Jayaprakash Satyamurthy's Reviews > Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes

Donald Duck by Carl Barks
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's review
Mar 13, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: childrens-fiction, adventure, graphic-novel, humour
Read in March, 2012

I'm thrilled that Fantagraphics is reproducing all of Carl Barks's Duck family stories in these handsome, durable hardbound editions. I've tended to remember only Barks' epic adventures, usually featuring Uncle Scrooge, but this series also includes the shorter 10-pagers and one-page gags, which is a good decision because it really brings out the range and depth of Barks' genius. Owing to Disney's policy of not naming the artists who work on their comics, Barks was for too long an unsung master of the form. Disney comic fans over the world already know about the greatness of the 'good Duck artist' and there have been past reprints by more niche publishers; hopefully this series of reprints will help him take his place alongside names like Eisner and Kirby as one of the greatest comics creators of all time.
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07/22 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Valerie (new)

Valerie This sort of thing makes me miss my uncle and his brother. They had an almost complete set of the original comic books, plus collections. They also would be thrilled to have a new collection produced, especially if it's as well done as this one apparently is.

I wonder how much of my uncle's collection survived the fire at his house after his death. My aunt was in Ireland at the time, but I gather she and her sons did quite a bit of salvaging. Probably her fourth son took custody of a lot of it: he was grooming himself as family archivist when I knew him.

message 2: by Jayaprakash (last edited Mar 15, 2012 06:33PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jayaprakash Satyamurthy In the 1980s, the people who published the Indian children's magazine Chandamama (a title that survives to this day) secured the rights to several Disney comics and published a monthly comic called Disney World which usually included a long-format adventure, one or two shorter stories, a few one-page gags, a Zorro comic and some educational text pieces inserted by the Indian publishers. I had a large collection of these as a child but unfortunately they are all stuck in the black hole of my asocial father's house. While Barks' duck tales were always a highlight, Mickey Mouse and Goofy were featured in some pretty exciting adventure sagas too. Later in the 80s, the rights shifted to a new publisher and eventually the market was taken over by imported editions of these comics (although, since the 2000s another publisher here has been reprinting Reader's Digest sized editions of Disney comics with simplified text).

Disney still produces comics, but since the 80s there's been a marked decrease in quality of art and storylines. Most of the comics I read as a child relied heavily on reprints of older material, material which seems to have become more timeless. Somehow children's comics today seem to be a lot safer and more childish than the kinds of things Barks was turning out in 40s and 40s.

message 3: by Valerie (new)

Valerie There was a lot of cartoon work in the early 20th century that was ostensibly aimed at children but was complex and interesting. This is why I would like to get collections of Crockett Johnson's Barnaby books. It wasn't just Gus the skittish ghost fearful of coffee fiends. It was the sleazy bars Mr O'Malley met his supernatural cronies in, and the scrap drives, and other such things.

My uncle kept the original comic books in plastic, but he didn't seal them, because he said there was no point in having them if you didn't read them.

When I was a child, one of my grandmothers got me a subscription to a periodical called Children's Digest. It had things like Tintin and Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats in it. I don't see much of that sort of thing anymore.

One critic commented that the Golden Age of X was the time when excellence in X is so commonplace that it's taken for granted. There have been several golden ages of comics, though in various fields. I don't suppose that modern comics pages could give enough space and printing processes to run original Little Nemo in Slumberland cartoons, for example.

One advantage of being in a place where Classic Arts Showcase has its own television channel is that some classic early animated cartoons from people like Winsor McKay do sometimes get shown. The Flying House, a fragment about centaurs, etc. I also like the classical music videos, if they don't have vocals or subtitles: but those animations were an unexpected bonus.

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