Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Ducktales: Twenty Years Later - Episode 10
Alright. Episode 10 coming at you, and (Spoiler alert) basically the end of the "First arc" of the story so I guess that means its kindof a milestone. Enjoy the choice bit of Drawfaggery above. Yes, I know it looks exactly like Shere Khan on casual Friday. Imagine a kid version of the guy above accompanying his Uncle Khan on fantastic treasure hunts around the world. I did, and it was pretty cool.
For the record, If you'll excuse me getting a little tl;dr on you, while all of the disparate canons I'm squashing together have their own specific problems and contradictions to deal with, Talespin is surprisingly accomidating for a show that literally had nothing to do with the General Disney Universe before I decided to throw it in. The problems are minimal, (More to do with fitting the Talespin era of the Twethirforties into a solid place in human history, rather than Duck history) the sense of adventure fits really well with the Duckiverse, and the mythos it brings to the table is just rife with amazing shit to add in. (Thembria existing is pretty much the only reason the boys are fighting communists. If I do say so myself, Scrooge McDuck's nephews fighting Commies seems really appropriate, don't you think?) All I really have to deal with is the fact that the array of anthropomorphic animals is MUCH wider than the usual Duck/Mouse/Dog show Disney usually falls back on. Not much of a problem at all, considering that Darkwing Duck also widened the scope a bit.
Speaking of DW, while the mythos is similarly rife with awesome shit, the DW universe is probably the most problematic, since it so obviousely took place in a much more modern setting than what I've attributed to it here, and yet its got such things as DW himself being such a throwback to The Shadow and the Green Hornet, and wearing that old-fashioned Double-breasted suit (Although they were in fashion in the 80s). Oh well. I'm happy with what I came up with. Maybe after I'm all finished with this I'll give my imaginary audience a rough timeline and explaination of everything.
tl;dr: Talespin is easy, Darkwing is hard, enjoy Chapter 10.
Behold the majesty of the Khan Building, Bombay, India! A tall, classic monster of Steel and concrete built as the financial center of the former Khan Industries before being absorbed by McDuck Enterprises. Within spitting distance of the Stock Exchange and tall enough to look over the entire glittering city, the Khan Building stood as a landmark to one of India's greatest businessmen, CEO of Khan Industries, Shere Khan.
In the large, generous penthouse office of the 100th floor, Farid Kagan sat with his back to the window, filling in a bit of paperwork to prepare for the hectic weekend ahead. He took a curious glance towards the simple, modern clock on the wall, and hastened slightly. He finished the page he was on in record time, and placed it gently on the outgoing stack, content with a job well done.
With business finished, the tiger began to primp a bit, making sure his tie was on straight and his fur was unruffled. Soon he was the shining vision of the slick businessman who could do no wrong. With one more glance at the clock, he nodded, ready.
There was a small commotion in his waiting room beyond the large double doors, and soon a rattling commenced. There were calls in Hindi from his high-strung secretary, but they were ignored by whoever it was rattling his door.
BANG! With a scream from the secretary, the door was kicked open hard, revealing on the other side three ducks, each dressed as janitors and holding mops and brooms as dangerous weapons. The secretary followed quickly as they entered, screaming at them that they were not allowed in there.
In his native language, Farid politely indicated that the woman should calm down and take her lunch break. Without another word, the woman looked nervously from her boss to the three odd strangers. Without another word, she bowed slightly, then bustled out the doors closing them behind her.
"Well, a rather inauspicious entrance for the CEO of a multinational corporation." Farid stood, walking over to his liquor cabinet with an easy stride before opening it and pouring out four glasses of amber liquid from a crystal decanter.
Dewey nodded as the three ducks shed their disguises. "Sorry about that, but everyone thinks I did that thing over in Duckburg. I can't afford to be seen. You would be amazed where a guy can go when he looks like a janitor."
"Of course," said Farid, smiling faintly, as he passed the tray of drinks among the three brothers, "what did you want to speak with me about?"
All three boys took the drinks, never ones to pass on free refreshments, and began to drink. Farid took his own glass and nursed it, slipping the tray under his elbow in a single even motion.
After downing his in one, Dewey breathed out, "Thanks, Farid. You're a lifesaver."
"And our business?"
"Ah. Yes. I need your help." Dewey walked up to Farid's desk and sat at the small chair in front of it. "We've been running from the authorities ever since we left Brazil, and I don't quite understand why. You're probably the closest thing I have to a friend within McDuck Enterprises."
