Duck.  Donald Duck.  He’s the latest Double Duck agent and he’s after a missing laptop containing the names of all the agents in the agency.  Is Donald up to the task, or will he fail miserably.

DonaldDuckFriends_349_COVER.jpgDonald Duck and Friends #349
Written by Fausto Vitaliano, Marco Bosco
Drawn by Vitale Mangiatordi, Marco Mazzarello
SC, 24 pgs, FC, SRP: $2.99
COVERS A & B: Magic Eye Studios

Here’s the weird thing – one would think featuring Donald Duck as a secret agent would be a combination that wouldn’t work.  Donald works as the comedic foil in Uncle Scrooge’s adventures, so it is a surprise Donald comes off as a serious character that gets caught up in humorous situation.

This issue finds Donald and other agents infiltrating Marlo Burke’s (the suspected head of a criminal empire) party in order to find the the missing laptop filled with sensitive information that could harm the agency.  Instead of going dressed to the nines like his fellow agent B-Black, Donald winds up as a waiter, much to his chagrin.  It gets even more complicated when Uncle Scrooge shows up hoping to make a deal with one of the attending dignitaries, and Daisy Duck shows up on the arm of Donald’s nemesis Gladstone.  These awkward moments work really well as Donald is able to maintain his cover and when the moment arrives, he carries out his mission.

But what kind of adventure would it be if there wasn’t a high speed chase, a lovely female agent, and a couple of big reveals that make this a very fun issue all around.  As much as a goof Donald has come off over the years, it’s great to see Fausto Vitaliano and Marco Bosco give Donald moments where he really is a hero.  The one-liners rock and are sure to bring a smile to the reader’s face, while subtle setups early in the issue pay off well when needed.

One would think the art style would be very consistent from issue to issue, but looking back at issue #357 that kicked off the story, it is interesting to see how different the characters look.  When Andrea Freccero did the art in the previous issue, everything was very cartoony and reminiscent the extreme Disney style one sees on the Disney channel.  In this issue Vitale Magiatordi and Marco Mazzarello serve up a more serious style of art that is more complementary to the story.

I know it is blasphemy, but I really wish Donald would get over his love of Daisy as she comes off as a gold-digging two-timer in this issue, who thinks it’s okay to date other guys, but the moment she spies Donald with another woman gets insanely jealous and gets all over Donald’s case. At least Kay K (the female agent) is a strong girl role model, and is a really likable character.  I really wouldn’t mind seeing more of this character in future issues.

I went in to this issue not expecting much except kiddie-fare, but once again Boom! Studios and Disney have surprised the heck out of me with this issue.  Donald Duck, secret agent, is a great concept, and one that works well with fine writing that keeps the character in his comedic space while serving up an exciting adventure.  Perfect for the kids, Donald Duck and Friends #349 is more than deserving of a 4.5 out of 5 Star rating.

Rating: ★★★★½

The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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1 Comment

  1. January 7, 2010 at 3:59 am — Reply

    Donald has been used as a serious character in humorous situations (and quite successfully so) for decades now, at least since the first few Paperinik tales.

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