Saturday, January 7, 2017

But I Digress... Doctoring DuckTales

By: Cat

“Life is like a hurricane
Here in Duckburg
Race cars, lasers, aeroplanes
It's a duck-blur!
Might solve a mystery
Or rewrite history!”
-Lyrics by Mark Mueller

Has the song continued to play in your head? It has in mine! If not, then get ready – because once this show hits Disney XD, it’s going to have a resurgence! Resistance is futile… wait… we’re not talking the Borg, here. Promise!

One of the more pleasant things to come out of 2016 was the announcement that Disney was bringing back its beloved DuckTales (1987-1990). The new series is allegedly set to air in the summer of 2017, and teasers have already begun to get network airtime. Word is that it's set to release with the 30th anniversary of the original. I haven't found any concrete dates to support that, but I seriously hope we're not waiting until September. 

I was a little leery, at first, about this planned reboot. This is one of the beloved cartoons of my youth, after all. The original voice actor for Uncle Scrooge was claimed as one of the many losses of 2016. Alan Young (The Time Machine, Mickey's Around the World in 80 Days, Mister Ed) was 96 when he passed away in May. He was lending his voice to that iconic role even in his last year with us.

Without Scrooge, this whole show concept doesn’t even work. Who could even possibly fill such enormous shoes to make a reboot even remotely acceptable by long-time fans? The new voice actor had to be worthy of the physics-defying, money bin swimming, and spats wearing miser with a heart of gold and thirst for adventure.

David Tennant (Jessica Jones, Dragons: Race to the Edge, Broadchurch) is the answer. I had the most epic fangirl reaction when I learned this, and I am not even a little ashamed about it.

Fate seems to be at work in this man’s life. The boy that grew up loving Doctor Who (1963-) came to play the title role, himself, as the 10th Doctor from 2005 to 2013 (and various specials thereafter). Most die-hard Whovians can tell you that the “6 Degrees of Who” goes a bit deeper than that childhood dream come true. That’s not my focus of the moment, however.

Kismet may have been found once more for this role. Why do I say that? Well… Tennant wasn’t the name our new Scrooge was born with. His last name was McDonald. He is also a native of Scotland. Tell me I’m grasping at straws all you want – I’m convinced those straws are really the shiny gold of the coins within that skyscraper-sized vault belonging to the thrifty McDuck.

Tennant has an amazing acting range from classics to comedy, is no stranger to voice work, and has an authentic accent. He also brings the love of his personal fan base to the series. None of that is anywhere near a negative.

I hold great hope for this series. In a way, it’s Doctor Who that has prepared me for moments such as this. When the Doctor regenerated and got a new actor, it was a process to accept the new face for the beloved character. When I was little, and watching the classic series with my mom, Tom Baker (Little Britain, Agatha Christie's Marple, Star Wars Rebels) was my favorite Doctor – the 4th Doctor. Tennant, as the 10th, is my favorite of the current series. This very strongly feels like history repeating itself. 

From what I have gathered in reading the various articles released thus far, most of the core characters of the original series will be reprised in this reboot. The entirety of the cast has yet to be announced – but it’s really only the supporting roles the likes of Gyro Gearloose, Duckworth, and the bulk of the Beagles, etc. that have yet to be announced.

The only character in the series to retain their original voice actor is Donald Duck.

Tony Anselmo (The Lion King 1 1/2, Phineas and Ferb, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse) has been the voice of Donald Duck since 1986. I’m happy to see that Disney is keeping it that way. Of course, Uncle Donald only appeared in 8 episodes of the original series; so it’s a bit unclear how much of a role he’ll have in this reboot.

I am super exited that right now “…they’re out there making DuckTales! Woo-oo!”

Is the song back in your head? Good! Here’s a fun away to purge it. The cast got together for a sing-along. Join in with me!

If you’d like to learn more about show or the new cast, visit the show’s IMDb page here.

But I Digress... is a new weekly column for that can't be pinned down to just one thing. It's Cat's celebration of tangents, random references, and general fan geekdom that both intertwines with, revolves around, and diverges from our movie-review core. In homage to the beloved Brit comedians, we want to bring you something completely different!

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