Spring Break Reviewstravaganza: Daffy Qaddafi: Malice in Wonderland (1986)

Note: I will not be able to provide scans from this issue, which is a damn shame, as it really has to be seen to be believed.

Note 2: You may have noticed that this one is actually being posted late. This is both because of the fact I went to see a lecture by Richard Stallman and the fact that I had to force myself through this monstrosity, as it is absolute dogshit.

Note 3: I will be using the spelling of Qaddafi used in the title, as I don’t have all night here. I have a bigass pile of Swamp Thing to read.

Note 4: I have not exaggerated any event in this comic.

Not to rip off Scott Snyder’s gimmick, but when I was younger, I had a book of old political cartoons from around 1993, which was about a year before I was born. I used to read through that thing, not quite getting the jokes, as I had no idea what the events referenced were supposed to be. But I kept reading through it, because it was comics, and it was either that, Dilbert collections, or my dad’s old copies of the Official Handbook To the Marvel Universe. Reading this comic is kind of like that. It’s poorly done, overly obvious, and I don’t, and likely can’t, understand it all that well without the historical context.

The cover, since my scanner is not in a usable state at the moment, is not much. It’s Moammar Qaddafi and the anthropomorphic duck that gives this comic its name in a white circle, with the Daffy Qadaffi logo above them and “MALICE IN WONDERLAND” in faux-stencil lettering underneath them. Laaaaazy.

We open with Moammar cowering under a table with his hookah blowing smoke under the title… Wait, “A Dictator’s Nightmare in Wonderland?” At least try to get your title straight. Of course, given that this gives no credit to the creators, that’s not all that much of a problem. A narrative caption tells us: “In a world that may or may not be yours a madman is about to get what’s coming to him.” Odd place to start the emphasis. I’d emphasize “get” as well, but hey, it’s not my comic.

He’s then chased out from under the table by a man with his thumb up his nose who, based on the gesture he’s making with his other hand, is either the Libyan Spider-Man or the Libyan Sorcerer Supreme. It’s then revealed that he was freaking out over the more violent parts of his own propaganda. After an odd scene in the propaganda film where scantily-dressed women dance around someone who is supposedly Qaddafi himself, Qaddafi, the one watching the film as opposed to the one onscreen, drops to one knee and sings that “nobody know’s the troubles I’ve seen!” Yes, that’s our first editorial mistake on page 2. After that little bit of vaudeville, he goes off to make a speech wherein his glasses seem to disappear for 3 panels, and in 2 of them his tongue is far enough outside of his mouth to make speaking intelligibly nigh-impossible. Also, when his advisor calls off the rest of the heated speech, the bubble is devoid of punctuation.

Editorial mistake count: 3

He goes into his personal chamber, where one of his servants presents him with a dinner of lamb, the lamb being alive, having what is unquestionably a human face, sticking its ass in the air, presumably offering Qadaffi its clearly delineated vagina. No joke here. Just… ew. Qadaffi declines the meal, which honestly is the unquestionably right thing to do here. He then has guards scan the floor with metal detectors while he changes into his footy pajamas. These guards open the window, allowing a smoke bob to be thrown into the room. no mention is made of this past the end of the page.

Editorial mistake count: 4(I cannot see how anyone could have seen the fact that the artist clearly drew a vagina onto that sheep and let that fly)

Qaddafi is tucked into bed, sucking his thumb while complaining that nobody understands him. He then goes into a dream sequence where he runs from his mansion, only pausing to… fondle the ass of a statue of a dog. Huh. He then meets the Daffy of the title, a small, anthropomorphic duck. He introduces himself as a leader of “millions of Islam terrorists”.

Editorial mistake count: 5

The duck is really annoying, so Qaddafi tries to dream him away, only to be stripped naked. They argue about how they can’t both be Moammar Qaddafi, as the duck is a figment of his imagination. Then Daffy offers to show Qadaffi how much he truly knows himself, and they teleport to what is supposedly America, where Qaddafi tries to fight Ronald Reagan, portrayed here as a doddering old man playing croquet. Reagan rebuffs with the consolation “I didn’t mean to offend you. It’s just that you are a repulsive little barbarian with delusions of godhood. Nothing personal!”

It’s worth mentioning here that this comic is not exactly subtle. Compared to this, Holy Terror is a nuanced and understanding portrayal of Batman The Fixer and Catwoman Some Woman Dressed In A Cat Outfit’s reaction to a terrorist bombing of Gotham Probably New York Or Somewhere Like That. This comic’s still less racist than Holy Terror, though.

Out And Out Statements Of The Author’s Opinion Of Moammar Qaddafi With Only The Barest Attempt Of Humor Count: 1

That little thesis statement is delivered in front of a crowd holding signs like “We’re Bullish On Qaddafi”, “Libya, Love It Or Bomb It”, and, believe it or not, “Bomb Airplanes”. Of course, those are the few signs not pointing towards the people supposedly being demonstrated against, so I’ll just assume those are the few numbskulls in the crowd, and the rest of the signs are either clever or at the least make some amount of sense. Qaddafi is not calmed by this, and starts to fight, only to run away after Reagan turns into the ghost of Fu Manchu as played by Bill Clinton.

