This DuckTales review contains spoilers.
DuckTales Episode 22
So was anyone else reminded of Fantasia while watching this episode?
It’s pretty much summed up in that moment of Scrooge tiptoeing behind Dewey. It’s a great bit of animation that’s perfectly timed to the music. It was like the best moments of Fantasia that was so perfectly animated to the music they were given.
I know I gush every week about the DuckTales animation team but here they really went above and beyond. Cleverly on writer Frank Angones’ part much of the episode takes place in one location, letting the animation team focus solely on our main cast of characters. Without much big action the characters faces and bodies get a new level of nuance that are essential for the biggest bomb drop of the series so far.
We find out what happened to Della.
I’m going to continue the Fantasia comparisons for a bit because this episode moved me in ways that film did. It conjured up images of fear, hope, anger, and loss. The music, beautifully done by Dominic Lewis, pulled at my heartstrings.
It’s the kind of episode that can only be accomplished after this much pay off and it wasn’t a disappointment. The Spear of Selene was a space ship. It’s the kind of twist that seems totally out of left field but it works.
What happens when you’ve explored the whole world? Well you either go all SeaQuest and explore the ocean (which I bet Della did) or you go to space. It hints at a grander universe (literally and figuratively) DuckTales could travel to but that isn’t important right now. Della loved adventure. Perhaps too much it seems.
While everyone is so quick to blame Scrooge for her disappearance, deep down I bet Scrooge knows what really happened. Della couldn’t give up adventuring even if it would have consequences for her future family.
It speaks a lot to Donald. Donald seemingly loved all those adventures to but he knew what was important. He had to take care of his kids and he had to keep them safe. I’m sure Della would have loved her children and I know she loved Donald… But sometimes you can love someone more than anyone but not anything.
Her first and most important love was adventure. It directly parallels Scrooge’s focus on the accumulation of wealthAs we saw in “The Golden Lagoon of White Agony Plains!”, Scrooge loves money but there’s a dichotomy within him that’s pitting that love of money against his emotional needs.
Perhaps Della was going through something similar. Unlike Scrooge, who’s had time around the triplets and the rest of the extended family, Della didn’t have that. She didn’t have the time to resolve the possible dichotomy between her love of adventure and the love of her family.
It’s only speculation right now but it’s the mark of a damn good show that all of that can be extrapolated from one powerhouse scene. Now the family is at a crossroads. Scrooge could tell everyone all the things he tried to do to save Della but that wouldn’t mattr at this point. The wounds are too raw. They all need a cool down period.
Like in many family arguments, logic doesn’t have a place. It’s all about feeling.
And then of course there’s Launchpad with his Darkwing Duck VHS tapes. I’m glad that even in the midst of family tension we can still get some smooth jazz in there.
This episode wonderfully used its limited setting to tell a powerful character focused episode. Shout out to director John Aoshima and the rest of the DuckTales team for their stellar work here, packing so much emotional punch into every moment.
With all respect to the amazing voice talent of the series (David Tennant killed it this episode), you could have cut the dialogue and effects and just let this run with the music. All I’m saying is that if Disney ever does Fantasia 2525 or whatever, they could do with giving the DuckTales team a crack at a sequence or two.
DuckTales Quotes To Make Your Life Better
– “You can’t outwit gravity!”
– “Junior Woodchuck rule 18. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction.”“I thought that was Newton.”“Where do you think he got it from?”“Science?”
– “What have you got there?”“Nottttt secrets!”“Literally the worst answer you could have given him.”
Shamus Kelley is a pop culture/television writer and official Power Rangers expert. Follow him on Twitter!