Comicbook / Darkwing Duck

Several comic adaptations were made on this cartoon series that ran 91 episodes from September '91 to December '92. Four issues of a Darkwing Duck series were produced in late 1991, and Disney Adventures included Darkwing Duck adventures until 1996. Even Goofy was a fan.

In 2010, nearly 2 decades after Darkwing Duck went off the air, Disney revived the franchise with the announcement of a brand-new four-issue comic miniseries, later expanded to a ongoing monthly comic series, published by Boom! Kids. Unfortunately, the comic book was cancelled in 2011 after 18 issues due to Disney obtaining ownership of Marvel Comics and revoking Boom's license to make comics based on Disney properties. Boom! managed to weasel the publication of a few more issues to conclude the story arc they were publishing at the time, Dangerous Currency, even after they had lost the license; Bad Idea: not only has Disney sued Boom! for this, Dangerous Currency has never been reprinted anywhere in the whole world ever since, and Disney constantly hammers that it's now "non-canon".

In February 2015, the first 16 issues of the Boom! Comics Darkwing Duck series and both stories in the single annual issue were reprinted as a trade by Joe Books Inc., rewritten by original editor Aaron Sparrow to better fit the show's tone and featuring a new epilogue. This is to be followed by a new ongoing series written by Sparrow, which, after being shelved in July 2015, is slated to hit shelves in spring of 2016.

This page covers arcs and tropes associated with the comic.

Tropes featured in this comic book series:

  • Added Alliterative Appeal: Used several times in the Disney Adventures story "Mondo the Mad Mask Misappropriater", first with the story's title (which is also the name of the villain), and later in some dialogues with little if any explanation, such as this answer of Darkwing Duck who's just been asked why he wears a mask at all:
  • Alas, Poor Villain: In the 2011 Darkwing Annual, we discover Quackerjack enjoyed his work in Quackwerks Toy Department, at least at first. Eventually the pressure and paranoia started to get to him, and he...well, snapped. At the end of the comic, after a long and extremely strange battle between the old and new Mr. Banana Brain, he goes back to his girlfriend, Claire's, house. He looks longingly at the door for a while, then sighs, and pulls out a miniature version of the device he had been using, which turned people into toys. We see a flash from inside the house, and Claire rushes out to find a sad, little Quackerjack doll, with a little note leaning against it. It reads "This is the best I'll ever be. -Jacky"
  • Alliterative Name: Darkwing Duck himself, of course. See also the Added Alliterative Appeal section.
    Darkwing Duck: "A valiant veiled visage vexes even the vilest villain".
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: In the second issue, Darkwing mentions that villains have tried to enslave St. Canard with death rays, robots, and New Age therapy.
  • Badass Boast: A slight variation on Darkwing's catch phrase at the end of comic #6:
    Darkwing: I am the terror that flaps in the night... I am Morgana Macawber's boyfriend. I am Launchpad McQuack's best friend. I am Gosalyn Mallard's father. I am Darkwing Duck. The one and only.
  • Badass Family: If they weren't before "Crisis on Infinite Darkwings", the Mallard clan definitely qualifies now. In addition to Morgana's magic and Darkwing's Badassary, Gosalyn now has the GizmoDuck suit, and, as Quackwerk's CEO, Launchpad has an army of Herobots as his beck and call.
  • Bad Guys Do the Dirty Work: When Taurus Bulba is revealed as the first arc's Big Bad, the Fearsome Four help Darkwing, Launchpad, and Gosalyn fight him...for about ten seconds before they are sent down a trap door.
  • Berserk Button: The mere mention of NegaDuck around Quackerjack causes him to beat up everything in sight. Liquidator even dropped his trademark salesman talk in order to warn people away from mentioning NegaDuck.
  • Big Bad:
  • Big Damn Heroes:
    • In one part of the "Crisis on Infinite Darkwings" arc, a woman is chased down by four alternate Darkwings (a mummy, a vampire, a fish creature, and a werewolf). As they close in, suddenly the Crimebots/Herobots arrive to rescue her.
