Robot Robbers is the tenth episode of DuckTales. It is based loosely on the Uncle Scrooge comic story, "The Giant Robot Robbers" by Carl Barks.
One day, Scrooge is at home reading the newspaper. While reading, Scrooge learns that his construction company has lost a bid to Flintheart Glomgold’s construction company. According to the article, the reason Glomgold won the bid was because he proposed to build a banking complex within just six weeks, which Scrooge claims is impossible. Outraged at Glomgold’s victory, Scrooge marches out to pay his rival a visit.
At the construction site a press event is going on. Glomgold spots Ma Beagle, who is snooping around the site, passing off as an apple vendor, when she’s really trying to take pictures of construction blueprints. Ma agrees to give Glomgold half of her paltry profits and a free (rotten) apple if he lets her stay.
Glomgold then gives a speech on how he won the bid because he promised he could build the complex much faster and cheaper than Scrooge could. Scrooge shows up at the site just as Glomgold reveals his “little” secret. Glomgold has four gigantic robots, built for construction purposes that are going to build the complex for him. Gyro, who built the robots, surprises Scrooge by revealing that he’s inside one of the robots’ heads, controlling it.
Scrooge then yells at Gyro, telling him that he never should’ve built another robot (after the incident with Armstrong). Gyro states that Scrooge told him never to build him another robot, and that he built these robots for Glomgold. Scrooge also complains that Armstrong tried to take over the world, but Gyro claims to have made an improvement with these robots. While Armstrong had a computer for a brain, these robots rely on their operators to serve as their brains. With Gyro as an operator, Scrooge isn’t so sure it’s much of an improvement.
Glomgold asks Gyro to give a demonstration with the robots, while he boasts that Scrooge made a mistake with passing up the offer to finance the robots. Within minutes, the robots have already built a small portion of the complex. Scrooge is also surprised to see that Launchpad is promoting Glomgold Construction by flying a banner from his biplane. But a quick crash gets Launchpad fired by Glomgold.
Ma sneaks into the silo which houses the robots while their not in use, and waits for the robots to return at the end of the day. After narrowly evading a security guard, Ma climbs into one of the robots, and takes control of it, breaking out of the silo and leaving the construction site. She takes the robot to jail, and uses it to bust Bankjob, Burger and Babyface out of jail. The Beagles then return to the construction site, where the boys each take control of the other three robots. After crushing a police car, Ma suggests that she and the boys should go and “paint the town”.
Soon a group of cops show up, and order the Beagles to surrender, but Ma realizes that they don’t have to surrender while they’re in control of the giant robots. The cops shoot at the robots, but their bullets have no effect on them, forcing the cops into retreating.
Launchpad learns of the robots whereabouts, and reports back to Scrooge the next day. Scrooge concludes that the robots were a mistake, and that he can’t let them get to the Money Bin or he’ll be ruined. Launchpad and Scrooge search for the robots in Launchpad’s helicopter, and find them in the middle of destroying an expressway.
Scrooge suggests that they land, so that they can sneak up to the robots on foot. Launchpad accidentally leads Scrooge into the sewers, but Scrooge likes the idea, and decides to spy on the robots from a sewer grating. Glomgold shows up and stupidly decides to kick one of the robots, but ends up hurting his foot. The Beagle Boys get back at Glomgold by playing hockey, using crossing barriers as sticks, and Glomgold as the puck. After getting smacked around a fair bit, Glomgold gets knocked into the sewer where Scrooge is.
Launchpad then remembers that Armstrong was destroyed when he was exposed to water. This gives Scrooge the idea to lure the robots into the Duckburg Reservoir. Scrooge then forms a truce with Glomgold at this point. They then ride around in Launchpad’s helicopter, flying a banner that reads “Ma Beagle Has Fleas!” which gets the Beagle Boys’ attention, causing them to follow the helicopter. But Ma knows that it’s probably a trap, and tries to stop her sons, who end up falling right into the reservoir. Ma uses her robot to break open the dam, causing all the water to pour out.
Launchpad receives a call from Gyro, who tells them that these robots are waterproof. When the reservoir is drained, the Beagle Boys try to attack the helicopter, but they miss. Scrooge goes to pick up Gyro for additional help, while the Beagle Boys try to destroy the Money Bin. Though they manage to destroy the Money Bin's outer cement shell, the boys are unable to break through the metal underneath. Ma, who’s taken a glance at the robots' instruction book, realizes that the robots’ batteries are running low, and that they need to recharge.
Scrooge, Gyro and Glomgold are at a power station, where Gyro has channeled all of Duckburg’s power into the station’s breaker switches. Gyro explains that the overload of power will cause the robots to blow their fuses. When the Beagles head to some nearby power lines to recharge, Gyro insists that they wait until all four robots are recharging at the same time. The opportunity never arises, so the switches are pulled only when the three boys are recharging. Although those three robots are kaput, Ma’s is still working, so she take her sons out of their robots and places them in with her.
The ducks flee in the helicopter, while Ma’s robot chases after them. Gyro explains that the robot shouldn’t run out of power for twenty four hours. Launchpad pilots the helicopter over to Glomgold’s construction site, where they lure the robot into a cement mixing building. After closing the door, Glomgold fills up the building with quick-drying cement, rendering the robot immobile. The boys try to flee from the robot, but get stuck in the cement before it fully dries. Ma, however, waits for the cement to fully dry before making her getaway. Her sons are soon arrested.
Afterwards, Scrooge admits to Glomgold wasn’t as bad as they originally thought it would be. Glomgold is pleased that at least his robots still weren’t destroyed. A policeman tells Glomgold that the mayor has ordered for the robots to be dismantled. He also gives Glomgold a bill for all the damages that his robots did to the city. Glomgold states that he can’t rebuild the city if he can’t use his robots. Scrooge offers to have McDuck Construction repair the damages, which ticks off Glomgold even further.
- This is Ma Beagle's first appearance.
- Throughout the episode, Burger speaks in Bouncer's voice.
- The thing Scrooge says about the last robot being built was true and occurred in the previous episode, "Armstrong".
Differences from the original comic
- Besides the obvious "Donald's not in this version."
- In addition to Donald's absence, Huey, Dewey and Louie also don't appear in this episode, unlike in the comic. Conversely, Gyro and Glomgold were not in the original comic (nor were Launchpad or Ma Beagle, since they were created specifically for DuckTales).
- In the comic, the Beagle Boys are in the crowd of spectators watching the reveal of the first giant robot, apparently having either escaped from jail before the story began or out on parole. One of them then climbs up into the robot and knocks out the person controlling it so he can take control of it himself.
- The comic included a running gag about Mayor Hogwilde begging the Beagle Boys not to damage the robots, which eventually culminates in him losing his temper when one of the Beagles dunks him into a mud puddle at the end.
- Unlike in the comic, the Beagles never actually manage to empty Scrooge's Money Bin in this episode.
- The comic had a completely different resolution, in which Scrooge and the boys distract one of the Beagle Boys into leaving his robot by cooking prunes. Scrooge then took control of the robot and began battling the Beagle Boys himself. However, since he damaged the robots in doing so, he ends up having to pay for the damages.