T-LAB – T-McBee’s Top 20 Donald Duck Cartoons (Remake. Well, Sort Of)

Donald-duck-cartoon-shorts

L-L-Legit! You are now reading a post from the Legit Animation Blog with more animation and cartoon fun on Disney Week!

Well this is it everyone! The last Disney content post that’ll show for Disney Week this month to end and I decided to do something big for this one. Three years ago, I did a list on my favourite Donald Duck cartoons, which was one of the first written countdowns I submitted to ItsTailTime.net. Since Donald Duck is one of my favourite fictional characters ever, I think he deserves a better list with now 20 choices instead of 10. I know I’m not the only person on this planet who appreciates this positive minded, yet very hot-headed duck. Maybe I should move to Europe who sees him as an iconic mascot to Disney rather than Mickey Mouse. 😛

     This is T-McBee listing down my Top 20 Donald Duck Cartoons. For this post, I’ll be listing the canon cartoons that are listed in the Walt Disney Treasure Collection, so ones from Mickey Mouseworks, House of Mouse and the 2013 Mickey Mouse cartoons will be saved for a future list. Also no full length films on the list like the Three Cabarellos. I already placed that movie in my Top 10 Disney Animated Films list that was posted this week. And one last thing, the choices on this post are just my personal favourites. So please don’t get mad at me if you don’t see your favourite Donald Duck cartoons on this specific post.

Now lets go quacking away and control our tempers to begin the countdown!

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20. Chef Donald

(1941)

ChefDonald

The 1941 short Chef Donald is all about Donald following a recipe from a radio show, but things go terribly wrong when he tries to get his waffle mix out of the bowl due to distractedly putting a different ingredient instead of baking powder. What really works in the cartoon are the scenes with Donald trying to take out his mix, using as much force as he can. Even using an ax at one point to break apart the bouncy waffle mix. The organ music played in the back makes the cartoon feel kind of dry, but Donald’s battle with the mixing bowl is what ranks up the comedy high.

19. Cured Duck

(1945)

cured-duck

We’re all aware about Donald’s extreme short-temper and it was nice to see a cartoon where he tries to fix his temper tantrums in order to be with Daisy. The cartoon begins with Donald visiting Daisy and does the offer to open her living room window. But that gives him a hard as he finally flips and starts smashing the house, making Daisy completely disappointed about his rage. Donald finds a way to cure his behaviour by using an insult machine (or get assaulted by it). The cartoon never gets old with unexpected gags for all the trouble Donald went through to control his temper.

18. Rugged Bear

(1953)

donaldduck-rugged-bear

I’m not a huge fan of Donald Duck shorts from the 50s and 60s. but there are a few that hold up well today, especially ones featuring Donald and Humphrey the Bear. They’re definitely a funny pair together and I personally think Rugged Bear is by far the best cartoon featuring the two. In the short, Humphrey is in a tight position to either go outside escaping the hunter’s shooting or pretend to stay still as Donald’s bearskin rug. Though Donald is more of a co-star than a lead in this one, it’s funny to see him not notice that he’s got a real bear inside his cabin.

17. Donald Duck and the Gorilla

(1944)

donaldduckgorilla

A cartoon about a terrifying gorilla entering Donald’s house to scare him and his nephews away would probably scare little kids. Though as you get older, you really laugh at the comedic gags shown in Donald Duck and the Gorilla. This was one cartoon that would always play on TV specials around Halloween and I remember laughing at the moments where Donald runs away from Ajax the Gorilla or where he and his nephews are tiptoeing in the hallways. I also like the animations in this cartoon, where it displays some really well drawn facial expressions on the characters.

16. Toy Tinkers

(1949)

DonaldToyTinkers

Chip and Dale causing mischief in the old Disney shorts wasn’t something I grew up to love over time, but the only cartoon that features them causing trouble that I can still like as an adult today is with Donald Duck in the 1949 cartoon Toy Tinkers. This was an animated short I would watch around Christmas,where me and my sister would always prefer watching this cartoon over Pluto’s Christmas Tree (still a good cartoon though). Toy Tinkers has good gags overall, especially near the end with Donald and Chip and Dale going at it with a toy combat battle in the living room.

