Mickey and Minnie Mouse are back for another early Walt Disney short in “Ye Olden Days.” In this short, Minnie is a princess locked up in a tower because she refused to marry a prince, played by Goofy, picked out for her by her father. Mickey attempts to rescue her, gets capture and must duel the prince for his and Minnie’s freedom.
This is only the second short in the Disney+ through the decade section to feature the mouse that started it all. Mickey first appears in “Steamboat Willie” in 1928 and then doesn’t appear again until this short from 1933. I don’t know the chronological order of all the shorts in the Disney canon, but that seems like a long time between appearances, so it would be great for any appearances in between these two shorts to be added at some point. This is also the first appearance of Goofy in any of the shorts that are currently on Disney+ and he doesn’t act like the Goofy we all know and love. He doesn’t act Goofy at all. In this short, he’s just a prince that is trying to win Princess Minnie’s hand.
While the subject matter is certainly outdated, it was still a lot of fun to watch older versions of Mickey, Minnie and Goofy. They wouldn’t be able to make a short or film like this today. In “Tangled,” Disney got away with locking Rapunzel in a tower because of two reasons. One, it was a kidnapper and not her father who locked her up. Two, she didn’t just wait for Prince Charming to save her. She had her own agency and while she needed Flynn Ryder at times, he needed her too. Nothing like that appears in this short. Minnie has no agency in this short. It’s very much a product of the 1930s. That doesn’t make it bad because we can look back on how we viewed the world back then and see how far we’ve come and how much we’ve improved. Of course, shining a lens on something from the 1930s can also teach us how much further we still have to go.
For an eight minute short, this was a lot of fun. I love seeing the evolution of the iconic characters and the animation styles that brought them to the masses. Someone who only knows Mickey Mouse from current animated forms would be shocked at the way Mickey, Minnie and Goofy look in this short. But, it’s still a lot of fun to see. I would recommend this short for anyone wanting to see something from the early days of Disney animation.
Ranking: 3.5 stars out of 5
What did you think of “Ye Olden Days?”