Article in Norwegian DD

Arne H. Juul arnej at
Fri Jan 20 21:32:57 CET 1995

The newest Norwegian Donald Duck & Co. has a long article
about Don Rosa to announce the story that begins in the next
issue. I though you might all be interested in it, and together with
a friend (Stig Saether Bakken) entered and translated it. From what
I've been reading on this list, it seems quite accurate. Do any of
you know whether the same or similar articles has appeared in other
Disney publications, or is it just the Norwegian publisher's?

Hope you find this interesting.
  Arne H. Juul


...there is a new Don Rosa story coming up?
Not many people are so lucky they may have the funniest and most
interesting thing they know as a full day job. Keno Don Rosa is one of
the few that has had the occasion to do exactly what he has dreamed of
since childhood. He was born in Louisville in the state of Kentucky
6/29 1951, and grew up with his older sister's Donald comics.

In the comics, it was especially the stories by "the good artist"
which captured him.  "The good artist" was the only name one had until
the end of the 60'ies for Carl Barks.  Don Rosa himself says that he
is a Barks admirer who has had his highest wish come true, namely
being allowed to draw Donald, Uncle Scrooge and everyone else in
Duckburg.  The fact that he also can make a living out of it,
appears to him as a miracle.

Don Rosa regards himself as a bad artist.  He is self-educated, and he
feels that he still has a lot to learn.  Those who read his stories as
they are published are not in doubt that he is continuously improving.
Nevertheless it is as a story writer Don Rosa is outstanding, and the
way he tells his tales is of a good old-fashioned sort, where the art
does not obstruct the fascination with the story.

Don Rosa imagines his stories going on some time in the 50'ies, as was
the case with Barks' tales.  This is the reason why things may seem a
little old-fashioned.  In the Duckburg he describes, the electronical
age has not yet come.  In Scrooge's office there are employees who
update the accounting journals by hand, like Scrooge himself does.  In
"Last dogsled to Dawson", the backs of the accounting journals are
labeled 1954.

It may often be an adventure of itself to go looking for the minor details
in Don Rosa's stories.  Not least one may find a lot on the first page.

Don Rosa is one of the few Donald artists who both write and do the
art of his own stories, like Barks did.  The fact that he is in debt
to the old master appears clearly from his stories.  The first one he
made, "The son of the Sun", begins with a scene in the museum where
uncle Scrooge has an exhibition of many items related his previous
adventures with Donald and the boys.

Like Barks, Don Rosa does a thorough job when writing a story.  Lexica
and references are plowed though, and like his teacher he takes to the
National Geographic to document facts.  It's not such a strange thing
that Don Rosa's stories are so full of historical and scientific
facts.  If some hieroglyphs are supposed to say "Kleopatra", they do
say "Kleopatra".  When errors sometimes occur, the reason is usually a
lack of accuracy or knowledge with the people who take over the story
when it leaves Don Rosa's hand.

Don Rosa's first story starts at Scrooge's museum.  A strange thing
with this museum is that there is also on display a treasure which
Scrooge had not yet obtained when "The son of the Sun" was published
for the first time in the USA, 1987.  In one of the display cases we
find a part of king Croesus' treasure.  Croesus is the prince who
is regarded as the richest man through all time.  Don Rosa thinks it
was Croesus who came up with the idea of coinage, and suggested in an
interview a few years back that it might be a good starting-point for
a story.  Now this story is finished, and next week you get to read
about how the story ended when Scrooge tried to find Croesus' treasure.

And one more thing - Don is not short for Donald!

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