Episode: 316 "New Gods on the Block!” 11/9/20
Starring: Huey Duck, Dewey Duck, Louie Duck, Webby Vanderquack, Donald Duck, Daisy, Zeus, Storkules, Selene, Scrooge McDuck, and Della Duck,
Costarring: Flintheart Glomgold
Appearances by: Gibbous and Good Boy
Introducing: Hades, Crownus the Titan, Cupid, and Sowvanna
Setting: MonGullia and Duckburg (McDuck Manor and Duckburg Pier)
We’re all replaceable; whether it’s Jim Starling, Zeus, or even *gasp* Scrooge McDuck. The question is, when that time comes, will it be met with resistance, is it simply out of one’s control, or will it be a voluntary passing of the torch? I hate to say it but the weighty issues of mortality and legacy have been burbling just below the surface all season and they could be hurtling us towards a major shakeup within the McDuck family. With no F.O.W.L. or Missing Mysteries to speak of this episode, it may be time to forecast where “the greatest family of adventurers and treasure hunters of all time” (and the show) is headed.
It’s hard to look at the dysfunctional family of Greek Gods and not feel like you’re seeing a bizzaro, funhouse mirror version of the McDucks. The biggest difference being, their patriarchal figure is a petulant man-child who is prone to destructive “godly whims.” This is why Zeus’s children, Storkules and Selene, have taken his laurel which effectively strips him of his powers as well as his lofty title as King of the Gods. Not only that, Storkules and Selene are looking to replace their father by crowning a new ruler. Of course, Zeus ends up reclaiming his throne, albeit pathetically, but the point remains… nothing is forever.
Which brings us to Scrooge… there will be no familial coup d'etat or hostile takeover but his place as the spry and virile 150-ish-year-old does feel a bit tenuous and he knows it. The clues are there and mounting:
We are all hoping that the show gets renewed and the series goes on forever but we all know that’s now how TV works. If DuckTales does end, it won’t be a sad or tragic ending, but it could be a bittersweet one where Scrooge hangs up his spats for good with Donald and Della heading up the Adventure Team. Even still, something terrible could happen to Scrooge, especially at the hands of F.O.W.L., and there could be a moment or prolonged period where Scrooge is on the sidelines and the rest of the family has to take over. The nephews are definitely more the main character in this modern incarnation as opposed to Scrooge’s firm grip as the unquestioned lead in DT ‘87. We could always have a Star Trek-esque arc for season 5 where treasure hunting takes a back seat in lieu of... “The Search for Scrooge.”
Genghis (or Hengis) Kahn has a rich history in the Scrooge McDuck universe. “The Lost Crown of Scrooge McDuck” was first the title of a Carl Barks’ comic from his 1950s Uncle Scrooge series and then an episode of the same name in DuckTales 87.
Again, we have to assume that Launchpad flew Scrooge and team to Mongullia since Della was at home waiting for them. This begs two questions: why isn’t LP accompanying them on their adventure and why is Della always staying at home? She hasn’t been on a treasure hunt or left Duckburg since “The Lost Harp of Mervana!” (S2, E4).
Junior Woodchuck Guidebook Rule #642: A team’s only as strong as its weakest link.
The effects of the rare failed Scrooge adventure: first comes the wallowing, then the anger, then he shakes it off.
This is Donald and Daisy’s second date. Surely, their meeting in “Louie’s 11” (S3, E5) can’t be counted as their first date. Meaning, their first rendezvous must’ve occurred offscreen.
Strong move by Donald to host their second date at his boat which is docked in the pool at McDuck Manor. It shows that he’s grounded while also flaunting his family money, implicitly reminding Daisy that he’s in line to inherit GAZILLIONS!
As for the kids’ choices for their godly powers, they are as follows and provide insight into their character:
Dewey - god of fortune (obsession with monetary means)
Huey - god of intuition (obsession with knowledge and over-preparing)
Webby - goddess of sunny friendship get-along times (obsession with maximizing everyone’s happiness)
Dewey - forgets to choose a god power and just does a dance routine (obsession with Dew-ing whatever he wants?)
Hades (God of the Underworld/Zeus’ brother) makes his first appearance. He can be seen texting fellow gods Athena (Goddess of War/Zeus’ daughter) and Poseidon (God of the Sea/brother of Zeus).
Eros (or Cupid) also appears, albeit bound and gagged, when Storkules steals his arrows and attempts to shoot Donald and Daisy.
I love how Daisy just giggles and let’s Donald hold her during their date. It’s a nice illustration of her declaration that she “feels like she can be (herself) around him.” The way their budding relationship is presented here is also a refreshing contrast to what we’ve grown to expect from them. In the past, Donald’s and Daisy’s relationship has been marked by tumult and strife, especially in comparison to that of their contemporaries, Mickey and Minnie. Although, their squabbles have yielded two of my all-time favourite Disney shorts in Donald’s Diary (1954) and “The Adorable Couple” (2104).
I’m guessing the Titan that Hercules summons is the previously mentioned Crownus. After all, the real-life Cronus’ story somewhat mirrors this episode where the Titan dethrones his father only for his children to then dethrone him.
I would’ve loved to see the new McDuck special ops team of Penumbra (the brawn), Quackfaster (the wildcard), and Djinn (special reconnaissance) in action. Don’t get me wrong, the kids are GREAT, but would it kill them to give us just one episode where we get an adult only adventure?