Robot 6

Good Lord, do these Floyd Gottfredson Mickey Mouse comics look amazing

Over on the CBR mothership, Shaun Manning interviews Fantagraphics co-publisher Gary Groth about his upcoming reprints of the Mickey Mouse comic strips by artist Floyd Gottfredson, kicking off with Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse, vol. 1: The Race to Death Valley in May. With his trademark blend of erudition and bluntness, Groth details the nuts and bolts of the whole project: The reason Mickey Mouse’s comic strip was an action-adventure serial to begin with, Mickey’s surprisingly feisty personality, the basics on the first few storylines being collected, the essays and other supplemental materials being included in the package, the eventual inclusion of racist material and other items of potential controversy, how big the books will be, and even a bit about Fantagraphics’ parallel plan to release the complete Carl Barks Disney Ducks comics. But I’m sure Groth wouldn’t mind if I said that the real star attraction for the piece are the actual Gottfredson strips used to illustrate it. Simply put, my jaw literally dropped once I opened up these action-packed images, so impressed was I by their power and grace. And since most of Gottfredson’s work has been reprinted rarely, if that, chances are you’ll be bowled over too. Click on over and check them out for yourself.

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6 Comments

This Is A Horse On Me!

I was exactly the right age (six) to experience the brief ’80s boomlet in colorized, cut up Gottfredson reprints that Gladstone used to put out as comic books… they were the first comics I can remember reading. I really loved them – there’s this amazing propulsion to the work that rewards reading them in big chunks in a way that I don’t think come across in very many vintage strip reprints. I think this stuff’ll knock some people out.

Interestingly, the press materials suggest they’re also throwing in the pre-Gottfredson Ub Iwerks/Win Smith mini-run…

You can read the color “comic-ized” Gotfredson stories in the Walt Disney Comics & Stories archives that Boom! is publishing in July. It also includes the Donald Duck strips by Taliaferro.

Gottfredson’s work has been reprinted, just not in the U.S. Italy has produced a beautiful series of volumes, which I suspect is the kernel for this project.

Gottfredson has been reprinted in the US, just not recently, and not definitively. Gladstone, back in the ’80s, put his stories both in their single-issue Mickey comics, and in some of their big albums. That’s how I first discovered him, when I was but a wee tyke.

I have the big Walt Disney’s Best Comics collection from the 70s. I understand it’s re-translated from an Italian reprint? Less than ideal. I’m looking forward to seeing a definitive collection of Gottfredson’s work. I think he’s unfairly overlooked. He’s certainly a big influence on me, and I think these Mickey comics deserve to be appreciated without irony, as the gorgeous, joyful and exciting stories they are.

Gottfredson was great! When I was a wee lad, a big hardcover compilation of Mickey stories, mostly by him, was published in Brazil containing classics like “Mickey Mouse vs. the gypsies”, “Mickey Mouse journalist” and “The House of Seven Ghosts” (sorry, I’m not sure those are the actual titles) and I LOVED those stories! Must have read them dozens of times!

However, almost no other Gottfredson story was published there when I was a kid, so I quickly became bored with the character, while Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge still had regular Carl Barks reprints (and some new stories, mostly italian) which were quite good.

Took me YEARS to learn that those stories I loved as a kid were done by one specific guy – and that I had just seen the tip of the iceberg!

I’m eagerly awaiting the Fanta edition to be able to read all those Gottfredson stories I missed. That and the Barks collection are must buys!

Best,
Hunter (Pedro Bouça)

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