Looking for a comic book - Gyro Gearloose

We’ve done stories, novels, songs, and movies, usually successfully.

Now the ultimate challenge: a comic book story.

It was a back of the book filler in some childhood Disney comic. The plot is simple. Gyro Gearloose, the inventor, was out at Grandma Duck’s farm for some reason. No reason to cook a huge meal, he tells her. I’ve invented a food pill that’s all we need. Grandma’s dubious but polite. So they swallow their pills and go to bed. But soon Gyro’s stomach is growling and he sneaks into the kitchen. And there’s Grandma Duck also tiptoeing into the kitchen so as not to disappoint him. Food pills don’t satisfy like a huge old-fashioned fresh-cooked meal from Grandma. So she whips up a giant meal for them to properly feast on.

That seems like a lot of information but I can’t find it by any combo of search terms. Can anybody help? A title? The comic? The year it was published? Anything?

Searching through Gyro/Grandma Duck appearance on I.N.D.U.C.K.S. leads me to the story “A Modern Christmas” from 1974, description: “pills for Christmas dinner.” Unfortunately there isn’t anything else about it and, although it was printed in English in the UK in Donald Duck # 13, I’m not seeing any indications it was ever published in the USA. (Most of the stories I’m seeing with both Gyro and Grandma are Xmas stories.)

It’ll be on Inducks somewhere, but there’s always a paucity of descriptiveness. Here’s 61 stories over 1 page long with both characters published in America. Can’t help beyond that.

Thanks. I’ve seen most of those stories, but I can’t track down a couple so they’re still possibilities.

It may be that the scene was part of a longer story and I’m just forgetting the rest. Probably not, since the clockwork twist-ending plot is exactly what 50 other Gyro stories were like.

I skimmed through the 6 volumes of Gyro stories by Carl Barks (Gladstone Publishing) but found nothing that matches your description.

When I pulled down my six volumes of the Barks Uncle Scrooge library (ha) I found two of those Gladstone color compilations among them. But they’re too expensive now to fill in the set.

I’m pretty sure that the story isn’t a true Barks. There are lots of sites that detail everything he’s done, and some even list those he only did art for and not story.

But I have oodles of old Disney comics that used Gyro stories and Barks obviously only did a small proportion of the total.

The progression of the story is so clear in my mind that it must have been something I read many times. It’s unquestionably Grandma Duck and has to be Gyro Gearloose. I’m terrible at remembering the plots of the thousands of sf stories I read but I can reel out the storylines from Disney as easily as I can sing along to 60s rock hits.

It’s going to drive me crazy. And anyone wanting to jump in and say “short trip” is welcome to do so.


I registered because I happened to come accross this request.

The story is called “At the old mill”. On US it was published on the “Walt Disney’s Donald and Mickey in Disneyland” issue. It was created by Pete Alvarado.

Here are the last 2 pages that you remembered.

OMG. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

I’m sure I have that comic. I thought I went through every relevant Disney comic I own but maybe I skipped that title because it seemed unlikely. I’ll race to the basement and pull open the boxes. (I bought the comic in 1958 and I still have it like I have every one of my Disneys. Make of that what you will.)

“Skunk cabbage! I live again!” (Bonus points for getting that reference.)

Phantom Duck! The Mysterious Hero of Duckburg!

And to the rest of you: I’m not crazy! I’m not crazy!

Hmm, I’m sure I’ve read that story but not in that particular comic issue.

Hah! Take that zombie haters!

Sorry, couldn’t resist. :slight_smile:

This thread reminds me how much I used to like those older Disney comics…
Now I’m gonna be stuck on that site for hours!

Haha, I’m glad I helped. I know how it feels when you can’t find what you have in your mind. So yes, rest assured, you are not crazy. The best part of this though, is that the story was included on those 61 stories, irritant posted about on the 2nd post. I guess you didn’t recognize it at first glance, because you remembered just the 2 last pages of a greater story, while those 2 pages were not even the main plot of it.

1958? Woaa! I was born like… 3 decades later. Since you live in US, I guess you have many original issues from that time. Take good care of them, since they have a great historical vallue.

Inducks, doesn’t feature every Disney comic ever created, even though that’s its goal. In the case of US, we can see that there are 5.341 completely indexed and 607 partially indexed (or even not indexed at all) issues. If we add to them a few more instances where some issues are not even registered on the database, we can conclude that in some cases (such as this), it’s quite possible for the story to have been published on an issue that doesn’t appear on the list.

