Saturday, October 31, 2009

Friday, October 30, 2009

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Mickey Mouse, Agent of C.R.A.P.

Mickey Mouse, Super Secret Agent.
Images taken from Mickey Mouse Digest #2, Gladstone Comics, 1987

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Grim Grinning Ghosts

The greatest band in the world, The Ghastly Ones, play their kinda-sorta cover of the Haunted Mansion theme, "The Ghastly Stomp":

Monday, October 26, 2009

This could be the start of something BIG!

It wasn't.

Image from Mickey Mouse Adventures #1, 1990

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Paranormal Activity

Uncomfortable Moments In Disney Comics, Part 1

From The Uncensored Mouse, Eternity Comics, 1989.

It's alive!

Frankenstein is the greatest monster, period. Not even family-friendly children's characters like Mickey Mouse are safe from his undead allure:

Mickey Mouse as Teenage Frankenstein.

The amazing Frankensteinia blog has done several pieces on Disney, including this one on a cartoon I'd never seen: Mickey Mouse in "Runaway Brain."

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

What's this? What's this?

Every year Disneyland gives the Haunted Mansion a Nightmare Before Christmas makeover, putting Nightmare characters on top of the existing gags. I've never seen it, but this Youtube video gives me a pretty good idea of what it's about:

It makes you wonder- why hasn't Disney made a Nightmare ride a permanent part of the park?

Designer and Imagineer Christopher Merrit came up with a cool-looking concept for such a ride, (his designs are available to view here) and I can't see a damn thing wrong with his idea. The website The Neverland Files doesn't seem to know why it wasn't picked up either. C'mon, Disney, make it happen! Scores of black-clad teenagers are crying out (literally crying!) for this nightmare to become reality.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Welcome foolish mortals

Every year a bunch of Goths (gaggle of Goths?) get together for something they call Bats Day. For ten years now, these people have been putting on dark clothing and heavy makeup for a day out at the amusement park. In August.


The California artist known as SHAG recently did 13 paintings to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the greatest theme park ride ever, The Haunted Mansion. These were created for an event back in August- I first saw it listed on Boing Boing and a number of other blogs.

I first became aware of Shag's work through album covers for surf and garage bands like The Bomboras, Man or Astroman?, and The Ghastly Ones. Shag art was all over the place in the mid-to-late 90's, and his cool retro style fit those bands perfectly (I believe he also played in the band The Tiki Tones) .

Shag's not the first artist you'd think of for a Disney collaboration, but it's a pretty groovy move on their part. I'm sure the Coop tribute to It's a Small World is just around the corner...

Monday, October 19, 2009

Danger Paperinik

Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #699 came out a couple weeks ago, the first issue from Boom! Studios (short review: Awesome). The plot of the issue is that Mickey's alien pal Eega Beeva (seriously) assembles all the superheroes in the Disney universe to rescue Uncle Scrooge and the Money Bin from a dastardly team of supervillains.

The issue has a lot of fun playing with the conventions of superhero comics, such as the gathering of the team, the uneasy alliance of supervillains, and the heavy use of captions and Editor's Notes that you used to see in Marvel books all the time.

Like all of the Boom! Disney titles, this comic is a reprint of a story that first ran in Europe. This particular series ran in Italy as the Ultraheroes. Having grown up on Gladstone Comics, with their heavy reliance on classic Carl Barks and Floyd Gottfredson, this issue was quite different from the type of Disney comic I'm used to. But, it's different in a good way.

A little research tells me that the concept of the Standard Characters as superheroes didn't originate with The Ultraheroes series, however. Super Goof of course had many adventures in the old Gold Key comics. Interestingly, Donald Duck has also had a long and storied career as a costumed adventurer in Italy, dating back to the 1960's.

The excellent website Disney Comics Worldwide has a lot of information about the Italian Paperinik series. Apparently inspired by Diabolik, Donald Duck dons a mask and cape to seek his revenge on those who have wronged him. Especially his relatives Uncle Scrooge and Gladstone Gander.

Over the years, the Duck Avenger became more of a heroic superhero type, more of a Batman than a costumed thief or whatever. In true superhero fashion, Paperinik was rebooted and relaunched a bunch of times, but maintained his popularity with readers.

