You know Duck Tales has been revived, right? The first episode was pretty darn awesome, so I decided the original needed some revisiting.
(Original Air Date: September 21st, 1987)
We jump right in on Magica DeSpell, who kind of looks like a duck version of Morticia Adams, wanting to steal Scrooge’s Number One Dime, which she believes will give her the power to take over the world.
She’s accompanied by her bird, who apparently was once a man…?
Scratch that, he’s her brother. So wouldn’t that make him a duck, and not a man? I’m confused on how this universe works, but I’m confused on how any universe with humanoid animals and regular animals co-existing works. At least he gets to keep his hat. She tells her Bro-bird (whose name is Poe, apparently.) that once she gets the Dime she’ll turn him back to normal after she melts it down and takes over the world. I wouldn’t believe her. Just saying.
To steal the Dime, she breaks the Beagle Boys (Bigtime, Burger and Bouncy) out of jail where they were serving life sentences, probably thanks to the three strikes rule. They’re only in if they can go after Scrooge’s money too. She’s cool with that, because as someone who’s relying on incompetent and obvious morons to see her plan to fruition, she’s not so great at thinking things through.
Back at McDuck Manor, Scrooge is expecting a reporter who’s going to write a story about how awesome he is. The boys harass him for money to go to the movies…then popcorn…and then attempt to get new bikes out of him.
Back to Magica, she turns the Beagle Boys into Huey, Dewey and Louie, but warns them mirrors will reveal their true selves. No one seems surprised when the trio of mini Ducks shows up seconds after they were supposedly going to the movies. Or when they sound exactly like the Beagle Boys. Did Magica use polyjuice potion? Mrs. Beakley actually chalks up their different voices to puberty. Because puberty not only deepens the tone of your voice, but adds a shady Brooklyn accent as well.
Beakley tells them to change clothes for the reporter’s arrival, then gets pissed when they don’t listen.
Although the disguised Beagle Boys are so stupid they continue to call each other by their real names, Beakley chalks up their “bad language” to the twenty second movie they just saw. At least until she sees their reflection in the mirror.
The Beagle Boys wreck poor Webby’s doll for kicks before they get back down to the business of breaking into Scrooge’s floor safe. Which seems like a pretty terrible place for a safe.
The reporter, who pronounces all her R’s like W’s, arrives, and is welcomed into the house by Scrooge.
The interview gets off to a bad start when Beakley comes in raving about how the nephews are really the Beagle Boys in disguise. Scrooge thinks she’s been hitting the bottle again, but it doesn’t help that Webby’s wailing that the boys broke her doll.
In an effort to redirect the reporter away from the crazed help, Scrooge takes her to his study to see where the magic happens. The money magic, of course. Too bad the safe the Beagle Boys were breaking into falls through the floor with a big crash. I told you that was a terrible place for a safe. Were they trying to open it by jumping on it?
Scrooge redirects the reporter away from the study and then heads upstairs, rolling up his sleeves like he’s going to beat those kids more than Beakley could ever dream. You kids are grounded!
Grounded until the reporter is gone!
Really? That’s it? They dropped a safe through your floor. I think that warrants at least a month.
Locked in a child’s bedroom, the Beagle Boys beg Magica for help. She should have seen this coming. Turning herself into Mrs. Beakley, which she probably should have done in the first place, she waltzes into the house like she owns the joint and frees them.
The real Huey, Dewey and Louie return from seeing some Invasion of the Body Snatchers rip-off to find the real Mrs. Beakley still on her monster rant. Scrooge then orders the grounded boys back to their room.
They are understandably confused.
They are even more confused when they return to their room, only be told by Magica/Beakley that they should be trying to help her find the Number One Dime.
Where are the Beagle Boys then? Surely they’re hard at work breaking into that safe they already successfully dislodged from the floor.
Yeah, no. One’s raiding the refrigerator.
Scrooge confronts Fake!Huey about this, and he whines that he hasn’t had lunch. Not having had lunch is a bigger problem than smashing the safe through the floor, so Scrooge demands answers from Magica/Beakley about it. He doesn’t demand enough answers about her accent though. Just make the boys lunch, slave. Maybe that’ll improve their suddenly erratic behavior. Boys will be boys!
Magica/Beakley serves the real boys some lunch all right. Who doesn’t want sickly-green soup that has a face and tentacles that reach up to swipe your crackers? Yum!
At least she bothered to include crackers. That was a nice touch.
For some reason, this food has the boys convinced that Beakley has been body snatched. I guess they’re not accustomed to sentient food living in the lap of luxury.
The reporter is still hanging around because no one has forced her out the door for some reason. Not only has she been allowed to remain with all this craziness going on, but she’s been permitted to roam the house at will. The butler can’t keep an eye on her? He was there to open the door!
The reporter attempts to pump Magica/Beakley for the real scoop on what Scrooge is like. “He is a fool,” Magica/Beakley scoffs, before casually mentioning she sprung the nephews from jail.
The reporter eats that shit up. Scrooge is on his way to becoming tabloid fodder even before the real Dewey and Louie rush in and tell her Mrs. Beakley’s been body snatched. Then they run into Fake!Huey who’s still stuffing his face and proclaim him an alien, tackling him to the ground.
Where’s real Huey in all of this? Well, he’s checking out the basement, where he discovers Magica/Beakley rummaging through random basement trash. She thinks Scrooge keeps his Number One Dime there? Really? It’s more likely he keeps it in a Mt. Rushmore-like mountain featuring his face like Richie Rich’s parents. I’m doubting your cognitive abilities, Magica. First you hired the Beagle Boys, now you’re convinced Scrooge has his most prized possession hidden under some rags any of his servants could paw through? Think things through.
