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->''"I always felt myself to be an unlucky person like Donald, who is a victim of so many circumstances. But there isn't a person in the United States who couldn't identify with him. He is everything, he is everybody; he makes the same mistakes that we all make."''

Carl Barks (March 27, 1901 August 25, 2000) was a Creator/{{Disney}} writer and artist who made comics set in the ComicBook/DisneyDucksComicUniverse from 1942 to 1966. He was known as ''the Good Duck Artist'' by the readers for much of this time due to a Disney company rule which forbade the comic authors' names from being featured in their magazines.

Barks is renowned for creating characters such as Scrooge [=McDuck=], Gladstone Gander, Gyro Gearloose, the Beagle Boys, Flintheart Glomgold, Magica De Spell, and many others, as well as setting in stone the base geography of the city of Duckburg. His stories brought in the treasure hunt plot to Duck comics and inspired a generation of people (such as Creator/GeorgeLucas, Creator/StevenSpielberg, Creator/OsamuTezuka, Creator/DonRosa, Creator/RobertCrumb, Creator/ArtSpiegelman and the writers of ''WesternAnimation/DuckTales'') to replicate the thrill of adventure. He's also responsible for expanding Donald Duck's personality beyond his usual one-note characterization in the WesternAnimation/ClassicDisneyShorts; reaching levels that were never rivaled in the animated appearances of the character.

After retiring, Barks took up painting (as seen in the page image). First his paintings were unrelated to his comic career, but later he began recreating scenes from Duck stories in paint. One completely original scene led to him writing one more story in retirement, which was drawn by William Van Horn, a younger Duck artist.

If you've been interested in reading his stories, there's good news for you: [[http://robot6.comicbookresources.com/2011/01/exclusive-fantagraphics-to-publish-the-complete-carl-barks/ Fantagraphics books has been in the process of republishing all of his old Donald Duck stories over a 30 volume series of books in the upcoming years, with two volumes a year!]]

