Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Donald Duck im Mickey Mouse Weekly von William Ward

Donald Duck im Mickey Mouse Weekly von William Ward

One of my favorites from everything Disney comics last year is the book Donald Duck im Mickey Mouse Weekly von William Ward, published by the German fan club D.O.N.A.L.D. (Deutsche Organisation nichtkommerzieller Anhänger des lauteren Donaldismus). The title and the introduction article is written in German, but the comic pages inside are facsimile copies from the British Mickey Mouse Weekly and in English.

The book collects all the Donald Duck serials by William Ward in chronological order which is a total of 135 comic book pages. In addition, there is a four-page article and a few pages with cover galleries.

These stories are super rare and only collected once before in the Italian Paperino: Le inedite follie inglesi di William A. Ward. I've been trying to get hold of a copy of the Italian book for years, and I wish I had it to compare. But unfortunately, I haven't been able to find anyone selling it for a reasonable price and willing to send internationally yet.
 

Paperino: Le inedite follie inglesi di William A. Ward
Italian book reprinting the same stories

The comics in the German book are scanned from the personal collection of a German collector, so I'm pretty sure the two books use different sources.

Comparing the book to the original British comics it's reprinted in a lot smaller format. But I guess production cost would have been way to high reproducing it in the same size. And I don't think this book had much of a budget as it's made by fans for fans.



Donald Duck im Mickey Mouse Weekly von William Ward and Mickey Mouse Weekly #67
The book on top of Mickey Mouse Weekly #67

Most of the reproduction is pretty good considering and according to a note only three pages had to be partly restored.

 



As I got the original comics I tried to compare the restored pages to the original. In the first case I could seriously not spot anything that could have been restored!
 

Donald and Mac: 5000 Fanthoms Under the Sea
Original comic vs the book - could not spot what had been restored on this page.

On the second restored page it's easier to see what has been done, as the text is partly restored in a new font, and some of the words are guessed wrong.


Restoration to the left, original to the right

The last restored page just has some minor restoration in the upper corner, and I also noticed partly missing text in a panel at the bottom.


Restoration to the left, original to the right

 


Another mistake in the book is that one page is missing. But the page got printed separately, numbered 15 ½ and came as an attachment.


Missing page as attachment

But overall, I'm impressed with the work on this book and it's still awesome! It's mainly created just to make the comics available for anyone wanting to do research or just read these early Donald stories. I'm not sure about the print run, but when I write this it looks like they still have copies for sale.

Not sure if there is any meaning behind changing the flag on the cover to an European Union flag though. The illustration is taken from the Mickey Mouse Weekly #66 cover, celebrating the upcoming coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth.

Mickey Mouse Weekly #66 and Donald Duck im Mickey Mouse Weekly von William Ward





Monday, June 18, 2018

"The Return of the Phantom Blot" and its American reprint

Here's a little trivia post about The Return of the Phantom Blot and its American reprint.
 

"The Return of the Phantom Blot" was originally printed in 4 parts in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #284-287
"The Return of the Phantom Blot" was originally printed in 4 parts in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #284-287


Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #284-287 and Gemstone's Mickey Mouse #285 reprinting the story

The Return of the Phantom Blot (1964) was the first new story featuring the Phantom Blot in the American comics since his first appearance in Mickey Mouse Outwits the Phantom Blot (1939). In the meantime, there was a couple of remakes of the daily strip series in the comic book format, and the Italians used the Blot in several stories. But The Return of the Phantom Blot was the first new original story for the American market and re-introduced the character leading up to his own comic book series.

 

The first issue of The Phantom Blot's own comic book series

At the end of the last part of The Return of the Phantom Blot we get an ad for this new series. When I see ads like this I'm always wondering if the story was created one row short or if the editors had cut something to make space for the ads. I got curious about this story too and wanted to check how the reprint dealt with the missing row. And it turns out Gemstone had done something clever, they actually re-used the ad too! But this time for their own new two-part miniseries with the Phantom Blot.
 

The story ends with an ad in both the original printing and the Gemstone reprint



AAd in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #287 and Mickey Mouse #285
Ad in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #287 and Mickey Mouse #285
 
The new Gemstone mini-series being advertised

Another fun thing with the Gemstone reprint is a little coloring goof with Goofy's clothes. I wonder what kind of strange onepice/jumpsuit thing is laying on this armchair...



