Solego: Nothing will happen that shouldn't have happened centuries ago!!
An epic five-part comic story that ran in Disney Adventures in the later half of 1994, The Legend of the Chaos God (written by Bobbi J.G. Weiss and David Cody Weiss and illustrated by Cosme Quartieri) features a Cross Through linking together The Disney Afternoon shows TaleSpin, Chip 'n Dale: Rescue Rangers, Goof Troop, DuckTales, and Darkwing Duck. The magazine started publishing the comic following Marv Wolfman's departure as the comics editor and at the start of Heidi MacDonald's run in that position. While Disney likely intended to build up to and commemorate the magazine's 50th issue, the comic ended one issue later than planned. Despite that little delay, numerous Disney Afternoon fans still think of this comic as the magazine's magnum opus.
In ancient times, Solego, (the eponymous and immortal Chaos God) destroys everyone who opposes his iron-fisted rule — until a young wizard named D'Shane manages to split Solego in two by imprisoning the sorcerer's immortal mind in a crystal cage and his mystical powers in its gold setting. To ensure Solego's eternal imprisonment, D'Shane keeps the halves separated via a giant jade block.
Many centuries later, archaeologist and professor Simon Potsherd removes the two artifacts from the jade block and fixes a chain to the crystal for handling. He arranges to have both artifacts transported to Cape Suzette, but during a battle with the Air Pirates, the gold setting ends up lost in the ocean. An ordeal at Higher For Hire arises when Solegos spirit possesses Rebecca Cunningham via the crystal. After a minor tussle, Rebecca is freed, and Baloo and Kit drop the crystal deep into the ocean.
Fifty years later, a lucky fisherman finds the crystal and brings it to the museum where the gold setting now resides (as it turns out, Scrooge McDuck donated it after he found it during a diving expedition). Fat Cat and his cronies sneak into the museum later that evening to steal the crystal, and though they foil his plans, the Rescue Rangers have a brush with Solego, who nearly manages to escape his 'prison' by possessing Dale and Fat Cat. A well-timed electric shock to Fat Cat keeps Solego's two halves apart, and the Rescue Rangers have a pair of crows carry the crystal and the gold setting in different directions to keep them separated.
The crow carrying the crystal grows tired during his flight and accidentally drops it into a car with a computerized brain — which, as fate would have it, ends up delivered to Pete in Spoonerville. When Goofy gets a look at the car, he begins to think something has haunted it; Later that night, Solego uses the car to learn from a TV report that the gold setting has ended up back in Scrooge's possession (it now sits in the Money Bin) after it ended up in a pawn shop. Goofy sees the car hack into his television set and freaks out, and he and Pete try (to no avail) to get Solego out of the car. Solego entraps Goofy and Pete inside the car's interior, then forces the latter to turn the engine on so he can get to Duckburg. The car ends up going over a cliff, though not before Goofy and Pete escape through the windows.
Solego uses the wrecked car's still-working phone to hire Spoonerville's tow service, which tows the car to Duckburg and writes off the bill to Scrooge McDuck. The next morning, Fenton Crackshell takes a look at the car (which Scrooge insists he knows nothing about) and finds the crystal inside. Under Solego's spell, Fenton summons the Gizmoduck armor, which Solego quickly kicks Fenton out of. Solego then uses the Gizmosuit to break into the Money Bin, but discovers that Scrooge sent the gold setting to St. Canard for cleaning. After Solego leaves the Money Bin, Scrooge, Fenton, and the nephew trio meet with Professor Potsherd's son, Bisk, who reveals the backstory of the Chaos God and D'Shane. Once they have all the information on Solego, Scrooge sends Fenton to St. Canard, then calls up S.H.U.S.H. Headquarters to get in touch with the only person in St. Canard who can help now: Darkwing Duck.
Over in St. Canard, J. Gander Hooter briefs Darkwing and Launchpad on their mission. The duo (and Fenton) arrive too late to stop Solego from finding the setting, however, and when Solego finally brings the crystal and the setting together, he assumes his original form and wreaks havoc across St. Canard. During his fight with Darkwing and his compatriots, the Chaos God disintegrates Fenton's Gizmosuit and turns Launchpad into chopped liver (literally), which leaves Darkwing to stand alone against an immortal sorcerer. After a brief cat-and-mouse battle between the two, Darkwing accidentally defeats Solego by turning his own powers back upon him, and the medallion segments are once again sealed away.
The Legend of the Chaos God marked a swan song for the TaleSpin, Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers, and DuckTales comics in Disney Adventures — those shows never had another full-length story in the magazine afterwards (with the exception of a DuckTales story in 1996 that Disney had scheduled to run in an earlier issue). Disney never reprinted the comic after its original publishing until Fantagraphics announced plans for its inclusion in a 2021 Disney Adventures comic collection, but you can read in full on this page.
The Legend of the Chaos God contains examples of the following tropes:
- Action Prologue: Chapter 1 opens up with Baloo thwarting the Air Pirates.
