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Cartoon Classic Favorites - Best Pals - Donald & Daisy
(Note: This is Volume 12 in a series. The full series, so far, looks like this: #1 Starring Mickey, #2 Starring Donald, #3 Starring Goofy, #4 Starring Chip 'n' Dale, #5 Extreme Sports Fun, #6 Extreme Music Fun, #7 Extreme Adventure Fun, #8 Holiday Celebration with Mickey & Pals, #9 Classic Holiday Stories, #10 Best Pals: Mickey & Minnie, #11 Best Pals: Donald & Daisy, and #12 Best Pals: Mickey & Pluto.)
I've reviewed several of Disney's "Classic Cartoon Favorites" DVDs, and each of of them comes with 7 or 8 animated shorts, some of which have been released on earlier "Treasures" collections and others that are brand new to DVD. This review deals with Volume 11: Best Pals: Donald & Daisy, which offers a quartet (!) of classic shorts that were previously unavailable on DVD, and several others that have since gone out of print -- which makes these 10-dollar discs a real treat for the Disney fan!
Included in Best Pals: Donald & Daisy are the following cartoons: (The * denotes which ones are making their debut on DVD.)
1. Mr. Duck Steps Out (1940, Jack King) - All Donny wants to do is enjoy a date with the lovely Ms. Duck (making her debut here), but pesky nephews Huey, Dewey & Louie won't have it. (8:10)
2. Cured Duck (1945, Jack King) - Daisy dumps Don until he can learn to control his temper, so the bird buys an insult machine and nearly loses his mind. (6:48)
3. Donald's Double Trouble (1946, Jack King) - Daisy wants Donald to be nicer, so he hires a classy lookalike to take her out on a date -- realizing too late how stupid an idea it was. (6:46)
4. Sleepy Time Donald* (1947, Jack Kinney) - Donald (literally) sleepwalks through an entire, and rather eventful, date with Daisy. (6:35)
5. Crazy Over Daisy* (1949, Jack Hannah) - An afternoon of romance in the park is ruined when Chip 'n' Dale target Donald for some punishment. (6:29)
6. Donald's Dream Voice* (1948, Jack King) - Donald finds trouble as a door-to-door salesman because of his ... speech impediment. Luckily, a man selling "voice improvement" pills is hawking his wares nearby. (6:32)
7. Donald's Crime (1945, Jack King) - Donald steals some of his nephews' money so he can take Daisy on a date ... but gets a sudden attack of the guilts. (7:59)
8. Donald's Diary* (1954, Jack Kinney) - Donald recounts a rather fanciful version of the "Donald Meets Daisy" story while scribbling in his diary. (7:15)
They're all a bunch of simple little shorts, to be sure, but you're getting some really great pieces of classic Disney animation that (you hope) your kids will actually want to come back to.
Video: The original full frame (1.33:1) aspect ratio is what's replicated here, and (aside from the flaws inherent within the source material) the cartoons look pretty darn excellent. As I don't own any of the "Treasures" collections, I cannot make a fair comparison, but I suspect even the diehard Disneyites will like what they see here.
Audio: Dolby Digital Mono, which is perfectly fine in every way. There's also a French audio track, as well as optional English captions.
Extras: Disney's still touting their "Fastplay" feature that, I believe, just lets you watch everything in order from the minute you pop the disc in. (And by "everything" I also mean the first two trailers mentioned below.) I suppose the Fastplay feature is meant to allow younger viewers to just pop the disc in and go. If so, great. Me, I'm a click-around-er. The only extras to be found are some trailers for upcoming Disney DVD releases: The Little Mermaid: Special Edition, Dumbo: Special Edition, The Fox and the Hound 2, Little Einsteins: Team Up for Adventure, Leroy & Stitch, Brother Bear 2, Princess Fairy Tales, and Lady and the Tramp 2: Scamp's Adventure.
One of the best "Classic Collection" volumes yet, #11 delivers four shorts that are making their DVD debut ... and another four are pretty cool, too. Noduck does a slow-burn/freak-out like good ol' Donald Duck does.