Monday, January 14, 2013

Hero Spotlight: Darkwing Duck

He is the terror that flaps in the night, he is the piece of popcorn that gets stuck in your teeth, he is Darkwing Duck. I used to love me some DW, this was one of my earlier exposures to the super hero genre and despite it's short three season run I consider it one of the best animated series of all time. Easily in the top 20.

Darkwing Duck spun off of the classic Disney show Duck Tales. Launchpad McQuack, a character inherited from Duck Tales, acts as DW's sidekick and pilot, a sorta Kato to his Green Hornet. DW himself is a parody of old pulp era super heroes like Batman, the Shadow, and of course Green Hornet.

The show was a loving parody of super hero, golden age pulp, and even super spy stories. However one need not be familiar with those genres to enjoy this show, if anything for kids unfamiliar with them it acted as something of an introduction to them.

The character of DW himself is rather interesting really, he's equal parts stand up guy and selfish douche. He is an egotistical glory hound who's head is often two feet up his own feathered ass, but also a loving father to his adoptive daughter Gosalyn. He cares very deeply for the safety of his city, obviously putting himself in harm's way to defend it, but frequently refuses the help of other heroes, even when it is obviously needed, for fear of them stealing his thunder.

One wouldn't expect a cartoon about an anthropomorphic duck super hero to have the depth of character and downright heart that Darkwing Duck did. But sure enough this was a funny, exciting, smart, and charming show and deserves to be remembered more than it is. It's a damn shame this isn't shown more in reruns. Darkwing Duck is truly a hero who deserves the spotlight, even if he craves it a bit too much for his own good.

Also, that pic is by a guy named Chad Fuller, if you get a chance you should check out his DeviantArt page.

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