As a fan of both Disney and superhero comics, I sincerely hope that Boom! puts out some trade paperbacks of this stuff in English. The idea of semi-serious superhero sci-fi comics featuring Donald Freaking Duck is just too bizarre not to share with English-speaking readers!

This is just wrong.

Saw this yesterday at the A&P.

Forget about the absurdity of character-branded eggshells for a second...does anybody really want to crack open an egg with the face of Donald Duck smiling up at them? "Go ahead, kids, consume my unhatched young! Wak!"

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Breaking News

The Disney Blog, Go Nintendo, Game Informer, and a bunch of other places have been reporting the latest on the video game"Epic Mickey," AKA "My New Reason For Living." Seriously, this thing looks fantastic.

I first read about this game on Boing Boing a few months ago. This looks like Stephen King's Dark Tower series meets Disney World. Suck it, Kingdom Hearts!

Mouse Smash

This picture was making the rounds throughout the comics blogosphere back in August, when the Disney/Marvel deal was first announced. This was drawn by Jack Kirby, the genius who basically invented the Marvel Universe (along with Stan Lee, Steve Ditko, and others).

It was taken from a coffee table book from the early 90's, where different artists gave their interpretation of Mickey Mouse. I remember my school library having the book when I was a teenager. I photocopied the Rick Griffin picture of Mickey as Bob Dylan and hung it on my bedroom wall, but lost it over the years. I wish I had that picture now...

I got this piece here, the blog of Craig Yoe, the man responsible for The Art Of Mickey Mouse, along with many other projects like Clean Cartoonists, Dirty Drawings (with Carl Barks girlie art!) and Secret Identity: The Fetish Art of Joe Schuster. Go check it out!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Fortune favors the bold

Don Rosa is the greatest. Rosa is a cartoonist and avid Carl Barks fan who got to live the dream and create Duck stories of his own. Rosa's comics are hilarious and imaginative, and many fans (like me) consider him to be Barks' true successor.

Rosa's Uncle Scrooge stories are more continuity-obsessive than any superhero book; in Rosa's Duckburg all the Carl Barks stories took place in the 1950's and early 60's, and his own stories often use the Barks tales as their starting point. Rosa has written sequels to the classic Barks stories and spun throwaway lines of dialogue into full comics. Eventually Rosa tied all the little hints and clues that emerged about Uncle Scrooge's over the years into the amazing "The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck" series, the definitive biography of the character.

Sadly, all great legends must end, and above we see Rosa's vision of that ending. I'm not sure where the above image came from originally, but I found it at this Italian website.

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Tragical World of Disney

Fans of Disney comics know Floyd Gottfredson as the Man behind the Mouse. From 1930 to 1975, Gottfredson drew the Mickey Mouse newspaper strip, introducing the world to classic characters like Chief O'Hara, Mickey's nephews Mortie and Ferdie, and archnemisis The Phantom Blot. Gottfredson's strips ran the gamut from lighthearted comedy to two-fisted action, second only to Carl Barks' Duck stories in terms of sheer awesomeness. Gottfredson's work has been reprinted around the world, and here in the US Gladstone, Disney Comics, and Gemstone kept Gottfredson Mickey Mouse comics in the hands of kids for decades.

But. The 1930's were a strange time, and the early Mickey Mouse often behaved in ways that would be considered at odds with wholesome family entertainment today. Many of the early Gottfredson strips are unlikely to be reprinted any time soon, due to shifting cultural attitudes toward violence, race, and class. The Mickey of the 30's drank beer, antagonized bullies, and as seen in these comic strips, suffered from crippling bouts of suicidal depression:

Read the entire story here. Learn more about Floyd Gottfredson here.

It's a weird world after all

When I got my first computer I started downloading cool pieces of comic book and cartoon art that I found on the "Internet." One day, during my daily surfing, I found this NSFW piece by comic great Wally Wood (Daredevil, Mad, Tales from the Crypt) for The Realist magazine. This led me to start scouring the web for other Disney-related oddities, and now I'd like to share them with you.

More about Wally Wood and the piece: