This page is a tribute to the great Carl Barks, one of the best comic-book artists of all times, who passed away in August 2000.

Carl Barks, the Duck Man.

Barks censored

Darkest Africa (1948)

This is Barks' most censored story. An entire panel (depicted below) is removed, and all over-caricatured African natives' faces are redrawn. The story's first version is lost (as far as I know, beside the U.S. comic-book, it only appeared in French Le journal de Mickey 313, 1958, and an Italian special booklet given to subscribers of Topolino from 1950).

In 2002, it was entirely re-constructed as close as possible to the original for Italy's Tesori #5 (and Piu' Disney # 26). This is the most faithful version in existence.

Top half of page 15

 
Above, page 15 of Darkest Africa's first original comic-book publication, March of Comics 20 (1948)
 
 
Above, one of Gladstone's later reprints, The Carl Barks Library of Donald Duck Adventures in Color #14
 

Voodoo Hoodoo (1949)

In the famous Voodoo Hoodoo, Barks once again drew over-caricatured African natives' faces (I can't quote any example -maybe Gottfredson?- but people have said it was current in comics at the time). The story, in its original form, is censored in America. This is not the case in Europe where the original version is reprinted. Disney's position is more subtle than just censoring, as one editor in Europe was told, by Disney, that they would suggest him not to use this story but not forbidden him to use it.

In Voodoo Hoodoo, most of the natives' lips and noises are changed, and the native dialect is deleted. Bombie the Zombie's nose is changed and the ring in his nose is removed (Daniël van Eijmeren's Carl Barks guidebook).

Bop Bop (page 1)

On a tricycle is Bop-Bop, a character who made a short appearance in the first page of the original print. But in that first printing he was a black man with the entire part of his head below his nose being simply a gigantic pair of bulbous pink lips. Also, Bop-Bop's dialogue was clearly a black-dialect. In Gladstone reprints Bop-Bop's lips and dialogue were changed, as were all the African natives' faces.
One change that has always been assumed to have been made prior to the original 1949 publication is the substitution of the words "DONE FER" in place of "DEAD" in Bop-Bop's first balloon... the word balloon bulges strangely at that point and the lettering is crowded. "DEAD" was restored in Gladstone's later reprints, other substitutions were made prior to the original publication, which are lost nowadays.

Barks originally drew the zombie with blank eyeballs. The editors at Western Publishing feared that the vacant eyes might frighten children and so they added pupils and half-closed lids..

(Source: Don Rosa & Daniël van Eijmeren).

 
Above, Bop Bop in Voodoo Hoodoo's first original comic-book publication, Dell Four Color #9
 
 
Above, one of Gladstone's later reprints, The Carl Barks Library of Donald Duck Adventures in Color #10
 

Foola Zoola (page 1)

 
Above, Foola Zoola in Voodoo Hoodoo's first original comic-book publication, Dell Four Color #9 (1942)
 
 
Above, one of Gladstone's later reprints, The Carl Barks Library of Donald Duck Adventures in Color #10
 

Because the story in its original form is censored, I'll include here pages with natives (where the most important changes are) from the original comic-book.

Donald Duck's Atom Bomb (1949)

Another Rainbow's version of that story was censored, in the last two panels. Jippes' original Dutch redrawing (made because of the lack of original proofs) wasn't censored (information thanks to Harry Fluks). Scans may follow.


Richard's bric-à-brac page.