Gizmoduck—Fenton Crackshell when presenting as a civilian and out of the Gizmosuit—is an iconic and beloved hero in Duckburg. He was created for and hired by Scrooge McDuck to serve as chief security guard for the Money Bin, while his civilian self is Scrooge's accountant. Gizmoduck occasionally helps out other parties than his employer and it is through this that he made his way to St. Canard. Fenton became an acquaintance of Drake Mallard through Launchpad McQuack and Gizmoduck became an ally of Darkwing Duck due to a failed scheme by Steelbeak. Both relations are rocky at best, although Gizmoduck only has an inkling of this fact and warmly calls his St. Canardian colleague "Wingy". Gizmoduck's strength lies in the physical power and the many gadgets built into the Gizmosuit. These also can be trouble, because Gizmoduck does not have full knowledge of all there is or what he needs to do to activate what. Another matter holding him back is that beneath the bravado he likes to indulge in, the Fenton identity is prone to insecurity stemming from his view that he is nothing without the Gizmosuit. A lot of his often time-consuming heroic show-offery is him acting out a dream he's afraid to wake up from. He is, however, learning to appreciate himself step by step.
He is voiced by Hamilton Camp.
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Fenton is a single child currently living with his mother in a trailer. He and his mother are close, even if their bond isn't always an easy one, while it seems his father hasn't been in his life for a very long time. Because of his talent for counting, Fenton originally worked as a literal bean counter at Scrooge McDuck's bean factory. There, he met Gandra Dee, with whom he developed a mutual crush that would later lead to dating. He grew weary of the job, feeling unappreciated, unmotivated, and stuck. When Scrooge McDuck put out an ad that he was looking for an accountant, Fenton grabbed the opportunity with both hands despite not having the qualifications for it. Scrooge and Ms. Featherby failed to keep him out of the Money Bin during the selection process, but Fenton got a chance to demonstrate his worth by instantly counting the pellets being fired from Scrooge's shotgun and by determining the value of some coins his would-be employer tossed in the air as a confirmation.
He was hired, but his lack of professional vocabulary had him make one mistake after another that, notwithstanding Scrooge's concurrent gullibility, caused the loss of Scrooge's Number One Dime and troubles with the rest of Scrooge's money. Fenton was ordered to retrieve the dime, while Scrooge got Gyro Gearloose to make him a robotic guard for his money. The first product was the GICU-2, which guarded Scrooge's money so well Scrooge himself could no longer get to it. To defeat the GICU-2, Gyro built the Gizmosuit, so that the adaptive mind of a person and the strength of a robot would be combined. There was, however, no wearer selected yet. Fenton manipulated Gyro away and by coincidence hit on the Gizmosuit's secret activation code: "Blatherskite", "Blathering Blatherskite" being his and his mother's catchphrase. He retrieved the Number One Dime and wrecked the GICU-2, which got Scrooge to agree to the choice of wearer. It would be a few more days before he'd learn it is Fenton in the Gizmosuit, but by that point both identities has shown their value and he was kept as accountant and chief security guard. Only Scrooge McDuck and Mrs. Crackshell know that Fenton and Gizmoduck are one and the same. Huey, Dewey and Louie are the founders and presidents of the Gizmoduck Fan Club.
Fenton Crackshell maintains a large reservoir of positivity to drink from. On one hand, this fuels his naivity and occasional obliviousness. On the other hand, this liberates him from the average person's sense of limitation. Fenton is someone who keeps going, for the longest time certain that he can wing it and that, if one method doesn't work, the next will no matter how ridiculous and overwrought it has to get. The main downside is that when he comes crashing down, he comes crashing down hard. It also affects his relations, because any interaction with him relies heavily on the reservoir of patience of the other party. Fenton has one special ability that gives him a step ahead on the job market: his counting ability. He only needs seconds to count millions of coins, whether in total or as their combined value, and any other type of object even when in motion. This is what got him his job as bean counter and later accountant despite a lack of conventional qualifications, but it is his go-getter attitude that got him to apply in the first place.
Gizmoduck exposes the cracks in Fenton's behavior. As much as he believes in his possibilities, he has little faith in his capabilities. While originally he donned the Gizmosuit to personally make up for his mistakes, Gizmoduck soon became a self that he liked better. Gizmoduck is a hero with equal investment in acting heroically and heroic action. He rarely jumps into battle right away but takes a moment to stately announce his own future accomplishment or talk sternly to opponents despite questionable effectiveness. His immediate advantages in any task are his size, strength, and speed.
