Director: Jack King
Release Date: September 25, 1942
Stars: Donald Duck, Pete
Rating:
 ★★½
Review:

The Vanishing Private © Walt Disney‘The Vanishing Private’ is the second of the Donald in the army cartoons. Like the first, ‘Donald Gets Drafted‘ from four months earlier, it features Pete as Donald’s adversary.

In the opening shot we watch Donald singing the theme song from ‘Donald Gets Drafted’ and painting a huge canon in ridiculously bright colors. Sergeant Pete tells him to make the canon hard to see. Donald does so by using invisible paint from an experimental laboratory. He accidentally falls into the bucket of paint himself, making himself invisible and driving Sergeant Pete mad.

‘The Vanishing Private’ suffers because of two reasons:

1) the invisibility makes Donald all too powerful. It’s therefore hard to sympathize with him, and not with poor Pete. This is a problem shared by other invisibility cartoons, like the Tom & Jerry cartoon ‘The Invisible Mouse‘ (1947).

2) The other Donald army cartoons are all about the pains and annoyances of normal army life, which is absolutely part of their fun. But the subject of ‘The Vanishing Pirate’ is so unlikely, one can hardly relate to it.

The result is not a funny cartoon, making ‘The Vanishing Private’ arguably the weakest of Donald’s army cartoons.

Watch ‘The Vanishing Private’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Donald Duck cartoon No. 35
To the previous Donald Duck cartoon: Donald’s Goldmine
To the next Donald Duck cartoon: Sky Trooper

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