Thursday, 1 May 2014

"Yo Ho (A Duck's Life For Me)"

I later discovered that Uncle Scrooge was created by Carl Barks. His likeness in "DuckTales" owed to
stalwart Tony Strobl. For my money, each interpretation is interesting.
As a child of three years old, I was delighted when I watched "DuckTales". A show that struck a chord with me; nowhere else could I show that blended brilliantly  humor, adventure, and morality. It was completing a puzzle of a Uncle Scrooge cooling himself with dollar bills, that made a strong impression on me. When watching the opening of "DuckTales", I was awestruck seeing Uncle Scrooge diving through his money, and spurting out coins. I imagined how fun it must be swimming through money. The feel of metallic coins and scads of dollars caressing your skin.  It was love at first duck. There was mystique that penetrated this whiskery web-footed duck who wore a pince-nez, blue coat with red trim, red spats, silk hat. 
The magical moment of Uncle Scrooge in his diving suit, surrounded amongst the  coins, was imbedded in my mind,  from an early age.
I was bewitched when I heard the sprightly duck, speak with a rich Scottish burr provided by veteran actor Alan Young. His performance covered the nuances that were Scrooge: the intense seriousness, joyous celebrations (in finding treasure), silly relaxed moments (swimming in the Money Bin), sarcasm, hostile anger (The Beagle Boys), Magica De Spell, Flintheart Glomgold), fear, and even those soft sentimental parts such as when he reminisces about Goldie. The voice was suited to a duck of dynamic personality.

 Carl Barks' tale, "Only a Poor Man" (1952) was the first Uncle Scrooge comic I read. A bitter Scrooge McDuck expresses his famous work-ethic. The black shading surrounding him suited the tone. The panel resonated within me an urge of applying myself to my studies in grade six. I was amazed by how "DuckTales" was faithful to the comics when Scrooge mentioned it.
I immediately adhered to Uncle Scrooge's determination, which radiated through him like the many coins in his money bin.  He earned his fortune by working on the seas, in the mines, the cattle wars of the old frontier, and the Klondike. He regards his fortune as a symbol of his worth. A life made on honesty and hard work. If he were to lose his fortune, it would result in the detrimental loss of his integrity. That is why by "thinking a little harder than the other guy - by jumping a little quicker" he stays ahead of everyone.

The "DuckTales" episode "Wronguay In Ronguay" demonstrated the importance of him being ahead of others. When he is demoralized about locating the sunken ship, he explains to nephews Hewy, Dewy, and Louie. "My whole life I've worked and sweated to stay one step ahead of wolves like Glomgold. Deep in my bones, I guess I've feared the one day I'd loose my touch."

 I felt sympathetic to his fears about no longer being the richest. By staying ahead of his rivals it acts as a catalyst for him to keep on hoarding more lucre. If he were to yield to his depression, it would lead to a catastrophic downward spiral. Does Scrooge McDuck remain hopelessness? Absolutely not. Described as a fighter, a "duck of iron". He rebounds despite how cynical the condition may be, was the greatest life lesson I learned from him.
Carl Barks' captures Uncle Scrooge's fierce determination of protecting his money from - Magica DeSpell, Flintheart Glomgold, and The Beagle Boys.  While being  surrounded by family - Daisy, Donald,  Hewy, Dewy, Louie, Gyro Gearloose, and Gladstone Gander.
When I was in grade seven, it was his work ethic that  soothed my spirit, after experiencing the stings of receiving a poor mark on a test. Like Uncle Scrooge I succumbed to my emotions, but on a dime (Hopefully not old "Number One") I salvaged the situation by changing my mindset. How could I prepare better for the next test? Were there any concepts I was not confident in? I discovered that I performed better on assignments than on tests. I put more emphasis on receiving a higher mark on homework. Mr. McDuck's  astute words "Work smarter, not harder" was stimulating. The credo is what I would later apply when taking "Chemistry 30". Falling flat on my face affected me deeply when receiving my Chemistry exam, but I heard Uncle Scrooge saying: "If I made a fortune once, and by gum, I can do it again. It'll just take me a litle time." It was a nugget of wisdom that I cherished.
Carl Barks' 1977 beautiful painting, "This Dollar Saved My Life At Whitehouse". Uncle Scrooge gathers his nephews to regale them with tales of cherished coins. It was how he hoarded his fortune that was impressing. 
To this day Uncle Scrooge remains my favourite Disney character.
Why? He is more dynamic. The many issues I have experienced, I analyze how he would tackle it. Carl Barks' design was the factor that first attracted me. As I grew, I appreciated how he instilled him with a set of attainable morals: Honesty and resilience. A soft cadence provided by Alan Young, stimulated me in embracing these  characteristics in my life. Cheers for Carl Barks' coolest creation! May new generations find him a terrific tightwad  tycoon as I have.
A journal entry from when I was in grade seven, showcases the height of my love for the character.
Note. the promt refers to "character". After all I could not exclude Donald Duck!