Category: matt youngberg

joedrawsstuff: Here’s the poster I made when proposing a…

joedrawsstuff:

Here’s the poster I made when proposing a Ducktales reboot back in 2013. Not the final style I was going for, but was a start. The big idea I wanted was to bring Donald back into the mix and make the story surrounding Scrooge based off of Don Rosa’s work. They wanted a different angle with the nephews as the leads. This is when we parted ways.

For those of you who are becoming as disenchanted with DuckTales 2017 as I am, here’s what’s really going on. Wouldn’t you rather see Joe Pitt’s show than the one we’re getting?

Leave it to Gladstone Gander to help this series feel like…

Leave it to Gladstone Gander to help this series feel like DuckTales again! Everything felt and played right about “The House of the Lucky Gander!,” including how the ensemble behaved and interacted. As a fan, this is how I envisioned the series playing out when they first announced it: Scrooge, Donald, the Boys, Webby, and Launchpad as the constants with the other characters making regular appearances.

And Launchpad! Such a change from “Terror of the Terra-firmians!” I prefer this take on Launchpad to the one we’ve seen in previous episodes. He can be goofy and boneheaded, but he’s, above all, a brave adventurer who is the epitome of everything the DuckTales theme song promises.

I also applaud the writers for coming up with a genuinely unique and original Gladstone Gander story. Paul F. Tompkins was a treat as Gladstone. I’ve always enjoyed Rob Paulsen’s take in the two episodes Gladstone appeared in in the original series, and Tompkins was a worthy successor, capturing how Gladstone can be both charming and annoying and a bit of a jerk. That’s not an easy balance to portray. I look forward to seeing more of him!

Going forward, I hope “The House of the Lucky Gander!” represents more of what we’ll see than the episodes after “Woo-oo!” did. While those episodes were enjoyable, they just didn’t feel like DuckTales or the Duck comics. “The House of the Lucky Gander!” felt like both…

Passing on “Terror”I don’t see DuckTales until the day after it airs, given the…

Passing on “Terror”

I don’t see DuckTales until the day after it airs, given the fact that I’m a cord-cutter and receive the series via an Amazon Prime Season Pass.

Word on the Web is that “Terror of the Terra-Firmians!” is yet another episode of “The Webby Show” featuring Huey, Dewey, and Louie with cameos by a character who’s named Launchpad but acts too stupid and one-note to actually be Launchpad and a character named Mrs. Beakley who lacks any warmth or maternal instincts, is stereotypically British, and instead acts like she’s an undercover agent.

Apparently, a few characters named Donald and Scrooge are referenced (or not), but are nowhere to be found in this episode, even though this episode uses characters from one of the most famous Uncle Scrooge stories and DuckTales episodes ever.

I think I’ve lost any interest I had in watching “Terror.” Hearing Ben Schwartz, Danny Pudi, Bobby Moynihan, and Kate Micucci scream their lines at me for 22 minutes isn’t my idea of a good time. I think I may watch the original “Earth Quack” episode and read the original Barks story instead.

Everyone is blaming the episode order for the wonkiness of the last few DT episodes, but it’s starting to sound more like a lame excuse with each passing week. Maybe I’ll wait until the entire season has been released to see it how it was meant to be seen. Maybe I’ll resume watching it in a few weeks when I have more than one episode to choose from. Who knows.

DuckTales 2017, a.k.a., “The a Webby Show,” is an ensemble show whose characters never assemble.

What a disappointment this series is turning out to be…

General Gripes About the Last Three DuckTales Episodes A common Disney PR talking point over the…

General Gripes About the Last Three DuckTales Episodes

A common Disney PR talking point over the last year has been that the original DuckTales series never did anything with Webby. It’s not true, of course, but that hasn’t stopped said talking point from being parroted all over the media.

It’s quite possible the new series is doing too much with her.

Frank Angones says the scheduling of the episodes has been wonky, especially in light of the production order. I can believe this, but the last three episodes, while enjoyable, have been frustrating.

Scrooge has not really seemed like Scrooge and has been barely there. In fact, he seems downright delinquent as a businessman and an uncle. This is not the aggressive, Type-A Scrooge who’s been that way across many iterations since Barks first created him. No wonder The Vultures keep complaining about declining profits. They’re actually correct!

