Home > Disney, Gemstone Publishing > Uncle Scrooge #341

Uncle Scrooge #341

April 30, 2005

Quick Rating: Good
Title: The Magic Hourglass and other stories

When Scrooge gives away the Magic Hourglass that brought him his fortune, can he get his luck back?

Writers: Carl Barks, J. Antrobus, B. Bartholomew & Dick Kinney
Art: Carl Barks, William Van Horn, Daniel Branca, R. Scarpa & G. Cavazzano
Colors: Scott Rockwell, G. Leach, Egmont, Pamela Rambo & Susan Daigle-Leach
Letters: Jon Babcock & Travis Seitler
Editor: Arnold T. Blumberg
Cover Art: William Van Horn
Publisher: Gemstone Comics

This issue we’ve got two old Carl Barks tales, and while neither of them are quite classics, they’re still quite entertaining in their own right.

The issue starts off with Barks’s “The Magic Hourglass,” featuring a new framing sequence by William Van Horn. Scrooge, thinking his favorite hourglass’s sand has worn out, gives it to his nephews, only to discover that the hourglass was magic and responsible for his years of prosperity. He winds up in a race with his own nephews to the Sahara desert to refill the glass with magic sand to give it back its power. The story is cute, but somewhat surprising from Barks. Frankly, I can never fully enjoy any story that credits Scrooge’s enormous fortune to any sort of magic or lucky charm as opposed to his own grit, determination and hard work. It cheapens the character somehow, and just because this story is by the creator of the character doesn’t really make it any easier to take.

Next up we have the Beagle Boys in “Metro Raid.” When Duckburg’s predominant crooks find out that Scrooge’s Money Bin is in trouble due to the nearby subway, they hatch a plot to break in through the subway and steal his fortune. Scrooge’s own plans may foul their up, however. It’s a cute story with very nice art by Daniel Branca.

Barks also supplies this issue’s Gyro Gearloose tale. In “The Stubborn Stork,” the inventor is depressed about his inability to sell his flying saucer bikes, even at the bargain price of $4. He finally finds a customer when Scrooge needs a way to get to the roof of his money bin to find why the vent is blocked, only to discover a stork that just just doesn’t want to leave. Again, it’s a cute story.

The prize of this issue is the final story, “Around the World in Eighty Daze” by Kinney, Scarpa and Cavazzano. Scrooge enters a competition with one of his many arch-enemies, John Rockerduck – a race around the world, with the catch that the victor is not only the one who makes the trip faster, but also cheaper. Scrooge and Donald get caught up in a series of misadventures, chasing their less-than honest adversary. This is easily the most entertaining story in this issue, and the most in line of what I think of as being a great Uncle Scrooge story.

Overall, one really good story and three so-so ones. Not a bad mix, but it could have been better.

Rating: 7/10

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