Disney Characters

Saturday, November 06, 2004


Good-natured but not that bright, this cartoon character made his first appearance, somewhat disguised, as a member of the audience in "Mickey's Revue" (1932). What distinguished the character from those sitting around him was not so much his appearance but his raucous laugh. That laugh, supplied by Disney storyman, musician, and former circus clown Pinto Colvig, made such an impression on Walt Disney and his staff that the character soon began to be featured in other cartoons. Before long, Goofy was part of the gang that included Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Clarabelle Cow, and Horace Horsecollar. In the newspaper comic strips, this new character was first given the name Dippy Dawg. A 1938 book indicated the first change to Dippy's name, "The Story of Dippy the Goof," and by 1939 the final change was made to Goofy with the release of the cartoon "Goofy and Wilbur."
Goofy was created as a human character, as opposed to Pluto, who was a pet, so he walked upright and had a speaking voice (first supplied by Colvig, and later by George Johnson, Bob Jackman, and Bill Farmer). There were 48 Goofy cartoons (primarily in the 1940s and 1950s), but he also appeared in many cartoons with Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. He was best known for his series of "How to" cartoons, where he bumbled through the explanations. In the 1950s, he appeared in several cartoons as Mr. Geef, with a wife and son. The 1990s television series "The Goof Troop" reintroduced Goofy and son, but by this time the son was Max, quite different from his earlier incarnation, and the wife was no longer on the scene. Favorite sayings: "Gawrsh!" "Well, whaddya know ..." "A-hyuck!" "Huh?"


Mickey's faithful pet dog Pluto starred in 48 of his own cartoons, but also appeared along with Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck in many of their cartoons. Pluto was created as an actual dog character, with no speaking voice, as opposed to Goofy, who was created as a human character. The dog who would eventually evolve into Pluto made his debut as a bloodhound in the Mickey Mouse cartoon "The Chain Gang" in 1930. Later that year he appeared as Minnie Mouse's dog, Rover, in "The Picnic," and the following year finally became Mickey's dog Pluto in "The Moose Hunt." Favorite sayings: "Grrr ..." "Snort!" "Sniff, sniff, sniff ..." "Bark! Bark!"

Daisy Duck

Donald Duck's girlfriend, Daisy, had her debut as Donna Duck in "Don Donald" (1937), but became known as Daisy in "Mr. Duck Steps Out" (1940). She went on to make 14 film appearances. Daisy had three nieces in comic book stories: April, May, and June. They first appeared in Walt Disney's Comics & Stories #149 (February 1953).
No other duck has a sassy sashay to her walk like Daisy; she's one-hundred-percent woman, from the top of the bow in her hair to the bottom of her determined heart. Mistress of high drama, Daisy can go from coy to flaming just as fast as her best beau Donald, and she more than matches him at his own game. A woman who knows her mind, she expects to be treated right: candy, flowers, a night on the town. If Donald won't toe the line, she's not afraid to offer an ultimatum. "Until you develop a more pleasant personality, I don't want to see you again." Threats notwithstanding, she's confident that Donald will always be back, faults and all. In fact, given the choice between keeping him for herself just as he is, or sharing him with the rest of the world, she makes her feelings for Donald very clear. "Me, me, me, me ... ME!" Daisy wouldn't have it any other way. Favorite sayings: "Well, I never!" "Oh, Donald ..."

Monday, November 01, 2004

Donald Duck

Donald Duck made his debut in the Silly Symphony cartoon "The Wise Little Hen" on June 9, 1934. His fiery temper endeared him to audiences, and in the 1940s he surpassed Mickey Mouse in the number of cartoons reaching the theaters. Eventually, there were 128 Donald Duck cartoons, but he also appeared in a number of others with Mickey Mouse, Goofy, and Pluto. His middle name, shown in a wartime cartoon, is Fauntleroy. The original voice of Donald was Clarence "Ducky" Nash, who was succeeded after 50 years by Disney artist Tony Anselmo. A daily Donald Duck newspaper comic strip began on February 7, 1938.

Donald Duck has a good heart and always has good intentions. Well, almost always. Actually, it's his second or third intentions that are the good ones, but by the time they surface Donald's already off and running in the wrong direction. He refuses to let anyone or anything stand in his way. It doesn't matter how much humiliation the world dishes out to him, Donald will take it and come back for more. He's a loser, not a quitter, and he'll go down fighting. This is a duck with one short fuse, and an amazing (if unintelligible) command of language, and when things don't go right, he goes ballistic. Yet after the storm is over and the tantrum is through, when faithful Daisy soothes his brow or his conscience finally catches up with him, even Donald can admit that there must be a better way. If only he could figure out what it is.

Hot-headed Donald is a little man in a big world that's trying to keep him down. Call it fate, or call it lack of self-control, nothing goes right for this duck: even his best intentions often go awry. Of course, by the time his best intentions surface he's probably already chasing after less noble pursuits. As stubborn as he is temperamental, he won't give in, even when he's up to his beak in trouble. Then watch out. Like a lot of people with a temper problem, he's blind to his own faults but quick to see them in others. He can't understand why life seems so much easier for pals Mickey and easy-going Goofy. It's not fair. Still, Donald will keep struggling to get what he deserves in the world. Some of his most popular sayings are "Oh, yeah?", "Hiya, toots!", "Aw, phooey!", "Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!", and "Nothin' to it!"

Minnie Mouse

Mickey Mouse's girlfriend was first seen in "Steamboat Willie" on November 18, 1928. She did not have her own cartoon series, but appeared in 73 cartoons with Mickey Mouse and his dog, Pluto. She has been a popular character at the Disney theme parks, so 1986 was declared Minnie's year, giving her well-deserved recognition. The first voice of Minnie Mouse was Marcellite Garner, from the Ink and Paint Department at the Disney Studio. Many others in the department succeded in learning the voice, and currently the voice is supplied by Russi Taylor. Minnie Mouse has two nieces, Melody and Millicent, who appeared in a few comic book stories. Favorite sayings: "Why, hello!", "Aren't you sweet!", "Yoo-hoo!", and "Oh, Mickey ..."

Sunday, October 31, 2004

Mickey Mouse

This information is from a Disney website, click here to go there.

Mickey Mouse is arguably the most famous of the Disney cartoon characters. Making his debut in "Steamboat Willie" at the Colony Theatre in New York City on November 18, 1928, Mickey went on to star in over 120 different cartoons. He also starred in "The Mickey Mouse Club" television show of the 1950s.
Mickey Mouse's original drawings used circles for his head, body and ears. 1939's "The Pointer" saw a bold, new design for Mickey as his body became more pear-shaped and pupils were added to his eyes to increase his range of expression. Later on, animators of the 1940s would add a perspective aspect to his ears, giving them a three-dimensional effect. This change, however, was short-lived. The Mickey Mouse of today appears much as he did in the early days with the exception of a costume change here and there.
Originally, Mickey was voiced by Walt Disney himself. Later, those duties were assumed by Jim Macdonald and today Wayne Allwine provides Mickey's distinctive voice.
Mickey Mouse has appeared on thousands of merchandise items, and currently holds the esteemed title of Chief Greeter at the Disney theme parks.