The Quackwerks Corporation is the most powerful company in St. Canard. At its height, everything was Quackwerks and everyone worked for Quackwerks. Quackwerks controlled all businesses, public transportation, the prison system, and even the SCPD, of which it fired all agents and replaced them with crimebots. Quackwerks was so effective that even SHUSH, F.O.W.L., and Darkwing Duck had to make way and become a 9-to-5-abiding part of the company. This height was engineered from the shadows by Taurus Bulba, who looked to become the owner of St. Canard and all it contains. After his fall, the government deemed the company to entangled with society to let it disappear and therefore delegated the task of refitting it to Scrooge McDuck. Scrooge made Launchpad McQuack the new CEO, which he did a decent enough job at for several months and then passed the job on to Maury Thwackstein, a former employee with the smarts and the decency to be entrusted with the responsibility.
The Quackwerks Corporation, while always functioning as a legitimate if questionable business, owes its existence to the dangerous intellect of Taurus Bulba. In order to gain undiluted power over St. Canard, no less for practical purposes than for petty vengeance, he went for a corporate takeover. Through unknown means, he mentally influenced several citizens to come together and lay the foundations of Quackwerks. One of the first projects was the construction of what would become the crimebots, Bulba's personal robot army disguised as the ideal law enforcers that soon replaced the regular police. Another big early project was Quackwerks Satellite One, a satellite headquarters designed to lift the puppetmaster above his theater to remain out of sight and out of reach, and again another was the purchase of St. Canard Tower, which was made the headquarters of the Quackwerks Corporation. Through all this, Quackwerks gained the momentum to become the sole business in St. Canard, owning or supplying every single store and facility. It also took control of all civil services, something that served Bulba well in his personal pursuits. SHUSH, F.O.W.L., and Darkwing Duck were all made obsolete or sufficiently threatened into ceasing their activities or going underground.
One notable societal change brought about by Quackwerks's all-encompassing control was the forced reintegration of criminals with little regard for their standing sentences. Due to the efficiency of the crimebots, letting them out of jail to undertake a fulltime job held no real risk. For about a year, this assessment wasn't challenged. Among others, Liquidator was in charge of the water supply at the headquarters, Quackerjack worked for the toy department, and Bushroot and Megavolt had office jobs. Ironically, Megavolt shared a cube with Drake Mallard, whom he suspected to be but never recognized as Darkwing Duck. Quackerjack met Claire at the company and the two struck up a relationship. It was also at Quackwerks that Quackerjack had the awkward experience of coming face to face with Aloysius J. Mandelbaum, the creator of his behated Whiffle Boy, during a consultation visit. It was Quackerjack that was the first criminal to crack under the rules of Quackwerks and reunited the Fearsome Four for revenge. At the same time, increasing hostility from the crimebots provoked Drake to don his hat and cape once more and investigate the megacompany. Taurus Bulba's role as CEO was exposed through this and after his defeat the government seized Quackwerks. Recognizing it as too big to disappear, they asked well-known business genius Scrooge McDuck to create a future for the company. His first order was to downsize by letting go of the civil service branches and use company resources to help competing companies return to St. Canard. As part of the former action, the crimebots were recalled for reprogramming for other functions and subsequently renamed herobots. With this set in place, Scrooge made Launchpad McQuack the new CEO. Launchpad would stay CEO for several months, using his position to help Darkwing and become mayor for five minutes, after which he resigned and passed on CEO-ship to Maury Thwackstein.
Quackwerks owns the Quackwerks Satellite Network, for which reporters Chip Dipson and Dip Dopson used to work. The Quackwerks Satellite Network survived the reorganization of Quackwerks, but the two reporters found another network to work for. Quackwerks Records is another branch of Quackwerks, one which fate is unknown. During Bulba's days, the artist Hannah Alaska was contracted to it and produced the hit "Your Love Is Like Melting Butter". Quackwerks furthermore owned a school of crooning, a toy warehouse that delivered to Clint Wacky's Wacky Wonders, and a unicycle factory. The prison they managed was the Quackwerks Detention Camp. It too continued to exist after Bulba's removal as CEO, but no longer fell under Quackwerks's ownership.
The logo of Quackwerks is a side view of a duck whose back of the head is shaped like a cog. It is modelled after Darkwing Duck, which Bulba ordered in hopes his image everywhere would sedate the glory hound. Darkwing never even recognized it as looking like him. At least one slogan of the company is "We're Your Friends That Are Always Right".