The Scrooge of old wouldn’t have had to be told this! He would have been in his Worry Room hashing out a solution. Also: Since when has Scrooge allowed other people to make decisions for him? If he liked Lil’ Bulb, he would authorize its development, The Vultures be damned!

Donald is hardly around. Oh, sure, he battled the Beagle Boys in “Day Trip of Doom!” But…since then?

Launchpad has yet to come off as the complex character he was in DT ‘87. So far, this LP has been incredibly one-note and lacks the charm of Terry McGovern’s LP. And he’s barely there.

The new voice of the Beagle Boys, Eric Bauza, makes them all sound alike or have only passing variations on that same voice. Chuck McCann went out of his way to distinguish between the Beagles and their voices. Their voices were fun, too. The new voices are just…gruff.

We can’t have the original Burger and his love of food because that’s fat-shaming, but we can have the Ugly Failures?

Don’t get me wrong. I like the series and have enjoyed many parts of it (Ma Beagle most of all; the Glam Yankees; Beakley and Donald’s interaction; madcap genius Gyro; Quackfaster).

But look back at the first syndicated episode of the original series, “Send in the Clones.” Not only did that ep juggle a huge ensemble, but it gave them all significant beats to play. In fact, look at the following four episodes from that first week of DT (“Sphinx for the Memories,” “Where No Duck Has Gone Before,” “Armstrong,” “Robot Robbers”). All ensemble adventure pieces. All with Scrooge at the forefront of the action. All with major character beats for the core cast.

So far, DT 2017 feels tonally disjointed and adrift. In many ways, it’s starting to feel like Quack Pack 2.0 (with Webby; lots and lots of Webby).

And I can’t help but wonder if the decision to make HD&L so distinct hasn’t damaged a core element of DuckTales and the Duck Family as a whole. With the boys being so distinct, it seems we’ve lost the endearing rapport they had and are supposed to have with both Scrooge and Donald…

unclescrooge: queenbean03: Updated DuckTales schedule “The Beagle Birthday Massacre!” September…

unclescrooge:

queenbean03:

Updated DuckTales schedule

  1. “The Beagle Birthday Massacre!” September 30, 2017
  2. “Escape To; From Atlantis!” October 3, 2017
  3. “The Tunnel of Terra (firmians)!” October 7, 2017
  4. “The Infernal Internship of Mark Beaks!” October 14, 2017
  5. “The House of the Lucky Gander!” October 21, 2017
  6. “The Living Mummies of Toth-Ra!” October 28, 2017

((Wait they’re going to Atlantis AGAIN?!?))

There’s not a single episode in this batch that doesn’t intrigue me. Looking forward to going to Terry Fermy again. “Earth Quack” (the TV episode) and “Land Beneath the Ground!” (the Carl Barks story) are among my favorite duck tales…

Here’s an amazing clip from one of today’s DuckTales…

Here’s an amazing clip from one of today’s DuckTales episodes…

It feels so good to write “today’s DuckTales”…

Ma Beagle! Margo Martindale! Ma Beagle!! Margo Martindale!! Ma…

Ma Beagle! Margo Martindale! Ma Beagle!! Margo Martindale!! Ma Martindale!!! Margo Beagle!!!

disneytva: Everyone knows it takes YEARS of practice to…

disneytva:

Everyone knows it takes YEARS of practice to master the Money Bin jump!

One of my favorite promo spots so far. Out of the three nephews, I think Louie intrigues me the most. His potential character arc seems to be unpredictable and the limited interactions that he’s had with Scrooge are interesting in that he’s not eager to please his great-uncle like Huey and Dewey are. In fact, his interest in being descended from a McDuck is borderline mercenary.

He is the evil triplet, after all…

Well, look what we have here. Thank you, Disney XD! A…

Well, look what we have here. Thank you, Disney XD! A multiplujillion, nine obsquatumatillion, six hundred twenty-three dollars and sixty-two cents worth of Woo-Oos for your unScroogelike generosity!

Please share this widely as well…

In about 15 minutes, five-year-old me will meet 35-year-old me….

