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From Baruch Weiss : I agree with
Ryan on the king and all that food. Too bad they didn't have weight watchers
What makes this so good? Simple. The characters are perfect. We get
every one of the main Disney characters of the time, cast in a role
that fits them perfectly, and the story proceeds with each playing their
part. You’d think that would be a simple formula, but it’s not always
For example, we have Mickey as the underdog squire or knight, riding
a beaten down pony with a blanket for a saddle. He comes to Minnie’s
rescue, and is the loveable underdog the entire way, skating out of
trouble and managing to bumble his way through, then uses his wit and
brains to win the day.
Minnie plays the sweet princess who is being forced to marry the
prince of the land, played by Goofy. Goofy is identified in the title
card as “Dippy Dawg,” the first time I’ve seen him mentioned by name.
He would change to Goofy later on in his career. The king, played by
Pete, is trying to force them to marry, but Minnie refuses and is thrown
in the tower jail.
That’s where Mickey comes in, and wins Minnie’s heart. But the king
doesn’t want any part of that, and forces Mickey and Goofy to fight
for Minnie’s affections. The fight is a great piece of work, featuring
the two running all around the castle, Mickey’s donkey besting Goofy’s
horse in a fistfight, and Mickey chopping off Goofy’s lance and using
it to chase him out of the castle.
This is also the first Mickey cartoon that has really used songs
to their fullest extent. Mickey is introduced with a song that he sings
as he rides his donkey. The king sings a song to introduce the royal
court, including the prince and princess. Mickey sings outside Minnie’s
tower window. You see here the beginnings of a musical, which would
serve the animators well in coming years as they began to work on Snow
In the end, though, it all comes back to the characters. They are
cast well, animated perfectly and filled with personality and life.
You don’t think about the drawings at all in this short, and that’s
a testament to the love and effort that was put into the work.
Ye Olden Days is a fantastic short, and
one of the true classics of Mickey’s career.
From The Deadly One : I'm not
certain that the king is Pete, as the king looks very much like a lion,
but I could be wrong. Half the time when something looks like Pete,
I think it is not him since they do not have the pegleg, but I find
a site that says that it is him. They did not get rid of the pegleg
until after 1935.
Ironically, the Mickey Mouse newspaper comic strip later tried to
smooth things over by showing that Pete sometimes wore an artificial,
more realistic leg ("new-model store leg," as he called it in 1941).
Oops, and speaking of Oswald, Ye Olden Days
does seem awfully reminiscent of OH, WHAT A KNIGHT at the start, doesn't
This one has a lot of fun casting the characters in new roles without
taking it too seriously. I especially like it when Mickey and Minnie
climb down Clarabelle's clothes – how much underwear was she wearing?!
Also it's kind of disgusting that the guillotine they use for decapitations
is the same one they use for food! The song "They're Gonna have a Duel"
is probably my favorite Disney song in our journey so far ("Which ever
one survives the slaughter Wins the hand of my fair daughter!).