Disney Longbox Reviews : Disney Magic Kingdom Comics #1 of 2 REVIEW
Hello and welcome to a special IDW presentation, this comic is called Magic Kingdom Comics, it is a special 2 parter made to celebrate the 60th anniversary of Disneyland. Both issues will feature stories centred around Disneyland, Disneyland Paris and Walt Disney World. Sadly no stories based on Tokyo Disneyland or Hong Kong Disneyland. Hope you enjoy these special stories with me.
FANTASTIC RIVER RACE
FIRST PUBLISHED IN : SCROOGE GOES TO DISNEYLAND #1 (1957)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
While Scrooge and Grandma Duck ride the riverboat in Adventureland , Scrooge tells her it reminds him of his days as Captain McDuck,Master of the Mississippi. We are taken on one such adventure where he is tasked with delivering a shipment of gold to Weevil City’s Bank using his ship,the Dilly Dollar while avoiding the Beagle Boys and their ship the River Witch.
Pappy Beagle and the Boys soon board Scrooge’s ship and steals the telegram wanting the gold for themselves as they soon stormed off.Scrooge and Ratchet Gearloose ,Gyro’s grandfather must give the Dilly Dollar a much needed boost in speed due to the steam engine being destroyed.Scrooge must beat Pappy Beagle another way.They soon find a way using whale oil and sulphur.
The rest of the comic is about the Beagle Boys and Scrooge finding other ways to make their boats faster to reach Weevil City before the deadline. Prepare yourself for an ending you could only find in a Carl Barks story.
This comic first appeared in this issue :
MICKEY AND DONALD IN FANTASYLAND
FIRST PUBLISHED IN : WALT DISNEY COMICS DIGEST #32 (1971)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
To celebrate the opening of Walt Disney World,an issue of the Walt Disney Comics Digest (Think a Disney version of the ever popular Archie digests) was made featuring one story per land. Country Bear Jamboree was a Disney World exclusive attraction and was chosen to represent Frontierland. The ride was originally sponsored by Pepsi Cola.
The original comic originally featured the Country Bears in incorrect colours,this has been fixed for this version by David Gerstein and Erik Rosengarten,the guest colourists for this story.
Mickey and Donald decide to go visit Frontierland but notice the Grizzly Hall is strangely silent as they decide to go investigate ,turns out the Bears are missing three of their members:Big Al ,Teddi and Ernest. Mickey and Donald decides to help them find the lost bears following clues left by Melvin (Love the joke of him not being beheaded but rather being through a hole)
Original colours :
The boys soon find out that the three Bears have decided to go have a picnic to give some off time.Mickey and Donald soon find out the train stops nowhere near the site so they have to dive into the water.Donald ,being yellow bellied jumps later and falls on the ground rather than the water.
The rest of the comic involves a chase sequence between both parties throughout different Frontierland attractions. (Sorry no Big Thunder Mountain here, that wouldn’t be built for another 9 years in Florida) as eventually the Bears decide to head back as they were getting tired of their long chase.
This issue first appeared in :
RED ROGUE’S TREASURE
FIRST PUBLISHED IN :ANDERS AND CO #9 ( 1992)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: DENMARK
FIRST PUBLICATION IN NORTH AMERICA
This story was made to celebrate the opening of Disneyland Paris in 1992 but it was known as Euro Disneyland back then.The park was originally not a success due to a strong backlash from the residents of France fearing the park would Amercanize France. The park would find much success within the next few years.
Donald and the gang are visiting Disneyland Paris courtesy of Uncle Scrooge as Adventureland reminds him of a recent exploit involving pirates and Magica DeSpell.The tale begins as Scrooge,Donald and the nephews have just finished watching a pirates movie ( Wonder if a certain Sparrow is involved in it) as Scrooge wishes for one more adventure since they have pretty much found all the treasure in the world at this point.
