More than 23 years ago, Darkwing Duck was introduced to the world through the Disney Channel.
Even though it has been confirmed that Darkwing Duck was a spin-off from another hit cartoon series, Duck Tales, the animators working behind the scenes drew a lot of their inspiration from another source.
A much darker source. One might have even say the original “Darkwing” – Batman.
It all started when master animator Tad Stones wanted to use the popularity of Duck Tales to create a spy parody that was similar in nature to the hit television series, Get Smart. Since Tad Stones was such a huge fan of DC Comics, he decided to create a character that was more like a comic book hero – with an original twist.
In an interview with the Animated World Network, Tad Stones had the chance to explain his creative process further.
“We wondered, ‘What if Batman had to raise a little girl? The idea finally jelled. That’s what gave the show the real heart, the real dynamic.”
After developing the character, Disney was ready to move forward with the production of what was then-titled Double-O Ducks. The only problem was that “Double-O” was already copyrighted and owned by Cubby Broccoli, producer of many of the James Bond films.
According to the interview with Tad Stones, there was a contest held within the animation studio to come up with a name for the cartoon – the winner would walk away with $500.
Stones stated that Alan Burnett was the one that came up with the winning name “Darkwing” and Stones simply added “Duck” to “make it silly.” Ironically, Alan Burnett eventually left Disney in order to help Bruce Timm develop the animated series, The Adventures of Batman.
In order to solidify the connection between Darkwing Duck and Batman, a catchphrase was developed.
“I am the terror the flaps in the night.”
In the opening title sequence, there is also a shadow cast on the wall of Darkwing Duck with his cape blowing in the wind while he maintains a “superhero stance.”
Even though Darkwing Duck is no longer in syndication, many people have been able to satisfy their nostalgic cravings with YouTube clips and DVD box sets.
A spoof Kickstarter parody starring Jim Cummings (the voice actor who spoke for Darkwing Duck) was released in April of 2013 by Funny or Die. However, there are many fans that wish the cartoon would seriously return to the air.
What do you think? Should Darkwing Duck be put back on the air?