218. Clown of the Jungle – Jack Hannah


SUMMARY: Donald Duck’s attempts to photograph wild birds are interrupted by the anarchic heckling of the bizarre Aracuan Bird.

WHY IT’S HERE: ‘Clown of the Jungle’ saw the short subject debut of the Aracuan Bird, a character who was debuted in the feature ‘Three Cabelleros’ and popped up again in ‘Melody Time’. This appealing wacky character is notable for his differences from the average Disney character in that his wild energy and ability to defy the laws of physics if it makes a gag work make him a very un-Disney-like creation. Indeed, with the crazy, gag-driven cartoons of Warner Bros. dominating at this time, ‘Clown of the Jungle’ feels like an attempt to mimic this style. What could have gone horribly wrong actually works very well, chiefly due to the cartoon never sacrificing the Disney style completely, with Donald his recognisable self even as the Aracuan Bird performs evermore impossible acts.


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