Boom Studios! comics
After his last fight with Darkwing Duck, Taurus Bulba gets into an accident that destroys his cyborg body. His mind shows more resilience by finding Gyro Gearloose's laboratory and reaching out to all electronica present to fashion himself a new, fully cybernetic body. The one thing he can't get a grip on is the Gizmosuit and knowing the password doesn't work either because the suit doesn't register him as a person anymore. Bulba resolves to take all of Gearloose's inventions with him to rebuild his empire and make a lackey wear the Gizmosuit until the day he can himself. Gyro counters he'll remotely change the codeword to prevent that, which Bulba takes as a challenge to control the entire city of St. Canard so he can force everyone to say every word to find the new codeword. This being Bulba, he's not bluffing and with mindplay gathers the first workers to build him the crimebots. He also has a satellite headquarters set up to control the rest of the development from a safe distance. By the time Negaduck attacks a residence in the suburbs, the crimebots are advanced enough to be trusted by the city to handle the situation. For Darkwing Duck the event is demoralizing and evidence he's become superfluous. Along with SHUSH closing shop due to Quackwerks, thereby leaving Darkwing without paycheck, it is enough to make him retire and get a job at Quackerwerks. Drake comes to work in the Quackwerks Corporation Headquarters as data accounts networking officer in employee group 421 alongside Elmo Sputterspark, with whom he shares a cube. A year into being a run-of-the-mill employee, he partakes in a mandatory presentation about the latest crimebot upgrade and disrupts it with a miniature meltdown about Quackwerks's omnipresent control that makes the crimebots unnecessary to begin with. He is removed from the presentation and minutes later is back to the work waiting for him. He is to finish a report on Quackwerks's furniture, nail clipper, and lima bean earnings that is due in two hours, but Drake daydreams the time away on memories of his heroic feats of yesteryear. He misses the deadline and his boss sends him away angrily when closing time arrives. At home, Gosalyn welcomes him while Honker illegally downloads some music. Their peace ends when the newly upgraded crimebots break in to arrest Honker and take him to the Quackwerks Detention Camp for an indefinite time of incarceration. Drake defends him in vain and considers his options when Gosalyn hands him his Darkwing Duck costume to investigate Quackwerks personally. Meanwhile, Elmo is having an odd day too, missing his bus due to a memo from the toy department, which is the work of Quackerjack. Elmo is abducted from the bus stop by his former Fearsome Five colleagues who are tired of working for Quackwerks and are teaming up once more to get revenge on the company.
As the reunited Fearsome Four enjoy themselves by blowing up the Quackwerks Toy Warehouse and Clint Wacky's Wacky Wonders and destroying four crimebots, Honker is taken from the detention camp to a special facility and Darkwing infiltrates the Quackwerks building. He makes his way to his own cube to use the internal Quackwerks Search system to discover who the founder of the megacorporation is. To his surprise, the result claims that there is no true founder and that Quackwerks is the creation of like-minded citizens who came together to improve the community. Darkwing is startled out of his detective work by a man who mistakes him for the loung singer hired for Maury Thwackstein's retirement party. Darkwing plays along and thus comes into contact with Thwackstein, who happens to be both one of the first employees and one of the original designers of the crimebots. He remembers Darkwing as a reliable hero and gives him the security code to investigate the crimebot factory. Darkwing has to fight his way past guard dogs and guard flamingos, but he reaches the hub. The complex is far greater than he ever imagined and it takes only seconds for the assembled crimebots to detect the intruder. Fortunately for Darkwing, Launchpad and Gosalyn burst through the roof with the Thunderquack to save him. As the three make their escape, they are spotted by the Fearsome Four. The villains give chase in their own vehicle, and a large number of crimebots give chase to both on account of illegal use of the air, which is the intellectual property of Quackwerks. At this time, Honker is strapped to a chair and forced to recite the entire dictionary in front of a box containing the Gizmosuit. Not a single reaction from the suit follows and when the CEO notices the Thunderquack on the security cameras, he simply releases Honker to personally see to the outliers' capture and punishment. All seven are taken captive and learn for the first time the CEO of the Quackwerks Corporation is none other than Taurus Bulba. As he makes a few snide remarks about costumed fools and real power, Megavolt's mood sours exponentially until a charge breaks free that hits Bulba and liberates the captives. They join up to attack the cybernetic powerhouse, but he easily corners the Fearsome Four and pitfalls them off the HR-Bot for employee evaluation. Darkwing and Launchpad get the drop on him and punch him through some electronics, eliciting a cry of "Keen Gear!" from Gosalyn. Their action also causes a biopic titled Cyber Like Me: The Ballad of Taurus Bulba to play on a nearby screen, cueing the heroes on in on the origins and true purpose of Quackwerks. When the biopic finishes, the Gizmosuit zooms into the room and attaches to Gosalyn; Gearloose one-upped Bulba by making the new codeword two words: "keen gear". Bulba's consciousness takes residence in an even more powerful robot kept in the back and attacks the trio. Launchpad rushes past some guard dogs riding guard flamingos to get to the Thunderquack while Gosmoduck and Darkwing keep Bulba busy. The struggle leads to Bulba and Darkwing plummeting out of Quackwerks Satellite One down to the streets of St. Canard. Darkwing is caught timely by the Thunderquack, but Bulba hits the concrete. He's still functional and activates the nanotechnology weaponry installed in the Quackwerks building as a final take-that. Gosalyn uses the Gizmosuit to override the order and Bulba, as well as the chaos he's brought, disappears. In the following days, the government concludes that Quackwerks is too big to fail and hires Scrooge McDuck to oversee a restructuring of the company to make it fit a fair future. He personally arranges for the company to get out of the police and prison businesses and to invest in the return of healthy market competition in St. Canard. Hereafter, he makes Launchpad the new CEO.