In the process of running off, he runs into Idi Amin, and, because of that smooth-talking duck, is put in chains with the rest of Idi’s topless sex slaves. Because that’s really the height of comedy. Qaddafi is not happy with this, and because of his needling, Daffy switches bodies with him. No mention of the sex slaves after this, btw.

Totally Crass and Inappropriate Gags Shrugged Off Like It Ain’t No Thing Count: 1

And in the panel where the body-switched Qaddafi complains about the body-switch not being what he wanted, a swear word is censored out, despite the fact you can see some naked breasts in the panel right above it, nipple and all.

Editorial Mistake Count: 6

After that, there’s a little thing where Daffy psychoanalyzes Qaddafi, and of course he’s affecting a Sigmund Freud voice, with this clunky brick of text:

“Undt zat iss vere de problem lies… I fit into this vorlt because I know who I am– I was a born loser chust like you, but you have no idea who or what you are, which is a prancing, posturing nincompoop who thinks that he can win over anything the world can throw at him, and then runs for cover when things get out of hand.”

Out And Out Statements Of The Author’s Opinion Of Moammar Qaddafi With Only The Barest Attempt Of Humor, a Complete Lack Of Understanding Of Freudian Psychiatry And Quite Possibly Psychiatry In General, and What I’m Pretty Sure Is A Grammar Mistake Count: 2

Then this exchange:

“What’s that around the castle?”

“A viaduct.”

“Viaduct?”

“I dunno. Why aren’t you a camel?”

badum pshh.

Anyway, in this castle, they seem to finally get around to the Alice In Wonderland thing that was the entire basis for the title, card soldiers, red king, “Off with their heads”, and all. Qaddafi tricks the king into handing over his kingship, because the king is just that dumb, and then commands everyone to bow. Daffy does not bow, because why bow to himself? Then, to spare us from that argument, the Blue King is announced to be attacking. Unless they have a vastly different chess set than I’m used to, there’s not really a Blue side in chess. Or a blue suit in cards.

Just Generally Stupid Shit Count: Fucking Infinite.

Qaddafi forgoes sending the normal troops, in favor of a few steroidal freaks who somehow manage to make Rob Leifeld creations look well-proportioned. This ends up going badly. Daffy teleports them to a forest where they are assaulted by hooded figures in what I think is supposed to be a Ghostbusters joke, due to the hooded figures chanting “Who ya gonna call? Who ya gonna call? Yeah yeah yeah!”.

Qaddafi gets shot to hell by the Ghostbusters I don’t even fucking know what they’re supposed to be. Since this is a dream, he survives. He and the now flying Daffy almost get shot down by the Enola Straight.

the Enola Straight. God damn this comic is stupid as all get out.

They land on Fantasy Island. FUCK THIS COMIC.

They teleport from there to the Hall of Martyrs, where Qaddafi is commended for creating so many martyrs. Also, there’s a panel where the pointers on a speech balloon point in no particular direction, like they just gave the fuck up.

Editorial Mistake Count: 7

After that, they go to an oasis, and Daffy pretty much tells him not to be so much of an entitled little shit. Then they go to a forest glade, where Qaddafi is anally impaled by a unicorn not once, but twice. He seems not to remember the first time when the second rolls around not 2 panels later.

Editorial Mistake Count: 8

Then it’s time for a rematch against Reagan, who decides instead to set Qaddafi against his “champion”, a challenge that provokes the following exchange:

“Rambo, ha! I spit at your puny heroes! Watch how a true hero operates!”

“The only hero I see here is a ham trying to be wry!”

Retorts I Will Be Trying My Damnedest to Work Into Regular Rotation Count: 1

Genuinely Funny/Clever Lines So Far: 1

Then he says something about there never being a green nun when you need one. I don;t get it either.

The champion turns out to be a little kid, and Qaddafi gets killed by the kid and 2 of the Not-Ghostbusters simultaneously. Though apparently not, as he is then captured and tortured. He then wakes up, EXCEPT NOT! IT’S TOTALLY STILL A DREAM AND ALSO HE’S IN A COMA! WOoOoOoOoOoO!

So yeah, this sucks, hard.

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2 Responses to Spring Break Reviewstravaganza: Daffy Qaddafi: Malice in Wonderland (1986)

  1. Allan J. Fromberg says:

    My apologies……you definitely put more time into reviewing this coming than I spent writing it! In my defense, it was demanded by an insane publisher as an overnight project. I will say, however, that it was a gas to work with one of the classic Marvel artists on the project.

  2. Allan J. Fromberg says:

    I meant “comic”, not “coming”…..damned auto-spell!

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