Monday, March 28, 2016

Short Subject: Mickey Steps Out (1931)

Good grief!

Three shorts in a row that I picked at random to review and they all have blackface in them!  I mean I was all set to comment on the nice music, Pluto’s awkward run cycle, the weird sidewalk and mud puddle that appears out of nowhere so Mickey’s movements match the music, kind of, but then we get to the ending.

Pluto chases a cat into the stove the soot falls over everyone, giving them the familiar black large lipped caricature look, and they smile away and we’re supposed to laugh at the antics.  Yes I know it was made 85 years ago, things that were acceptable then are not now it happens.  And as I’ve said it’s good that it happens, because it means we’ve grown since then.  But I want to enjoy the effort that went into these shorts from a creative perspective and you’re making it really hard by including the racial stereotypes of the day when honestly I don’t think they need to be there.  You could have had everyone crash into another mud puddle and it would have achieved the same thing.

In closing somethings are timeless, this is not.  

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