It’s difficult to reboot a classic show. To nod to the past while also looking towards the future and the freshness you hope to bring. What do you retain? What do you discard? How do you make such decisions and keep the original DNA intact? There’s a lot to consider. But one thing for sure is that, when it comes to reboots, the theme song is perhaps the most important element. It’s the first thing a viewer hears and must tell them hey, what you are about to see is just like you remember but better. Disney just released the theme song for the upcoming reboot of Duck Tales and while it still has the same lyrics that discuss life being like a hurricane and promise race cars, lasers, and aeroplanes, the song is no mere rehash but a worthy update that ferries the adventure-seeking ducks into modern times.
The Duck Tales reboot promises a modern, energetic take on the popular animated franchise. And it’s a no-brainer to keep the catchy theme song. That tune, performed by Joe Pescetto, was exactly the type of clever, ear-wormy tune that defined cartoons of the era. It explained the characters and premise while making each episode familiar. It was transportive. The new theme retains that feeling. Sung by an unidentified female singer, who proves more than capable of emerging from the ever-looming shadow of nostalgia unscathed. Set over a synth-heavy arrangement, the theme is fun and bouncy, modern and different without ever feeling untrue. It serves the new theme song well, as it immediately sets itself apart in a sea of middling children’s themes.
For a song to truly be reinvented, it must capture the organic spirit of the original while simultaneously exploring new frontiers. It must at once feel familiar and new, like reconnecting with an old friend. In this sense, the new Duck Tales theme song unquestionably succeeds, drawing on the adventurous, mischevious “Woo-oo”-ing of the past, but utilizing a modern, slightly more uptempo beat to create a new, distinct sound that, much like life, is like a hurricane.