Much of the rest of the episodes contained within Darking Duck: Volume 2 come across only as mind-numbing and plodding, suitable only as the most TV-addicted kids’ fare. The inconsistencies in the way each story (and character) unfold can be chalked up to one simple, apparent goal of the show’s writing: to always go for the easiest, cheapest laugh possible.
In “Dead Duck,” Darkwing tells a foe that “his goose is cooked.” The villain responds by removing a cooked goose from a nearby oven and remarking that it still has a while to go. What kills the joke here is that this is all taking place on the catwalks of a factory where an oven has no logical reason to be. However, to try and make the situation seem somehow less “cartoony,” the oven is shown mysteriously apparent on the catwalk in the background of an earlier shot, as though that allows the joke to somehow “make sense” in a rational setting. All that extra work for a really, really dumb joke. Sigh.
Before settling down to watch Darkwing Duck I had recently checked out a few episodes of DuckTales, now also available in multiple volumes on DVD, and found that they held up rather well even now. If you’re looking for a hit of pure Disney Afternoon nostalgia and don’t want to end up disappointed, I’d suggest catching DuckTales on DVD instead of Darkwing Duck. It turns out here’s more of the “Terror that Flops in the Night” than you might remember.