Episode: 208 "Treasure of the Found Lamp!" 5/7/19
Starring: Scrooge McDuck, Webbigail Vanderquack, Louie Duck, Dewey Duck, and Huey Duck
Costarring: Ma Beagle, Duckworth, Selene, Charybdis, Gladstone Gander, Doofus Drake, Bentina Beakley, Mr. Drake, Mrs. Drake, Big Time, Burger, and Bouncer
Appearances by: Johnny Ottoman and Randy Ottoman
Setting: Duckburg and Ithaquack
Plot: When a mysterious figure comes calling for his lost lamp, Scrooge and Webby must distract him while the nephews attempt to track it down.
Value is subjective. What may be a priceless family heirloom to some is just a “cheap bauble” to others. Value can also meander between the material and the abstract. It’s a fluid concept that plays out through the contrasting worth Djinn and Scrooge place on the (found… lost… and then found again) Lamp of the First Genie.
Djinn doesn’t value the lamp itself for monetary or magical reasons. For Djinn, it’s purely sentimental. He cherishes his family’s history and believes that “treasure’s greatest value lies in the stories it can tell us.” The lamp symbolizes the love between his great (x7!) grandmother who found the lamp at a bazaar (how bizarre...), fell in love with its genie, and wished for his freedom so they could live a life together. For Djinn, this is the story that gives the lamp meaning.
We know Scrooge places value on items; be they monetary (money… duh) or sentimental/magical (his #1 Dime). This is why it’s curious that Scrooge has discarded so many of the treasures he’s collected through his various adventures to his Wing of Secrets (aka the McDuck Manor garage). I’d venture to guess it has something to do with the ten-year funk he fell into following the disappearance of Della. It’s such a waste to let so many cool items just collect dust in the dark - without a story, without a care.
In a bit of a throwback to the original series, Scrooge actually gleans a lesson from his experience and acts on it in a productive and meaningful way. Inspired by Djinn’s quest, Scrooge opens the Adventures Wing of the Duckburg museum which will house many of his treasures otherwise collecting dust in the aforementioned Wing of Secrets. Now, artifacts such as the famed Candy Striped Ruby** or the giant disc from the Valley of the Golden Sun*** will be on display in the aptly titled Relics from a Forgotten Time exhibit. Just like the Lamp of the First Genie, Scrooge’s treasures can now be given proper value through the sharing of their stories.
(*) In fact, we first see the Lamp of the First Genie in the Wing of Secrets all the way back in “Woo-oo,” the series’ pilot episode.
(**) A gift from the King of Rippan Taro Island. This treasure first appeared in the story “Many Happy Returns” from the series of DuckTales (2011) comic books.
(***) Of which we first saw all the way back in the pilot, “Woo-oo!” But, more famously, it’s from the epic, five-part pilot of DuckTales ‘87, “Treasure of the Golden Sun.”
The lamp gains its powers on the “eve of the Ifrit’s dawn.” An Ifrit is a supernatural creature from Arabic lore and legend.
Here’s a list of the many references to DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp (1980):
Djinn mistakes the television show, Ottoman Empire, for the real life Ottoman Empire of which ruled parts of Europe, Asia, and Africa for over six centuries from 1299 through 1924… while also trying to destroy his ancestors and steal the lamp.
At Louie’s Emporium, you can see red, green, and tangerine coloured shirts hanging in the background. While red and green have always been Huey and Louie’s respective colours, Dewey would often wear a tangerine coloured shirt in the classic shorts.
Duckworth’s demonic dragon friend is named “Francis.”
Duckworth’s vacation shirt has the same colour and pattern as Lilo’s mumu from Lilo and Stitch.
Louie, true to character, snatches a diamond from Gladstone’s ice bucket while simultaneously denying the offer and lamenting that “there’s no time for that.”
Gladstone’s new home (the blimp he received in return for trading the lamp to Doofus) features a large painting of what looks like a robed male and female duck enrapt in a passionate hug and kiss. The significance, if any, eludes me.
Doofus is such a weirdo. He forces his parents to dance to him playing the theremin for over an hour all whilst he’s wearing roller skates. Then, he reveals he’s been using the lamp as a syrup boat for his one-man-flapjack-jamboree.
In the junkyard, Djinn refers to himself as “Faris Djinn.” In Arabic, Faris translates to knight or horseman.
The only discernible beagles to make an appearance, other than Ma, are Big Time, Burger, and Bouncer.
Scrooge and Ma Beagle, scurrying up the column of garbage in a race to procure the lamp is an homage to the famous clip of Scrooge and Flintheart Glomgold making a similar climb from the DuckTales ‘87 title sequence. That scene, though, is from the episode, “Master of the Dijinni.”
Episode: 207 "Whatever Happened to Della Duck!" 3/10/19
Starring: Della Duck
Featuring: Lieutenant Penumbra and General Lunaris
Setting: The Moon
Plot: After a crash landing on the Moon, Della must learn to survive the elements of the moon.
The show does a smart thing here. Integrating Della Duck in with her family and into the story in general could prove to be difficult and awkward.* That’s why introducing Della with her own bottle episode, of sorts, where she spends the vast majority of the episode all by her lonesome doing her best version of Castaway or The Martian provides her the room to spread her wings and give her character a chance to breathe on its own.
Even smarter, the story steers away from the inevitability of reuniting with her family and, instead, launches into a Della-on-the-moon storyline where she starts the process of integrating with the mysterious, not-to-be-trusted civilization of moon people. Perhaps, this could even serve as our yet-to-be-determined story arc of season two.**
So, who is Della Duck? We already know she’s a bit reckless and impulsive. Afterall, she did commandeer a not-yet-ready rocketship to space all while her unhatched eggs are left at home, incubating without her. Though, by her preoccupation with and dedication to returning home to the sons she’s never met, it’s safe to say that she’s not beyond regretting that fateful decision. Della’s also a bit of a composite of her family, exhibiting traits of everyone:
(*) I’ve mentioned this multiple times already but I don’t think we’re putting enough consideration into how much Della’s presence (as the boys’ mother) really changes the very fabric of the show. At its core, Ducktales is about the relationship between Scrooge and his young nephews - Della’s reemergence really undermines Scrooge’s role as their chief parental figure.
(**) Which will ultimately lead to Della returning home where she will accidentally let slip that there’s a Moon city made of gold which will then lead to Scrooge leading an expedition to extract said gold from the city resulting in an intergalactic war between the McDucks and the Moon people.
Due to it being trapped under her ship, Della cuts off her leg (off screen) and fashions a new one made of scrap metal.
The oft-mentioned Moon Theme from the 8-bit DuckTales video game features prominently but, most notably, when we learn she added words to the tune to create a lullaby that she used to sing to the unhatched boys.
I don’t think we will or should ever get a “who’s-the-boys’- father?” storyline. I have no evidence for this but I feel like, in this world, that female ducks just lay eggs independently of “male companionship” and that the father is just whoever the mother happens to be in a relationship with (if at all) during the hatching.
Della celebrates the boys’ birthday one year after the crash. Were they actually born the day of the crash??? Or, is she just nuts at this point?
This episode closes a few loopholes too:
“A mother would do anything for the sake of her kids!”… except, of course, forego a dangerous mission to space in an unready rocketship within months of their hatching *shrugs*