Is Christopher Nolan’s “Inception” nothing more than a big rip-off (or at the very least, a secret extraction — get it?) of an old Scrooge McDuck comic book storyline called “Uncle Scrooge in the Dream of a Lifetime”? Hell, it sure looks like it. Read the entire Disney comic book issue for yourself here and I’m pretty sure you’ll draw the same conclusions I did, which is that Christopher Nolan has some ‘splainin’ to do.
I’ll wait for you to come back.
Okay, back? Let’s continue.
Granted, Nolan added a lot of complexity to the storyline, including the very expensive “architecture” angle, and he greatly expanded on the dream concepts (it is, after all, just a silly comic book for kids), but there’s no denying that “Inception” was more than a little, shall we say, “influenced” by this particular Scrooge McDuck story.
The main plot of the McDuck storyline? Bad guys the Beagle Boys are using a “dream machine” to invade McDuck’s dreams while he’s sleeping in order to trick him into giving them the combination to his money vault. When McDuck’s nephews find out, they are unable to stop the bad guys, since the Beagles are already inside McDuck’s dream, and to just wake him will do major damage, like, oh I don’t know, getting McDuck forever trapped in his dreams or some such. So Donald Duck is forced to go into the dream to save McDuck and pull the bad guys out one by one.
According to TheWrap, the comic storyline was reprinted by Boom! Studios back in 2004, but the storyline itself was originally published earlier than that. Nolan has repeatedly said that he came up with the idea of “Inception” more than a decade ago. Perhaps he read a McDuck comic book back when he was a younger man and forgot.
Again, you can read the entire Scrooge McDuck comic book storyline for yourself here and judge. Who knew Disney comic books were this sophisticated back then? I’m not going to go so far as to say that Nolan “stole” the idea from a Scrooge McDuck comic book, but it sure looks like he got the original idea from somewhere else and either blocked out the original source from his head, or was hoping no one remembered an old Disney comic book. Unfortunately for Nolan, there are very strange people on the Internet, and some of they actually collect old Disney comic books and have the whole issues online to read for free.
This news has busted all over the Interwebs today, and it’ll be interesting to see how Nolan and Warner respond to it tomorrow, if they decide to at all.
Say it ain’t so, Christopher Nolan!
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