The Pertwillaby Papers' first episode
In 8.9.1971Kentucky Kernal included an one page announcement
that Don had drawn to tell about his new comic strip that would begin
the next day, The Pertwillaby Papers. The strip appeared
as four or five panel long episode from 9.9.1971 to 13.12.1973 and
it was published 127 episodes. But after episode 65 Don's editor didn't
want to publish his comic anymore, because episodes after that told
about a Barks-style treasure hunt and the editor wanted a political
satire comic, like Doonesbury that had just started to appear
in American newspapers. So, Don waited untill there became a new editor
and he was willing to publish Pertwillaby Papers.
After graduating from college Don illustrated
and wrote articles for fanzines like The Collector, The
Buyers Guide for Comic Fandom, The Rocket's Blast Comicollector,
Comic Reader, Amazing Heroes and Collector's Dream.
Later he also continued making The Pertwillaby Papers,
and now he made it for the earlier mentioned The Rocket's Blast
Comicollector, the field's biggest fanzine, which circulation
at the best was about two thousand. This time the pages of his stories
were the size of a comic book or there were 8-12 panels on one page.
Don still made the stories in episodes and continued with the old
numbering so, that the first episode like this was 128. But the
episodes were about ten page long now and there was five or six
of them in each story, which meant that the stories were about 60
pages long. The comics appeared in RBCC in years 1976-1978 and the
first episode or 128 appeared in number 130 in September 1976. Don
had already before this contributed RBCC's Ray Miller's Information
Center beginning from number 75. The Center gave
answers to comicfans' questions. In number 108 he took over the
whole Information Center and also illustrated it. It was
now 10-15 page long and Don answered to readers question in all
categories of entertainment, for example comics and old movies.
He continued this until number 150.
Don made two whole stories for RBCC (episodes 128-138) and also two
episodes of the last story, Knighttime. Episode 140 was the
last published episode and Don never finished Knighttime, because
he just stopped making it in 1979 when he got tired to it, he didn't
even got any money for it, because he made comics just for the enjoyment
of making. Soon after this he began Captain Kentucky comic
strip for Lousville Times and after he stopped making
that, too, in 1982, he draw one more Knighttime episode (141),
but it was never published in RBCC.
But Don's fanzine-hobby didn't completely stop there, he still made
some illustrations and articles for Amazing Heroes -fanzine
and even continued Information Center in it. And Fantagraphics
Books, that also published Amazing Heroes, published
two issues of a fanzine called Don Rosa's Comics and Stories
in 1983. The first issue contained Sub-Zero and the second
Vortex. Number 190 (May of 1991) was the last issue of Amazing
Heroes that included Don's production.
Episodes 1-127 form a story called Lost
in (an alternative section of) the Andes, but actually it's
two different stories. The first one was the political satire that
Don's editor wanted (episodes 1-65) and it was about Lancelot Pertwillaby's
attempt to get to college for free (or his being there). The second
one (66-127) was about Manco Capac (an Incan temple) and a search
for it's treasure. The second one's plot also was a model of Don's
first Duck-story, The Son of the Sun and it includes a scene
that he later used in The Last Lord of Eldorado. This was
just the kind of story that Don wanted to do but his first editor
didn't want to publish. He even had already written the plot for
it in 1971, but couldn't use it before 1973. Episodes 1-65 Don draw
himself, but in writing the script he was helped by his friend Ron
Weinberg and in writing episodes 66-127 Ray Foushee, also his friend.
Ray Foushee also originally acquainted Don to fanzines.
different explosions of Manco Capac.
The first story that was published in Rocket's
Blast Comicollector was called Sub-Zero, and it
contained episodes 128-133. It's about a search of an art collection
collected (and stole) by nazies and hidden to the North Pole. There
is scene in the story that Don made into a Duck-story, Incident
at the McDuck Tower. The story itself is the only Pertwillaby
Papers story that's main idea Don didn't convert into a Duck-story.
The third story, Vortex, (episodes 134-138)
is about a black hole, that Lance and professor Artemis Phoebus
discover and capture and a trip to the center of Earth. It's obiously
the model of The Universal Solvent. Beginning from this story
Don named every episode and here are the titles of the episodes
of Vortex: 134: A Mole in the Hoon, 135: The Black
Solvent, 136: The Real Pits, 137: Hollowed Ground
ja 138: Comes the Black Dawn.
