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Plus, the cast discusses their characters' arcs and the greatest prank they ever pulled on David Tennant.

By Christian Holub
March 08, 2021 at 12:00 PM EST
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After three seasons of adventure, DuckTales is coming to an end. But as EW's Darren Franich wrote recently, that means it's a great time for you to start watching Disney XD's DuckTales (the first two seasons of which are streaming on Disney+).

Whether you've been watching DuckTales from the beginning or still looking to dip your toes into the animated fun, you can enjoy EW's new panel discussion with the principal cast — including Ben Schwartz (Dewey), Bobby Moynihan (Louie), Danny Pudi (Huey), Paget Brewster (Della Duck), Kate Micucci (Webby Vanderquack), Beck Bennett (Launchpad McQuack), and Toks Olagundoye (Mrs. Beakley) — as well as showrunners Matt Youngberg and Francisco Angones.

The panel video consists of two parts: a table read of an early scene from the finale episode, and a round table discussion of the show overall. Unfortunately David Tennant, who plays Scrooge McDuck himself, wasn't able to make the panel. But since Scrooge is an integral component of any DuckTales scene, Tennant sent a pre-recorded video message declaring that "the single most gifted and dedicated performer I've ever had the honor to work with, and my favorite member of my DuckTales family" should take on his role. This ended up being rather vague, but Brewster powered through the ambiguity and took on Scrooge duty herself.

The table read took the form of the opening scene from the upcoming season finale, where the Duck family throws a big birthday bash for Webby. But in a surprise twist, the party turns out to be a ruse so that the family can infiltrate the hidden base of their nefarious enemies in the F.O.W.L. organization. Webby being Webby, this is the best surprise she could ask for. But by the end of the scene, a new surprise appears that no one expected.

DUCKTALES
Credit: Disney XD

After the table read transitioned into a Q&A, the cast members took advantage of Tennant's absence to finally tell the story of a prank they had pulled on him years ago. While this interview marks the end of DuckTales' run, back in 2017 when the show was first beginning, the cast assembled at Disneyland to promote it. There, someone handed Tennant a manila envelope, and Tennant made the mistake of being exasperated by it. 

"All day long, we just kept tricking different people into coming up to David Tennant and giving him the envelope because he did not want it, he just wanted nothing to do with it," Moynihan explained. "To the point that we got a superfan to give it to him at the end of the day. We blew his mind. I'm still very proud of it." 

"The best part was, he would always get it back and throw it out," Schwartz said. "Then Bobby, because he's incredible, would go into the garbage and find it, wait for an hour, and then give it back to him at the worst time. Like we just did this whole parade, and Channel 7 is gonna interview David, and right before the camera that's live goes to David, Bobby sneaks the envelope back to Tennant and he's like, 'What?' And it's like '3, 2, 1…' and he has to pretend that didn't just happen." 

Schwartz continued, "then this year, he has a show called Staged that is done through Zoom, and I did some of it. I had to send him something for that, and instead of sending him the thing I was supposed to send him, I had held onto the manila envelope for literally years and mailed that to him instead. So when he thought he was getting something else, he got the manila envelope again, and was very pleased."

Tennant's Scrooge is a central figure on DuckTales, but the real genius of this incarnation of the franchise was giving each of the three nephews such distinct and individual personalities. A lot of that had to do with the performances by Schwartz, Moynihan, and Pudi, who explained what sets their characters apart. 

"Dewey is the adventurer, he's the middle child who wants to stand out very badly," Schwartz said. "That's the drive that I had going into Dewey: the person who's always trying to make a big deal out of things, and cannot wait to jump without thinking." 

"Hubert is the oldest," Pudi said. "On the outside he might be the most logical or mature, but he is always about to scream, and he carries a book in his hat." 

"Louie's a greedy little jerk," Moynihan said with a chuckle. "He's the one who's gonna leave you behind, but he'll make a dollar off it. He means well." 

What the three actors didn't quite realize is that each of DuckTales' three seasons was centered around one of the nephews and their emotional journey. Angones took the liberty of explaining, while also teasing some of the finale's revelations.

"Season 1 is Dewey's season, he's trying to figure out what happened to his mom," Angones said. "Season 2 is Louie's season. It was all about him starting Louie, Inc. and trying to fit in with his adventure family. Season 3 is Huey's season, where he's trying to be okay with uncertainty. He's got this set of treasures and it all makes sense, it's very Junior Woodchuck Guidebook-oriented, but learning to let go and embrace the family side rather than just the straight facts of everything. Then sneakily, stealthily, the whole series is about Kate and Webby." 

To find out what he means, watch the three-part DuckTales series finale when it airs on Disney XD on March 15.

For now, watch EW's full video with the cast above. The table read lasts until 13:40, and the Q&A begins after that. 

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