YMMV / The Mighty Ducks

The films:

  • Counterpart Comparison: Subverted. Russ goes from arguing with Jesse in the second movie to using his term "cake eater" in the third. No one acknowledges this, although the issue of roster slots had come up before. This might explain Jesse's absence.
    • Fulton, the tough guy with the nearly-unbeatable slapshot, is also the first one to exclaim over Russ' knucklepuck.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: Queen's "We Are the Champions" at the end of D2.
  • Designated Villain: Of the three rival teams the Ducks had to overcome in the trilogy, Team Iceland is the least dickish to them. Unlike the Hawks and the Varsity team, we never see the Ducks interact with the Iceland players off the ice. True that the Iceland players were anything but nice to the Ducks during the games but then again, they're playing hockey. Aggression is all apart of the game and even their taunting could be viewed as their competitive nature shining through. The one thing that cements Team Iceland's status in this trope is that fact that they are the only team to have the decency to go back on the ice and congratulate the Ducks on a game well played.
    • Even Wolf Stansson, Team Iceland's coach isn't that much of a villain. He's just a damn good coach who did everything he could to make sure his boys were ready to take on the world. Yeah, he was an arrogant Jerkass that talked a lot of trash but could be translated as him being confident in his team. And just like his team, Stansson, after losing the big game to Ducks at the end, was humble enough to shake Gordon's hand afterwards and congratulate him on the win.
      • Sportsmanship aside it was still a dick move on Stansson's part to clip Gordon's injured leg the moment he was on the losing end of their one on one contest.
    • In D3 Banks is looked at as a traitor for being a member of the Varsity team despite the fact that the team jump was the coaches' decision and beyond his control. While he does hang around the Varsity team at school, you could tell it was out of reluctance and peer pressure than pure spite. He didn't even take part in the Varsity's locker room and restaurant pranks against the Ducks and only found out about them after the fact. The Ducks on the other hand are quick to treat Banks no differently than any of the other varsity members.
  • Designated Hero: The Mighty Ducks have usually been considered the lovable underdogs in parts I & II of the trilogy but come part III they were dangerously close to losing the lovable aspect. Granted the Varsity were dicks to The Ducks but when one of them became a member of the opposing team he became a victim to The Duck's pranks without any provocation from their former team member. And when The Ducks failed to meet the academy's standards they had to use Bombay to bully their way into staying at the school. And it wasn't like the school itself was purposely trying to sabotage them either.
  • Even Better Sequel: Specifically, D2. It's more engrained into pop culture than the original — especially considering its popular new characters that replaced the old ones — to the point that when the cast of kids reunited to celebrate a 20th anniversary, it was in regards to the sequel's anniversary.
  • Follow the Leader: The success of The Mighty Ducks led to a slew of 90s movies with underdog kids as players or managers in all sorts of sports: The Sandlot, Little Giants, Little Big League, Rookie of the Year, and The Big Green. Word of God says that The Mighty Ducks was intentionally this to The Bad News Bears. note 
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Emilio Estevez's character is obsessed with winning in the first film. Nearly twenty years later, his brother Charlie Sheen began using "Winning" as one of his catch phrases.
    • In the third film Fulton realizes that he doesn't want to play hockey his whole life and wants to get a good education. He grows up to be a lawyer.
  • Ho Yay: Averman appeared a little too into seeing Dean stripteasing while in the penalty box in D3.
  • Invincible Hero: Let's be honest: if there's any team in D3 that's the underdogs, it's the Varsity Warriors.
  • Memetic Badass: Gordon Bombay and the team have become this to hockey fans. A lot of people joke about how if Bombay were an NHL coach, the Mighty Ducks would win every season. Indeed, when Emilio Estevez tweeted his support for the Anaheim Ducks against the Chicago Blackhawks in the 2015 Western Conference Final, and Anaheim went on to win that game (and was even spotted in a Flying-V formation), his popularity boomed.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Reilly, the Hawks' Coach is just a smug jerk for most of D1, but he crosses the line when he has McGill check Adam Banks (who had been playing for him until a few weeks ago and was only a Duck because Bombay took advantage of a change in the district boundaries to have him play for his team) into the net so hard that he had to leave the game due to injury.
  • Retroactive Recognition: Charlie was played by Joshua Jackson, who went on to Dawson's Creek and Fringe.
    • Elden Henson has had a very respectable career as a character actor, popping up in everything from She's All That to Daredevil (2015).
    • Russ Tyler was played by Kenan Thompson — the same one who was on All That, Kenan & Kel, and is currently a cast member on Saturday Night Live (notable as the first one to be born after SNL premiered in 1975 and the first one to be a child star and perform in more family-friendly fare [specifically this movie and the two aforementioned Nickelodeon shows] before moving on to fare that's more adult).
    • Julie Gaffney was played by Colombe Jacobsen, who eventually became a chef and competed in the 2007 season of The Next Food Network Star.
  • Rooting for the Empire: One wouldn't blame those who felt Varsity should have beaten The Ducks. Especially, after a series of taking levels of jerkass The Ducks provide.
  • Sequelitis: D3.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Most of the ducks in D3 fall victim of this but Charlie takes the bulk of the trope.
  • Toy Ship: Connie and Guy.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Most of the Ducks, but especially Charlie, in D3. Yes, the students and faculty at Eden Hall aren't the nicest people, but the Ducks act like a bunch of entitled, arrogant brats who expect everything at the school to be catered to them just because of their past success. Coach Orion doesn't even act like a jerk to the team, he's just stricter with them than Bombay was and the players don't give him any respect as a coach initially.
  • The Woobie: Bombay, believe it or not. Missing a penalty shot to lose the district championships as a child costs him his passion for the game, although he's very skilled. He makes a comeback as an adult, tears up the minors and seems to be on the fast track to the NHL when a cheap shot to the knee by a frustrated opponent ends his career for good.

