Mickey, Donald and Goofy are ghost exterminators hired to remove four ghosts from a home. But, when they arrive, the trio finds the ghosts are the ones who called them, because the house has been abandoned for years and the ghosts are lonely. The trio inadvertently scare the ghosts away when they fall into molasses and look like ghosts themselves. Although, it’s made clear none of the three know how or why they were able to scare the ghosts away.
This 1937 short is the first released by Disney after the company’s first foray into feature length films with “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,” being released just three days after the film hit theaters. It also marks the early days of Mickey when Walt Disney, himself, voiced the character. And, it is one of my favorite of the shorts from the 1930s. I really enjoy seeing Mickey Mouse in these early shorts. We, no longer, get to see him in feature length films, so it’s nice to see the most iconic cartoon character of all time as the star of the show. While, I know he’s had several kids shows on Disney’s family of channels, I’d love to see a full-length movie featuring him and the other main characters.
While some of the early shorts can be hit or miss when it comes to quality, it’s my belief that the early shorts featuring Mickey, Donald or Goofy are a class above the others. This short has more staying power with me than something like “Flowers and Trees” or “The Pied Piper.” I don’t know if Walt Disney, or any of the other animators, put more effort into a short featuring Mickey or his main cast of friends, but it certainly feels that way when I watch them in succession.
This is one of the shorts Disney+ chose to put on its Halloween collection and I love the selection. I would rank it as the second best Mickey short and the fourth best special in the collection. That doesn’t include the movies, I’m just focusing on the shorts and series specials with that ranking. It’s a lot of fun. Disney would improve upon it with “Trick or Treat” in the 1950s, but for 1937, I can’t complain. It’s fun. The iconic characters are starting to settle into the roles that many of us remember them as from our childhoods. We even get the first utterance of Goofy’s early catchphrase of “Somethin’ wrong here!”
This is the second time I’ve seen this short. The first was when I watched “The House of Villains” special episode of “The House of Mouse.” It was a lot of fun then and it was a lot of fun this time. It’s something I would love to sit down and watch with my kids.
Ranking: 4 stars out of 5
What did you think of “Lonesome Ghosts?”