Back in 1990, there was no cable TV and hence no Cartoon Network. I did not have the luxury of 24-hours of Centurions or Swat Kats. All I had was Sunday. It was the day, more like the hour of cartoons on Doordarshan and like all other kids, I waited for it through the week. This was 1 hour of pure adventure. Death-defying, high-octane, action of Ducktales and Talespin. I loved watching it and would not miss it for anything. As Cartoon Network started, the sunset on Ducktales and Talespin.
DuckTales was originally aired in 1987 and saw massive success. Disney went on to produce more adventure driven shows such as Chip n Dale, TaleSpin and a spin-off series called Darkwing Duck.
It reached iconic status spawning comic adaptations, feature film, toys, video games and a reboot.
So we cut to 2017, Disney decided to reboot Ducktales and this got me really excited. I was keen to see what the new DuckTales would look like and there were so many questions in my mind. What would Scrooge, Uncle Donald, & the triplets sound like? Will I get to see little Webby? Will Gyro & Launchpad be there? What about Glomgold and Gizmoduck?
I am happy to say that Ducktales is a brilliant reboot that preserves all the best things from the original and throws up of extra as well.
The new Ducktales starts off from the very beginning when the kids meet Uncle Scrooge for the first time. What the new DuckTales does brilliantly is it preserves a lot of the nostalgia. Launchpad still crashes everything, Gyro still invents weird stuff, Flinthart Glomgold still wants to become the wealthiest duck and Magica still wants revenge. I loved it then, and I loved it this time around as well.
Though, what I loved, even more, is how the reboot develops its lead characters. There is individuality to each of the triplets as each of them gets a personality of his own. So, Huey is sharp and intelligent, Duey is great at adventurous and fearless and Luey loves money and wealth. We also get to know a lot more about Uncle Scrooge and his past along with his relation to Mrs Beakly, to Donald and his twin sis Della Duck and also to his parents (who are still alive). All the support cast are there as well, like Launchpad, Gyro, Gladstone along with the nemesis Magica and The Beagle Boys.
The show stealer, however, is little Webby who turns out to be the biggest surprise of the season. She is no longer the timid little girl but the exact opposite and her character is such a joy to watch. Webby is fearless, loving, adventurous, and obsessed about Scrooge McDuck. She is brilliantly voiced by Kate Micucci and is a complete delight.
The season comprises of half-hour episodes that have 2 major themes running across. Though there are episodes which are an exception to this. The two big plot themes of the season revolve around the mother of the triplets, Della Duck, and a mysterious new character, Lena. Apart from this, there is also the Gizmoduck plot that runs across 2-3 episodes but not in a continuous manner. One of my favourite moments from the season is from episode 20 that throws up a huge surprise.
On one of their adventures, Scrooge, and the gang encounters none other than Don Karnage from Talespin. The entire episode is pure nostalgia and super fun
There are many other nostalgic moments spread across the season. Magica is back as always and her evil laugh is so damn nostalgic. There is a scene where Magica puts a spell on Webby and she turns into a stuffed doll but one resembling the old webby from the previous Ducktales. This comes as such an unexpected surprise and people may miss it as well. Other moments include dialogues like “Aaye Aaye Mr McDee” by Launchpad to “I am Gizmoduck”.
But my reminiscence peaks every time I hear the iconic title song. I actually start humming and jumping with joy as soon as I hear the song, it is just that powerful.
The animation is totally fresh but different, so people who have seen the original may take a few episodes to break into it. Disney has cleverly mixed original stories with some new ones and even the old stories have a fresh take. So unless you have just seen the old series recently, you will not be able to recognize the storylines that have been done before.
The show ends on a high, culminating both the key storylines, Della Duck and Magic De Spell, across the final 3 episodes. The finale is entertaining and a fitting end to a great season. All the major characters come together to take on an old foe and in doing so, put aside their individual issues. It is not the most emotionally charged finale but does the job well enough. Stay tuned till the very end to get a glimpse of what could be not just the biggest reveal of the season but also a major theme for the next season as well.
Ducktales is a fabulous show which further strengthens the legacy of the franchise.
It is a show which is extremely nostalgic for people like me. So everyone who has seen and loved the original, watch it once for old times sake. It has something for everyone and especially for the kids. Each episode teaches you something new, from the importance of family to being there for your siblings. It is a show that I cannot rate without being biased. But then again, I love it a lot. How can I not, It’s DuckTales…Wohoooo!