This DUCKTALES review contains spoilers.
Sometimes it’s nice to just sit back and watch your characters have fun.
Amidst all the character development, the large cast, and the promise of an upcoming big Darkwing Duck episode, I’m glad DuckTales took the chance to just have a romp of an adventure this week. As much as fans always want every episode to be BIG and important and tell us something new about the world or the characters, we can’t have those big moments without a little time for a status quo to set in.
The Halloween episode just lets the kids run around and get into a wacky spooky adventure while the adults got into their own shenanigans. It’s great to watch these rich characters DuckTales has built up be let loose into comical situations and see how they react.
Launchpad’s plot was easily my favorite. It’s so funny because when you stop and think about it, for his ENTIRE LIFE he’s been carrying the shame and guilt of letting loose monsters all over the world! Any other character you’d question how they hadn’t heard of Halloween but not Launchpad. He’s absent minded enough to miss something blaringly obvious like a huge commercial holiday but dedicated enough to devote years to an imaginary threat. The slow realization from Della and Donald of just how far Launchpad has taken this was comedy gold… especially since they both took it completely different ways.
Donald was in mild disbelief but Della went all in! Her reaction was not only a great gag but helped to demonstrate DuckTales’ perfect balancing of comedy that’s underscored by deep feelings. Della is desperate to make this Halloween memorable for her family. On the surface this is a funny joke that leads to some of the best one-liners about trauma I’ve ever seen (not a sentence I ever thought I’d write.) Look a little deeper though and her insistence on giving her kids the perfect scary experience is her trying to make up for all the Halloweens she’s missed.
Della adores Halloween but because she was trapped on the moon she didn’t get to share it with her family. Now she’s trying to shove years of Halloween scares into one night. It’s so tragic but you don’t have time to get sad about it because the show is making you laugh so hard at how intense she’s making it. Thankfully at the end she realized she was taking it too far and Donald was able to rein her in a bit. Gotta say, I love how responsible they’ve made Donald in this show. He has a tendency to get into wacky situations but he’ll do whatever he can to protect the boys!
The kid’s plot was also fun; the twist that the monsters were actually tricking kids to steal their candy was great. Frankenstein’s analysis about why people are afraid of childish things was shockingly spot on. The conflict between Huey and Louie didn’t do much for me though. Huey telling the story about Halloween being the boys’ biggest adventure while living on the house boat was good insight into their past but it didn’t quite mesh with Louie’s desire to get all the candy. It was meant to be the big emotional climax of the episode but Huey’s fear this could be their last Halloween wasn’t communicated enough throughout the episode.
Thankfully the comedic climax of the episode quickly came after and had the plots of the kids and the adults dovetail beautifully, with the adults (except for Launchpad) unintentionally scaring the monsters. It was a fantastic sequence with jokes ricocheting back and forth.
In a world with shortened seasons for most TV shows and the need for everything to be an EVENT I’m glad DuckTales uses its large episode order to occasionally indulge in a pure romp like this. Anytime we get more Della is welcomed and Launchpad was the MVP of comedy this week. I also loved getting to see how much pride Scrooge took in getting as much candy as possible. He’s greedy as hell but at least he’ll work for it!
DuckTales Quotes To Make Your Life Better
- “With my cut I can finally open that twenty-four hour candy store I’ve been dreaming about since ten minutes ago!”
- “Candy for life!”
“Candy for death!”
“Don’t you turn my motto back on me!”
- “A Halloween they will never forget.”
“Because they will be traumatized!”
“Traumatized in the most wholesome way possible.”