At first, it seems like heavy doses of Took a Level in Dumbass and Badass Decay when Captain Hook is thwarted by the pirate kids, until you realize that Hook has always found himself defeated by children, starting with the original Peter Pan.
Not to mention that Jake and his crew pretty much are three of Peter Pan's lost boys (with one girl) who he's appointed as his own pirate crew for Pirate Island.
Peter doesn't need his shadow to fly! He can just use Tinkerbe... oh yeah.
Yes, he doesn't need it. The reason is that without his shadow he feels sad, but it's constant Happy Thinking what keeps him afloat.
You know how most of the episodes are comedic and mostly inconsequential to both the main characters and the villains until the stakes are raised in a special? Well, in the original Peter Pan novel, the narrator explains that the Lost Boys, the pirates, and pretty much everyone and everything in Neverland go around in circles trying to get the one-up on each other- until Peter comes back and kickstarts the plot. Now take a guess at who appears in those aforementioned specials...
In the original novels, the Lost Boys were children who'd fallen out of their baby carriages and never been claimed. This implies that Jake, Cubby, and Izzy are all either orphans brought to Neverland by Peter, or unclaimed children. Regardless, they've likely lived on Neverland their whole lives. They might also have come to Neverland like the Darlings, only they've completely forgotten their homes and families, because "Neverland makes you forget".