To tell you the truth, I was sceptical when I saw the date (4 years ago!), but then I just said “screw it” and revived the thread. After all, it wouldn’t make sense if I created a new one.

Some of you will be happy to know that IDW comics is currently releasing new Disney comics stories (with oldie reprints in the back few pages for extra fun.) Uncle Scrooge, Donald, and the nephews go to deepest Africa to rescue some long-lost explorers, while Mickey Mouse takes on the Phantom Blot (again!) It’s all formula, but it’s a much beloved formula, and they’re doing it well.

The art is particularly strong (although it is in the “European” mode, somewhat more strongly caricatured than the Carl Barks style.

(Some of you may remember the Carl Barks/Don Rosa debates of times gone by. I love 'em both!)

I don’t know about the U.S., but in Canada it’s pretty easy to find copies of Mickey Parade in magazine stores. (Or at least it was the last time I looked which was years ago, admittedly.)

Now now, let’s not go overboard!! You really don’t know him …


I put the article up on my site Flying Cars and Food Pills.

I’m always on the lookout for references to food pills in the most unlikely places. There’s a contact page if you want to send any ideas my way. Here’s fine too, of course.

Gyro Gearloose always resonated with me for some reason. He’d come up with these neat little inventions and had that little helper with a light bulb for a head. He always wanted to help mankind (or in this case duck-kind), but he never anticipated the greed and and surliness he would evoke in people.

For instance, the “South Side” of the city came to him because they wanted his help in defeating the North Side rivals in their annual baseball game. He invented a bat that attracted baseballs so they’d always be able to hit. Eventually, the North Siders learned he was actually born in the North Side, so they made him pitch for their team. He didn’t want to make it look like he was allowing the South Siders to always hit his pitches, so he made a baseball that was repelled by wood. At the big game, Donald Duck was up to bat. Gyro’s pitch avoided the bat, but the bat started chasing after the ball and the two wildly orbited around each other. Both sides accused the other of cheating and a massive brawl broke out. The last panel was a big pile of people clobbering each other while Gyro made his escape.

The brilliant twist that Carl Barks gave Gyro was that his inventions failed - by being too successful! The dumb inventor whose inventions don’t work is a cliche. Gyro was a terrific inventor. He just didn’t have an off switch. (Or much of a sense of how ordinary mortals worked.)

My favorite Gyro Gearloose story was the one where Uncle Scrooge was locked out of his Money Bin, and they went to the Moon in search of material dense enough to enable them to break back in.

The meteorite they found was so heavy, it threatened to crash the spaceship when they were returning to Earth. They had no choice but to jettison it, and of course it wouldn’t burn up in the atmosphere.

Three guesses where it landed.

I’ll give you a hint: When they landed back in Duckburg, it was raining money!

The flip side of that was when Gyro invents a universal solvent. Note that the last, hardest to break substance of them all is a Disney Contract.

Gyro is one of the best characters of Carl Barks. He managed to succeed and people demanded more stories with him, because he was misunderstood by the public and the readers would empathize with him as the years went by.

Although short, Bark’s stories with Gyro are incredibly well done, even for today’s standards. Take for example Monsterville. Gyro is fed up living on a huge town, full of smog, fast pace of life and not taking advantage of recycling, so he decides to get rid of the old town by taking it completely down and rebuilding it from the scratch.

Everything was completely automated now. No one had any reasons to go to school, to work, or even take a simple walk out of their house. Everyone had become zombies, slaves of robots that are now thinking instead of them. Gyro’s only chance was to sabotage his own inventions in order to save the citizens.

In 10 pages we see elements that make for a great story. A story that was created 55 years ago, but nowadays seems even more well timed. Its a story funny to read, but at the same time it makes you worry a bit about our future.

Grin! Yes! And the scene, in that story or one derived from it, when Scrooge goes crashing down through the office levels of his building, cutting right through desks and file cabinets and things (narrowing avoiding killing anyone, because, Disney, right?) The expressions on people’s faces were hilarious.

(Um, no, the expressions themselves weren’t hilarious. They were shocked, terrified, startled, or flabbergasted. The artwork was hilarious!)

(Wait, wait…)

There was another Don Rosa offering where gravity turned sideways…but only for Scrooge, Donald, and the lads. The art was brilliant, especially the depiction of ordinary everyday street scenes as terrifying. You’d be standing on the side of a building, looking “down” to the horizon, many, many miles “below” you! Again, brilliant! Rosa had a knack for taking horror and making it funny.