15. Crazy with the Heat

(1947)

crazy-with-the-heat

I went on about Crazy with the Heat on the old list and in my recent countdown on Goofy cartoons, so I won’t go too long on this choice. I’ve already mentioned the funny scenes with Goofy from the short, but what about the ones with Donald? We’ll he’s got some  fun moments too, but I personally think Goofy’s comedic delivery was handled better in the cartoon. The funniest bit with Donald was him seeing a big icicle in the middle of the desert, but turns out to be mirages playing on him. I enjoyed this one as a kid as it still holds some fun nostalgia whenever I see it again.

14. Officer Duck

(1939)

donaldduck-officerduck

Mickey Mouse and Pete are big rivals in the Disney Classics franchise, but sometimes Donald can go up against the nasty Pete and bring such amusing gags to the audience. There are ton of great cartoons featuring Donald Duck and Pete from the 30s-60s, but I think the 1939 cartoon Officer Duck is the one I enjoyed the most. Donald is an officer who’s on a mission to arrest Tiny Tom (aka Pete), but tricks him to disguise himself as a baby in order to take Tom to jail. It’s a fun and charming cartoon that features Pete’s sweet side to children and Donald’s adorable baby impression.

13. Donald’s Dilemma

(1947)

donalds-dilemma

Donald’s Dilemma is an interesting cartoon where Daisy is the center star rather than Donald. Daisy goes to a therapist to tell her story about Donald getting hit by a falling flower pot, but changes him mentally when he becomes a singing sensation while seeing Daisy as a complete nobody. This one had a dramatic feel and than other Donald Duck cartoons, displaying some dark scenes of Daisy getting depressed and going mad crazy over losing him. The colours, animations and sympathetic storytelling (though over dramatic at times) is what really shines in this cartoon.

12. Donald’s Better Self

(1938)

DonaldsBetterSelf

Donald’s got a unique pair of inner voices of good and evil telling him what to do in the 1938 classic Donald’s Better Self. What unique about this cartoon was having Donald’s good and evil side be full sized figures with pretty distinctive voices rather than having Donald’s quack-ish voice. It’s a simple of plot about Donald and his good side going to school (isn’t he too old for school?), but instead plays hookie with his evil side. I find it a good cartoon to teach viewers and kids of what’s right and wrong to do in life. Going to school is okay, but skipping school to smoke is not.

11. Donald’s Double Trouble

(1946)

donalddouble

The 1946 cartoon Donald’s Double Trouble was one cartoon I would always see during Valentine’s Day as it involved Daisy getting mad at Donald for not having the qualities that she wants to see from a man. Donald hires a lookalike with sophisticated mannerisms to win Daisy’s heart back, but even his doppelganger takes the advantage to have Daisy for himself. It is a charmingly fun cartoon that takes the love triangle format and presents it with great funny material. It’s even more hysterical when Donald’s plan gets worse every minute. He can’t get a break sometimes, huh?

10. Donald’s Lucky Day

(1939)

DonaldLuckyDay_Cat

Nobody likes Friday the 13th, but it’s seems like Donald still manages to deliver a package on that day in the 1939 cartoon Donald’s Lucky Day. This one is filled with many gags associated with Friday the 13th and it’s bad luck signs where Donald encounters a black cat that follows him around while delivering the unusual package. I especially like the cartoon for having some atmospheric environment shots of the streets and docks at night. The first act of this cartoon always makes me smile and get a laugh from Donald and the cat, overall making it a great cartoon.

9. The Autograph Hound

(1939)

donald-autographhound

We always have those moments where we want to see our favourite celebrities to get their autographs and this cartoon titled The Autograph Hound showcases the celebrities Donald meets while sneaking into Hollywood Studios and avoiding the guard. I really like some of the designs on the 1930s celebrities that were drawn in the cartoon, like Greta Garbo, The Ritz Brothers and Mickey Rooney. It’s a colourful cartoon that flows nicely with very comedic moments but throws in some adorable moments into the picture, especially when Donald gets Shirley Temple’s autograph.

8. Don’s Fountain of Youth

(1953)

donald-fountainofyouth

If there’s one Donald Duck cartoon I like that was made after the 50s, it has to be the 1953 short Don’s Fountain of Youth. Donald takes his nephews on a road trip to Florida where the boys want to do is read comics than sight seeing. Donald finds a fake Fountain of Youth and tricks the nephews that he fell in it and pretends to be turned into a baby. However, things get out of hand when a mother crocodile and her babies gets in the way of Donald’s prank. There were many comedic moments that easily got me laughing out loud, especially Donald acting like a big spoiled brat.