Not to be confused with a [[FunnyAnimal dog]] themed PunnyName version of Creator/KarlMarx.
* AdaptationalVillainy: People who have read stories featuring John Rockerduck but never read the only Barks story where he appeared will be surprised to learn he was by no means portrayed as a villain in that story.
* ArtisticLicenseEconomics: Averted in two occasions.
* AtopAMountainOfCorpses: Non-lethal variant, of course. Let's just say Scrooge can kick butt.
* BehindTheBlack: In "Statuesque Spendthrifts", somehow nobody can ever notice a much bigger statue of Cornelius Coot right next to the one getting unveiled until the moment the veil falls off it as well. Taken UpToEleven during the third round, when both statues are at least ''ninety'' stories high and clearly towering over Duckburg's skyline.
* BittersweetEnding: While he did write a lot of stories with unambiguously happy endings, more often they would end on a bittersweet note or a downright DownerEnding, and even the happy endings would often have some kind of ironic twist to them.
* BleachedUnderpants: Before Barks started his Disney career. In the 1920's he began his career at a racy men's magazine called the "Calgary Eye-Opener" a racy men's cartoon magazine of the era. [[http://www.cracked.com/article_21568_7-famous-artists-you-didnt-know-were-perverts-pt.-2_p2.html During his retirement, he would constantly draw or paint erotic pictures of women or men with Duck Faces.]]
* BreakoutCharacter: Scrooge [=McDuck=]. Barks created him as a one-shot character for the story "Christmas on Bear Mountain" (1947) Then he decided to bring him back in the horror-themed story "The Old Castle's Secret" (1948), where Scrooge is effectively the co-protagonist and receives much of the spotlight. Barks then started using him as a permanent addition to Donald's supporting cast, and other Disney writers started following his example. By 1952, Scrooge was popular enough for the publisher Western Publishing to give him his own comic book series. Barks' stories "Only a Poor Old Man" (1952) and "Back to the Klondike" (1953) were new origin stories for Scrooge. Subsequent stories by both Barks and other writers introduced villains, rivals, romantic interests, and supporting characters for him. The Disney Ducks' stories more often revolve around him, rather than his hired assistants (sidekicks) Donald, Huey, Louie, and Dewey. He is by far one of the most popular Disney comics characters, and several writers and readers consider him the the real protagonist among the various members of the cast. Not bad for a character that was only supposed to appear once.
** Scrooge ended up being so popular that he eventually made his video debut in 1967 in the short WesternAnimation/Scrooge McDuck and Money.
* BunglingInventor: Gyro Gearloose.
* ContrivedCoincidence: Invaribly accompanied by someone (frequently the nephews) exclaiming, "[[LampshadeHanging What a break!]]"
* CoolOldGuy: Scrooge all the way.
** And Carl Barks is not considered cool? Comeon.
* CreepyTwins: The Nephews at times.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness:
** Scrooge living in a mansion, his money being stored in a bankhouse instead of the money bin
** In its first appearance Scrooge doesn't hold his NumberOneDime in particularly high esteem - when he decides to change all his coins into banknotes, the dime is spared because he kept it in his pocket, but he apparently wouldn't have cared had it been changed too - unthinkable in later stories.
* EscapedAnimalRampage: One Carl Barks comic strip had Donald Duck walking around with a necklace that brings good luck. When he hears that a dangerous gorilla escaped he decides to turn the giant ape in, believing that he will be prevented by his lucky device. Of course, it doesn't work.
* ExecutiveMeddling: Barks' comics often suffered from this. Several stories that were considered inappropriate were censored or just thrown out entirely, others were cut down to make room for adverts. Some material is most likely lost forever.
** One problem for his editors was that Barks had a taste for Westerns and horror films, and liked to incorporate such elements in his stories. Mummies, werewolves, zombies, magical and cursed objects, invisible men, Yetis, ghost ships, and skeletons entombed in castle walls all turn up in various stories. Some of his ideas were considered overly violent or creepy for an underage audience.
* FurryConfusion: Barks actually points it out in one panel. The anthropomorphic Duck protagonists briefly appear next to non-sentient realistic Ducks. The main characters are essentially human, while the others are animals.
* GetTheeToANunnery: "the only live one I ever knew"
* GreyAndGrayMorality: Uniquely for kids' comics at the time, there are very few people in Barks's comics that are unambiguously good or unambiguously bad. Most people are firmly in-between, and several of the conflicts don't have a clear good guy or a clear bad guy.
** The only exceptions are Flintheart Glumgold and The Beagle Boys.
* HiveMind: The Nephews at times.
* {{Jerkass}}: Gladstone Gander
* LemonyNarrator: There was a surprising amount of snark in the narration boxes: "No more trouble? Ho ho! That's what you think, Donald!"
* MoneyFetish: Scrooge swims in it.
* MrViceGuy: Scrooge used to be the {{Trope Namer|s}}.
* {{Mundanger}}: "Vacation Time", a story of his from 1950, is notorious for its main antagonist being not anything you would call a supervillain, but rather a common {{Jerkass}} who still manages to get disturbingly close to ''actually killing'' Donald and his nephews without actually trying.
* NoodleIncident: Scrooge keeps on littering them around, referring to his adventurous past.
* NotAllowedToGrowUp: Everyone, but most notably the nephews.
* OurFounder: Cornelius Coot. The founder of Duckburg. He is revered by people of the town, and his statue (or statues) are city landmarks. He is long dead but his face is everywhere.
* TheProfessor: Gyro Gearloose
* ScoobyDooHoax: On occasion the heroes would come across as this, most notably in "The Hound of the Whiskervilles."
* ShinyNewAustralia: In "The Golden Helmet", the eponymous helmet was proof an ancient viking named Olaf the Blue was the true owner of North America, theoretically allowing any (alleged) descendant of his to use it to take over the continent. When DonaldDuck got the helmet, an attorney offered to help Donald and wanted Canada as his legal fees.
* ShownTheirWork: Barks was very well known for doing his homework on whatever subject his stories involved. Several of the landmarks and foreign locations in his stories are based on the photographs in his favorite reference source: "National Geographic".
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVsCynicism: More on the idealistic end of the scale.
* TakeThat: Barks really didn't seem to like all the silly quiz-shows that were popular at the time, and he mocked them a lot in stories like ''Voodoo Hoodoo'', ''The Crazy Quiz Show'', ''The Talking Dog'', ''Land Beneath The Ground'' or ''The Colossalest Surprise Quiz Show'', often pointing out how easy it was to answer the questions even for a complete idiot.
** In ''The Crazy Quiz Show'' in particular, the host of the quiz is portrayed in a slightly cruel light, giving insanely impossible quiz questions to professional prize-grabbers (like "What is MickeyMouse's social security number?"), and giving silly punishments and pranks for answering wrong or trying to coach other contestants.
** Meanwhile, Huey, Dewey, and Louie each got easy questions and the prizes to boot.
* One Donald ten-pager involved his being influenced by a quack psychologist named "Dr. Pulpheart Clabberhead," who believed any form of punishment administered to children was cruel. Clabberhead was a very thinly veiled parody of Dr. Spock, whose child-rearing books were popular at the time. The nephews used Donald's new softhearted philosophy to get away with everything and drive him nuts. Eventually they decided to light a stick of dynamite under Clabberhead's chair, causing the "doctor" to break his own doctrine by chasing them with a stick.
* TangledFamilyTree: Barks worked out his own genealogy tree on how the major and minor characters of the Duck and [=McDuck=] families are related to each other, including several generations of ancestors. Technically he created most of the characters in it, but it was compiled for the masses to see by Rosa.
* UpliftedAnimal: Gyro Gearloose once invented a 'think box' device that could make any animal as smart as a person. He ended up creating both a superintelligent rabbit and a superintelligent wolf, the latter of whom he only barely stopped from stewing Donald alive.
** To be fair, Donald wanted to trick the nephews and Gyro by dressing up like a wolf, but the super intelligent wolf ended up dressing up like a man in order to trick Donald.
* WiseBeyondTheirYears: Barks started portraying the Nephews like this and invented the Jr. Woodchucks.