The Razor: Uncle Scrooge's deposit

The Razor: Uncle Scrooge's deposit

The Razor

After the lockdown, after hateful and very long periods spent staring at the same four walls, it's time to move house; and a Genoese like me could only think, as a new home, of the most famous (and colossal) house-piggy bank ever: Uncle Scrooge's deposit. To be honest, the bank I consulted for the mortgage made me a great rate offer, but the aunt refuses to sell the deposit with attached gold coin content, so I just have to use this razor. month to ... no, not to threaten him and force him to sell it to me ... but to tear the veil that covers this mighty building and take a peek inside, without using the plan prepared by Don Rosa.

Already, few people know that the American cartoonist, passionate about ducks and expert civil engineer, made a plan of the warehouse in 2001 (on the occasion of the fiftieth anniversary of the building), not only very accurate - could you expect anything less from him? When I met him, before making a sketch for me, he weighed the sheet of paper and evaluated the impact of the marker on the celluloid with an algorithm - but also very useful for all those who want, for example, to know that the building it consists of eleven floors; plus the ground floor.

How did Uncle Scrooge's warehouse come about?

Or that the warehouse was designed in 1902 by a certain F.I. Drake. "So it really exists?", You will ask me, but the answer, razor in hand, is that no, it does not exist. It is, of course, a mere figment of Carl Barks' fantasy, "The Duck Man, who conceived and designed him for the first time in 1951, in the history of Donald Duck and the frozen dollar" (original title: The Big Bin on Killmotor Hill).

But it could have existed, if only the proposal of the Tuscan cartoonist Daniele Caluri had been accepted in 2015 to transform an incomplete building on the Livorno hills, known as the Mausoleum of Ciano, right in the famous Scrooge's deposit. In fact, the masonry structure comes close enough to the idea that we all have of that iconic building, and, after all, it would have been enough to repaint it in blue and yellow and write that famous S which is not only the dollar symbol (easy !) but which is also the initial of Scrooge. But ... Scrooge starts with the P! Before calling me illiterate, however, know that Scrooge's original name is Scrooge.

I mentioned the idea that we all have a deposit: well, what exactly is it? Not just one, because the first version of 1951 (a simple steel parallelepiped) is very different from that, for example, by Giorgio Cavazzano, an Italian designer who, thanks to the extraordinary softness of his ink, has greatly accentuated the rounded shapes of the building. Not to mention the addition of the hemispherical dome that towers over its top: in the original Barksian version it did not exist, and this is because it is an all-Italian invention. It was in the history of Made in Italy Donald Duck and the Acute Auritis (1965, Rodolfo Cimino to the texts and Romano Scarpa to the drawings) that appeared for the first time, never to leave again!

Uncle's deposit Scrooge: destroyed and attacked!

But, in its long career, the depot has undergone more than a metamorphosis, going from a ground-anchored airship (but also in flight!) To a vehicle equipped with six wheels and double mechanical arms , from suggestive aquarium to “giant nougat”, sphere or huge piggy bank (conceived by Paperoga). Not to mention the times it has been destroyed: by aliens, for example, (in the story Uncle Scrooge and the marauders of space) or crushed by the colossal monument dedicated to Cornelius Coot (Paperinik and the revenge of Cornelius Coot) or, again, destroyed by same heavy artillery that should defend it (in Uncle Scrooge all'attaaaaacco!) for a trivial misunderstanding about the bellicose message of an ant colony.

How? Doesn't it seem possible that the depot's defensive tools are powerful enough to crash it? Try asking the Dachshunds, who have been trying (in vain) to plunder it for decades, tasting the numerous traps scattered around and inside it. Paradoxically, one of their most successful attempts is that which took place in the first episode where it appears, in which the Dachshunds end up destroying it (add this case to the previous ones listed!). The story, as mentioned, is that of 1951, signed by Carl Barks and originally titled The Big Bin on Killmotor Hill.

But what is this "Engine Killer Hill" that is mentioned? It is the hill overlooking Duckburg, on which the deposit stands. In ancient times it was called "Amazzamuli", alluding to the difficulty with which the pack animals would have faced the steep slope to reach Fort Duckburg, which stood on the summit of the mountain ruggedness. It was Scrooge who made her change her name because his car stopped halfway and, without brakes (too expensive: why install them?), Ruined downstream. Farmer Dabney Duck, seeing the car crash into his corn fields, renamed the hill "Killmotor". All this is narrated in The Invader of Fort Duckburg (1994, Don Rosa).

And if you still wonder why, in moving house, I want to move right to the top of this damned hill, don't forget that the deposit , in its first appearance, it was exactly a safe…. A safe full of gold coins!

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