No one was originally ready for the sequel of “The Mighty Ducks” revival. But when it comes to streaming something interesting to invite more attention, popular titles remain the masterpiece. Get introduced to “The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers”, a lovable Disney+ TV about a young and junior team of quirky underdogs, in which Emilio Estevez shows up with his character as old age, considerably short tempered coach.
The original movies are not completely at the level of Star Wars’ intelligence, but the Disney movie did come in three parts, along with a short-lived TV show. And Disney did not incidentally launch a real hockey team. The show, on the other hand, wouldn’t feel out of place on the Disney Channel, but, like most of the studio’s streaming content, it aspires to be something unique, and succeeds.
The show starts with 12-year-old Evan (Brady Noon) being abruptly ignored by his young junior hockey team, the Mighty Ducks, much to his single mother Alex’s chagrin (Lauren Graham). He’s been told that growing up to the 12-14 age group is beyond him, but that hasn’t dampened his enthusiasm for the game.
Alex, being the good mother she is, jumps at the chance to start her own team, but that necessitates assembling a team. Evan and his nerdy pal (Maxwell Simkins) go about the task of hiring, gathering an interesting group of misfits, including a goalie who has built lightning reflexes while playing videogames, but putting that into effect on the ice may be another story.
After some digging, they eventually find hockey space at a facility owned by Estevez’s Gordon Bombay, who has hit hard times since the last time anybody saw him, to the point that there’s a large “No Hockey!” sign on the wall. Indeed, the character appears to owe as much to Walter Matthau’s snobbish coach in “The Bad News Bears” as it does to old “Ducks” flights.
One can easily surmise that Gordon’s unwillingness to assist Alex with her young charges will dry, but depending on the first three episodes, he’ll take his time getting there.
Believing the original writer and producer of the series, what distinguishes this “Mighty Ducks” — and takes it into the twenty-first century — is its emphasis on super competitive parents and the burden that this puts on kids, such as Evan’s former teammate, who is already worrying about hockey as her path to college scholarships.
Obviously, “The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers” didn’t want to do much about a tried-and-true formula. However, the producers have largely succeeded in creating an engaging, joyfully light show around this new quack attack.