Reviews: Quack Pack
The pros and cons of the series
Pros: I liked that Huey, Dewey, and Louie were given their own sort of personalities and more distinct looks. I always bemoaned as a kid how you could leave only one in an episode and he could easily fill the role of the other two and no one would notice besides the sudden lack of a an echo. Admittedly, the pretty much Freudian/Power Trio personality and roles were pretty damn shallow but it was a start. Furthermore, Daisy, outside of this show, it prone to being depicted as a nagging, whiny, snobbish girl who (especially in some of the Dona Rosa comics) would break up with Donald for any reason, especially for circumstances beyond his control (or more precisely, entirely in the control of someone else who was obviously out to get him), and treat him with nothing short of domestic abuse. In Quack Pack, she's actually a decent girlfriend to Donald, and has a better design that does not make her look like her wardrobe is hand-me-downs from Minnie Mouse. Cons: Pretty much everything else. It would have been nice if this was instead tied into the Duck Tales universe with Donald taking back over watching the kids and enjoying naval retirement (and not NEEDING to work with Uncle Scrooge for more than the sheer adventure), maybe the odd cameo with Uncle Scrooge and a few other familiar faces. But, such is life.
The clash between the writers and producers right before your eyes
I LOVED Duck Tales. Its storytelling was fantastic, varied and fun, and the characters had a lot of personality. It was stylized, and did not attempt to be "cool" by the standards of its time. It just told fun stories, and told them well. I have nothing against the classical Donald Duck cartoons. They're entertaining, generally stand the test of time pretty well, and Donald himself is a fun, timeless character. Why did I bring those two loosely related shows up? Because Quack Pack was the result of a pull between producers who wanted "Duck Tales with EDGE", and writers who wanted to recreate the old Donald Duck cartoons, but with a modern flair. I'd have to say that not only is the show neither, but it is both at the same time, and fails at being both. Making Huey, Dewey and Louie into modern day teens makes them unpleasant to look at, and kills their classic, admittedly cartoony personality. Having ruined those characters, how's the show? It tried to be part comedy and part adventure, while having all the modern trappings of all the other cartoons of the time. But it couldn't seem to make up its mind whether it was trying to be the successor to Duck Tales or the Donald Duck shorts, and that struggle is noticeable in many episodes that try their hardest to be both. One episode has Donald Duck somehow start to decrease in age. His nephews find it cool at first, and enjoy hanging out with their younger, hipper uncle, until he becomes a baby, then an egg, and is at risk of being cooked when the egg accidentally enters a restaurant. Yes, that last part is rather disturbing, and it's mixed in with some cartoon slapstick and a somewhat Duck Tales-esque plot. There was another episode that had Donald Duck trying to go on vacation at the same place where a bunch of spies were at work carrying out their own activities. Donald becomes a Spanner In The Works in the sense one might expect of his original Disney incarnation, while the villainous plot is otherwise taken seriously. I absolutely hate this cartoon. It just fails in every way. It doesn't capture the feel of the Donald shorts, or the fun, exciting adventures of Duck Tales, and it's randomly disturbing at times for no reason. I also can't stand the characters. There is no redeeming value, in my opinion.