- And I Must Scream: D'Shane intended for Solego to suffer this fate for eternity, though this is averted throughout the story. It is implied to happen to Solego at the end of the story, when the two halves of the Chaos God medallion are buried deep beneath the Money Bin, dooming Solego to an eternity trapped within the crystal with the gold setting just mere inches out of grasp.
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Played straight but ultimately subverted:Darkwing: So what does the richest duck in the world — who might slip me a big fat bonus for a job well done — want me to do, anyway? Recover a stolen fortune? Rescue a rich niece? Guard his caravan while he goes off in search of treasure in a far-off country?
J. Gander: He wants you to pick up a necklace from the jewelers.
- Badass Boast: Solego ends his big speech to Darkwing Duck with one of these.Solego: You will die a sheep, as will all the sheep called "men!" And I shall be the only wolf among you!!
- Be Careful What You Wish For: Happens in Chapter 5:Launchpad: So what am I, chopped liver?Solego: As you wish! [zap]
- Bilingual Bonus: "Solego" translates from Latin as 'the sun I am'.
- Big Bad: Solego, the Chaos God.
- Big "NO!": Solego looses this more than once throughout the story as he's denied a host body. He releases a final one when Bisk Potsherd re-imprisons his crystal prison back in the jade block forever.
- Buffy Speak: Right after Solego disintegrates Gizmoduck in Chapter 5:Darkwing: You—you exploded him!
- Canon Foreigner: Solego, D'Shane, and the Potsherds.
- Celebrity Paradox: One of the pages has Goofy apparently watching Darkwing Duck
- Chaos Is Evil: Invoked with Solego's title, the Chaos God.
- Contrived Coincidence: The Spoonerville News Broadcast just happened to be airing a story about the gold setting at the exact moment Solego hacks into Goofy's television.
- Covers Always Lie: The title pages in the first four parts each feature a character with glowing eyes, indicating that Solego is possessing them in the story: Rebecca in Part 1, Dale in Part 2, Pete in Part 3, and Gizmoduck in Part 4. However, Pete is never possessed; and while Solego does take over the Gizmosuit, Fenton quickly gets kicked out.(although Pete and Fenton own the machines that Solego possesses)
- Cross Through: While it took a little bit of fudging to make it work given that the characters from Rescue Rangers and Tale Spin had to fit in there, it ultimately worked all five shows into the story very well.
- Cursed With Awesome: Sort of. Solego, though trapped within a crystal, has the power to possess any living or mechanical thing that comes in direct contact with the crystal.
- Diabolus ex Machina: Really, the very fact that Solego can possess things like the car and the Gizmosuit is a straight example of this trope. The trope and its title are also parodied as "Spookus ex Machina", which is the title of Chapter 3 that involves Goof Troop, as Solego does possess Pete's new car and tries to harm Pete and Goofy by taking them to Duckburg.
- The Dreaded: Solego, obviously. Everyone who learns anything about him agrees that him returning to full power would go poorly for the rest of the world.
- Evil Is Not a Toy: When he realizes what powers Solego's medallion might possess, Fat Cat is determined to harness those powers for himself. Solego, of all people, is quick to warn him what a bad idea this is.Solego: Fool! You tamper with the very powers of destruction!
- Expy: Solego seems to be one of Kulan Gath, from Red Sonja.
- The Faceless: The human security guards in Chapter 2.
- For the Evulz:
Solego: Ha-ha-haah! I'd forgotten how much fun it was to break things!
- When Solego gleefully uses the Gizmosuit to smash through the Money Bin's front door:
Solego: So, little hero—AMUSE ME! [zap]
- Later on, he chases Darkwing Duck around like a cat toying with a mouse.
- Great Big Book of Everything: The Junior Woodchuck Guide (obviously), which has info about Solego and Professor Potsherd.
- Haunted Technology: Solego possesses Pete's car in Chapter 3 and the Gizmosuit in Chapter 4.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: D'Shane, and later, inadvertently, Darkwing Duck, split Solego in two by reflecting his own own magic back at him.
- Homage: Chapter 3 is an homage to Christine.
- "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight:
- Touched upon in Chapter 1. Rebecca Cunningham puts up the biggest fight against Solego's mind control because her daughter's life is at stake.
- Solego also lampshades this trope as the reason he'd rather start possessing technology instead of people. People have personalities and feelings that can fight against him; technology has none of these things, thus giving Solego complete control.
- Identity Impersonator:Of theBlooper variety. It might have been an accident on the artist's part, but Fenton appears alongside Gizmoduck in the denouement at SHUSH headquarters.
- I'm Standing Right Here: After Solego easily dispatches Gizmoduck, he tells Darkwing that he now faces him alone. Launchpad takes offense to this, but the analogy he uses puts him out of commission as well.
- Large Ham: Solego, as befitting a sorcerer-king from ancient times.
- Light Is Not Good: Solego's name means "The sun I am" in Latin, and he wears ornate golden-orange robes. He's anything but benevolent.
- Magic Versus Science: Played with. Solego, impressed with modern technology, intends to combine it with his existing powers once he regains full strength. And then in the end Darkwing dives behind a satellite dish, which reflects Solego's magic in the same way the knight's shield did centuries ago and again seals him in the amulet.
