Poster

Donald's Dilemma

A Donald Duck Cartoon

Release Date : July 11, 1947

Running Time : 7:14

Synopsis

A blow on the head from a flowerpot changes Donald's personality for the better, but Daisy loses him in the process.

Characters

Donald Duck
Daisy Duck

Credits

Director
Jack King
Animation
Don Towsley
Edwin Aardal
Emery Hawkins
Sandy Strother
Backgrounds
Maurice Greenberg
Layout
Don Griffith
Story
Roy Williams
Music
Oliver Wallace

Video

United States
Cartoon Classics : Limited Gold Editions I : Daisy
Germany
Micky Liebt Minnie
That's Donald
Micky Liebt Minnie
Donald Total Verliebt
France
Mickey et Minnie les Amours de Printemps
Italy
Io Paperino
Paperino Piume Guai e Simpatia
Paperina
Topolino e Minnie Innamorati
Topolino and Co. : Avventure Tutte da Ridere
Cartoon Classics : Limited Gold Editions I : Paperina

CED

United States
Limited Gold Editions - Daisy

Laserdiscs

Japan
Donald Duck and His Duckling Gang
Disney Cartoon Festival 7
Daisy : Limited Gold Edition
Mickey Loves Minnie

DVD

United States
Disney Treasures : Wave 7 : The Chronological Donald Volume 3
Classic Cartoon Favorites : Volume 6 : Extreme Music Fun
Germany
Disney Treasures : Wave 7 : The Chronological Donald Volume 3
Musik Spass Superstars
Schmetterlinge in Bauch
Italy
Extreme Music Fun
Canada
Classic Cartoon Favorites : Volume 6 : Extreme Music Fun

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 40: Crazy Over Daisy
Mickey's Mouse Tracks: Episode 75

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 : Rolling on into 1947, we come to a very strange entry in the Disney shorts known as Donald’s Dilemma. I call it strange because although it is a Donald Duck cartoon and features an opening that brands it as such, Donald is not the main attraction. Instead, Daisy takes center stage for the first time in a Disney cartoon.

I’ll have to say the results are mixed. Although Daisy is established at this point in the canon of Disney as Donald’s girlfriend, she has not had much to do aside from spurn Donald. The few times we have seen Daisy have not hinted at much of a personality. This time she does have one, but I’m not sure it’s the kind of personality we want her to have.

The trouble that faces Daisy comes from a transformation in Donald’s personality. He switches from the quacking, ill-tempered duck we know to a suave singer who lights up the stage. Daisy turns from a confident girlfriend that we’ve seen in other shorts to a woman spurned who will stop at nothing to retain her man.

It’s a strange transformation, because it shows Daisy as a woman who needs a man to make herself happy. There are some very strange scenes in the montage of Daisy dealing with the fact that the “new” Donald doesn’t recognize or care for her. There’s even a shot of Daisy with a gun to her head preparing to shoot herself! This is not what we expect from a cartoon.

Layer on top of that that the song that vaults Donald to prominence is his rendition of “When You Wish Upon A Star.” It’s very confusing to see a song made famous by a Disney animated film being reused in a Disney animated short that is supposed to reflect the world at large. Very strange. We have officially entered the era of Disney self-reference, which combines with Daisy’s personality change to make this one of Disney’s strangest shorts.


From Jerry Edwards : While I dislike this short, several aspects intrigue me. The title should be DAISY'S dilemma, not Donald's. Donald is perfectly happy being a famous singer, it's Daisy with the dilemma, not Donald. I suppose the cartoon has Donald in the title since it would sell better to the distributors than a Daisy title. I try to not psychoanalyze cartoons, but this short definitely shows the "dark side" of love to me. When the psychiatrist asks Daisy if she would rather have Donald as he was or allow him to continue to be successful, loved by the world as a famous singer - Daisy screams, "Me, Me, ME!!!"
From Ryan : What Jerry Edwards said above hadn't occurred to me before. The title should be "Daisy's Dilemma" not "Donald's Dilemma." Daisy tells the psychiatrist how it happened. I enjoy this short with some of the funny scenes that Daisy explains in her flashback. She says how she had trouble sleeping with her lying in bed holding the flower that hit Donald on the head. There is a censored scene in this short where Daisy explains that she didn't want to live. She is sitting at the table that is filled with knives, poison, etc. She is also holding a gun to her head.
From Brian : I saw this episode many times on a home video when I was about two, and I do agree with the other two reviews that the title would better off being "Daisy's" dilemma instead of Donald's. Daisy tells the psychiatrist how Donald lost his memory of her and explains some strange things in her flashback. When on TV, this episode is missing a scene where Daisy mentions how she had trouble eating her lunch with her imagining the food on the table as nuclear waste, and her fork as a blunderbuss. The next scene is not censored - she explains how she went insane with her untying her hair ribbon and biting her arm. She goes to the Radio City Music Hall to get a chance to see her lost love, whom cannot recognize her. The psychiatrist then tells Daisy to drop another flower pot on Donald's head for a cure.
From Electro Sun Dog : I happen to have the uncensored version and yes, it's all very...wrong. I, personally, am amazed that they even OK'ed it for release. But then, think again about how the short works. I see it as a Disney attempt at a "dark humor" piece. Well, doesn't it seem like Lynch to you?
From Baruch Weiss : I agree with the two comments up above. The title should be "Daisy's Dilemma." The song Donald sings is "When You Wish Upon a Star." However it is slightly different from the famous song we know today because the duck replaces the line "Makes no difference who you are" to "Shine in right in from afar."
From Matthew Cooper : I love this cartoon. The best thing about it is when Donald gets hit and changes from his quackish, short-tempered self into a smooth-toned, desirable singer, he sounds a lot like Bing Crosby (whom my Grandma is a fan of, so she likes this short.) I agree with some of the others that this short should have been called Daisy's Dilemma because it's her who has the problem. Myself, I think that by making Donald lose his singing career, Daisy did the right thing for even though Donald may be able to get somewhere with a smooth voice, without him, Daisy is nothing!

Referenced Comments