Magica overhears this and tricks Scrooge into going on a hunt for Red Rogue’s buried loot on a abandoned island. Donald,in a fit of rage, manages to break the sail Scrooge had for 134 years. While buying a new sail ,Donald befriends a pink parrot that only loves sailors , the store owner decides to give it to Donald for free along with the sail during their adventure. The hunt soon resumes.
Real pirates have overheard them at the shop and decide to follow the gang to the island not knowing the treasure is a bomb set off to explode when the chest is opened.Scrooge manages to walk throughout the jungle and finds the treasure as a disguised Magica and the evil pirates soon capture them.Will they able to find any real treasure on this caper or not ? You will have to read on to find out.
This story first appeared in this issue:
GOOFY IN FANTASYLAND
FIRST PUBLISHED IN DONALD DUCK GOES TO DISNEYLAND #1 (1955)
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN: USA
Goofy , Minnie and Pluto decide to go visit Fantasyland as they go through several rides such as Mister Toad’s Wild Ride (No longer in Florida), Peter Pan’s Flight, Mad Tea Party and Dumbo.
They soon bump into Jiminy Cricket who is essentially the cricket in charge of the whole park as he decides to take them on a ride on Snow White’s Scary Adventures (No longer in Florida). Goofy gets scared by the Animatronic of the Witch from Snow White and jumps off along with Pluto.
The duo soon find their way into a parallel world where all the rides are indeed real as Pluto gets hit by Toad’s jalopy.Mr.Toad decides to call upon the Queen of Hearts to execute Pluto. The Queen instead charges Goofy ,who she believes caused the crime.
WRITER’S NOTE: While Alice in Wonderland was not an opening day attraction in Disneyland,the ride would open in 1957. Her inclusion in the story could have been a sneak peek.
Doc and Grumpy, having overheard this consult Jiminy on how Goofy could save his head. They decide to ask the Queen if he could do her a great service.She settles on wanting the recipe for the Wicked Witch’s Poisoned Apple.Goofy and Pluto soon head out to the castle to distract the witch long enough to snatch the recipe from her.
The witch soon captures as Jiminy and Pluto go to Peter Pan for some much needed help and a bit of pixie dust. Will the gang ever get out of this sticky situation ?You will have to find out for yourself dear readers.
This story first appeared in this issue:
STORY 1 : While I am a big fan of Carl Bark’s Scrooge stories.This is sadly a disappointment to me,I was expecting more of an adventure throughout Disneyland from the great Duck Master ,but its only mentioned within a page and a half then cuts into a standard story. This story was done much better on Duck Tales than in this comic.This should have been saved for an issue of Uncle Scrooge than in a collection of theme park stories.
STORY 2: This story has what I wanted,a story that shows off the park and characters associated with it. While the Country Bears are the only focus in the story,I do love the other nods of Frontierland throughout the story.The art is very well done for a 70s story back when the art started losing its former quality due to tightening budgets over at Gold Key.
STORY 3: This has the same problem I had with Fantastic River Chase where it only briefly shows a ride within a page then cuts to a regular story that could have been made without the shoe-horned in promotion for Euro Disney.But this one sticks out more since the story does have a feel that is much closer to the ride it’s inspired from featuring pirates ,parrots and action. A much recommended read compared to Fantastic River Chase.
STORY 4: This was my favourite story of the issue since it features pretty much every ride at Fantasyland on opening day back in 1955. The various cameos from the feature films is much appreciated here from Jiminy to Peter Pan. As you can tell, I am a very big fan of the Disney parks so to see this story made me very happy that it could appeal to any Disney Dork or Disney Junkie that love the theme parks.
WRITERS: CARL BARKS ( Story 1), UNKNOWN ( Story 2) PAUL HALAS and UNN PRINTZ PAHLSON ( Story 3) DON R. CHRISTENSEN ( Story 4)
ARTISTS: CARL BARKS ( Story 1), PETE ALVARADO ( Story 2) , Victor ARRIGADA RIOS ( Story 3) AL HUBBARD ( Story 4)
EDITOR: SARAH GAYDOS
ARCHIVAL EDITOR: DAVID GERSTEIN