    • Subverted in issue 14. Darkwing battles a new, seemingly indestructible tank of a supervillain called Cat-tankerous, and is not having any luck - all of a sudden, out of absolutely nowhere, Launchpad flies to the rescue and rams the plane straight into Cattankerous. It doesn't actually work.
    • Just when Darkwing, Scrooge, and the gang get all caught up in Negaduck's trap, Scrooge calls for help from an "Agent 44", alias Donald Duck. He goes through the corrupted Duckburg and cries out to the entire town to let out their 'inner Donald Duck' and makes everyone get so infuriated that Negaduck loses his focus.
  • Big "NO!": Magica DeSpell, comic #8
    But now I lose my hold on the Darkwings! It is cliche, but...NOOOOO!
  • Bowdlerise: Megavolt got away with saying "crappy" in the third issue of the Boom Studios comic, but the revision for the Joe Books omnibus cleaned up his language by having him say "crummy" instead.
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: A flashback in the third issue has Negaduck mention that he needs to buy chainsaws, flamethrowers, and flaming chainsaw throwers.
  • Brick Joke: The first issue has a reporter mention that he is filling in for Dip Dopson. Dip Dopson is later heard reporting Darkwing Duck's comeback in issue number 5.
  • Canon Discontinuity: Dangerous Currency will become this due to the omnibus published by Joe Books omitting the last two issues of the original comic and making an entirely new story in its place. It's been stated by some correspondences with Aaron Sparrow that, to begin with, the story was published without Disney's approval and that a new crossover might be written later, but only time will tell.
    • That being said, while "Dangerous Currency" is no longer canon, "Campaign Carnage" still features the Phantom Blot and his alliance with Magica DeSpell in the ending and even still has his ink has the source of the villains' powers.
  • Captain Ersatz:
    • The Chief of Police is a canine version of Batman's Jim Gordon.
    • In the second arc, several of the Darkwings are parodies of Batman & Robin, Spider-Man, Silver Surfer, the Universal movie monsters, the Flash, Popeye the Sailor Man, Fozzie Bear, Mr. Incredible and The Fourth Doctor to name a few.
    • We also have such gems as Starducks, Hanna Alaska, Dungeons and Ducklords, and World of Whifflecraft.
    • Then there's Femme Appeal, the spy introduced in issue #10. She's basically Emma Peel as a vixen.
    • The new villains introduced in the Campaign Carnage story arc: One-Shot seems to be a parody of Marvel Comics' Bullseye, Cat-Tankerous draws from the X-Men's Juggernaut, and Suff-Rage is very similar to the Spider-Man villain Mysterio.
  • Civilian Villain: In the first issue of the new comic series, one of Drake Mallard's co-workers is his old classmate Elmo Sputterspark, aka Megavolt.
  • Comic-Book Time: The show ended in 1992, but the 2010 comic (which is supposed to take place about a year after the show's finale) shows Honker using a flatscreen computer to download songs by "Hannah Alaska."
  • Covers Always Lie: The cover for the sixth issue of Boom's DuckTales comic, which contained the penultimate part of the Dangerous Currency arc, depicted Magica De Spell, Flintheart Glomgold, Megavolt, Quackerjack, and Steelbeak swimming in Scrooge McDuck's Money Bin when only Magica and the Beagle Boys did so in the actual story and Flintheart and Steelbeak weren't present at all.
  • Crossover: Crisis On Infinite Darkwings involves Negaduck teaming up with one of Scrooge McDuck's villains, Magica DeSpell.
    • An even larger crossover with DuckTales served as the final arc for the comic's initial run.
  • Crossover Punchline: In issue 3 of the Boom! comic series, as Launchpad comments that there aren't a lot of openings out there for sidekick/pilots.
    Launchpad: (holding up the Ranger Plane) I can pilot this!
    Gadget: No. No, you cannot.
