5 Life Lessons We Can Learn From ‘Ducktales’

Chrissie Miille
TV Animated Series
TV Animated Series Disney

The new Ducktales reboot is something wonderful to behold. It’s filled with fun adventures and mysteries, and its characters offer a treasure trove of life lessons. Scrooge McDuck brings a lifetime of wisdom and experience to the table, while his young nephews and honorary niece are adventurers-in-training who can learn much from him. Here are some pearls of wisdom from our favorite ducks that we can all benefit from.

There Are No Shortcuts

Not always a straight line

In the reboot’s first episode, “Woo-oo!,” Scrooge wastes no time in teaching the overeager Dewey a couple of lessons. While on an adventure to Atlantis, Dewey insists that there’s a shortcut their submarine can take through the oceans. Scrooge replies, “The shortest distance between two points isn’t always a straight line.” His route is longer, yes, but it’s also safer since Dewey’s would lead them through sea monsters and other dangers.

Sometimes you have to put in extra work to get what you want, which is so important in this day and age of instant gratification. It’s what allowed Scrooge to become so successful. There are no shortcuts.

Be Efficient

Dewey crosses the death-trap bridge

While there are no shortcuts, there is efficiency. In the first episode, Dewey crosses a bridge laced with fiery deaths to show off to his uncle. Scrooge, meanwhile, simply zip-lines across a rope right under the bridge. He tells Dewey, “Work smarter, not harder.” Dewey brushes Scrooge off, saying he did it the “easy way.”

Both ducks cross the same distance, but Scrooge’s way is much more efficient and less deadly. Dewey needs to become adept at recognizing alternate, safer routes during adventures. For the rest of us, being more efficient will result in more fulfilling work and saved time. It’s time to step up and be productive.

Don’t Give Up

Donald's not giving up

There’s something to be said about willpower. It’s what keeps the world spinning. Donald Duck needed a reminder of this in the episode “The House of the Lucky Gander!” In a race to determine who ends up being Toad Liu Hai’s servant, Donald is convinced that his lucky cousin, Gladstone Gander, will win easily.

Donald feels dejected until his nephew, Louie, motivates him to victory by saying, “No matter how bad things get, like really, really bad, you keep going. It’s kind of ridiculous. You never had the common sense to give up before. Why start now?” It is kind of ridiculous, but it’s true. We all need to stay determined and not give up. From small tasks to global problems, if we keep on pushing forward we can do incredible things.

Don’t Be Fake

Project Tada!

I know I’m not the only one who was fed up with Mark Beaks by the end of “The Infernal Internship of Mark Beaks!” The tech mogul is a fake, leading interns Huey and Dewey on with false hopes. His company and hyped-up “Project Tada!” turn out to be nothing at all. He dreamed them up just for the sake of popularity and money. Dewey initially sides with Mark because people like them have to fake it to make it. Later, he and Huey use their strengths to help save Mark from corporate saboteur Falcon Graves.

As the boys learn, it’s important to be yourself. Putting on a show for quick gain will eventually come back to bite you, as it does for Mark. Dewey has to be his fun, energetic self and Huey has to be the smart, organized guy to save the day. They have different strengths, but that’s okay. Everyone’s different for a reason. Staying true to yourself makes the world a better place.

Know When to Walk Away

Knowing when to walk away

In contrast to the second lesson, Ducktales also teaches us when to call it quits. In “The Impossible Summit of Mt. Neverrest!,” Scrooge almost reaches the top of Neverrest, stopped only by wormholes that won’t let him reach the peak. It’d be risky for him to continue. It isn’t until Huey says, “Sometimes the bravest thing an explorer can do is walk away,” that Scrooge decides to turn back.

The reward would’ve been great for them. Scrooge would’ve been the first person to reach the mountain’s peak, and Huey would’ve earned his cartography badge. But heading back down Neverest was still the best decision. Determination and persistence are good things, but sometimes, the cons outweigh the pros. When things get bad, common sense should be the obvious choice, especially when you already know something’s unattainable. Otherwise, you might lose even more in the end.

Chrissie Miille
Chrissie Miille is a Fan Contributor for FANDOM and an admin on the Danny Phantom Wiki. When not watching Danny Phantom, Voltron, DuckTales, or Star Trek, she's usually neck-deep in another fandom, following the Warriors, listening to Michael Jackson, writing, or stargazing.
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