Launchpad McQuack first appeared as Scrooge McDuck's pilot in the DuckTales cartoon series. He later appeared in the spin-off seriesDarkwing Duck as Darkwing's sidekick. He is usually depicted as brave, good-hearted, and incredibly dim-witted. While a skillful pilot, he is very bad at landing and almost always crashes instead but, to his credit, he and his passengers always survive such crashes, and he takes a strange sort of pride in being able to crash any imaginable aircraft ("If it's got wings, I can crash it!" he has proudly proclaimed). In one episode, he has a checkbook of all the vehicles he has crashed (including a submarine). He was voiced by Terry McGovern. The character sometimes appears inWalt Disney World's Magic Kingdom and Disney's Animal Kingdom for meet-and-greets, though his appearances have been rarer since the Disney Afternoon cartoon block ended production. He was to be the original star of TaleSpin.

In DuckTales, Launchpad acted as Scrooge McDuck's personal pilot. His imposing physical stature meant that he sometimes acted as a bodyguard for Scrooge as well, though his role was later taken over by Gizmoduck. In earlier episodes, he is idolized as a hero by Huey, Dewey, and Louie's friend Doofus. In later episodes he appears less frequently. Often when a DuckTales story adapted an original Carl Barks story, Launchpad would be used as a stand-in for Donald. While Launchpad never argued with Scrooge the way Donald might, he would often end up in Donald's role as physical laborer or man of action. Launchpad was the subject of several episodes devoted to exploring his character in more detail, including one that explains how he came to work for Scrooge McDuck.

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