  • Darker and Edgier: While not super dark, the stakes tend to be higher than they were in the tv show, and there are more long-ranging consequences.
  • Demonic Possession: Paddywhack pulled this one on Negaduck after he feeded enough of Negaduck's rage which gave him powers enough to take over his body. The combination of Paddywhack's powers and Negaduck's rage created a giant monster who almost destroyed St. Canard and the whole army of the Darkwings, only to be defeated by The Power of Love.
  • Digital Piracy Is Evil: The Crimebots target Honker for file sharing. Drake agrees with the "don't steal music" part, but thinks carting him off to detention camp is going too far.
  • Disney Death: Gosalyn in issue #4.
  • Doomy Dooms of Doom: From comic #4
    "I am the HR-Bot. Get ready for the employee evaluation...OF DOOM!"
  • Eldritch Abomination: In the storyarc beginning in issue #9: Darkwing must join forces with Steelbeak to stop F.O.W.L. from summoning the dread Duckthulhu, an elder being from beyond the stars that "has an incomprehensible mystical presence that obliterates all free will and sanity" all because of Quackwerks taking over the city before and making S.H.U.S.H. and F.O.W.L. almost disappear.
  • Enemy Mine: Darkwing and Steelbeak in Arc #3.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: In the Darkwing Annual, we find out that during Quackerjack's time in Quackwerk's toy division, he managed to make friends and even got a girlfriend.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Steelbeak is absolutely horrified by F.O.W.L. High Commands plan to unleash Duckthulu, to the point where he unashamedly goes begging to Darkwing for help. Even after we find out Steelbeak was doing a triple-cross (from F.O.W.L to Darkwing back to F.O.W.L. he still seems to think this as his "My God, What Have I Done?" seems to imply.
  • Evil Counterpart: The series sets up Magica DeSpell as Morgana's evil counterpart.
  • Eviler Than Thou: In issue #3 of the comic series, NegaDuck reveals to Quackerjack that he learned Darkwing's secret identity. Quackerjack begs to be let in on the secret, but...
    NegaDuck: Are you kidding me? Going after Darkwing Duck's secret identity, going after his entire life, is a job fit for only the best villain this two bit town has to offer. Face it clown...You're just not mean enough for this.
  • Furry Confusion: Lampshaded by Gosalyn in the annual issue story "The Untimely Terror of the Time Turtle" when she sees a pet duck that resembles her and comments that it creeps her out.
  • George Lucas Altered Version: The Boom series gets this treatment for the Joe Books collection, the most notable changes being the addition of wittier dialogue, a few panels being redrawn, and the omission of the now non-canon "Dangerous Currency".
  • Hate Plague: The Phantom Blot has created an inky mind-altering substance to create new rogues in St. Canard which is also used to control the populace briefly.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Morgana McCawber sacrifices herself to banish Duckthulhu. The "Dangerous Currency" arc revealed that she was still alive in another dimension and she reunited with Darkwing by the end, but with the story arc being stricken from canon in the Joe Books continuation, Morgana's fate now remains unknown, though the revised version of "Campaign Carnage" ends with the implication that she's still alive somewhere.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: Negaduck is revealed to be the slime in the crossover finale
  • Honest Corporate Executive: When Launchpad is appointed as the new CEO of Quackwerks, he actually does a lot of good with the company and former Crimebots/now Herobots.
    • In the omnibus by Joe Books, Launchpad steps down as CEO of Quackwerks in the revised version of "Campaign Carnage", with Maury Thwackstein taking his place.
  • Hypocritical Humor: In the "Dangerous Currency" crossover, one of the Beagle Boys demands to be the first to wear the Gizmoduck suit. One of his brothers insists that he should wear it because he has better style, berating his brother for wearing the same thing every day. It should be pointed out that all the Beagle Boys are examples of Limited Wardrobe.