7. Der Fueher’s Face

(1943)

donald-derfurersface

There were ton of propaganda cartoons during the 1940s when World War 2 hit the world and Der Fueher’s Face featuring Donald Duck is one of those wartime cartoons that surprisingly holds up in my opinion. It’s extremely hilarious to see Donald Duck as a Nazi worker chanting out Hitler’s name, which I felt like Donald is the only character that can pull off being in this dark setting with the comedy mocking Nazis and Hitler presented in the cartoon. What’s even more surprising about the cartoon is that it won an Academy Award for best animated short in 1943.

6. Donald’s Snow Fight

(1942)

donaldsnowfight

Donald’s Snow Fight is an all-time classic featuring Donald and his nephews in one amusing snowball fight.  I remember watching this one a lot on TV around Christmas time and it still doesn’t get old. It starts off with Donald wrecking Huey, Duey and Louie’s snowman, but things becomes a laughing riot when the nephews get back on Donald in an icy battleship combat, attacking him with fire coal arrows and catapulted snowballs. Just like Toy Tinkers, this one’s a fun cartoon to watch over the winter Holiday season. You’ll have a blast with this one if you haven’t seen it yet.

5. Donald’s Crime

(1945)

DonaldsCrime

The nominated short Donald’s Crime is a visually appealing cartoon in where Donald steals money from his three nephews’ piggy bank so he can afford going out with Daisy. However, he feels completely guilty for taking the money as he starts to believe he’s a wanted criminal and needs to make amends to pay his nephews back. It is a cleverly made short that’s told in a gangster film noir atmosphere, which fits the setting and visuals so well. I now grow fond of this cartoon than when I was younger with its moral that anyone can all agree on… Crime doesn’t always pay.

4. The Hockey Champ

(1939)

HockeyChampDonald

There are ton of great cartoons featuring Donald Duck with Huey, Duey and Louie, but the one I favour the most is the 1939 cartoon The Hockey Champ. Donald shows off his hockey skills to his nephews, but takes it a bit too far to make Huey, Duey and Louie get back at him. This too was another cartoon that played on TV during Christmas when I was a kid and it  was always my favourite with its beautiful winter painted backgrounds and fun gags that were quick and easily amusing. Great environment atmosphere and fun comedic gags easily makes this one memorable.

3. Drip Dippy Donald

(1948)

donald-dripdippydonald

There have been a few cartoons featuring Donald Duck trying to sleep, but have things keeping him up at night. The 1948 cartoon Drip Dippy Donald is one I can really relate to with the “trying to get some rest” scenario. Donald arrives home tired and quickly heads to bed, but rolling curtains and dripping water infuriatingly keeps him up. It’s a pretty chilled cartoon with some well drawn animations, great colours to capture the sleeping hours setting and lots of funny but weird bits that gets me chuckling. I understand your pain Donald, though dripping water doesn’t wake me up.

2. Wide Open Space

(1947)

Donald_WideOpenSpaces

The first ever cartoon short featuring Donald Duck that I remember ever since I was a toddler is Wide Open Space. Donald arrives at a motel exhausted, but decides to sleep outside in the wilderness rather than paying 16 dollars for a cot on the porch only available for the night. I’ve always liked this one not only for its setting and animations, but the music scores really syncs with the comedy and animations perfectly. The distractions and things that kept Donald up were inventive, weird and funny all at once. It also had a great ending that’ll make you giggle right away.

1. Donald’s Ostrich

(1937)

DonaldsOstrich

On my old list, I talked about loving lots of aspects in the 1937 classic Donald’s Ostrich, with its funny gags, animations and overall presentation. It takes a simple plot of Donald working at a train station, but deals with a Ostrich that eats anything to rank up the randomness in the cartoon.  The Ostrich herself (though drawn like a male ostrich) is an odd character, but also pretty funny in my opinion, especially whenever she flirts with Donald. The vibe and weirdness in the cartoon was one of my influences in drawing and my strange personality, making it my number one pick.

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And that wraps up my Top 20 favourite Donald Duck Cartoons for the end of Disney Week. I hope you stuck around and had a blast reading the Disney content posts I made for Disney Week in July. Thanks for reading everyone! Hope I get the time to share more written countdowns, reviews and other fun goodness real soon or in the future.

LEGIT!  

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