Friday, July 6, 2012

Fernbaugh's DuckTales homage is underway; Barat's is imminent...

I would be remiss if I did not plug, endorse, advocate on behalf, express my enthusiasm for, etc. Pete Fernbaugh and his  Caught at the Crossroads blog's recently-commenced and now-ongoing DuckTales' 25th-anniversary retrospective, the inaugural entry of which can be found here. To my understanding, Pete plans to write a post for every episode. The afore-linked first one is a thorough, on-the-mark A+ effort, and there's no reason to not expect the same of future entries.

Chris Barat, via his News and Views blog, will soon be launching his own DuckTales 25th-anniversary retrospective. I've long considered Chris the leading authority on the series(*), but this is based on writings that appeared in print in the late `80's and the early `90's and have never made it onto the Internet. Pete's and Chris' efforts will go a long way to "fix" the woeful under-representation of DuckTales coverage and presence on the Internet. For too long, a completely fictional list of original episode air dates was in circulation, and can still be found here and there.

(*) The older writings that I'm thinking of were collaborations with Joe Torcivia. In all reality, Joe is no less of an expert on the subject than Chris. But because I've always had the impression that Chris is, to whatever degree, fonder of the series than Joe is, and has been outspoken as an advocate of it, I think of Chris as THE DuckTales "guy".


  1. Hey Ryan,

    Thanks for the plug, man. I am indeed planning to profile each episode. I originally wanted to post one a day, but I don't think that's going to happen, especially given the copious coverage I'm giving each episode. So, this project could take longer than I expected.

    I started working on "Sphinx for the Memories" last night, and I hope to post it this weekend.

    You nailed the goal precisely on the head...I want to help rectify the under-representation of DT on the Web. Eventually, all of my posts (and the writings of others) will be collected into a larger, independent website devoted exclusively to DT. That's a year or two down the road, but that's where we're headed.

    I'm also gleaning my own screen shots for each episode in hopes that I can help increase the number of DT images available online. That's a smaller part of the goal.

    It's the least I can do for a series that has influenced me so greatly...

    Thanks again!


  2. Ryan,

    I appreciate the kind words. Truth be told, by this point, I've all but forgotten which parts of the (main) DT INDEX are "mine" and which are "Joe's."


    As I learned when doing the KIMBA reviews, you should probably always assume that a project like this is going to take longer than you expect!


    1. I hear ya, Chris. I hope folks don't get bored. I know I won't.

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  4. Pete,

    I'm only too happy to do what I can to promote your retrospective. Great job on the first post, and I'm looking forward to those to come!

    I'm rather fond of "Sphinx for the Memory" -- at least in my memory, it's actually a full-fledged straightforward mystery-horror story! Aspects like ominous, eerie, shadowy "lighting" and astute use of some of the more foreboding of the series' stock music cues go a long way in creating atmosphere, and played no small part in my positive lasting impression of the episode. Can't wait to see your take on it!

    I'm very impressed by how many screen shots you've taken and incorporated into the post (as you can see, I used one of them, to give a sense of relatedness -- hope you don't mind!, as well as your use of several additional images so as to represent various references made by you and/or the episode. I know that doing that kind of thing can be tedious ... and I usually integrate on average per post a mere one or two images that I just snatched from Inducks or a Google Image search. Forget making screen caps myself! I only admire how diligent and comprehensive a job you're doing.

    BTW, is a comment of mine on the "Send in the Clones" post in your moderator's cue? I believed Blogger confirmed that I submitted it, but I notice it hasn't appeared yet, so wanted to make sure.

    -- Ryan

    1. Use those screenshots freely and widely. In VLC Media Player, it's pretty simple to capture them (unless you get uber-picky like I do and have to capture a specific nanosecond moment, lol).

      Yep, just added your post. Bethany and I are getting ready to go out for dinner, but I'll respond later this evening. Thank you for your insights and for your kind remarks!!

  5. Chris,

    In the recent past, when I've used it as a reference, there's been times where I've thought, "This sounds like Joe", or, "This is definitely Chris" ... but I can never be sure. It reads seamlessly, and if I didn't know, I don't think I'd ever consider that there's more than one author "speaking".

    -- Ryan

    1. I totally agree. Usually, I know if the review picks up on an Irwin Allen or STAR TREK reference, Joe was probably the originator. But the fact that Chris and Joe were able to bring their very unique writing styles together and harmonize them so seamlessly is remarkable.

      I'm not sure I could do that.

  6. Yep, you can always count on me for a good Irwin Allen or Star Trek reference! And, the sheer scope of what DuckTales did, offered me lots of opportunities to indulge in them.

    Preparing that Index with Chris was one great experience! Often, I, too, cannot tell exactly who wrote what. But I DO remember that we did it all through the mails! Imagine that! This may have been the last gasp of old-school fandom!

    And, Ryan… I’m still a “DT Guy”. Though, over the years, I’ve become less forgiving of the flaws of DTVA in general. Regardless, DT still ushered in an age of quality that (to one degree or another) has remained in TV animation ever since! Look back to the ‘70s thru mid ‘80s (See Pete’s superb Ruby-Spears posts!), and you’ll NEVER forget DT’s place in animation history!

    I look forward to both Pete and Chris’ efforts! It’s gonna be a great year!

  7. Joe,

    That was INCREDIBLE patience and dedication, doing it through the mail! If it was "the last gasp of old-school fandom", old-school fandom went out in a blaze of glory! :)

    Ah, I see -- I've always known you to be most enthusiastic about Warner's series, but I'm glad you've set the record straight!

    -- Ryan