Director: Walt Disney
Release Date: August 7, 1928
Stars: Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Peg Leg Pete
Rating: ★★★★★ ♕
If possible, he is even ruder in this short than in his first cartoon, ‘Plane Crazy‘: according to a poster in the background, he is a sought-after criminal, and before our eyes he smokes and drinks, and he dances a stout tango with Minnie (who’s wearing a bra in this cartoon).
Nevertheless, this cartoon is also the first in which Mickey shows to be a small, but clever and courageous hero. For when Minnie is abducted by Peg Leg Pete (who, in his first appearance, still has both his legs), Mickey rescues her in a heroic fight. He then earns the kiss he tried to get by force in ‘Plane Crazy’.
Due to the melodrama ‘Gallopin’ Gaucho’ contains less gags than ‘Plane Crazy’, but it’s still a wonderful and fast cartoon with ingenious gags like the scene in which Mickey uses his own tail as a tackle. ‘Gallopin’ Gaucho’ also set out a storyline that was to be copied a couple of times (e.g. ‘The Cactus Kid‘ (1930), ‘Mickey in Arabia‘ (1932),’ The Klondike Kid’ (1932)), and self-consciously parodied in ‘Gallopin’ Romance’, the film shown in ‘Mickey’s Gala Premiere’ (1933).
A few final trivial remarks:
- Mickey has shoes in this cartoon, which he shortly looses while whistling his ostrich in one scene.
- Mickey’s eyes change from the goggly to the familiar ones during the same scene.
- The bird Mickey’s riding might very well be a Rhea, a relative of the ostrich, that lives on the pampas of Argentina, the place where the cartoon takes place.
Watch ‘Gallopin’ Gaucho’ yourself and tell me what you think: