February 13, 2012 – The Jake and the Never Land Pirates Special “Peter Pan Returns” Airs on Disney Junior
“When I left to explore the lands beyond the Never Sea, I knew I would need my own crew of pirates to watch over Never Land for me.”
On February 13, 2012, the special primetime episode of the popular children’s show Jake and the Never Land Pirates entitled “Peter Pan Returns” aired for the first time on Disney Junior. The show is based on the Disney animated feature film Peter Pan, with the focus on three children – Jake, Izzy, and Cubby – who are tasked to protect Never Land while Peter Pan is away exploring. This special premiered with over 3 million viewers, becoming Disney Channel’s highest evening telecast ever for a preschool program. The episode was written by Mark Seidenberg, Mark Drop, and Kevin D. Campbell, and stars Colin Ford as Jake, Madison Pettis as Izzy, Jonathan Morgan Heit as Cubby, David Arquette as Scully, Adam Wylie as Peter Pan, Corey Burton as Captain Hook, and Jeff Bennett as Mr. Smee.
As Never Land is fast asleep, a familiar shadow plays among the clouds, and begins to play tricks with the crew of Captain Hook’s ship. The pirates believe it to be a ghost, and begin to panic while the shadow laughs. The shadow then plays pranks on Captain Hook, stealinghis blanket and tickling him. Captain Hook accuses the crew of trying to make a fool of him, but they are just as stumped.
Jake and his crew are sleeping soundly when they are woken up by a familiar crowing sound, and are excited to see that Peter Pan has returned to Never Land. While Peter is also happy to see them, he admits that he needs their help finding his shadow, who has gotten away from him again during a game of “Catch Me if You Can.” They decide to start looking in Never Land for Peter’s shadow.
Meanwhile, Hook is questioning his crew, and does not believe them when they tell him it was a ghost. They spot the “ghost” behind Hook, who informs them it’s nothing but Peter Pan’s shadow. Hook then realizes that if the shadow is around, then Peter Pan is back in Never Land; he then comes up with a plan to make Peter leave Never Land forever, but they have a terrible time trying to catch Peter’s shadow. Peter’s shadow is able to quickly disable the crew, and they all end up overboard as they try to catch him, with Peter’s shadow making off with the ship, sailing to Never Land. They track him to shore, and Hook is finally able to capture him in a sack.
Peter and his gang make it to the shores of Never Land a bit too late, and are greeted by a note from Captain Hook, saying that if Peter wants to see his shadow again, they will need to go to Buccaneer’s Bluff. Peter is angry, but Jake promises that they will retrieve his shadow. They find Peter’s shadow tied in a sack, but as Jake runs to retrieve it, Peter stops him, as the sack is surrounded by booby traps. Jake dismisses Peter’s worries and tries to make it past the trip wires, only to set off one of the traps. Peter luckily catches Jake in time before he is trapped by a cage. They then come up with a plan to have their parrot Scully fly ahead to let the crew know where the trip vines are so they can safely avoid them.
As they pass all the traps, they open the sack to reveal not Peter’s shadow, but Mr. Smee. Peter and Hook then “greet” each other, with Hook informing Peter than he now owns Never Land, and Peter will have to leave. Peter demands the return of his shadow, and they find it on the other side of a cliff. Hook promises to return the shadow only if Peter and the Never Land pirates leave Never Land forever. Peter refuses, and Hook makes a quick getaway with Peter’s shadow in tow. When Peter tries to go after the Captain, he finds that he is no longer able to fly. Hook observes this with glee, knowing he can now defeat Peter, and decides to hide Peter’s shadow in the Valley of Shadows, where Peter will never find it again.
Peter and the gang try to cut Hook off, with Peter’s condition worsening. They realize that since Peter is so upset about the loss of his shadow, his sadness is causing him to be unable to fly. They quickly take a shortcut to catch up with Captain Hook, who has to pass by Crocodile Creek to get to the Valley of Shadows. Captain Hook tries to sneak past the crocodile, but Peter, who is nearby, plays a prank on Hook’s crew, mimicking Hook’s voice. He then trips the Captain, who wakes up the crocodile by accidentally stepping on his tail. The crocodile then decides to hunt Hook and his gang, with Peter and his gang in hot pursuit.
The gang makes it to the Valley of Shadows, and searches for Captain Hook by looking for his shadow. Although they find Hook, the Captain declares that he will sink Peter’s shadow to the bottom of the Never Sea. Peter is discouraged, but Izzy comes up with a plan to retrieve the shadow. Unfortunately, her plan backfires, and she causes Captain Hook to fly by the use of pixie dust. Jake and his friends then realize that they’ve been showing off to Peter all day, and decide to pull together and work as a team. Hook and his team then make it back to the Jolly Roger, and they commence with the plan to sink Peter’s shadow at Skull Rock.
Jake and his crew quickly board their ship to cut Hook off around the other side of Skull Rock. Hook then places the shadow in a trunk, ready to throw it overboard. Jake and his crew then board Captain Hook’s ship, but while they are able to avoid the first obstacle, they are quickly caught by the pirates. While Peter is surrounded, Jake manages to break through and rescue the shadow. The shadow quickly reattaches itself to Peter, and Peter sends Hook and his crew flying into the ocean, and are once again chased by the crocodile. With Peter regaining his shadow and happiness, all is well in Never Land once again.