Some days go by and St. Canard slowly returns to being the city of old. The crimebots are reprogrammed for other jobs with their old coding updated but dormant underneath in case an emergency ever requires the backup of a small army. Launchpad is doing well as CEO and comes across some interesting files while cleaning out the skeletons in Quackwerks's closet. One such file describes the brainwashing of a witch, Morgana Macawber, as a security measure. With the overly elaborate Quackwerks's camera system, he finds her and has her brought to the Quackwerks building in hopes Darkwing can get through to her. They also find Archie, Eek and Squeak in the Quackwerks Vaults and after a long time of talking Morgana indeed regains herself. The reunion is shortly enjoyed due to Darkwing being blamed for a crimewave perpetrated by several lookalikes. To clear his name, Darkwing has Launchpad use his influence as CEO of Quackwerks to announce a performance on Tuesday 17:00 on Audubon Bay Bridge where he will get rid of the evil. Things don't go according to plan and before long St. Canard is overrun by "Darkwings". This qualifies as an emergency and Launchpad calls upon the crimebots, renamed herobots, to deal with the assault. They do a great job capturing "Darkwings" and rescuing civilians, but Gosmoduck has to shortcircuit a unit of them when they overzealously target her father. The "Darkwing" crisis is averted and life goes back to normal. Quackerjack returns with a scheme to turn all players of World of Whifflecraft into toys and during the investigation Darkwing meets Claire, Quackerjack's girlfriend from the Quackwerks days. She relays what harm being part of the company did to Quackerjack and convinces Darkwing to take pity and offer him a way out. Another Quackwerks consequence merges shortly thereafter. To restore their power of old, High Command decides that summoning Duckthulhu is a good idea. As Darkwing becomes trapped in their machinations, Morgana visits Launchpad in his office to formulate a plan of action. Although the day is saved once more, Morgana goes missing and Darkwing gets the idea to run for mayor to do a better job at crimefighting and have the resources to search for her. However, the population goes crazy over the idea of Launchpad, who's already showed leadership qualities as CEO, becoming mayor. Launchpad goes with the people's wish and becomes a candidate with the intent to spare Darkwing from overworking himself. As Quackwerks owns the St. Canard Tower, it is easy to make his face visible everywhere in the city. That he wins the mayoral election is barely a surprise, nor that it takes him five minutes to march St. Canard into chaos. He promises to use Quackwerks's resources to fix the mess he's created, which draws the ire of Scrooge McDuck. He resolves to pay his former employee a visit and brings along Huey, Dewey and Louie and Webby.
Upon Dewey's question why Quackwerks matters to Scrooge at all, he explains that he's using the company to store valuable assets that he can't keep himself due to the disappearance of Fenton Crackshell. Fenton's been secretly abducted a year prior by Magica De Spell for a scheme that is currently set in motion. With the aid of the Phantom Blot and several other villains, Magica unleashes the ink on St. Canard. She and her allies take up residence in the transformed Quackwerks HQ from where they can keep track of all the happenings within the city limits and which Magica knows will draw Scrooge's attention. Scrooge's and Darkwing's teams realize this and while the others try to locate the ink bassin, Scrooge, Darkwing, Gyro, and Little Helper infiltrate Quackwerks HQ to get answers on what's going on. Darkwing gets them in by swinging straight to a window office, but they are awaited by the ink-powered Fearsome Four. Scrooge reasons that if Magica enjoys her home in Mt. Vesuvius home, she'll have taken up residence in a penthouse office and leads the team back outside to climb their way up using the vines covering the walls. These vines turn out to belong to Bushroot, requiring quick action from Darkwing. After some more climbing, the group takes a break on a floor that coincidentally is Drake Mallard's old office. It's there they find Fenton, but also all of their enemies involved in this scheme. Against the odds, Fenton is freed and the group escapes the building. After reuniting with the other group, Scrooge calls for a strategical retreat to Duckburg. Magica orders for her allies to follow them and transfer the ink, thereby letting go of the city and Quackwerks with it.
Joe Books comics
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