Socrates Gander (and other stuff)

Wed Nov 9 12:20:00 CET 1994

      Dear Folks,

      Jorgen talked about a recent reprint of an old Vicar story, 
D7436, in which Huey, Louie, and Dewey are paired with a boy (who 
looks a lot like Gus Goose) by the name of Socrates.  This character, 
whose full name is Socrates F. Gander, is a Karp/Taliaferro creation,
who appeared in the daily strips on and off around 1944.  Around 
WDC 80, a lot of those strips were reprinted.  But I don't believe the 
character lasted more than a year.
      Karp and Taliaferro always made HDL into nasty little bullies, 
which really bothers me.  When they first hear that this boy, who is 
their cousin, is nicknamed "Sock", they assume he's good at fighting  
due to that nickname.  When they find that his nickname is a 
shortened version of Socrates and see that he's really no tough guy, 
they are overjoyed to meet him, mainly because now they know they 
have somebody who they can beat up and take advantage of.  Doesn't 
sound like the HDL that I know.
      But it sounds like this D-story does "Sock" a better turn than 
the old strips did.  I would like *VERY MUCH* to redo it for 
Gladstone.  Here's where you guys come in.  I need to know if anyone 
has a DUTCH or GERMAN printing of story D7436.  Help!

      The entire business about liquor apparently is an issue in 
Norway as well.  Gladstone apparently is not allowed to even mention 
booze unless it's out of context -- for example, in that old sea 
shanty "Sixteen Men on a Dead Man's Chest" (and as I mentioned, thus 
Gladstone does have it better than Whitman, which couldn't even 
mention rum there!).
      The bit about Pete drinking the champagne may have been one of 
the reasons the original version of "Island in the Sky" was banned 
here for so long, but everyone I asked gave other reasons.  I'm sure 
that was a consideration, though.  Phooey.
      The (VERY GOOD) 1931 story "Mickey Mouse Vs. Katt Nipp" 
involves CATNIP wine, which a bootlegger (this was Prohibition, 
remember?) is actually shown brewing.  Mickey knows that this wine is 
Katt Nipp's weakness, so strategically places jugs of it near Katt 
Nipp's shack.  When Nipp drinks the stuff, he acts drunk, and is easy 
prey for whatever Mickey's trying to do (as he points out).  Wine is 
clearly shown in a negative light, as just another reason why MM is 
smarter than the villain.  Very interesting.

      D93520 (Donald learning to control his anger)  Seems like this 
is actually a new twist on that old saw.  And it's not the only one 
Egmont has done lately.  Dave Rawson (or was it Bob Ingersoll?) spent 
some time at the Comic Con last fall telling me about a similar story 
of his own, which is titled "Temper Fugit."  And again, the story 
sounds like a winner.

     D93477 (Mickey down on the farm)  Groan.  About the only thing I 
can say about this story is that at least Mickey isn't shown as being 
good at everything.  Worse, I know that in Britain it will be printed 
just because it is a Mickey story, thus preempting one of the better 
stories you mentioned was published this week.  (Since the British 
weekly only has 22-24 pages of comics each week)

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