 Checking the original coloring the clothes makes more sense 😄



Sunday, May 27, 2018

IDW's Walt Disney Showcase #2

"Mickey Mouse & Goofy in The Secret of Gold City" published in IDW's Walt Disney Showcase #2
"Mickey Mouse & Goofy in The Secret of Gold City" published in IDW's Walt Disney Showcase #2

In the second issue of IDW's new series we get Mickey Mouse & Goofy in The Secret of Gold City. The story takes place in modern time but with Mickey & Goofy continuing the adventure of their ancestors Mickey the Kid and Six-Shot Goofy.
 

From "The Secret of Gold City" in IDW's Walt Disney Showcase #2

The story is actually a sequel to and with direct references to the Italian story Topolino Kid contro "Jack la vaporiera". To my knowledge the original story is not available in English anywhere, and the second issue of Walt Disney Showcase would have been a lot more interesting if it were – but I do have a Norwegian translation of the story in Donald Pocket #68.
 

"Mikke Kid og Jernhest-Jack" (Norwegian title) in Donald Pocket #68

The flashback panels in The Secret of Gold City are directly copied from scenes in this story.

Original story (top) and flashback scene in "The Secret of Gold City" (bottom)

Original story (left) and flashback scene in "The Secret of Gold City" (right)

Original story (left) and flashback scene in "The Secret of Gold City" (right)

But these two are not the only stories with Mickey the Kid and Six-Shot Goofy created. In fact, there is a whole series with these stories, and the origin story where they meet up is available in English too.
 

"Mickey Kid and Goofy Six-Shots", comiXology
"Mickey Kid and Goofy Six-Shots" available digitally on comiXology

It's published digitally in two parts on comiXology titled Mickey Kid and Goofy Six-Shots. (slightly different names than the recent IDW translation)
 

Mickey and Goofy's Wild West ancestors meets for the first time - from the digital comiXology issues

In addition to the Mickey and Goofy meetup, we also see how they met Susanna, a recurring character in the series and seen in the photograph in The Secret of Gold City. We also get the Oh, Susanna song for the first time, which must have been passed down in generations as modern time Goofy also knows it!
 

From the digital comiXology issues


From the digital comiXology issues (top) and "The Seret of Gold City" (bottom)


And we get to see Mickey the Kid's signature attack move used for the first time, re-used by Mickey Mouse in The Secret of Gold City.
 

From the digital comiXology issues (top) and "The Seret of Gold City" (bottom)


To get the most out of the new Showcase issue I recommend getting the two digital comics too, just to read the backstory of Mickey and Goofy's wild west ancestors. And as I already said, the story would be a lot more interesting if read together with Topolino Kid contro "Jack la vaporiera"!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

A 70's newspaper article about Italian Disney comic production

A couple of years ago when doing some searching in Google's Newspaper archive I found an interesting article in The Tuscaloosa News. It was printed in this newspaper April 11, 1971, but it looks like the article was originally written for The Los Angeles Times. I found it interesting enough to save a copy so I thought I could share it here too.

 

From The Tuscaloosa News - April 11, 1971 (layout slightly edited for this blog)

If the image is scaled to your screen when clicking on it, try this link to view it in full size for reading.

Reading it now 47 years later it doesn't have too much new or unknown information if you are a Disney comic fan. But being from an American newspaper in early 70's, and about Italian Disney comics, it's still a fun read. Especially interesting is the fact that Romano Scarpa is mentioned in the article. Back then it was not common knowledge who created the stories seen on print.

Zio Paperone e il drakkar volante, the Scarpa story mentioned in the article still hasn't been printed in English.

Another interesting fact is that in the early 70's the Italian Disney comic production didn't require approval from the American office any more, but they still sent over copies of all stories. I wonder what archive they ended up in, and if they still are a useful resource if publishers wants to reprint old Italian stories.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

What's green and fuzzy and has eight legs?


I was searching through the inducks database the other day trying to find an April fool story to talk about. There are some good ones I had almost forgotten about, so the result was me reading a bunch of stories instead.

