Huh. Who knew that there was a Ducktales episode (or two) based on "Only a Poor Old Man?" Well…Barks fans who've seen this episode, I guess. Dumb question. Loosely based, to be sure, but when a Beagle tricks Fenton into unleashing super termites on the dam, it becomes apparent that the similarities are no coincidence.
So that's the plot, basically: Scrooge has to relocate his money bin due to some sorta eminent domain thing (and Beagle manipulation), and the Beagles, naturally, try to take over.
Yeah, Fenton (who now has HIS own place in the opening sequence). Am I in danger of overrating the character just because he's not Bubba? Maybe, but he seems okay so far. It actually makes organic sense that Scrooge would need an accountant, even if it's not quite clear that Fenton would be as psychotically determined to get the job as he is. I mean, sure the bean-counting job may suck and all, but it still seems a bit much.
Still, I like his enthusiasm, and I like the fact that he's able to use it to sort of overwhelm Scrooge. It's a different character dynamic than we've seen in the past. He is, it must be said, a little Daffy-Duck-esque, but not really in a bad way. Only thing I'm not necessarily keen on is his bumbling--okay, strike that; some bumbling is fine, but when he hears that Scrooge is keen on "liquid assets," so he responds by dumping all of his money in the lake (as opposed to "Only a Poor Old Man," where it gets laked at Scrooge's own behest)? Come on, now. I realize it's a cartoon, but the fact remains, that's more "mentally-impaired" than "bumbling." That sort of thing could get really, really grating if done to excess.
The business with his mother, who sits around and watches soap operas all day, is another thing that could go either way: it's a potentially interesting character dynamic for sure, but it could also get horribly annoying. There needs to be at least some effort made to humanize her, or she'll just get unpleasant to watch.
Still and all, though, this was a pretty decent episode, and I have high hopes for the rest of the serial.
-And yes: maybe the fact that I actually like this just shows how dopily inconsistent I am, but I find it hilarious the way Scrooge is tricked into thinking that a Beagle Boy is a real-estate agent. In spite of the fact that he's still wearing his number. And his mask. And claims to be from "BB Realty." But hey--he has a bad suit and a toupee! Bam! Later, Scrooge returns the favor by pretending to be a building inspector. Good stuff all around.
-Funny bit with Launchpad, off-camera, communicating with Scrooge via telephone: "Why are people screaming?" "Aw, the sissies never saw a shopping mall collapse before. But don't worry--I'm okay!" An effective use of telling rather than showing.
-Scrooge's worry room makes an appearance! A Ducktales first?