The animated series:

  • Awesome Music: The glorious theme song(with vocals by Mickey Thomas of Jefferson Starship):
  • Chaotic Good Is Not Nice: Mallory has no trouble with collateral damage during a mission as long she completes it.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: That theme song. Dear God, that theme song.
    Here come the Mighty Ducks, burnin' up the ice!
    Just try and stop the Mighty Ducks, and you're gonna pay the price!
    Here come the Mighty Ducks, fightin' for the gold!
    Let's hear it for the Mighty Ducks: Time to rock n' roll!
  • Ear Worm: The Theme Song.
    • Its resemblance to a sports team anthem doesn't help.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Ask the fanbase about their favorite character. Duke, Nosedive and Mallory are the usual answers.
  • Evil Is Cool: Which team would you rather be on? The anthropomorphic ducks who play hockey, or the sinister Magitek fire-breathing dragon team of Tim Curry, Tony Jay, Clancy Brown, and Frank Welker?
  • Evil Is Sexy: Lucretia Decoy also has a nice fanbase for this very reason.
  • Ham and Cheese: You have Tim Curry as the Big Bad and Tony Jay as one of his henchmen. What more needs to be said?
  • Harsher in Hindsight: There's a scene in "Beak to the Future" where the ducks shoot down one of Dragonus's ships and it crashes into a tower and explodes, which can't help but invoke 9/11 today, that scene may be the reason why that particular episode was not aired in syndication for very long.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Tanya's Omnitool might make modern viewers wonder if Commander Shepard is working with the Ducks.
  • Narm / Narm Charm: Let's be completely honest here, the premise is astoundingly stupid and makes no sense whatsoever: But the fact that they played the underlying plot 100% seriously (including a rather shocking aversion of Disney Death) turned it from forgettably stupid into kind of amazing. Plus, the bad guys are awesome.
  • So Bad, It's Good: In a weird way, you can't not love that premise.
  • Tear Jerker: The Disney Death of Canard Thunderbeak was very shocking for the little kids of the '90s who weren't used to that sort of thing from a Saturday Morning cartoon.
    • Also the fact that Chameleon took advantage of it being a Disney Death to trick Wildwing later on, pretending to be Canard. Ouch.
  • Vindicated by History: Initially dismissed as yet another Ninja Turtles knockoff, the show has developed a cult following in recent years. Many say that it's a decent show as long you judge it by its own merits.
  • What Do You Mean, It Wasn't Made on Drugs?: Adapting Underdogs Never Lose sports movie about a little-league hockey team called "the Mighty Ducks" into a cartoon about a race of actual, anthropomorphic alien ducks who fight evil through hockey-themed superpowers and weapons? What?