On Don's work...

Fredrik Ekman d91fe at gnetis.pt.hk-r.se
Sat Mar 12 22:55:18 CET 1994

A couple of days ago, Don wrote:
>	So, say you think my work sux eggs... and tell me that my job
>depends on how popular Barks made the Ducks all over the world... but
>please don't say that I depend on anybody but ME for the effort I put
>into these stories! 

Since I'm afraid that that refers to a message sent by me, I feel that
I must reply to it.

Don; I think this is yet another example of how words sometimes don't
come out as intended in writing as described by Mattias some time ago.
I also have to express myself in a foreign language, making things
even more probable to come out in another way than intended.

Thus, I never meant to say that your work is depending on anyone else
than you. I never meant to say that you are using Barks work to make
it easier for yourself. And I certainly never meant to say that your
work "sux eggs", or anything else for that matter.

I realize that there is an exceptional difference between your work
and that of most of Egmont's other creators: Like them, you base your
work on that of Barks, but unlike them, you try (and mostly succeed)
to make something new and exciting out of it.

But then again, take the Lo$. I'm not saying that perhaps it should
never have been done. Nor do I say that you haven't done a great job
on it. On the contrary; noone could have done it better. But, as you
have said yourself a number of times, it's basically nothing more than
a number of loose facts collected from three decades of one man's
work. That you have still managed to tie all the loose ends together
and even make a readable story out of it is nothing short of

Lo$ is, of course, the most obvious example, but the same goes for
most of the follow-ups, like "Return to Plain Awful". I will still
claim that that kind of story "impairs" your writing since there are
so many facts that have to be taken into consideration (and you would
obviously never consciously go against any of them). The stories that
have a more "healthy" amount of Barks references are (in my opinion)
much better. For instance, I love "Son of the Sun" and "The Crocodile
Collector". The one exception to this rule is "Return to Xanadu"
which I hold to be your best work.

If you still think I'm far out, Don, please tell me so, that I may
perhaps be able to read your stories in a new light the next time.

On a slightly related matter, Mattias writes, on the subject of Lo$
10: "it seems plausible to me ... that it is a perfectly readable
story, even if you don't recognize a single Barks reference". Well, I
showed Lo$ 9 to a couple of friends, none of whom had enough knowledge
of Barks to recognize the references, and all but one though it was
quite a masterpiece. My sister, who reads a lot of Disney comics, even
said it was great, but "quite unlike all the other stories about the
past life of $crooge". I have really tried to explain about Barks and
the impact he's had on Disney comics, but for some reason, she refuses
to understand...


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