This DUCKTALES review contains spoilers.
Webby is pure and mostly innocent. She sees the world through big eyes and with her full heart she seemingly can’t lose. But that’s not fair to her, is it? Yes her innocent belief in everyone and everything is one of her most endearing traits (and one of DuckTales‘ as well) but that can get you in trouble if you aren’t careful. Beakley however wants to protect Webby. She sees her optimism as her strength. This could be seen as noble but, as the episode clearly shows, this isn’t fair to Webby.
It assumes Webby can’t handle the harsh truths of the world. That she’ll crumble and fall if even a hint of cynicism infiltrates her happy world. As we see that isn’t the case. Yes she’s hit with a wave of despair after learning Beakely lied to her but it’s temporary. Thanks to Louie of all people she’s able to bounce back and still retains her optimism. It’s just a little more tempered by the real world but that’s fine.
It’s great that Louie is the one who helps her get through this, not just because it’s a great reversal to see him being the more touchy feely one but because it furthers the power of family message that DuckTales is all about. You’re willing to go against your own beliefs, even for family, and that’s certainly true for Beakley as well.
We sometimes try so hard to protect the ones we love but in doing so we’re actually hurting them, even if we don’t know it. Beakley is of course in the wrong here but that doesn’t make her bad that makes her more relatable and human (or well, more duck?) Beakley has a very cynical view of the world, much like Louie actually, but desperately wants to keep Webby guarded from it. Intriguingly we get some small hints this may just be more than an overprotective grandmother. The Harp quietly reveals at the end that Beakley may in fact not be related to Webby!
Is there some larger reason why Beakley kept Webby locked in the mansion for so long? Does Webby have some sort of connection to something more powerful? Only time will tell but DuckTales masterfully planted this new seed while also revealing a lot about Beakley who’s mostly been in the background of the show. Hopefully this will be her time to step into the spotlight!
The Mervana mermaid plot was a great tie-in to the Webby story. Learning their king simply wanted to escape the harsh truths of the world felt painfully real, especially in our current social climate. Truth can be tough and running away feels easier but, as we saw with the king, it’ll hurt you over time. It was a great touch that the king ran away from his problems because he thought he had to handle them all his own. That’s such a great character beat for someone running away from responsibility. The fear of asking for help is strong but, as the episode demonstrates, is ultimately rewarding.
This episode was just chock full of great moments for the whole cast. Della and Donald going on the mission was especially wonderful, with Della’s fear of “anything with fish parts” particularly hilarious. Also her playing tic tac toe with herself and enjoying it was a good subtle callback to her time on the moon. Donald getting into the groove of peace and love and then getting set off with the truth about his chili was delightfully wacky. Dewey with his tail was just… perfect Dewey.
We also learned some more about Scrooge here. Seeing him get angry with the hippy mermaids was fun but it’s when he revealed his “truth,” that he can’t “forget the hard work of the world for some touchy feely love fest” that could be potentially revealing. He’s obsessed with how far his work has gotten him and can’t even pretend to give it up. He needs it, just like he NEEDED all those tickets last week. It’s telling this staunch view of his wealth is coming just as his family is back together. Deep inner conflict is brewing inside Scrooge and I suspect it’ll come to a head at some point this season.
This is DuckTales firing on all cylinders. Great character moments, great jokes, and some well integrated set-up for future stories. Big shout out to writer Collean Evanson, story boarders Vincent Aparo, Kristen Gish, and Victoria Harris, and director Tanner Johnson for crafting such a solid episode.
DuckTales Quotes To Make Your Life Better
-“Because I have a running tally of the number of times each of us has been offered as a sacrifice.”
“DEWEY’S ON TOP!”
“Where are those feckless flower children when you need them?”
-“Telling shiftless hippies to work hard and get a job. A harp after my own heart.”