- Meaningful Name:
- The Lost Temple of Duuminglum in the lost city of Rakkinroonnote .
- Also Solego's name (see Bilingual Bonus above). Somebody has a high opinion of himself.
- Simon Potsherd, the archaeologist. "Potsherd" is an archaeological term for, well, shards of pottery. They tend to survive surprisingly long (especially in middens) and are some of the most common physical artifacts to come from many ancient sites.
- Mind-Control Eyes: Rebecca flashes these in Chapter 1 and Dale flashes these in Chapter 2 when Solego possesses them. Fenton also gets these eyes as he reaches for Solego's crystal in Chapter 4.
- Mundane Utility: Subverted. Scrooge McDuck hires Darkwing Duck to "pick up a necklace from the jewelers." According to Launchpad, Scrooge usually hires "low-paid menial flunkies" to do small jobs like that, but said necklace is VERY dangerous, and Darkwing is the most qualified person in St. Canard to get it.
- Never Trust a Trailer or Splash Panel: The opening splash panel for Chapter 3 seems to indicate that, at some point in the story, Pete gets possessed by Solego (although this never happens; he merely buys the car that Solego possesses). Likewise for Chapter 5 (see the image above), which seems to indicate that Darkwing valiantly stands tall against a fully-powered Solego (when, in fact, he spends much of the chapter running and ducking for dear life).
- Non-Mammalian Hair: Despite being reptilian, Solego has a pair of slender eyebrows upon regaining a physical body.
- No Ontological Inertia: Once Solego is defeated, Gizmoduck un-disintegrates and Launchpad changes back to normal.
- Not Himself:
- When Solego threatens Scrooge's life, Scrooge instantly knows that Fenton isn't in the Gizmosuit.
- In Chapter 1, Molly thinks that something is wrong with her mother when the then-possessed Rebecca growls at her. Then Baloo knows something's wrong when Rebecca steals the Sea Duck.
- Oh, No... Not Again!: This is Solego's reaction to being split in two again at the end of the story.
- Origins Issue: We don't get any details about D'Shane trapping Solego, or Professor Potsherd locating the crystal, until Chapter 4.
- Out of Focus: Despite being main characters on Goof Troop, PJ and Max only appear on one page of Chapter 3, admiring the new car. The actual plot itself belongs to Goofy and Pete.
- Pet the Dog: Solego, upon possessing the Gizmoduck armor, decides to spare Fenton Crackshell because he unwittingly provided him such a powerful vessel to inhabit.
- Physical God: Solego, upon freeing himself. He's so powerful that the heroes end up defeating him by chance more than anything else.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Solego, and anyone he happens to be possessing.
- Reality Warper: Solego's powers function as this - outside of his magical blasts, he can fashion an army out of inanimate objects, turn statues into living monsters, or transform people into whatever he pleases.
- "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Solego delivers a brief one to Darkwing, mere seconds before being defeated.Solego: I am disappointed in you mortals! You are no challenge anymore! You have grown soft and cowardly!
Darkwing: Then how come I'm still alive?!
Solego: Because I hoped you would prove yourself a foe of some worth! Only D'Shane proved his worth, and he was a mere boy! You will die a sheep, like the rest of the sheep called men! And I shall be the only wolf among you!
- Reptiles Are Abhorrent: While it's not entirely clear what species Solego is supposed to be (if he indeed confirms to any real-life lizard species (the vase implied him to be a monstrous gigantic cobra), he's definitely reptilian. He's also the Big Bad.
- The Scottish Trope: As explained by Bisk Potsherd:"He came to be known as the Chaos God, for it was bad luck to say his name aloud!"
- Sealed Evil in a Can/Soul Jar: Solego, for most of the story.
- Sins of Our Fathers: While not intentional, Simon Potsherd was inadvertently responsible for all the trouble Solego caused by removing his medallion from the jade block. Bisk himself said that his father never meant for his discovery to cause such chaos, and was grateful for a chance to correct his mistake.
- Spanner in the Works: Solego's plans to escape his imprisonment and Take Over the World are constantly disrupted by the protagonists he runs afoul with Darkwing Duck being the biggest of them all.
- Wacky Wayside Tribe: Chapter 3 is almost one of these. Except the story also serves the purpose of making Solego realize that he doesn't have to possess mortals anymore, and the ending gives him a way to reach Duckburg. Both of these things set up his hijacking of the Gizmosuit in the following chapter.
- The Worf Effect: Solego easily destroys Gizmoduck, and Darkwing friggin' Duck himself spends most of the story trying to stay alive. It's so serious that Let's Get Dangerous! is averted completely, and Solego is only defeated out of sheer dumb luck.
- Worthy Opponent: Upon returning to full power, Solego hopes that at least one of the heroes facing him will put up a good fight. He find himself sorely disappointed. But he ends up losing anyway thanks to Darkwing Duck unwittingly turning his own powers against him.
- You Are Too Late: Darkwing, Launchpad, and Fenton rush to the jeweler's to get the necklace before Solego shows up, but he's already arrived when the heroes arrive — and he has the necklace. Things get worse VERY quickly.