Today is a beloved cartoon character’s birthday. DONALD DUCK! That’s right, Donald Duck was premiered on June 9, 1934 in a cartoon called the Wise Little Hen. Therefore, the Walt Disney Company recognizes today as Donald’s birthday. Donald is the most popular Disney character after Mickey Mouse. He was originally voiced by Clarence Nash until his death in 1985 when Tony Anselmo took over and continues to provide his voice today.
Donald is famous for his semi-intelligible speech, mischievous and temperamental personality. Many of Donald’s cartoon shorts portray him in a happy mood until something comes along spoils his day. I always liked Donald because he through he is initially scared of whatever is antagonizing him, that fear turns to anger and he fights back and comes out on top. However, Donald has also been portrayed as the one who antagonizes. He can be a prankster and sometimes a bully, especially to his nephews, Huey, Dewey and Louie. Donald also is often portrayed as jealous of the spotlight given to Mickey Mouse and as a result a rivalry ensues. Everyone remembers the original Mickey Mouse Club song.
The cool thing about Donald is that he is often portrayed outside of Disney. He is the only character of film and television to appear as a mascot. The University of Oregon has a licensing agreement with Disney to use Donald’s image as “Fighting Duck.” The U.S. Coast Guard also uses Donald as a mascot despite his portrayal in cartoons as in the army.
Join me and everyone wish our favorite duck a Happy 81st birthday!