The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers returns for its second season as the team travels to an intense hockey institute during summer.
I know exactly what you’re thinking. Is it still worth watching the show after the departure of Emilio Estevez? The answer is yes. This show has always been about the underdogs and if the first four episodes of season two are any indication, showrunners Josh Goldsmith and Cathy Yuspa are sticking to the franchise themes. Gordon Bombay or no Gordon Bombay, this franchise has always been about the underdogs playing hockey and leading the way to perseverance. No longer the Don’t Bothers as a result of the first season’s climactic game, the Mighty Ducks have reclaimed their name. Unfortunately, this leads to a question of whether they truly belong at camp.
This season reminds me of both D2 and D3 in so many ways. It reminds me of D2 because they find themselves in California. Instead of training to represent Team USA, it’s a summer hockey institute. It reminds me of D3 because Coach Colin Cole (Josh Duhamel) fills the role left vacant by Coach Bombay. Of course, Estevez was shooting a film during D3 and couldn’t commit to a larger role for that film. This time around, Estevez left the series because of Covid-19. Estevez isn’t the only departure from the series. Neither Kiefer O’Reilly or Bella Higginbotham are listed as series regulars for the second season. Both played Logan or Lauren, respectively, during the freshman run on Disney+.
I don’t want to say anything too specific without giving it all away. One thing that becomes clear in the first four episodes is how Alex Morrow (Lauren Graham) has a different approach to hockey and summer than Coach Cole. She’s fun and he’s serious. Cole comes from an NHL background so he knows what it takes to win at an elite level. Unfortunately, he’s the same type of father to his son, Jace Cole (Naveen Paddock), as he is a coach. One fascinating thing about this season is the differences between Jace and Evan Morrow (Brady Noon). Evan wants to play hockey while Jace is there because of his father.
At the time of publishing, only four episodes were screened for press with “Draft Day” being the fourth episode of the season. There’s a lot of promise for a solid season and I can’t wait to see how things develop in the remaining six episodes.
The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers changes locations but the series otherwise sticks to its working formula.
SHOWRUNNERS: Josh Goldsmith, Cathy Yuspa
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Josh Goldsmith, Cathy Yuspa, Lauren Graham, George Heller, Brad Petrigala, Jordan Kerner, Jon Avnet, Steve Brill
CAST: Lauren Graham, Brady Noon, Maxwell Simkins, Swayam Bhatia, Luke Islam, Taegen Burns, Bella Higginbotham, DJ Watts, Naveen Paddock, and Josh Duhamel
Disney+ launches Season 2 of The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers on September 28, 2022. New episodes will premiere weekly. Grade: 3.5/5
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