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Unlike you, I have had the privilege of reading those Barks comics as a child, as they were serialised in the Dutch Donald Duck in the seventies and eighties, which does make a difference, but I also think you're right to suspect reading them in colour matters.

Barks after all was a Disney animator before he became a cartoonist and the use of colour to give definition to his characters therefore must've come natural to him. Obviously you lose that if it's reprinted in black and white, and having it all in some uber serious, too big to actually take out and read edition doesn't help either.

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