Poster

Pluto's Quin-puplets

A Pluto the Pup Cartoon

Release Date : November 26, 1937

Running Time : 9:05

Synopsis

Pluto has to stay and watch the kids while Fifi goes out for food. Not an easy job with five rambunctious pups who won't stay still and end up fighting with an airhose and some spilled paint. Even more difficult when Pluto accidentally drinks moonshine.

Characters

Pluto
Fifi, the Pekinese

Credits

Director
Ben Sharpsteen
Animation
Seamus Culhane
Frenchy de Tremaudan
Norm Ferguson

Video

United States
Starring Pluto and Fifi
Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck Cartoon Collections Volume 3
Germany
Happy Birthday, Pluto!
Donald Ich bin der Grösste
Pluto Held Wider Willen
Die Popcornschlacht
Donald und die Entenbande
Donald Ducks Tolldreiste Abenteuer
France
Disney Parade 1
Italy
Paperino e la Sua Banda di Paperi

CED

United States
Disney Cartoon Parade Volume 5

Laserdiscs

Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck Cartoon Collections Volume 3
Starring Donald and Daisy / Starring Pluto and Fifi
Japan
Donald Duck and his Duckling Gang
Disney Cartoon Festival 1

DVD

United States
Disney Treasures : The Complete Pluto Volume 1
Germany
Disney Treasures : The Complete Pluto Volume 1

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 12: The Many Loves of Pluto
Mickey's Mouse Tracks: Episode 20

Technical Specification

Color Type: Technicolor
Animation Type: Standard animation
Sound Mix: Mono
Aspect Ratio: 1.37 : 1
Negative Format: 35mm
Print Format: 35mm
Cinematographic Process: Spherical
Original Language: English

Released by RKO Radio Pictures, Inc.

Comments

From Ryan Kilpatrick at The Disney Film Project : Of all the Fab Five, I have often said here that Pluto offers the animators the most opportunity to express themselves. As a “real” animal, Pluto gives the Disney team the chance to express human emotions within the limits of animal behavior. All that said, it may seem counter intuitive that I do not care for the Pluto cartoons as much as the other series.

It probably has most to do with the fact that I don’t relate to Pluto as a character the way that I do Donald or Goofy. Pluto’s roles change often, such as the father role he plays in Pluto’s Quin-puplets opposed to the roles he played in the Mickey shorts. Plus, he tends to repeat gags a great deal.

Take for instance the first part of this short. Fifi, who is now Mrs. Pluto, heads off to get some food for the family, while Pluto is left to mind the children. So he ends up trying to herd the five pups in very much the same way he did the chicks in Mother Pluto. In fact, this short is similar to Mother Pluto in that it puts Pluto in the parent role, only to see him fail spectacularly.

There are good gags in this short, though. When the children disappear into the basement of the nearby house, they slip and slide on some potatoes. Then, one of the pups pulls free an air hose from a nearby compressor, and the hose begins whipping around the room. This is what drives the rest of the short.

The air hose ends up knocking Pluto out, assisting nearby paint cans in spray painting the children, and generally wrecking the basement. Having the pups get sprayed different colors with different patterns because of junk in the basement is a very clever gag.

What I didn’t like was the way Pluto got knocked around and ended up with a jug of moonshine pouring down his throat. This is a similar gag that was used in Alpine Climbers, when the St. Bernard poured the alcohol into Pluto to revive him. It just seemed unnecessary. Pluto was already in hot water because of the way the kids were getting in trouble. It seems like it would have been better to have him chasing the kids around but unable to prevent them from getting sprayed.

The ending is a little off, too. Fifi returns, but she sees the kids coming up from the basement and growls at them. It’s unclear if she’s just mad or if she doesn’t recognize them. Then, she really takes it out on Pluto. The short closes with Fifi in the doghouse growling, while Pluto and the children sleep in a nearby barrel. It seems just off to me. Is Fifi still mad while they’re fine with it? What is going on?

I thought Pluto’s Quin-puplets was good, but falls short of the standard set in the other shorts from 1937. Watching it the day after The Old Mill was probably part of the problem. You could not see two different shorts if you tried.


From Mac : This is one of my favorite Pluto shorts. The music is especially good and I love the scene where the puplets get sprayed different colors and patterns (I've always thought that Fifi barked angrily because she didn't recognize them).

I must admit though that my opinion of this short may be biased because of my own nostalgia. This is still the same cartoon I enjoyed as a kid and it really takes me back to a happy summer I spent as a 9 year old (when I first recorded the cartoon from TV). I won't bore you with all the details and memories that this cartoon stirs, but I'll never forget my little cousin dramatically and enthusiastically acting this cartoon out for me before I had a chance to watch it myself. I remember it so clearly it's astonishing now I think that this was around 16 years ago and now we're all adults!

This was probably the first cartoon to be released as a Pluto cartoon (again I'd like to see the original titles!), although there wasn't another until 1940.


