Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Ducktales, Season One, Episode Forty-Six: "Magica's Magic Mirror"/"Take Me Out of the Ballgame"

Two episodes in one means…two times the fun? Well, in this case, I'm afraid it only means, at best, a very small percentage of the fun. I really can't imagine why they decided to cram these two unrelated stories together. It might have been interesting to see a "treehouse of horror"-type anthology episode in which the show throws to the winds all ideas of canon, but neither of the mini-episodes here do much of anything to justify their existences.

In "Magica's Magic Mirror," she tricks Scrooge into accepting a mirror that can allegedly see into the future; it actually just connects with another mirror in her possession, and she's gonna use it to trick Scrooge into coughing up the dime. There's potential here, I guess, but the ways in which she tricks the ducks into thinking the mirror shows the future are pretty dumb and rely on a lot of convenient happenstance; the whole thing is pitched considerably dumber than the better sort of Ducktales episode. It does have this going for it: Magica transforming into a vulture is pretty cool-looking. And the ending--in which the kids use the mirror to stage a skit to unmask the plan, in which they smash a Magica doll--is pretty funny. But that's about it.

"Take Me Out of the Ballgame" has a premise that might seem funny, in theory--Duckworth has to coach the Woodchucks' baseball team--but the execution is pretty dismal. The first sign of trouble is when we learn that they're playing against--god help us--the Beagle Brats. Seriously, out of all the obscure characters from duck-comicdom, these were the ones you chose to revive, Ducktales people? Damn you! But the real dumb kicks in as Duckworth sabotages his own team in painfully moronic ways--he won't let them slide into base because that would smudge their uniforms; he won't let them steal bases. After he proved highly capable in his starring role last episode, there's no excuse for him to do dumb shit like this. But never fear! He comes around at the end, and, with the team behind by double-digits, he shows them how to win by playing "like golf," which somehow--the "how" remains unexplained, because that would've required a greater level of thought than anyone cared to put into this--allows them to always hit the Beagles' rigged baseball and score dozens of points at a clip. And then Doofus hits the winning run when Duckworth advises him to "pretend the ball is a great, gooey cream puff," and apparently we're supposed to believe that Doofus's love of sweets would cause him to want to get rid of this cream puff as expeditiously as possible. Really, really stupid stuff all 'round.

Stray Observations

-"Great Grandma Tragica"

-What the hell is the deal with the kid at the picnic dressed as Glomgold?

-Mozambique becomes "Nose'n'Beak." Right, then.

-Dammit, when I saw the bit with Doofus hitting the winning run, I suddenly KNEW I'd seen this episode before, but I have absolutely no memory of anything else about it. Memory is weird!

-The one moment of awesome in "Take Me Out of the Ballgame:" the kids are trash-talking before the game, and a murderous-looking Webby yells "let's make the little creeps cry for their mommies!" That is the Webby we need to see more of.


  1. Small typo: "Take Me Out of the Ballgame" rather than "Take Me Out to the Ballgame".

  2. Ah-ha. Just goes to show how you see things you're used to seeing rather than things that are actually THERE. Thanks; fixed.