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Friday, December 28, 2007

Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew #'s 14/15 - April/May 1983

I thought I'd go for something goofy(I mean, goofier) for this final Comic Friday of 2007, so today we'll discuss "Crisis on Earth-C!" by Scott Shaw! and E.Nelson Bridwell(with "Editing/Kibitzing" credited to Roy Thomas), from Captain Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew #'s 14 and 15, which featured, among other things, the debut of...

Earlier in the series, Roy Thomas introduced us to the Just'A Lotta Animals super-team, and he thankfully included an ersatz Aquaman in the group! Thanks Roy!

With this story, we got to see that the characters drawn by Rodney Rabbit(aka Captain Carrot) in his comic book are not just comic book characters, but real heroes who populate another Earth(gee, that sounds familiar...)!

In this story, one of the JLA's most fiendish foes, Feline Faust(man, they must have had a field day writing this story) transports several of the team to another Earth--the home of Carrot and His Amazing Zoo Crew--and its here that the two teams team-up, going so far as to split up into several smaller teams to handle a series of disasters popping up all over the world, and eventually confront other supervillains, like Armordillo, Digger O'Doom, and the Shaggy Dawg.
sgAquaduck teams up with two members of the Zoo Crew, Yankee Poodle and Rubberduck, and its cute to see this version given the same impressive abilities the "real" one has.

Turns out Feline Faust was using these bad guys as decoys, keeping the JLA busy so he could plunder their Earth without interference. The two teams figure this out and head for that Earth to stop him, which leads into the next issue.

Both issues are a lot of fun, and the Shaw/Bridwell/Thomas combo throw in a lot of sly jokes, mostly aimed at DC arcana but not limited to it--there's also sort-of cameos by Disney characters, Pogo, Tom and Jerry, and even the Justice Society!

I can only imagine what an uphill sales battle this book must have been at the time--all non-superhero comic genres were dying out, and here's a book sort of poking fun at all the conventions of all that. Most kids wouldn't be caught dead reading a "funny animal" comic(I was one of those kids), and so Carrot only lasted twenty issues.

Going back and reading them now, I see how fun they were and how I wish I had had the ability to appreciate them at the time.

Maybe if they had done a solo Aquaduck comic...


Anonymous said...

One of my favorite comic stories from my youth. Captain Carrot at it's zenith as well (of course there were only a handful of issues after this, so that's a given really).

Gotta love the comic creators on the front; "Duck Giordano"? "Roy Tomcat"?

The classic JLA/JSA floating head design is used well on both covers. Just an all around fun comic! I'm partial to Batmouse and Boyd, the Robin Wonder, though.


Doug said...

LOVED Captain Carrot as a kid!
I wasn't afraid to be seen with a "funny animal book" then, and I'm not now!

Thanks for sharing these Rob!

Michael Jones said...

I find it amusing that the whale's name is "Melville"!

rob! said...

that is a nice touch!

Siskoid said...

Ahh there he is!

Roy also uses the "let's split up in small teams" structure used by many a JSA and JLA story, including the various early Crises. Great fun.

Aquaduck's got it rough. His power is to talk to animals in a world where animals can all talk! Well, I guess sea life isn't as funny animaled as those on land...