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“Pearl” is a nickname for a mysterious woman who appeared as an anthropomorphic duck.
After nearly drowning in a shipwreck in the Pacific in the mid-1930's, Donald Duck woke up safe and sound on the beach of an atoll, being tended to by a mysterious blonde-haired woman with a penetrating gaze. She claimed to be a local pearl-fisher, and had, at any rate, rescued him after observing his bravery.
However, it was clear that there was more to her; not only did she know the fate of Donald's crew with certainty despite having no possible way to do so already, but once she was confident that Donald was in good health, she "went home" by diving into the sea, from which Donald did not see her reemerge. Before doing so, “Pearl” made Donald promise always to wear the same sailor suit he had on when she met him, that she might recognize him if she tried to find him again someday.
Behind the scenes
“Pearl“ appears in the 1997 comic story The Odyssey, where she remains unnamed. In 2015, comic artist Gaucelm created an illustration of the character, dubbing her “Pearl” based on her supposed occupation.
The 1997 story gives little information as to the true nature of the mysterious woman, but the title (which does not otherwise connect to very much in the plot) suggests that Pearl may be none other than the water nymph Calypso as featured in Homer's epic poem, or, failing that, a comparable supernatural figure.
She is also possibly inspired by Madison the mermaid from the 1984 movie Splash, who is a mermaid who rescued a human man from the sea, and gets human legs when she is on dry land, until she gets wet.
Pearl's hairdo is reminiscent of Ariel's from Disney's The Little Mermaid, another mermaid figure.