"Is there anything you can do? Do you have anywhere we can go, or anything we can use to clear my name?" Dewey leaned back, "anything at all you can do to help would be appreciated."
"Ah. Of course. Well, Dewey Duck," He walked back around his desk and sat at the high-backed swiveling chair, "I'm going to tell you exactly what I can do for you."
"I can run the company in your absence."
"Oh." Dewey looked slightly dejected, "Well, that's good. It will be good to come back to a tight ship, but we're really in a tough situation here and..."
"I don't think you understand," said Farid, "I'm going to be running the company in your absence. From now until indefinitely. You are a wanted criminal now, after all. You can leave everything to me. Good day." He then looked down at a file on his desk.
"Er. Yes. I suppose." Dewey's eyebrows began to bend in worry, this was not going well. Huey and Louie were beginning to look to each other and sweat a bit. "But, Farid..."
"Oh. Are you still here?" The voice was suddenly cold, and withdrawn. "I thought I had bade farewell."
"Now look here, Farid," Dewey began to say, with a streak of irritability, "I'm still the CEO of this company. Just because I've taken an extended leave due to an unforeseen circumstance doesn't mean..."
"Why, Mr. Duck. I do believe it means exactly that." He resumed that faint smile that curled up his striped cheek like a spiral. "The board voted just this morning to let you go."
"Let... let me... WHAT!?" Dewey shot up, his face red. He slammed his hands on the desk, "You! You double-crosser! You can't do this to me, not after what I've done..."
"And what HAVE you done, Mr. Duck?"
"You found a gold mine, lovely. Another one to add to the pile. A drop in the bucket compared to what your Uncle made with his bare hands. You have spun your wheels for two years since your brother left, and no actual growth has occurred at your hands. Criminal record notwithstanding, you were an extraordinarily bad CEO."
"Now that the Duckburg incident has come up, you have been discredited once and for all. A shame. A fraud. A mere babe who had his entire fortune handed to him on a plate with no idea of what to do with it. Well, no more. Now I shall be in charge. I will take your Uncle's company and operate things my way. I've had my eye on your job for quite a while Mr. Duck."
"You... bastard. That mine was... That mine..."
"Quite." He then pressed a button on the intercom, "Please escort my guests outside, if you please." He then turned back towards the file on his desk, "Good day."
The Green Phantom spoke up, finally having an excuse to say, "You'll never get away with this!"
Farid Kagan rolled his eyes at the line and looked towards the Phantom, "My men will take you to prison, which will turn you over to S.H.U.S.H and to the international Police, where you will be tried with crimes against humanity. I do not see whatever you mean."
Just then, the door slammed open. All three ducks, Huey in his ruffled leather jacket and red T-shirt, Dewey with his powder blue jacket and no tie, and Louie in his Green Phantom costume, sans cape, jumped to attention, ready to fight whoever came through the door. To Dewey's surprise, he recognized them.
The three security guards, with days of stubble upon their cheeks and blue upon their uniforms, stood Boner Beagle, Ballast Beagle, and Braincase.
"What do you wants us to do with them, Boss?" said Braincase.
"Take them to the appropriate authorities."
"Right!" all three beagles cried, as they bore down on the three ducks. However, they soon began to back away once they saw the expression upon the boy's faces.
Hatred, betrayal, anger, all of these emotions and more stood out clear upon Huey, Dewey, and Louie's faces, blushing purple. Their heads moved from one Beagle to the next, with the clear intent to kill. All three of them were lost in the long-standing urge to protect their Uncle's fortune from interlopers, as well as the blinding realization that they had all been played for suckers.
As the Beagle boys backed away, all three boys looked over their shoulders and began to speak in a habit they had tried their best to unlearn in their teenage years.
"It was you..." said Huey, "...That ordered the siege..." continued Dewey, "...On Duckburg!" finished Louie.
Calm, even in the face of the face of three stellar examples of the unflappable rage of the Duck family, combined with the money-fueled indignation of a true McDuck, Farid sat in his desk and answered, simply, with a smile.
"WAAAAAAKKK!" Yelled the three boys as they, as one, lunged at Farid, who did not flinch. The three Beagle boys finally snapped out of their terrified stupor and tried to hold down the three Ducks.