  • I Let Gwen Stacy Die: One of the alternate Darkwings from "Crisis on Infinite Darkwings" took on Gosalyn's Quiverwing Quack persona when his Gosalyn pulled a Heroic Sacrifice, and there was nothing he could do to save her. Interestingly, he's shown Curb-Stomping Darkwarrior Duck, who also lost his Gosalyn, but had a very different reaction to the loss.
  • In That Order: A Played for Laughs example from the "Campaign Carnage" arc. After Suff-Rage has hypnotized the city against Darkwing and Launchpad, to the point where they're ready to burn them both alive, Doofus Drake (visiting from Duckburg) says that, "We've got to save Launchpad and Darkwing! You know, maybe, in that order..."note 
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: The alternate versions of Darkwing listed under Captain Ersatz.
  • Literal Split Personality: Happens to Negaduck at the end of "Crisis On Infinite Darkwings". To the n-th degree, it turns out.
  • Love Makes You Evil: Mortimer L. Marquand became the villain Cat-Tankerous because he thought that doing so would impress Gosalyn, whom he had a crush on. The revision changes Mortimer's motive to simply wanting to act as strong and tough as her after she defends him from bullies.
  • Male Gaze: In the tenth issue, the second panel with Femme Appeal in it has her rear end in the foreground.
  • Mythology Gag: In #4, when Scrooge McDuck is given control of Quackerwerks and places Launchpad in charge, alluding to him having worked for him previously.
    • In #6, we see a dozen versions of Darkwing that appeared in the original cartoon, including Dark Warrior Duck, Arachnoduck, "Thug" Darkwing, Darkwing Dog, Spaceman Darkwing, and Privateer Darkwing.
    • The Blot uses the alias of "Bob" when working as a campaign manager, which he also did in early follow-ups to the original Floyd Gottfredson story.
    • In the first issue, Darkwing mentions that he ran in the Mouseton Marathon, Mouseton being Mickey Mouse's hometown in the Mickey Mouse Comic Universe.
    • In the campaign arc, Launchpad hires Doofus Drake as his campaign manager.
  • Noodle Incident: Darkwing mentions fighting a new villain called Blood Thinner in the fifth issue (changed to "Muckduck" in the Joe Books omnibus).
  • Not Brainwashed: Darkwarrior Duck told Quiverwing Darkwing it was so in his case. While the rest of the Darkwings had been hexed by Magica de Spell, in part of her, and Negaduck's plan to attack St. Canard, he had voluntarily allied with them so he would get a chance to "clean up St. Canard."
  • Not Now, Kiddo: During the "Campaign Carnage" arc, Darkwing ignores what Launchpad is trying to say as he attempts to cut himself free from his stake, only to discover that Launchpad was trying to warn him not to set the wood on fire.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: Liquidator momentarily drops his Verbal Tic of ad slogans, to warn Megavolt about Quackerjack's Berserk Button.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Quackerjack in Issue #2, reacting to a Crimebot mentioning Negaduck's name:
    Quackerjack: Never! EVER! SAY! THAT! NAME!
  • Putting the Band Back Together: As of the first issue, Quackerjack seems to be doing this with the Fearsome Four, even using the exact phrase.
  • Red Herring: The revised version of the "Campaign Carnage" arc in the Joe Books omnibus, at first seems to have changed it, so that Suff-Rage is Morgana McCawber after a Face–Heel Turn, due to referring to Darkwing as "Dark," and her helmet matching the shape of Morgana's hair (the latter actually being the case in the original Boom version), but it turns out that she is still Constance A. Dention, who now had an unrequited crush on Darkwing.
    • During "Crisis on Infinite Darkwings," Quiverwing Darkwing has Darkwarrior in his sights, and the latter surrenders, claiming they both saw into the timestream, and the main Darkwing deserved a final victory before "he loses her." Both of these alternate Darkwings lost their Gosalyn, it was Darkwarrior's Start of Darkness, there's a strong implication that something's going to happen to Gosalyn Prime... And then the next arc ends with Morgana's Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Reverse Mole: Femme Appeal turns out to be one.
