Monday, December 20, 2010
For Pete's Sake: Disney's 12 Days of Christmas
In 2004, Disney made a toy of long-time villain Pete that may be the best plush version of the character that I've seen (there's also a great Frontierland Pete). This looks most like Pete from "The Three Musketeers," also from 2004. This is the best looking character from a very, very bizarre and unusual "12 Days of Christmas" bean bag set released by The Disney Store and Catalog. Pete plays the "Twelve Drummers Drumming."
From the DVD of the 2004 computer animated movie, "Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas," it is revealed that a Disney "12 Days of Christmas" was planned for the film, but was scrapped. This would have also used classic characters representing the gifts.
I consider myself pretty knowledgeable about Disney, but I have no idea who this character is supposed to be playing the 12 Drummers Drumming for the animated version.
In the bean bag set, Goofy plays the Eleven Pipers Piping.
The animated film would have cast The Mad Hatter from "Alice in Wonderland" as the Piper.
Minnie is a nice choice for the Nine Ladies Dancing, as is Mickey for the Ten Lords A'Leaping.
The animated film would have had very different characters.
Fantasia's alligator would have been the Ten Lords A'Leaping.
Hyacinth Hippo (also from Fantasia) would have represented the Nine Ladies Dancing.
The hippos and alligators did end up being in the "Belles On Ice" segment of Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas.
For the Eight Maids A' Milking, it's Clarabelle Cow (naturally!).
She's holding a bucket of her own milk, apparently. The jokes just write themselves here.
Clarabelle Cow was the choice for the animated version, too.
These were all the characters shown on the Mickey's Twice Upon a Christmas DVD, so we'll have to imagine what the other choices would have been for the computer animated version.
For the bean bag set, Daisy Duck represents Seven Swans a' Swimming. She is holding a swan, (yes, you read that correctly) and wearing swan wings (you can't see them here).
I think her look was inspired by Bjork, the Icelandic singer who wore a swan dress to an awards show years ago.
Missed opportunity: The Ugly Duckling as the Seven Swans A' Swimming.
For the Six Geese A' Laying, it's Mickey Mouse. Of course! Who else would it be?
They could have used the Geese from The Aristocats, or Gus Goose, or Gladstone Gander. But they did not.
Minnie Mouse is cast as the 5 Golden Rings.
Missed Opportunity: The Golden Harp from "Mickey and the Beanstalk" (a stretch, I know).
Pluto, what have they done to you?!
Pluto is the Four Calling Birds. OK.
Missed Opportunity: Zazu from The Lion King.
For Three French Hens, the Disney Store chose Donald Duck (and he's not happy about it).
Since they used an obscure character like Clarabelle Cow, couldn't they have used Clara Cluck--a hen--for this?
Lastly, it's Mickey and Minnie, dressed as the Partridge in a Pear Tree and Two Turtle Doves.
Oh, Disney Store and Catalog, what were you thinking?!
Missed Opportunity: The Female Tree from the vintage "Flowers and Trees" cartoon could have had a tiny Partridge and a Pear. The Male Tree from the same short could have had the Two Turtle Doves. How's that for "outside the box" thinking?
By now, the song is probably stuck in your head, along with some of the images you've just seen.
Happy Holidays everyone!