Carl Barks did a few
 

Carl Barks 10-pager from WDC #127


Carl Barks 10-pager from WDC #211

And there's a fun wolf story in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #152 that is ready for a re-print.
 

A Li'l Bad Wolf story from WDC #152

There's a lot of Egmont stories and Dutch stories too, not available in English, and one that is only printed in English in the UK.


   



But I didn't really find any I had much to say about. So I'll try something else instead.

Under a two-page April fool story with Mickey and his nephews, and I thought I could do a little quiz out if it.
 

April "Fool"ishness with Mickey, Morty, Ferdie, Goofy and Minnie
April "Fool"ishness (click to enlarge)

The first one to tell where this story was printed is officially a real Disney comic nerd 😊 

***

Update May 27, 2018:

Alright, now it's been almost two months so I guess I have to reveal the answer. The two-page April fools story can be found in the Spring 1989 issue of Mickey Mouse Magazine.
 

Mickey Mouse Magazine, Spring 1989
Mickey Mouse Magazine, Spring 1989

This magazine was not a comic book series, but some of the issues had a page or two with comics. I don't have a whole lot of issues from this series, but I think I remember seeing some Disney Babies comic pages in it too.
 



Sunday, March 25, 2018

The Walt Disney Treasure Book

In February 2016 I made a blogpost about two pages of comics where I was trying to identify what publication they came from. And it turned out they were from a British book called The Walt Disney Treasure Book. Now two years later, I finally got hold of a copy of the book!


The Walt Disney Treasure Book published by Odhams Press


I already knew that the Barks story had dialogue changes in the British edition, so I did a little search for more examples.

The first story in the book is a re-arranged version of the Sunday pages with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The dialogue in the first part of the story is pretty much unchanged. But when the dwarfs start talking, a lot of the slang is removed.
 

From Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Sunday pages
Original dialogue to the left - British dialogue to the right

From Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Sunday pages
Original dialogue to the left - British dialogue to the right

We also get an occasional British word inserted.

From Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Sunday pages
Original dialogue to the left - British dialogue to the right

The next story is Mickey Mouse and The World Under the Sea.

From Mickey Mouse and The World Under the Sea
Original dialogue on the top - British dialogue at the bottom

Then we have Christmas on Bear Mountain.

Original and British dialogue from Carl Barks' Christmas on Bear Mountain
Original dialogue to the left - British dialogue to the right

Original and British dialogue from Carl Barks' Christmas on Bear Mountain
Original dialogue to the left - British dialogue to the right

And Bambi, where not much is changed, just some minor adjustments here and there. But here I also checked another early British print of the story.

Bambi, minor dialogue changes
Original dialogue (left), from World Distributor #33 (middle), and the Trasure Book (right)

And finally, the book ends with Mickey Mouse and Pluto the Hero.


From Mickey Mouse and Pluto the Hero
Original dialogue to the left - British dialogue to the right

Today’s exchange rate is about 0.7, but trying to check historical data it looks like the exchange rate was about 0.36 in the early 50’s. So 18 thousand pounds would have been more accurate when the book was printed, while it’s not too far off today. (I’m not sure exactly when the book was published)



Thursday, March 22, 2018

Comics on Norwegian milk cartons

After IDW started publishing Disney comics we have seen 3 stories drawn by Norwegian Arlid Midthun, and I hope we'll see more in the future! If you haven't read any yet I recommend checking out "The Substitute Santa of Strathbungo" printed in IDW's Uncle Scrooge #21, with Scrooge as a young boy in Glasgow.

Among the stories we haven't seen in English yet is a series of crime riddles with Donald & company, created in collaboration with novelist Gunnar Staalesen. But they are not the only crime riddle comics the two them have created together.

For the last 8 years they have created comics printed on Norwegian milk cartons. And the comics are only printed on the cartons during the Easter Holidays (and the week before).
 

2011-2014 milk cartons


2015-2018 milk cartons

If I didn't make it clear these are not Disney comics, but an original creation with the detective character "Ulf Ulvheim". But the drawing style is very similar to Arild's Disney comics.

Here are the comics from the last two years as slideshows (external links, might not work forever):


2017

2018


Source: https://www.tine.no/påske