Boner held Louie in a rough half nelson hold, and he flailed wildly, trying to break away. The Beagle was sweating as the hero thrashed about in his arms. His lower torso and family jewels were securely protected now by no less than three cups, but the many kicks that were issued to his groin and legs were no picnic. Soon, however, Louie was able to use both of his legs and a quick swing to drive both feet into Boner's stomach, causing him to bend over while still holding Louie. His legs now touching the ground, he now had the leverage to flip boner over his head forward and send him roughly into Farid Kagan's desk, breaking it roughly in half.
Huey had been accosted by Ballast Beagle, who grabbed him by the wrist and did not let go, no matter how much Huey punched him in the gut, the chest, the arms, and the face with his other hand. Ballast seemed to shrug off most of the blows, although he began to cry lightly when blood started rushing out of a broken nose. He tried to pull Huey towards himself to pick him up, but Huey used the large Beagle's weight against him by grasping the pulling arm with both hands and pulling himself, sending the Beagle falling forward, screaming, before he slammed into the floor. His opponent down, and still seeing red, Huey began to jump up and down on top of the crying Beagle, who yelled for the rage-filled duck to stop.
Dewey had been held at gunpoint by Braincase. It wasn't a very smart move on Braincase's part, as his hand trembled in fear of the stories that his father and grandfathers told him about these times, when the Duck's rage would boil over and everything would lose control. It happened in the days of the very first Beagle Boys under Blackheart Beagle against the young Scrooge McDuck, It happened in the later days versus Scrooge's sailor-suited Nephew, and it was happening now, against the last bits of the clan. Taking careful aim, Braincase's shaking hands pointed the gun towards the slowly approaching blue-clad Duck, before pulling the trigger. Before he could, however, Dewey had simply grasped his hands and moved the gun upwards, causing it to fired into the ceiling. Soon, Braincase found the gun wrenched from his hands and, soon after, the butt of the gun slamming into his face repeatedly.
With each Beagle taken care of, each of the Nephews, unconsciously acting as a single unit again after all these years, turned to face down Farid Kagan. They saw, behind the ruined desk, that the spinning chair was backwards. Jumping up, and around the desk, the three boys spun the chair around to reveal nothing but a rapidly closing trap door.
All three swore loudly.
"What now?" asked Dewey, the red haze over his eyes lowering slightly.
"Follow him!" Yelled Louie, "He'll get away."
The three boys began to run towards the double doors, and opened them roughly. Behind them, was a huge team of additional Beagle Boys in security guard drag.
"Stop in the name of the La-AAAAHAHHHHH HE'S GOT MY LEG!"
"OH GOD HE'S BITING ME! DUCK'S DON'T HAVE TEETH! HOW CAN THEY BITE!?"
"GO! RUN! GO ON WITHOUT ME! I'M ALREADY DEAD!"
"NO! WE CAN'T LEAVE YOU BEHIND- AHHHHHHRGGH!"
"Is that mine? WHY IS IT ALL THE WAY OVER THERE!?"
After taking a few seconds to work their way through the Beagles, Louie lead his brothers to the elevator. The strong fingers of three Ducks pried the doors open, allowing them access to the car, which they entered, closing the doors with a snarl before trying to figure out what number to punch.
"Where do you think he went?" asked Huey.
Dewey studied the numbers, before coming to the conclusion that the bottom floor was a safe bet. However, the elevator did not move as they pressed the button. The lights came off and the red emergency light came on.
Louie snarled, "They've cut the power."
All three Ducks, using a handy set of extendable metal tools from Louie's utility belt that were never meant to be used as crowbars, the boys worked furiously on the cieling of the dead elevator, leaving a gaping hole in the emergency trap door. The three boys were soon out of the car, and crawling along the top, with the slightest amount of space between the top of the car and the top of the ceiling and machinery, before they all, in turn, grabbed a hold of the thick steel cables holding the lifts up. They climbed down slightly, before jumping once again onto the steel cables hanging underneath the elevator they were just on. Using the same metal tools, the three boys began to slide, carefully yet quickly, down the steel cable of the dead elevator, taking the floors by the tens per minute. Soon, with all of their ears popping from the change in altitude, the three boys were facing the door into the first floor.
Within the hallway, the first floor was having a normal day at the office before the doors of the elevator blew open violently, and the three Ducks, breathing hard from their fast trip but still red-faced and rage-filled, ran out the emergency exit, setting off the loud alarm.
