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…