  • Rogues-Gallery Transplant: Well, it's obvious that Darkwing fights two infamous Disney villains from other comics: Magica de Spell is Scrooge Mcduck's enemy, and the Phantom Blot is known to be Mickey Mouse's arch nemesis. Conversely, in Boom's concurrent DuckTales comics, John D. Rockerduck hires Darkwing's enemies Moliarty and Camille Chameleon, as mercenaries to stop Scrooge, Launchpad, and his nephews from getting Scrooge's treasure back.
    • The Phantom Blot also lampshades his being a transplant in "Dangerous Currency," when he tells Magica that he has enemies of his own. In fact, he actually appeared in the DuckTales episode "All Ducks on Deck," so the Blot is already familiar with the likes of Scrooge and Launchpad.
  • Self-Deprecation: In "Campaign Carnage," Suff-Rage torments Darkwing by asking what he is afraid of, and changing him to match her questions. When she asks if he is afraid that he is not original, Darkwing then gains multiple heads with the likenesses of his alternate selves from the "Crisis on Infinite Darkwings" arc, many of which were examples of Captain Ersatz and No Celebrities Were Harmed. In other words, the comic is mocking itself for having so many of Darkwing's alternate selves be based on copyrighted characters and celebrities. The Joe Books revision takes it a step further, by having Darkwing and Launchpad make fun of Suff-Rage's name.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: Issue #4 of the Boom! comic has Megavolt, at the end of his inner monologue, zap Taurus Bulba during the middle of his speech, freeing Darkwing and the other prisoners.
  • Soft Glass: Averted in Darkwing Annual. After jumping through a window, Darkwing is (briefly) covered in shards of glass.
    Darkwing: I never did that before; now I know why.
  • Spanner in the Works: Taurus Bulba's ultimate plan in the first storyline? Find the new code to activate the Gizmoduck suit. How did it get spoiled? Gosalyn was the one who accidentally said the code.
    • There's actually a second spanner. His plan was to get people ot say the entire dictionary. THE WORD WASN'T IN THE DICTIONARY!
  • Spy Catsuit: Femme Appeal wears one.
  • Take That: The Joe Books collection's revision of "F.O.W.L. Disposition," has Darkwing Duck mention a poorly written romance novel called After Dusk. Just in case the reference isn't clear, Steelbeak even refers to it as "sparkly vampire drivel."
  • Time Skip: The comic takes place over a year after the end of the series.
  • Took a Level in Badass: In Issue #2, Quackerjack goes down this road (carrying Joker level insanity with him) at the very mention of Negaduck's name.
    "Mr. Banana Brain": Hello, folks! I'm full of hate and wires!
    • Launchpad has scored himself some badass points after becoming the head of Quackwerks. When the alternate reality Darkwings start showing up, he immediately activates all the robots to combat mode, and flies into the fray, taking out superheroes left and right.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Ammonia Pine returns in "Dangerous Currency" as a member of the League of Eve-il, in spite of being turned into mud in "F.O.W.L. Disposition."
  • Villain Team-Up: Negaduck teaming up with Magica de Spell.
  • The War Has Just Begun: Darkwarrior Duck almost said the exact words in Issue #6 just as the army of the Darkwings attacked St. Canard.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Gosalyn tears Darkwing a new one once she finds out the reason he retired, and why he and Launchpad weren't on speaking terms. Namely, Negaduck had learned his identity, he was upstaged by a bunch of robots, and he decided to keep Gosalyn in a fancy school.
    Gosalyn: I'm sorry, dad, but I've waited a year and a half to say this, but... [[spins Darkwing's chair]] Are You Crazy?! You're always saying "Let's Get Dangerous!" Not "Let's Get Dangerous Unless They Find Out Where We Live!" And certainly not "Let's Get Dangerous Until We Can't Afford It!"
  • Wide Eyes and Shrunken Irises: Quackerjack in the comics, after Negaduck is mentioned.