However, they heard the helicopter before they could see it. Farid's private ride was lifting up into the sky already, the tiger waving from his seat in the front side passenger seat.
Swearing loudly, Dewey yelled, "what do we do now?"
"Sea Duck!" yelled Huey, "We'll ram him!"
However, Louie was coming down from his wrath-high, "Wait! No. We need to think about this."
"Think about it!?" cried Dewey, grabbing the hero by the costume and shaking violently, "He's robbed me! Robbed my entire family! Robbers do NOT get off lightly in my family!"
"I know that you idiot!" cried the Green Phantom, grabbing Dewey's hands and pulling them off, "But if he try to kill him now we'll never get the company back. Get it?"
Huey began to line up a counter argument, but couldn't come up with anything convincing, "He... He's right, Dewey. C'mon."
The three of them then climbed down the stairs leading from the fire escape to the helipad Farid had just lifted off from. They ran across it to the chain link fence that cut it off from the city street, climbing up and over it, and piling into the puttering red car beyond, hoping to put enough distance between the building and them to get the cops off of their trail.
Back in the plane, safe, Huey piloted, and Louie sat in complete silence. Dewey laid across two seats with his head in Webigails' lap, quietly moaning.
"There, there Dewey," she cooed softly, "It's alright. Don't let it get you upset."
"But he's got me. He's got me. He's got me. He'll have everything. The company. The revenue. My gold mine. He's going to get away with everything. He's won. He's won god dammit!"
"Shhh. Dewey. It isn't over. It can't be over."
"Without that mine, I'll... Oh. I'll never be able to... I'm sorry Uncle Scrooge! I'm a failure. An utter failure!" He beat the sides of his face with his fists, writhing around in Webby's lap, "I'll never... I can't..."
Louie was about to stand up and begin speaking, but he was pacified by a stern glance from Webby. She looked back down towards the mental breakdown in her lap and laid her hands on either side of his head. She then lowered her own head down on top of Dewey's and began to whisper.
"Dewey Duck. Stop."
His beak clammed up as he placed his own hands over hers.
"Dewey," She continued, "Listen to me very carefully. Are you listening?"
"Dewey. I want you to know that you are going to get your mine back."
"Yes. That mine is not Mr. Kagan's. It is yours. You didn't siege Duckburg, he did."
"We are going to find a way to get him back, us, together."
"W-Webby. Yes. Webby."
"Repeat that back to me."
"We... w-we're going to get my mine back."
"We're going to get it back together." He gripped Webby's hands around his face harder, causing her to smile.
Louie looked on at the scene, the two ducks comforting each other, so close, and yet with his brother still off in another world looking for the pot at the end of the rainbow.
"Mr. Kagan. One minute."
The last layer of orange and black touch-up was applied to his handsome face as he stood and walked out of the private dressing room. As he travelled through the hall, his tie was straightened by one man, his pants touched up by another, and his Jacket dusted off by a third.
The aides dispersed as he neared the stage, and the red curtain, beyond which sat the most influential pens and cameras the world over.
With one final sigh of contentment, Farid stepped out onto the stage to the thunder of applause and the bright flashes of photography. He walked briskly to the podium, smiling warmly and waving to the press, displaying all of the cool suaveness of his late Uncle, but look, with much more warmth than the old man ever showed.
As he arrived at the podium, he began to deliver a speech to the American people, which was summarily translated into every language available for broadcasting in television and radio.
"My friends. Today is a dark day for the memory of Scrooge McDuck..."
"I'm sorry, everyone," Said Dewey, as Huey and GP sat around the passenger seats, auto-pilot engaged, "I lost my head there."
"It's alright," said Huey, diplomatically, "It happens to the best of us."
"Still," asked the Phantom, "What now? We have to win, but that Farid Kagan has us pretty well locked out."
"There has to be a way," said Huey, "We can't give up."
Louie crossed his arms and looked towards Dewey, "I hate to say it, but I think it's your call."
"Yes, you. You're the one with the most to lose here. What happens next?"
Huey, GP, and Webby all stared at Dewey as he thought. He didn't hesitate to wonder if he was the right man to lead the others, he merely paused to give the matter some thought.
"We lay low. We hide. Somehow we've got to find evidence of Farid's involvement with Duckburg..."
"And Saint Canard. Remember, McDuck Enterprises has been laundering money through the underworld. I'll just bet that was Farid Kagan's doing."
