The Beat chatted with Langridge about gathering his web-footed team.
Deanna Destito: Why is Justice Ducks a good fit for you as a writer?
Roger Langridge: I suppose it ticks a lot of boxes for me, in terms of being like things I’ve written in the past. Humor? Check. Disney-related? Check. Inspired by some of the goofier Silver Age comics? Absolutely. On top of that, I’m a lifelong fan of the Disney Duck comics of Carl Barks – I was “reading” them since literally before I could read, and Barks’ writing style heavily influenced my own – so having the opportunity to write some ducks after all those years was something I wasn’t likely to pass up.
Destito: How did this tale of Disney Ducks come about?
Langridge: Editor Nate Cosby, with whom I’ve worked on several projects in the past – most notably Thor the Mighty Avenger for Marvel – offered me the job and said I had a pretty free hand in terms of the kind of stories I could tell, but suggested “aliens” as a starting point, as something I could take or leave. I started to make some notes around that premise to see if I could get anything out of it, and it turned out I could! The five issues are all self-contained stories, but there’s a connecting thread, which becomes clear in the final issue, where we see how everything fits together. But if you miss an issue you should still have a good time.
Destito: Who is your favorite duck?
Langridge: Of Disney Ducks generally, Donald – and particularly Donald as written by Barks – is unbeatable. He’s a properly layered character as both a parental figure but also short-tempered and childlike in many ways. You can see a bit of yourself in Donald no matter where in your life you are, both in terms of his flaws and his strengths.
Of this bunch, I’ve enjoyed writing Darkwing himself quite a bit, as he’s somewhat Donald-ish, containing many contradictions – egotistical but selfless, short-tempered but responsible. He feels the most well-rounded.
Destito: Any surprise guest stars or anything else you can tease for readers?
Langridge: In terms of established characters, I’m only allowed to use those specifically from the Darkwing Duck subsection of the Disney universe, so I’m afraid there’ll be no Donald Duck or Beagle Boys or anything like that. I’ve made up lots of characters for this series, though, as one-offs – and a few of those might be reminiscent of characters from elsewhere. Hope that’s mysterious enough for you!