She’s definitely not thinking things through actually, because she rattles off the whole plan to Real!Huey, thinking he’s a Beagle Boy. Disturbed, Huey slowly backs away only to run into the real Mrs. Beakley in the kitchen. Time to scream and run away again! The reporter probably sees him, because I bet she’s still in the foyer snooping through Scrooge’s mail to see if he subscribes to Play Duck.
Time for the two Mrs. B’s to meet face to face.
Before the real one can freak out too much and probably draw the attention of that lurking reporter, Magica uses her magical powers to make her faint. Would have been way more fun to turn her into the reporter and see how that turned out, but oh well.
The two Beagle Boys masquerading as Dewey and Louie are doing what they do best: trashing Scrooge’s library looking for the Dime. They’ve probably never seen a real live book before. They had no hope of finding anything in this giant house, but luckily for them the real Huey runs in with the Dime he’s trying to protect, and mistakes those fools for his bros.
Magica now has everything she’s ever wanted: the coin that will let her take over the world.
Because their collective IQ is under a hundred, none of them realize Huey isn’t a Beagle Boy and they take both him and a kidnapped Beakley with them as they flee the joint.
Know who still hasn’t fled the joint? The reporter, who Scrooge is now trying to convince that today hasn’t been “normal”. Normal? I guess a children’s TV show can’t exactly call a shit show what it is.
Things get somehow worse for our wealthy duck friend when he finds that Dewey and Louie have tied up Fake!Huey in their bedroom. The pair try to explain to their uncle that he’s an alien, but Scrooge doesn’t believe them, of course, and starts to untie him.
The boys try and stop him when that reporter just opens the door to a private room in a house she probably should have left awhile ago.
Scrooge makes this awkward situation infinitely more so by trying to convince this lady they just love to play “cowboys and Indians”…and then proceeds to demonstrate the most super stereotypical Native American dance you can possibly imagine. Somehow she doesn’t take a picture. Everybody sucks at their job.
Meanwhile, on Magcia’s badass plane, she turns the complaining Beagle Boys back into themselves. Unfortunately the Beagle Boy still with the ducks…
…also turns back, leading to that awkward photo. The dumbass immediately gives up the whole Dime plan, so Scrooge rushes off to his waiting helicopter to save the day. The reporter tries to come along by grabbing the bottom of the helicopter, because she has a death wish. (Or perhaps training for the Shinra Olympics…?)
Back at Magica’s hideout, Huey and Mrs. B have been tied up, but luckily Huey learned how to escape in Junior Woodchucks. That’s a useful skill for rich kids, I guess. Alongside which spoon you use for caviar and how to name drop your dad to get out of a speeding ticket in your Mercedes.
Mrs. Beakley still thinks he’s a Beagle Boy and freaks out. Pretty sure she’s going to need therapy after all this. Too bad Scrooge doesn’t provide his employees with a health plan and locks all his medicine cabinets.
As Magica prepares to melt the coveted Dime, Huey dumps spell dust on her head that only gives her crazy hair, but turns a pursuing Beagle Boy into a bull, and then Huey himself into a chick. How random is this stuff? Maybe don’t make more, it seems extremely unstable. The best part is when the dust turns Magica into a bird like her bro.
During all this madness, which makes all the hi-jinks at McDuck Manor earlier seem like high tea with the Queen in retrospect, Mrs. Beakley flips through a spell book attempting to change them back while potions continue to fly everywhere. Magica manages to turn back into herself and regain control. How do her powers work exactly? Why couldn’t she turn herself back faster? Does she need that shady dust to do magic at all?
Magica’s advantage doesn’t last for long, because Scrooge shows up with the freaking reporter he just can’t seem to shake. You might want to consider a restraining order at this point.
I’ll hand over the real Dime if you hand Huey over, he promises Magica.
You never had the real one, he tells her, because I don’t keep it where anyone could just grab it. Not thinking things through, as is her way, Magica agrees, and after some curious fumbling of the coin, Huey returns to his family.
Back in the helicopter, which has room for three adults and three kids apparently, the parasitic reporter gushes about what a great story it will be, a millionaire giving up his prized possession to save his family. Forget all the stuff with magic, mistaken identity, and criminals broken out of jail, just focus on the coin thing, that’s far and away the most interesting part of the story.
Scrooge: Yeah, no. I switched the coins. Didn’t get rich by being stupid!
Look, I know you think the coin is the source of all your luck or whatever, but maybe leading the public to believe you don’t have it will cut down on a lot of the grief you’re going to experience in the future. Also the public would really eat up the whole millionaire with a heart angle, more than crafty millionaire covets ten cents and laughs all the way back to the helicopter pad behind his mansion.
That phony Dime doesn’t work out so hot for Magica, whose spell backfires, practically exploding her hideout. She vows revenge and maintains that she’ll rule the world one day.
Seriously, what the hell is that Number One Dime made of? Or maybe Magcia just really sucks at magic. Leaning toward that one.
The episode ends with everyone (yes, even the fucking reporter) exclaiming, “She gets so carried away! HAHAHAHAHAHA!”
If anyone glanced back they probably would assume she’s burning to death. But they’re still laughing.
Wait a second…if Scrooge can be his own pilot, why the hell does he need Launchpad?