79 years ago today – June 9, 1934 – Walt Disney via United Artists released The Wise Little Hen, which featured the big screen debut of Donald Duck – one of the most beloved characters in the history of animation and comics. Well, he’s my favorite, anyways.
Holy crap. 79 years? Man. I remember going to Disney World during his 50th birthday. I bought a plush Donald with angry hooded eyes. Perhaps that’s when my life long obsession with the ill-tempered waterfowl started. Who can be sure? I knew I found my spirit animal. My fetish totem. My best friend.
The first comic book I ever bought was an issue of ‘Donald Duck Adventures’. It was a reprint of the seminal classic ‘Lost In The Andes’ by Carl Barks. I musta read it and reread it 100 times that weekend alone.
Yeah, I know, I know. Donald’s cartoons are mildly amusing at best, and their are far funnier cartoon characters out there, but there was just something about this duck that was instantly relatable. There was something about him that was about the duck that was, well, human.
Oh yeah! It’s his rage! It’s his unadulterated, unmitigated rage. That’s what I love about Donald Duck.
Ah, well. That topic is for my therapist and me to discuss.
Happy birthday, Donald Duck.
Funny, you sure don’t look 79!