There are three things about this little cartoon that should get you up-out-of-your-chair mad. And not just huffing mad, but pounding walls mad.
The first is elusive. Walt Disney created Goofy and indeed all of his characters with a single notion: that they would be extremely abstract entities. These were NOT people, and not animals either and not something in between: they were a new type of being altogether. Donald Duck had some of the accoutrements of people — a house, (some) clothes, nephews… — but he was deliberately pulled so far away from what a person was that we entered an abstract world. A twilight zone of a different reality that tested the imagination of drawer and viewer.
I do not know why the current Disney oafs decided to transmute Goofy into a Fred McMurray surrogate — probably because it can rely on established, tired plot templates. But doing so robs a child of the ability to imagine, to create another world. If you are old enough, think back to how hard you had to work to enter Walt’s fantasyland, how that subtly but strongly exercised your ability to perform rewarding abstract reasoning. And compare that to this. No wonder our kids are getting intellectually sick.
The second big goof is more obvious. I don’t know who thought that sports and intellectual activity were the same, or in any way similar. No one who lives the life of the mind would equate the two in any way, and not in the least in matters of “focus” or “determination”. To so equate the two is so mindnumbingly wrong and would only be done by a corporate entity who sells sports instead of educational programming. Again, this sickens society in no small way.
The third goof may not offend you, but it does me. Disney takes the occasion to plug a Disney-owned ESPN product to kids. Now that’s downright low.
If you are a parent and have a shred of concern about those few early years in which your child wakes up to a thinking person, you’ll stay far far away from this. Please. I don’t want to pay for more prisons.
Posted in 2004
Ted’s Evaluation — 1 of 3: You can find something better to do with this part of your life.