The last and unfinished story is Knighttime
and it includes episodes 139-141 (episode 141 has been published
only in The Don Rosa Archives II: Pertwillaby Papers). This
story has been an inspiration for two Duck-stories: The Once
and Future Duck and The Black Knight. In it Lance and
company travels to the time when king Arthur lived, year 540, but
Arthur isn't as glamorous as the stories tell and isn't even a king
but a warlord. Don has told that in the end (if he would've finished
the story) Lance and others realize that they haven't traveled back
in time, but just switched to an alternate dimension. Now they also
know they can switch back. Just when Lance as the last one is sending
himself back it takes a fraction of second too long and he ends
up to the upper atmosphere (because Earth had moved) and falls to
Earth just like Donald in Don's Duck-story The Duck Who Fell
to Earth. The names of Knighttime's episodes are Chronillogical
Orders and The Once and Future Myth. Don didn't give
a title to the third and last episode. By the way, Don thought this
story as the fifth, so he actually does considers the episodes he
made for Kentucky Kernal as two different stories.
Lancelot "Lance" Pertwillaby
is the hero and main character of the comic. Lance is Don himself
and that's why he likes the character so much. He's a naive and brave
young man, who goes to college (later an associate professor) and
won't believe bad from anyone and thinks that everyone has at least
a bit of good. Lance, or as his girlfriend calls him, Lancey, is gentle
and noble and won't kill an animal even if his life dependes on it.
In his adeventures, he travels literally around the world and even
into it. Lance is also Don's self-portrait.
Feather Fluffnuthin is Lance's faithful
girlfriend. In the first stories she is descripted as a dumb blonde,
but later, in then end of 1970's Don tried to show that Featherilla
has even more common sence than Lance, and that she's very civilized.
Professor of physiological and neurohumoral surgery Viktor Domitrius
Smyte is an old nazi and represents the main evil in Pertwillaby
Papers. He's mean in every way and eventhough he tries to kill
Lance many times because he doesn't like him and fears that he might
reveal his past to the others, Lance always believes his insane explanations
and Viktor always maintains Lance's trust. VD is in every adventure
that Lance experiences and always seeking for his own benefit.
Schuyler Roatch III is Lance's roommate
in college. He doesn't like Lance, because his intelligence and honesty
have replaced Schuyler's (or more better his parents' money's) position
as college's most popular. He also knows that Lance is in college
for free, but can't proove it. He commonly works with prof. Smyte
but doesn't, unlike Smyte, want to kill Lance, just to embarrass him.
is Lance's best friend. He's only in the two first stories
and in the first one he's only a minor character. But in the
second story (Sub-Zero) he's appears throw the whole
story. Freddie suffers from poopphobia, is ostentatious and
a ladies' man. He also smokes pipe all the time.
In addition to these, there are also charcters that appear only
in one story but go along at least almost the whole story. These
are for example Eskimo Lil-Snookums (Sub-Zero) and professor
Artemis Phoebus (Vortex and the beginning of Knighttime).
There is also characters who appear in more than one story but are
only minor characters, like university president Adrian Morphous
and flightpilots Frank and Ted. One interesting little detail is
that every character has their own shaped balloon.
of characters' diffenrent balloons.
THE DON ROSA ARCHIVES
A Norwegian Gazette Bok-publishing
firm published in March of 2001 two hardcover book under the name
The Don Rosa Archives: The
Pertwillaby Papers and The
Adventures of Captain Kentucky. The books are in English.
The Pertwillaby Papers contains of course Rosa's all Pertwillaby
Papers stories including the third episode for Knighttime
(episode 141) that was made in 1982 and haven't been published
anywhere else before this. The book includes Don Rosa's and professor
of mathematical statistics Nils Lid Hjort's forewords. There is
also a special limited edition of the books that includes both of
the books singed by Don and a poster.
The picture in the poster is the only scene where Captain Kentucky
and Lance Pertwillaby ever met. The poster also is singed by Don
and there is only 150 issues of it. You can order the books from
here, but in
Finland they can also be found from Akateeminen kirjakauppa and
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