In about 15 minutes, five-year-old me will meet 35-year-old me. I think we’re going to get along swimmingly…

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INITIAL THOUGHTS (to be updated as I form more initial thoughts):

These two premiere episodes answered most of my “concerns” (and I use that word loosely) about a new version of DuckTales. While the show echoes classic DT and the Barks/Rosa stories, it stands on its own and is developing these characters in its own unique direction. And they’re doing it without sacrificing the essence of who these characters are at their core.

For example, all of the elements of the new Mrs. Beakley were present in the classic Mrs. Beakley and vice versa. She could be daring in classic DT (see the first season episodes “Maid of the Myth” and “Cold Duck” as examples). However, classic DT chose to emphasize the grandmotherly aspect of Beakley more than the adventurous side because that aspect of her character better-suited the needs of the series, and DT 2017 is taking the opposite approach because an adventurous Beakley suits its needs better. Yet both are valid because it’s still the same character.

Same for Webby. The Webby we see in this show was present in the old show. Contrary to what some of the reviewers have been saying, Webby went on many adventures and was incredibly brave and daring in classic DT. She now has the opportunity to develop that aspect of her character in this new series even further. As for the nephews, they’re only a few shades different from Russi Taylor’s take on the nephews, and this is to be expected, because they’re being played as older–more adolescent than pre-adolescent.

In other words, the comparisons that the entertainment media have been making regarding classic DT vs. new DT are rather ludicrous now that I’ve seen the show for myself. As Frank Angones told us time and time again, every creative choice they’ve made has a story-based motivation behind it. And these creative choices were necessary to set this show apart from its predecessors and counterparts, both on screen and in print. The good news? These choices work.

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The stand-out character for me in the premiere was Donald. I’ve never seen this version of Donald on-screen before. Tony Anselmo really rose to the challenge of playing shades of Donald that he may never have been asked to play before, one that actually seems rooted in the Carl Barks 10-pagers that focused on Donald as parent and Everyman.

Understand: I love everything that Donald has ever been in. I’m a huge fan of the shorts, the Navy Donald from classic DT, “Quack Pack” Donald, etc. But Barks’ Donald is my favorite, especially when he’s exploring Donald’s humanity. The character is never more intriguing. I’ve been waiting for years to see the Barks Donald brought to 2D life.

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I see where they’re going with the theme of family. It’s remarkable, because Disney has always presented a progressive idea of family. In the comics, however, Donald is the steady adult in the boys’ lives. At the end of the premiere, Scrooge and Donald basically agree to co-parent the lads. That’s a step beyond what we’ve seen before. I look forward to seeing how this arrangement develops and how Scrooge impacts each nephew individually. Louie obviously needs to be taught about honesty and hard work. Huey has to be taught how to use his knowledge astutely. And Dewey could use a few lessons in curtailing his adventurous impulses.

******

Glomgold is hilarious. Keith Ferguson carries on Hal Smith’s characterization in classic DT nicely while giving it a fun twist. This Glomgold seems as if he’s stepped right out of our world of celebrity (and political) CEOs.

******

Finally, I’m relieved that they balance the adventure and the comedy evenly. I was concerned too much of an emphasis would be placed on humor. The Ducks, whether on TV or in the comics, have always used humor organically. It’s the sly side remark, the throwaway gag, etc. The humor aids and abets the plot; it doesn’t get in its way. These two episodes continued that approach.

******

A sentimental note: DuckTales was the first TV show I loved, and in some ways, it’s the only TV show I’ve ever loved to the point that I can watch it on repeat. Most shows I’m cool with only seeing once and moving on. Not classic DT. I’ve seen each episode dozens of times, if not hundreds. It’s been present in my life for 30 years. That show (and the radio series “Adventures in Odyssey”) opened up my world to some of the greatest storytelling in history. I discovered Carl Barks, classic television, some of the greatest actors ever, history/literature/science, etc., not because of school but because talking Ducks and those who made them talk cared enough to create stories and characters that were interesting and intelligent and exciting.

As for DT 2017, when the premiere episodes finished this morning, I felt the same way I did back in 1987. I wanted to see more. And I wanted to watch these two episodes again and again (thanks to the Disney marketing machine, I can). That, to me, is the greatest sign of success for DT 2017.

I hope there are five-year-olds watching this premiere today whose worlds are about to be opened to some of the best characters and stories they’ll ever encounter in their lives…