for the Saturnians, about the only thing they have in common with the origianl version is the green skin. Interestingly, this version gives markedly different physical appearances to the two Generals, who are here christened Unus and Duus (Rebo himself is renamed Rebus-Rebus).

I'll see if I can post scans.

Joe Torcivia said...

That is a FASCINATING FIND, Achille!

You should use this as a post at your own Blog… which everyone should visit HERE!

I know I’D love to see some of those illustrations and, judging by the overall great reactions to Bottaro's “Uncle Scrooge’s Money Rocket”, so would many others reading your comments above!

And, yes… so many great comics, only one flight up from where I’m typing this comment… all crammed out of sight, where Esther doesn’t have to be inconvenienced by them! (We have no basement!) Though I see the day where Averi will be far more amenable to the situation, once she can climb the stairs! If “Grandpa Joe” has his way, I hope to do for Averi what “Grandma Millie” did for me!