Sunday, May 18, 2014


RELEASE DATE: Friday 21st May 1948

SYNOPSIS: Donald is a door-to-door brush salesman. (These were apparently very common in America throughout the 1930s and 40s - you might remember the Big Bad Wolf's disguise in The Three Little Pigs) The only problem is, no one can understand a word that Donald says! Just when he thinks he will never sell a single brush, he comes across a man selling pills that will make him entirely understandable! Only problem is, they have a very short time of effect.

IRVYNE: There are elements of this cartoon that are quite Looney Tune-ish, like Donald cross-dressing, and the way the thug punches through the wall. It almost felt like a Bugs Bunny cartoon for a while. The Looney Tunes were certainly around during the mid-to-late '40s, so I'm sure the Disney animators would have been inspired even unknowingly by the humour over at "that other studio."

WENDY: How long has Donald Duck had a theme song?

MALEFICENT: He always has!

IRVYNE: My internet research tells me that his "Who's got the sweetest disposition" theme song was at the start of all of his cartoons from 1947 to 1959. So at this stage the song was still fairly new.

MALEFICENT: It's unusual that there's no resolution to the story. Although I suppose he did sell all of his brushes.

IRVYNE: Yes. Which means he now has lots of money. Which means he could go and buy a whole truckload of tablets! Why doesn't Donald Duck think these things through?

WENDY: The tablets don't last long, but I suppose that's the point. You keep buying them because they're so limited.

MALEFICENT: They probably do have a permanent solution, but they don't want to sell that.

SHENZI: When his voice changes, it sounds exactly like the other duck from "Donald's Double Trouble."

IRVYNE: So perhaps that double didn't really have a nice voice, he was just poppin' pills!

WENDY: Conspiracy!

SHENZI: I wonder if acting Donald so much hurt the creator's voice.

IRVYNE: Well the voice actor (Clarence Nash) did his voice for close to 50 years, so I don't think it could have been that uncomfortable. Anyway, after seeing Donald with a lovely eloquent new voice, I must say the "wak wak wak" is far more endearing.

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