Day 6: Mickey’s Amateurs (1937)
Starring: Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Goofy
Costarring: Pete, Clarabelle Cow and Clara Cluck
Setting: A theatre
Plot: As a parody of poplar “amateur hour” shows of the time, Mickey hosts one of his own featuring Donald and Goofy.
Yada, Yada, Yada…
The first performer is Pete singing “Asleep in the Deep” – a delightful ditty paying homage to sailors who have drowned.
Mickey’s striking of a gong to stop a bad performance and his repetitive line of “Okay, okay” is in reference to Edward Bowes who famously hosted the Major Bowes Amateur Hour (1934 – 1952).
Donald’s rendition of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star” is cut short when he forgets the words resulting in the audience derisively mocking him with laughter.
When Mickey introduces Clara Cluck and Clarabelle Cow as “the two Claras,” it is the first time it ever occurred to me that there are, indeed, two Claras.
The song Clara clucks with Clarabelle backing her up on piano is “Il Bacio.”
Filed under the “It was a Different Time” dept.;” a disgruntled Donald enacts his revenge on the audience by smuggling a Thompson submachine gun (a.k.a. a “Tommy gun”) onstage and proceeding to open fire on the crowd all whilst re-singing “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.”
Despite owning “50” different working instruments, Goofy uses a plunger in place of a baton.
My musical knowledge is limited but I only counted seventeen instruments: saxophone, harmonica, trombone, clarinet, trumpet, banjo, drum, tambourine, piano, pipe organ, triangle, cymbal, accordion, flute, xylophone, zither, tuba.
Goofy would play “In the Good Old Summer Time” and “There’ll be a Hot Time in the Old Town Tonight.”
Donald refuses to let it go – it turns out he was hiding under Goofy’s hat during his entire performance just so he could reveal himself at the end and finally deliver a perfect recitation of “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.”
A Short About Nothing
Much like in Magician Mickey, Mickey is at his best when he’s clearly in charge while hosting or emceeing and event. It allows him to showcase his understated wit and sarcasm while also allowing plenty of room for Donald’s temper and Goofy’s clumsiness. Donald does steal the show though as he went from sweetly attempting to sing a song to opening fire (with a gun!) on the terrified audience in a fit of unhinged rage. The crowd wasn’t too affected though as they stuck around long enough to watch Goofy toe the line between shyness and bombast with his “50 piece band.”