Fenton's ambitious ideas and hasty decision-making create serious problems for his boss. He is doggedly determined to make amends each time by any means necessary, which can create even more complications until he ultimately succeeds. His one talent in which he excels is counting. A mere glance at any amount of anything and he will come up with the correct quantity, regardless of how large the number or the situation where the quantity is presented. He was even able to defeat the fastest supercomputer in the universe, Master Electronic Leader, in a contest of counting ball bearings.
Gizmoduck is hired by the army to protect the E.G.R.T., which he does when a unit of Eggmen infiltrate the army base. Afterwards, the general asks Gizmoduck to protect it when it'll be on display at the St. Canard Air Show three days later and suggests that he teams up with Darkwing Duck for the job. Gizmoduck objects, arguing that Darkwing is not confirmed to be hero or hood and promising that he'll protect the E.G.R.T. against both Darkwing and F.O.W.L.. He takes the opportunity of a job in St. Canard to visit his former colleague Launchpad McQuack, unbeknownst to him nowadays the sidekick and housemate of Darkwing Duck. When the matter of his temporary roof comes up, Launchpad invites him to stay for the duration of the air show. Drake's objections are bypassed due to a news bulletin that the St. Canard Cinema is under attack by Darkwing Duck; in actuality an Eggman disguised by Steelbeak to get Gizmoduck and Darkwing fighting to facilitate the theft of the E.G.R.T.. Both Gizmoduck and Darkwing rush to the crime scene and save the cinema, but at the same time build up agitation towards each other. Gizmoduck still isn't convinced Darkwing is a good guy and the warm welcome from St. Canard Gizmoduck gets—along with the Key to the City of St. Canard—does not sit well with Darkwing. The two independently go to the hangar the E.G.R.T. is stored in to guard it, but they find each other there and start fighting. This allows Steelbeak to enter the cockpit and fly the weapon to the city to cause major chaos. Gizmoduck and Darkwing understand they've been had and agree to cooperate. Gizmoduck serves as Darkwing's ride to the city, but Steelbeak stops him by dropping a piece of statue on him. Darkwing dodges, but Gizmoduck has to use his strength to free himself. He throws the piece into the E.G.R.T.'s legs, forcing Steelbeak to disconnect them and retreat. Darkwing gets back on Gizmoduck's shoulders and they use a ramp to be launched onto the plane. While Darkwing fights Steelbeak inside, Gizmoduck plucks the wires on the outside to force the plane down. The two part on good terms after a job well done and return to the Mallard residence. Fenton announces that he'll leave and the air seems good until a report on television prompts him to remark that Gizmoduck saved the day again. Drake, of course, is of another opinion, leading to a heavy argument. Megavolt is menacing the horse races by stealing all the horseshoes, whether on or off the horses. Darkwing fails to stop him, but Gizmoduck is just passing by and, while he doesn't capture the villain, saves the horses. St. Canard gets into the Gizmoduck spirit quickly once more. Darkwing hates it and isn't amused either that his colleague discovers Darkwing Tower on his own accord. Gizmoduck offers another teamup, but Darkwing refuses. Just then, Megavolt shows his face again, this time to steal the bridge's industrial strength wiring. Due to the bridge's shaking, Gizmoduck gets hooked up to the Thunderquack and drags the plane on top of him and Launchpad.
Disney Comics comics
Disney Adventures comics
Boom! Studios comics
- Gizmoduck (along with Bubba and an unused character named Space Duck) were created by Tad Stones for DuckTales. The inspiration for Gizmoduck lies in the 1987 movie RoboCop, further played with in that the GICU-2 is based on the ED-209. Gizmoduck was preliminary called Roboduck, which remains his name or the basis of his name in many countries outside of the Anglosphere, and also explains the "R"-shaped insignia on his chest.
- Gizmoduck was proposed as one of the protagonists of the unproduced Justice Ducks series.
- Gizmoduck's catchphrase, "Blathering Blatherskite!", may be a reference to "Elevenworth Prison", a 1962 episode of Dudley Do-Right where Inspector Fenwick (voiced by Paul Frees) insults Dudley, "Do-Right, you're a blithering blatherskite!"
- In the non-DuckTales comics, Scrooge's accountant is a dognose named Clerkly.
- In the italian version, the name of Gizmoduck is Roboduck in this series.
- In the 2017 reboot of DuckTales, GizmoDuck will be voiced by Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator and lead actors of the Broadway Musical Hamilton. In this version, Fenton Crackshell will be renamed Fenton Crackshell-Cabrera.