Ducktales, Villains, and the Black Knight

Daniel J. Neyer jerryblake2 at
Sat Sep 27 15:18:39 CEST 2003

Unlike some of the others on the list, I was already familiar with Barks
and the Duck comics before I saw DUCKTALES, but I enjoyed it anyway.
Launchpad still remains a favorite character of mine, and I really wish
some author would start using him in their stories again (William Van
Horn has done some hilarious two-pagers with Launchpad, and I'd love to
see him use him in a longer adventure). I've heard that Branca once did a
tale that featured both Donald and Launchpad--anyone remember this
story's name? To me, DUCKTALES remains the only thing that Disney got
"right" after Walt's death--I guess because they were working (at first;
the later episodes did indeed get weaker) from Barks' blueprints.
Geoffrey Blum has charged that Scrooge was "sugar-coated" for the show,
but I can't really agree. McDuck is every bit as greedy and stingy in
DUCKTALES as he is in the comics. Check out the scene in the DUCKTALES
movie (TREASURE OF THE LOST LAMP) in which he is hesitant to use up his
wishes, even to save his life. 

Scrooge: These wishes are worth a fortune!
Genie: What's more important? A fortune or your life?
Scrooge (after a long pause): Wellll...
Genie: Hey! Is that exactly a trick question?

That sounds quite Barksian to me. I should mention that TREASURE OF THE
LOST LAMP is probably one of my favorite movies; I think it's even better
than the show itself (the movie also features another sequence right out
of Barks--and Rosa--the perilous passage through Scrooge's booby-trapped
money bin corridor). 

This discussion on comic villains is very intriguing. I would agree with
Don Rosa that Glomgold is one of the most evil of the Barks heavies--more
so as he seems to realize how rotten he is. The Beagles and Magica each
have their own wacky, twisted code, and the Beagles (one of them at
least) have been seen to express sorrow at Scrooge's (apparent) death in
THE GIANT ROBOT ROBBERS. No one's yet mentioned Mickey's villains, but I
think it would be interesting to compare, say, Black Pete and the Phantom
Blot. Pete is like the Beagle Boys in a way, but he also has something in
common with Glomgold, in that he has tried to kill Mickey several times
(especially in MICKEY MOUSE IN THE FOREIGN LEGION). The Blot is a very
complex character, one that I think only Gottfredson has done justice
to--he can't bear to see anything "suffer" but he's quite willing to
inflict suffering vicariously through one of his elaborate death-traps.

And finally, that's great news about a return of the Black Knight, Don!
Monsieur Lusene has great potential as a villain, and I can't wait to
witness another one of his "incroyable" heists.

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