When Michael Eisner took over as CEO of Disney in 1984 he vowed to revive the company by returning to it’s animation roots. When you realize that movies like Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid, Lion King and Aladdin were all released during his tenure, it’s safe to say he accomplished that dream. But despite all those films, his biggest success may have been Ducktales.
Ducktales debuted it’s first season in 1987 with 65 episodes (a standard amount for a syndicated show) and was a huge success. The show would go on to last another three seasons for a total of 100 episodes.
If you have any doubt just how big Ducktales was, consider this: To this day it is still the most watched syndicated cartoon of all time. It o become a major motion picture and also had two spin-offs (Darkwing Duck and Quack Pack).
The show was so huge in Hungary that anyone born between 1980 and 1985 are still known as part of the “Ducktales” generation. It was the first American cartoon aired in Russia after the cold war.
By the time The Disney Afternoon officially started, Ducktales had already completed most of it’s run. In fact only seven new episodes ever aired during the block.
Here are some things you may not have known about Ducktales:
Scrooge McDuck has been voiced by the same guy since 1974. Alan Young, perhaps best known as playing Wilbur on Mr. Ed is now 93, just voiced Scrooge again for the upcoming remake of the Ducktales video game.
Speaking of which, the Ducktales game is considered a classic. It is so beloved that it was considered a major announcement when Capcom revealed they were remaking the game in HD for all the major counsels for release this summer. Many consider the moon theme from the game to be considered one of the best video game song ever. So much, we wind up with weird covers of it like this:
As you may know Huey, Dewey and Louie are usually raised by their uncle, Donald Duck. So where is he during the four year span of Ducktales? In the navy. Apparently he rather follow the direction of a Village People song than be a father to these children. Just kidding. We should honor Donald Duck for helping fight terrorists. I hear he’s one of the troops that threw Bin Laden over the side of the boat for his burial at sea.
Ducktales is also being used in politics. When Ron Paul was running for president some of his supporters used the following clip from the show as a lesson on why printing money is a bad idea and we should return to the gold standard:
Tomorrow Disney Afternoon weeks continues with Chip N’ Dale Rescue Rangers!