Disney+’s new original series such as The Mandalorian and WandaVision have been receiving a lot of hype and deservingly so, but the draw of a new streaming channel isn’t just on what’s new, but also what else do you have for audiences?
With over 80 years worth of content, Disney+ will include iconic classics in its library, including movie favourites, hit TV shows and just about every other Disney Channel classic that ruled the 90s before streaming was a thing, and when rushing back to school to catch the latest episode of your favourite TV show was the norm.
Whether you’re a fan of Donald Duck and his family, a superhero geek way before the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies kicked in, or have grown up watching older classic titles with your parents, there are many hidden gems available, so here are some of the legacy shows to revisit on Disney+ that will have you reliving the good old days.
There’s no way we’re not starting this list with the all time Disney classic, DuckTales. DuckTales was the first animated series Disney produced for modern television and it is an ultimate classic! It’s theme song is undeniably catchy and the characters – mainly Donald Duck’s nephews Huey, Dewey and Louie – are some of the cutest and craftiest kids you will ever meet. Together with Donald’s wealthy uncle Scrooge McDuck, the gang of ducks quack up an adventure around the globe looking for the most exotic treasures. Whilst the 2017 reboot still manages to hold fans old and new, nothing hits like the original Duckburg!
Darkwing Duck (1991)
After the roaring – or shall we say quacking – success of DuckTales, Disney released a spin off, Darkwing Duck. The superhero comedy and mystery series follows the adventure of titular superhero Darkwing Duck whose alter ego is the totally regular duck Drake Mallard. Aided by his sidekick Launchpad McQuack (from Ducktales), the two go on a series of crime fighting adventures with Darkwing routinely engaging in slapstick battles with supervillains and street criminals.
Whilst the series focuses a lot on the action aspect, Darkwing Duck also tells the story of Darkwing struggling to balance his egotistical craving for fame and attention against his desires to be a good father to his daughter Gosalyn. The everlasting love and bond between father and daughter is bound to bring you to tears.
The Mighty Ducks (1992)
Boy, we sure love our ducks. Why? Because Ducks fly together! The Mighty Ducks as some would already know, is a much-loved sports franchise that focuses on an ice hockey team composed of young players. Starting right at the bottom of the league, the team of teens and their coach stick together throughout all the ups and downs before emerging as champions at the end of the film.
The Mighty Ducks grew into a franchise with two other sequels after the 1992 release, an animated series in 1996 and now, an original series sequel, The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers, featuring original cast member Emilio Estevez as Coach Bombay, and joined by Lauren Graham. The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers is premiering on Disney+ on 26 March 2021. The Mighty Ducks marathon, anyone?
Honey, I Shrunk The Kids (1989)
Honey, I Shrunk The Kids is the comedy-sci fi family flick that you can watch over and over and over again and still have a laugh. The film follows the story of a scientist who accidentally shrinks his four kids when trying to get his shrinking machine to work. Things go awry when he then accidentally throws his kids along with the garbage. The four children then must survive the journey back to the house through a yard where sprinklers bring treacherous storms and ants stampede like elephants. Of course, you can also catch the sequels but nothing beats the original.
The Sound Of Music (1965)
Now, we know The Sound of Music isn’t exactly a 90s flick but it sure is a deeply loved classic. Telling the tale of a governess tasked to take care of 7 growing children, The Sound Of Music is a musical drama film that brought love and music to a time that was difficult for many in life. Based on Maria von Trapp’s memoir, the musical has evolved to be a popular piece of pop-culture that has inspired numerous songs even after 56 years of its release.
Disney had a lot of animated series that took a liking to darker and horror themes back in the 90s and Gargoyles was no exception. Gargoyles sees a clan of heroic night creatures pledge to protect New York City as they did in Scotland one thousand years earlier. These heroic warrior monsters were known as Gargoyles in the Dark Ages but now exist as stone during the day.
TaleSpin takes you on a ride high up above the skies as Jungle Book characters Baloo, Louie, Shere Khan and new characters fight air pirates and operate a flight business in a city called Cape Suzette. The show is a mix of comedy, adventure and even a little bit of romance and if that isn’t the reason why you want to be a pilot – you sure do now.
X-Men: The Animated Series (1992)
X-Men: The Animated Series is bound to be a nostalgia overload for those born in the 90s. The show loosely adapted the comics and featured the OG Blue Team composed of Cyclops, Wolverine, Rogue, Storm, Beast, Gambit, Jubilee, Jean Grey, Professor X as well as an original character named Morph.
The show even had crossovers with the animated Spider-Man series which, come on, in which world would you ever see THAT again? The series deals with social issues including divorce, feelings of loneliness and the AIDs crisis. X-Men: The Animated Series set Marvel on their path to big screen dominance so without this true classic, would MCU even exist at all?
This 1988 adventure fantasy movie by George Lucas sees a kind and bravehearted young farmer who is tasked to protect a special infant named Elora from an evil queen. Like most classic magical tales, Willow includes a prophecy – in this case, one that proves Elora would be the reason for the evil queen’s downfall. In his task of protecting Elora, Willow was helped along the way by a mercenary swordsman.
Home Alone (1990)
A Christmas classic that remains many people’s favourite even after two whole decades. Home Alone is a comedy that sees eight year old Kevin accidentally left behind when his family takes a trip to france. Thrilled at the idea at first, Kevin later has to fight off thieves who try to break into his home.
The X-Files (1993)
Big on aliens? Conspiracy theories? The X-Files is a popular sci-fi series that is perfect for those convinced of extraterrestrial life. The series follows the careers and personal lives of FBI Special Agents Fox Mulder and Dana Scully who investigate X-Files – marginalised, unsolved cases involving paranormal phenomena. Mulder’s stance on extraterrestrial presence on Earth is motivated by his sister’s abduction, whereas Scully is a skeptic and is assigned to analyse and offer rational theories to Mulder’s discoveries. The series became a pop culture touchstone that tapped into public mistrust of governments and large institutions.
Disney’s Adventures of the Gummi Bears (1985)
If you lived through the 80s era of animatronic teddies, then Disney’s Gummi Bears will be no stranger to you. The series sees the last of a once great race of Gummis (called Gummi Glen) striving to live in harmony with mankind. Considered as a fairy tale by many, the gentle and loveable gummies seek to rediscover their heritage with a few trusted humans. The Gummi Glen meet ogres, wizards and a big new enemy Duke Igthorn along their journey, making this animated series high on adventure.
Chip ‘n Dale’s Rescue Rangers (1989)
Wrapping up this list of legacy shows to rewatch is Chip ‘n Dale’s Rescue Rangers. In this family series, the naughty chipmunks Chip and Dale start their own detective agency called the Rescue Rangers and help police officers solve crimes that are considered “too small”. The duo often go up against a Mafia-style tabby cat called Fat Cat and a mad scientist Norton Nimnul.
Feeling nostalgic yet? We bet you are.
There are plenty of hit shows in Disney+’s wide and extensive library but these are the few that commonly hit home for those who were around their teen or early child years in the 90s. Many of these series and films remain to be fan-favourites (like Home Alone for example) and have faced multiple reboots (2017 DuckTales) just so the next generation can still enjoy the same great content that have shaped many childhoods and lives of those older than them.