Poster

Rescue Dog

A Pluto Cartoon

Release Date : March 21, 1947

Running Time : 6:46

Synopsis

Pluto, as the title says, is a rescue dog in the frozen north. But when he tangles with a baby seal, it turns out that he is the one who needs to be rescued.

Characters

Pluto
Salty, the Seal

Credits

Director
Charles Nichols
Animation
George Nicholas
Jerry Hathcock
George Kreisl
Jack Boyd
Backgrounds
Howard Dunn
Layout
Karl Karpe
Story
Eric Gurney
Bill de la Torre
Music
Oliver Wallace

Video

United States
Cartoon Classics : Limited Gold Editions II : From Pluto with Love
Germany
Pluto Ein Schlappohr Hetzt die Meute
France
La Collection en Or des Studios Disney Volume 2
Les Nouvelles Aventures de Pluto
Italy
Le Nuove Avventure di Pluto

Laserdiscs

United States
Cartoon Classics : Limited Gold Editions II : From Pluto with Love
Japan
More Tales of Pluto

DVD

United States
Disney Treasures : The Complete Pluto Volume 2
Classic Cartoon Favorites : Volume 8 : Holiday Celebration with Mickey and Pals
Canada
Classic Cartoon Favorites : Volume 8 : Holiday Celebration with Mickey and Pals

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 42: Goin' to the Zoo
Mickey's Mouse Tracks: Episode 48
The Mickey Mouse Club : November 27, 1956

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 : The more Disney shorts I watch, the more I feel like the eras can be grouped into sets by characters. The late 20s and early 30s were the Mickey/Silly Symphonies era, then we had the Mickey/Donald/Goofy era, the Goofy & Donald era and the post war years are shaping up to be the Donald/Pluto era. Hence, we get another Pluto short in the beginning of 1947, with Rescue Dog.

I was not excited going into this one, because the trope of the rescue dog has been used before, not just by Disney. I’ve seen it in Looney Tunes cartoons as well as modern cartoons, so it’s not that original. Pluto has even done variations on it in other shorts. In case you’re unfamiliar with it, the rescue dog is that dog in the snow with a barrel around their neck that drips hot liquid into the mouths of frozen travelers to warm them up in the frozen wastelands.

As discussed yesterday, there is a conundrum of how Pluto can appear in shorts, because he’s at his best when he is a little mischievous. Being a rescue dog takes that away from him, so it’s hard to see how Rescue Dog is going to be good. The story pits Pluto against a seal, who is interested in playing a game with the barrel around his neck.

It’s just not that compelling, frankly. The seal and Pluto cannot talk, so the short is reliant on action to convey the story. There’s not enough action or gags in the short to make it work. On top of that, the seal is not a great character. I had to watch the short twice to understand whether the seal was malicious or just playing around (It’s the latter).

The final sequence of the short offers a different twist, as it’s Pluto who crashes through the ice and is in danger of freezing. The seal goes through a variety of actions to try and save Pluto, finally pulling him out of the water frozen solid.

It’s a neat idea, but the scenes of Pluto swimming around under the solid ice are frankly a bit frightening and unnerving. Even though I knew Pluto would make it, it was hard to watch him struggle like that. The ultimate resolution of the two characters as friends was telegraphed from the beginning, so it lacked an emotional punch. Not the best Pluto short I’ve ever seen, to be sure.


From Ryan : This is a better Pluto short than the previous one that I commented on. I enjoyed all the fun gags in this one. I can't remember all of them so I'll have to watch this short again. The censored scene (where Pluto is dunked under water for a short time) seems to be on the "Ink and Paint Club" version of this short. I don't understand why this was censored. I mean, they probably would have someone being dunked underwater on one of those stupid new shows like "Schnookums and Meat." Perhaps it was just deleted in order to fit within a certain time frame.
From Nikki : Like Pluto's Playmate it was good but it was more of a short teaching kids how to make friends with the appearance of the seal. Its quite entertaining filled with the gags but once again poor Pluto needs to be rescued again.
From Baruch Weiss : In this short Pluto is, like the title says, a Rescue Dog. I enjoyed the scene where Pluto and the seal are in an ice cave!
From Billy Joe : Pluto tries to be a good rescue dog in this cartoon, but he ends up trapped in the ice because he was harassing a seal. Pluto almost drowns underwater, but the seal rescues Pluto. The cartoon's name should of been "Rescue Seal". This is another fun Pluto short. It gets a 9 out of 10.

Referenced Comments