Post by Baar Baar Jinx on Feb 23, 2019 19:07:20 GMT
Indeed, for a very long time I thought the idea of Ludwig being Donald's "uncle" was merely fan speculation, as there was nothing in the numerous Ludwig appearances to which I was exposed, including some alongside Donald, that suggested that was the case. They certainly never acted as if they were related. Only much later did I learn that Walt Disney himself mentioned their relationship in one of Ludwig's earliest appearances. The idea became more and more de-emphasized with time (at least in animation). I didn't read a whole lot of stories in the comics featuring Ludwig in those days, so didn't know that the two were related more explicitly in that medium.
Going back to Walt Disney's statement in "The Hunting Instinct" that Ludwig was, as Donald's father's brother, a "drake, of course", it's clear that he thought of "duck" and "drake" as species descriptors, not last names. Seen in that light, the idea that "the drakes are the paternal side of the family" makes sense (but of course, there would have to be female members of the "drake" branch and male members of the "duck" branch, Donald himself being an example of the latter, so it's not a perfect explanation).