Dewey nodded, "But we can't do it ourselves. We're too well-known." He turned to the Green Phantom, "Still on good terms with Darkwing Duck."
"Say no more, Dewey. I'll get right on that."
"Thanks, Phantom. I just know if we work together we can find a way to trap him."
"...The great founder of our company, the tycoon of a thousand industries, Scrooge McDuck, has attained a new disgrace earlier this week. His three Nephews, Huey, a known draft-dodger with obvious red sentiment, Dewey, the reclusive former CEO of McDuck, and Louie Duck, a carefree layabout, have ordered a siege on Duckburg, hiring a mob of their Uncle's very worst enemies, the Beagle Boys, to sack the town. Built up by their own Uncle with his famous bin and business at the center of commerce, Duckburg had become a symbol of McDuck's success, and thus a symbol of scorn for the three boys, who felt they would never be able to live up to their uncle's legacy. Their ruthless attack shows us the depths to which even formerly good people can sink, and how men rotted to the core may sink even lower.
"My name is Farid Kagan, Some of you may know me, and some may be meeting me here for the first time. I come to you today as an ambassador of the company to try to extend our most severe apology for the terrorist actions of our former CEO. I also want to tell you a little about myself. I was born the nephew of the great Indian businessman Shere Khan, but even though I had his great inheritance to look forward to, I never stopped working for my place in the world. I joined the conglomerated Khan Industries and McDuck Enterprises as a humble stock clerk, and quickly rose through the ranks of the offices in Bombay, until the moment you see here today.
"With the board's approval, effective immediately, I hereby take control of McDuck Enterprises as the CEO, and let me say that it is a great honor to now be leading the company that my own uncle's company is at least a part of."
"No doubt all of our accounts are frozen," lamented Dewey, "One third of a hundred thousand Squidillion dollars, gone, just like that." His face lit up slowly, "But what about Louie?"
Green Phantom shook his head, "No. His would be frozen as well."
"How do you know?"
"Er... I just... er... talked to him. On my wrist communicator." He uncovered his wrist, revealing only his bare white arm, "Er, I mean, Belt communicator." He pointed towards his belt.
"You have a belt communicator..." began Dewey, his face going wide, "And you never let me use it to make cheap calls!?"
"Well, er..." Louie gulped, "It ran out of batteries just after Louie called. Sorry."
"Well, that's just great." Dewey leaned back and waved his arms about. "No more money, nowhere to go, few friends. We're in great shape."
Huey then laughed merrily, "Ha! You didn't ask if I had money."
The two boys then looked at their remaining brother, and both said at the same time, "You do?"
"Of course! I inherited just as much money as you guys did." He began to shuffle through his pockets as he spoke. Webby idly wondered if it was really safe for him not to be driving the plane right now. "O'course, my main account was frozen when I skipped the country, but I planned ahead. Check this."
Dewey took the small slip of paper and read it. A seemingly random string of numbers and letters, but in a sort of familiar length and pattern. Louie was the first to make the connection.
"The code to a Swiss bank account." Huey laughed again. "Take all the money you need. It's for a good cause.
Dewey looked at the number, and his plan suddenly unfolded in his head. "Bahia."
"What about it?"
"We go there. Lay low," said Dewey, "We stay with José and the girls until we figure out where to go from there." He took a deep breath in and then out. He closed his eyes and rubbed them with his thumb and forefinger. Once Darkwing gets back to us... we'll go from there."
Off into the wild blue yonder, the Sea Duck buzzed off over the horizon into an uncertain future.
"As I make this announcement, I understand that I am putting myself at great personal risk," continued Farid, nearing the crescendo of his speech, "Both from terrorists like Dewey Duck, and from common criminals. As the inheritor of Scrooge McDuck's fortune, I also inherit the risks and intregues associated with it. I can only hope that I can be up to the challenge, but to endure my own safety, and to speed along the hunt for the ruthless criminals responsible for the atrocity at Duckburg, I have taken steps."
Farid began to step away from the podium as he reached off to gesture off stage left, "I am pleased to introduce the former bodyguard of Scrooge McDuck himself, and legendary hero in his own right. My hero, and yours. Gizmoduck!"
With a sound like a revving engine, the silver-armored duck rolled out onto the stage, waving as cameras flashed, blinding his instruments, and the crowd whispered and roared and cheered, drowning out all sound coming into his mechanical ears.