recently laid out his vision of what a putative "Disney comics line of the future" should look like. He argues his points well and seems to respect the Disney comics tradition while acknowledging that new paths would have to be taken in order to give such a line a fighting chance to succeed. Here are my (brief) takes on his plans. Read them, read R.O.D., and let me know what you think.
(1) DARKWING DUCK -- Yes, just with an absolute minimum of editorial interference.
(2) DUCKTALES -- Yes, but not unless EVERY effort is made to do the job right. I'd even be willing to give Warren Spector a chance to redeem himself for "Rightful Owners" -- he certainly possesses the required enthusiasm -- provided that he worked with an accomplished editor who fully understood the TV series. If Warren isn't interested, then perhaps someone like Jonathan Gray could be called upon to serve as the title's regular writer, seeing as how Gray's scripting job for "The Arcadian Urn" (UNCLE $CROOGE #399) has received such high praise. Anyone who writes for DT, however, should be required to pass the equivalent of a Wonderlic test to prove that they are thoroughly familiar with the series and what makes it different from the UNCLE $CROOGE title.
(3) KIM POSSIBLE, replacing FILLMORE -- I do have a suggestion re: Fillmore (and others) which I'll mention below. But of the contemporary (by which I mean, post-2000) Disney productions, none deserves a comic-book title more than KP. The show has a legitimate following, a strong female lead, good supporting players, and obvious potential for long story arcs. A KIM POSSIBLE title done right could be for this line what DARKWING was (at least for a while) for Boom! -- an instigator of some badly-needed buzz.
(4) UNCLE $CROOGE AND DONALD DUCK -- This is a very intelligent way of avoiding the eternal dilemma of what stories "belong" in $CROOGE and what stories "belong" in DONALD. It would definitely have to be a 64-page book, however.
(5) DISNEY KIDZ -- Yes, that spelling is intentional. Here is where we can play to the 2013 version of the "Peanut Gallery" (can we really say that there is one?) and feature a rotating cast of child stars based on DTVA's numerous kid-centric offerings of the past decade-plus: FILLMORE, PHINEAS AND FERB, PEPPER ANN, TEAMO SUPREMO, etc. Heck, I'll even accept comic-book adventures for Hannah Montana and other live-action Disney Channel faves, provided that we can get someone like Stefan Petrucha to write them. He's got Disney comics "street cred" from his work for Egmont and has also written "comics-like" material for NANCY DREW.
(6) THE DISNEY AFTERNOON -- Another rotating title, more like the Disney-Marvel title of the same name, only executed with, well, competence. Various shows from the "Golden Age" of 1987-92 -- and even a little bit beyond those boundaries -- could be featured here.
(7) WALT DISNEY'S COMICS AND STORIES -- I wish that R.O.D. were a bit less vague about what he would like to go into this title. Even an "Anything Goes" approach needs a few ground rules. Classic supporting players from the "Golden" and "Silver" Ages of WDC&S, such as SCAMP and LI'L BAD WOLF, would of course need to be included, but stories featuring Disney movie characters would also be welcome. These could be tied in with recent cinematic releases. If the new line could score the rights to the Pixar characters, so much the better.
(8) MICKEY MOUSE ADVENTURES -- Here's my biggest beef with R.O.D.: the MICKEY material in the Gemstone books was, without question, some of the very best post-Gottfredson Mouse work that we've seen. What, Mickey's adventures in Shambor weren't good enough for you? Or some of Noel Van Horn's more off-the-wall offerings? Amp up the danger quotient if you like, but by all means, keep the artistic polish and the general attitude. Mix in (judiciously) some more material from Casty and look to the early issues of Disney Comics' MMA for more inspiration. If the "new" MMA can simply match the best of Gemstone's MICKEY stuff, then I'll be more than satisfied. That's not nostalgia, that's just the facts, Mouse.
(9) THE MUPPETS -- I'll take your word re: the high quality of Langridge's work for Boom!. Only one title, please, so as not to wear the man out.