From Patrick Malone : Married life has never been a blessing for the Disney characters. Mickey got a taste of it in Mickey's Nightmare and Donald in Donald's Diary; neither episode turned out too well for our heroes. But Pluto gamely gives it a try here. Now I have three kids myself, so I know what a handful they can be, and in this short, Pluto is saddled with five identical puppies! So, I think he can hardly be blamed if things get a little out of hand.

The short begins, as they always do with a scene of domestic bliss; Pluto and Fifi nuzzling away as they watch their five pups sleeping. But when a passing shopper with a string of wieners hanging out of his basket passes by, Pluto finds out just how henpecked he really is. Fifi assumes the role of the hunter / gatherer which Pluto seems reluctant to abdicate. But abdicate he does, under duress, and he is left with the care of the five children. Now this might have been a simple job for him, had not one of them rolled over and woke up; and then woken up the rest of them.

As kids will do, they just want to go out and have fun and explore the world a bit. Pluto, fearful of Fifi's wrath if the pups aren't exactly where she left them when she gets back, tries every means at his disposal to keep them in; pinning a few down with his paws, lassoing one with his tail, and finally stretching out to grab a board and boarding up the door of the doghouse. But the pups must have been reading "Huckleberry Finn" as they discover a loose plank in the side of the house and make their escape that way. Their exploration of the world eventually leads them into an open basement of the house, where you wouldn't think they'd be able to get into too much trouble. Boy, would you be wrong.

The problem was that someone had left a live compressed air hose and, when one of the pups gets tangled up in it, he inadvertently pops it off and it begins to swing wildly around the room, blowing the pups this way and that and generally scaring them out of their wits. Meanwhile, Pluto has been mindful of his duties. In searching for the pup, he hears them yelping down in the basement and goes down to investigate. Heroic Pluto takes the initiative; he grabs the hose in his teeth and attempts to wrestle it down, but in doing so, he gets the air pressure in his mouth, blowing up his cheeks and then his ears like a Macy's Parade balloon. The pressure lets go and Pluto gets shot across the room, upending a variety of paint cans.

And as if things couldn't get any more troublesome for him, he also upends a jug of moonshine, which begins to empty right into poor Pluto. Well, what the heck ... might as well enjoy it. The air hose continues it's romp around the room, now aided and abetted by the spilt paint. One pup gets a waffle treatment as a paint job, one gets stripes, one gets polka dots. Earl Scheib couldn't have done the job any better or faster. The other two pups just get the splash treatment as does Pluto himself, who is as happy as can be ... hiccupping away. And the air hose finally spends itself out.

But who did we forget? Ah, yes ... here comes Fifi back from her shopping with the trail of wieners for supper. The pups hear her arrive and come running, all sporting impressive new paint jobs. Fifi is aghast - are these really her kids? Pluto attempts to run and greet her as well, but it's difficult to get up the basement stairs when you're both intoxicated and have paint cans stuck to your paws. Pluto gently smiles and greets Fifi without a clue that anything has gone wrong. But as any henpecked husband knows ... the blast from Fifi will be furious and long-lasting.

You would think after all this that Pluto would have ended up in the doghouse. But the doghouse this evening is reserved for Fifi by herself, madly snapping and growling through the night, while Pluto and the pups are banished, for the evening at least, to a nearby barrel, where they peacefully sleep off their adventure.


From Tom Wilkins : A cute story, but not a great short. I think this is the only Disney short that captions the title page as "A Walt Disney Pluto the Pup." In reality, Pluto was not a pup anymore at 49 dog years (since debuting in 1930).
From Jesus Daprice : How come Pluto and the pups slept in a barrel? Couldn't they have just scratched on the door and have their owner (most likely Mickey) let them in? That way they could've spent the night in the house.
From K. Richard : Am I the only one one that's noticed that that cocker-spaniel that Pluto was involved with in several cartoons bears a strong resemblance to the dog from "Lady and the Tramp"?
From Ryan : As someone else pointed out in their comments, Fifi does look like Lady from "Lady and the Tramp." Pluto, however, is no Tramp. He's just plain 'ol Pluto the Pup (as this short says in the opening credits, although he really isn't a pup). This time Pluto is a daddy and has five cute little mischievous puppies (isn't it odd that all of them look like Pluto and not one of them looks like Fifi). It was just hilarious seeing them get into all sorts of trouble like when they were down in the basement, they had a run-in with a hose and some paint. Pluto got drunk on moonshine that accidentally fell into his mouth. Later after Fifi comes back with supper, she sees what a mess her family has become and kicks them out of the doghouse leaving them to sleep in the barrel all night. Someone else had a question in their comments about why Pluto and the pups didn't just bark at the back door so that their owner could let them in. Hey, they'd get the better place to sleep than cranky old Fifi. This cartoon is really great and I recommend it to all you Pluto fans out there.
From Baruch Weiss : Five years after this short Pluto was a father again, but this time he had only one pup and Fifi did not co star with him. Perhaps they got divorced.
From Michelle I. : This short is pretty cute; Pluto's kids prove to be more than he can handle while his Pekingese wife is away.
From Mike : This is a good Pluto cartoon. The scenes of him getting drunk off the moonshine was just hilarious. I loved the kids even though they were trouble.

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