Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Ducktales, Season One, Episode Fifty-Two: "The Uncrashable Hindentanic"

Glomgold bets Scrooge he can make money off of anything, so Scrooge gets stuck having to make an old blimp skyworthy again. It takes off with various wacky passengers, and in spite of a meteor shower and Glomgold's sabotage efforts, Scrooge ultimately wins out (duh).

Man, finally, an episode that I can praise wholeheartedly. The actual story here is not particularly coherent, but that's okay, because it's really just a vehicle for goofy characters and dumb, anarchic jokes. You have left-behind silent-film actress Gloria Swansong (whose crowning moment, apparently, was a movie in which she ministers to sick sheep) and her awesome pig assistant; you have the lounge singer Bert Quackerack (this is one episode where I can actually accept the terrible names), who appears to be either a parrot or some sort of turtle, and in either case the name seems inapropos; you have a guy who you know is meant to be based on Carl Sagan 'cause he says "billions and billions" a bunch of times; you have the mentally incompetent captain from "Bermuda Triangle Tangle"--it's good times. There's a bandaged character on his way to London for a beak transplant; he has seemingly no purpose except so the episode can build up to a terrible joke ("Hey! This soup came with a bill!" "Wha'dya think, it was free?"). There's a totally inexplicable part where an apparent would-be hijacker (ne'er seen before or after) threatens to whack Beakley with a mallet: "Take this blimp to London!" "We're already going there!" "Oh!" [puts away mallet embarrassedly) "Then can I have a soda?" Guh? The whole thing is super-crazy and super-cool, and it comes as no surprise that it was written by the same guys behind "Double-0-Duck."

More like this!

Stray Observations

-"I'll make this turkey fly even if it takes all the money in my money bin!" "But sir, turkeys can't fly either!" There's no good reason for me getting as annoyed as I do when people make this mistake, but the fact remains: TURKEYS CAN FLY. Thank you.

-…but seriously, yeah, we know Launchpad's kinda dumb, and you can see him fucking up the spelling of "Hindentanic," but replacing the 't' with a 'p'? C'mon.

-Super-forced, absurd Casablanca parody that would probably have irritated me in any other context, but here it just feels natural--so I'll content myself with noting that "play it again, Sam" is not, in fact, a line from Casablanca. Though that may well be part of the point.

-"I've been on rocky flights before, but this is ridiculous!" Argh! See what I mean?


  1. Yes, in the real world turkeys can fly. In the real world, ducks can fly too; but in the Ducktales universe ducks cannot fly unless they use a plane or helicopter, and even then they crash a lot. It stands to reason that that in the Ducktales universe, turkeys are similarly earthbound.

  2. So you say. But imagine if Scrooge had referred to the blimp as a "cow," or the like: "I'll make this cow fly even if it takes all the money in my money bin!" If Duckworth responded "but sir, cows can't fly!" it would seem so pointlessly self-evident as to be a complete non-sequitur. So basically, if you want the idea to be that he's saying that 'cause in this universe turkeys are flightless too, then you also have to accept the idea that in this universe, the way language is used is also substantially different than it is in this one. And that seems to me to be a harder sell.