may be a timeless show that can be easily adapted to any time (as this series so far proves), but there are some aspects that haven't aged well. For example, Scrooge McDuck obtained his wealth through his lifelong career as an industrialist, thus making him a caricature of the Robber Barons. Considering how manufacturing jobs have been on the decline in recent years, such a career path no longer seems feasible in this day and age, making Scrooge literally a relic of another time. Nowadays, the big money is being made, not through the manufacturing sector, but within the tech sector. So it only made sense for the series to bring in a new character to reflect these new times.
Enter Mark Beaks, the tech mogul who represents the new breed of entrepreneurs making their money in the tech sector. As such, he perfectly encapsulates all of the vices that have come to stereotype the Silicon Valley "tech bro." And that right there is the major problem with his character. Most of his tech-savvy nature is centered around such stereotypes, which makes all of the comedy surrounding him focused solely on regurgitating jokes about social media. If you've heard one joke about how Silicon Valley types are eccentric "out-of-touch" kooks, or how young people these days are obsessed with smart phones and social media, you've pretty much heard all of the jokes being made about Mark.
Where this episode shines, however, is two fold. First is the rivalry between Scrooge and Glumgold, a rivalry so petty that some of their biggest conflicts involve something as simple as a staring contest, though major enough that they often involve Glumgold trying to make an attempt against Scrooge's life. Of course, so incompetent is Glumgold in these attempts that Scrooge barely considers him a threat, to the point where he can comfortably maintain their relationship more along the lines of "frenemies" rather than as "mortal enemies."
The other good aspect is with the storyline involving Huey and Dewey. Both have been accepted as interns at Mark's company with aspirations of eventually climbing the corporate ladder and becoming tech moguls themselves. While Huey is dead set on achieving such a goal, whereas his slacker brother couldn't care less, he learns the hard way a lesson I'm sure most of us have also learned in our occupations: that the myth of meritocracy is just that--a myth! This is especially true when it comes to the tech sector, which, far from being a "free market", is very much a "crony capitalist system" where hard work can always be upstaged by some guy with higher connections and a better personality, and where someone can make it big by literally doing nothing. Considering who's sitting in the White House office right now, it's a lesson that really and sadly remains relevant.
Interesting that Scrooge is willing to hang out and be friends with someone who, only a few episodes ago, wanted to kill him and his family.
Then again, as we'll see later in this episode, considering how "well" Glumgold is successful with his schemes, I'm going to guess Scrooge isn't very threatened by him in the least.
So his name is Mark Beaks? I'm guessing the creators wanted to go with the obvious pun of Mark Zuckerbird, but didn't want to end up being potentially sued for copyright infringement.
Now that I think about it, there are plenty of potential bird puns for other tech moguls in the Ducktales universe: Talon Musk. Tweeter Theil. Duckbill Gates.
I'm really curious as to what type of social media app "Waddle" is trying to satirize. Is it anything like Tinder? Do people have to swipe left and right with their webbed feet?
Mark: I'll flip you my peep-deeps so you can follow my updates.
Scrooge: I don't understand half those words.
And here's the main problem with Mark Beaks as a "character": most of the jokes involving him are social-media related, and those types of jokes have been done to death. They basically barrel down to "LOL! Aren't those millennials just wacky with their obsession with smart phones and social media?", and it's the type of sentiment that's been expressed by every hack Boomer/Gen-X political cartoonist and their grandmother. We get it, grandpa! You don't get those darn kids and their darn-fangled new phones. We've already heard your jokes a million times before!
I want to side with Huey, but I'm afraid I have to side with Dewey. To work in Silicon Valley, you have to be willing to take big risks. Being "irresponsible" pretty much comes with the territory. (See: Juicero, Bodega.)
So are you offering them an internship or a job? Because they're two different things. One of those you actually get paid for. The other is what most big corporations tend to hire people so they don't actually have to bother paying people.
There's something rather suspicious about this billboard. Let me put on some glasses and check...
Yup! Just as I thought.