Season 2, Episode 5: "Down the Hatch"
Starring: Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, and Goofy
Co-Starring: Ludwig Von Drake
A Cameo by: Gyro Gearloose
Setting: Hall of Science
Ludwig Von Drake is leading a tour of the Hall of Science where Mickey, Donald, and Goofy are also part of the group.
Of course, the trio is quick to fall behind as Mickey and Goofy take a closer look at the shrink ray while Donald stops to get a drink of water. When Donald bends over to fill his cup, his bum pushes the button which activates the shrink ray. Mickey and Goofy get shrunk and subsequently land in Donald's water cup where, unbeknownst to him, he is quick to swallow his pals. Once in Donald's "Inner Space," Mickey and Goofy decide to have some fun to Donald's great discomfort. First they begin strumming on Donald's vocal chords like they're a guitar, then they decide to tickle his funny bone and eventually land in his cranial cavity. It's here that Donald realizes what's going on and he throws the mother of all temper tantrums resulting in a thunder and lightning storm within his body. Mickey and Goofy escape to Donald's stomach where Donald then assaults them with a barrage of corn and soda pop. After finding refuge in Donald's rectum, the shrink ray finally wears off and Donald lays the rapidly growing Mickey and Goofy in an egg.
Ludwig Von Drake declares this an "astonishing scientific discovery" and wants to explore Donald further. Donald disagrees and hurriedly scampers away.
The outside of the Hall of Science is modeled after Disneyland's Tomorrowland.
Ludwig Von Drake has been a recurring character and presenter in many of Walt Disney's television projects including Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color (1961) and, more currently, as Launchpad McQuack's therapist in Duck Tales (1987) as well as Mickey Mouse Works (2000) where he was given his own series.
There are many references to Disneyland's since retired Tomorrowland attraction Adventures Thru Inner Space (1967 - 1985).
- Much of the music and sound effects are reminiscent of the ride including the song "Miracles from Molecules" which Donald sings over the episode's credits.
- Mickey comparing him and Goofy to snowflakes is taken from the ride's narration.
- The mere idea of shrinking and traveling through inner space is a direct homage to the ride.
The redheaded chicken scientist who appears at the end of the episode is none other than Gyro Gearloose who is best known for his role on Duck Tales but first appeared in 1951 as a recurring character in Carl Barks' famous series of Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge comic books.
Final Grade: A
This short doubles as both a fantastic homage to a long forgotten Disneyland attraction and one of the better Mickey, Donald, and Goofy episode thus far. Plus, we got to see old friends like Ludwig Von Drake and Gyro Gearloose. This gives me hope that we will soon see other Duckburg residents such as Uncle Scrooge and Hewey, Dewey, and Louie - feathers crossed!