Poster

Bootle Beetle

A Donald Duck Cartoon

Release Date : August 22, 1947

Running Time : 7:02

Synopsis

A young beetle attempts to run away from home, but is stopped by a lesson about the dreaded bug collector, Donald Duck.

Characters

Donald Duck
Bootle Beetle

Credits

Director
Jack Hannah
Animation
Art Babbitt
Bill Justice
Judge Whitaker
Backgrounds
Thelma Witmer
Effects Animation
Andy Engman
Layout
Yale Gracey
Story
Bill Berg
Milt Banta
Music
Oliver Wallace

Video

Germany
Donald Präsentiert
Donald Total Verliebt
France
Disney Festival
Italy
Le Avventure di Caccia del Prof. de Paperis
Paperino Pippo Pluto e …
Paperino Superstar

Laserdiscs

Japan
The Hunting Instinct
Starring Donald
Disney Cartoon Festival 7

DVD

United States
Disney Treasures : Wave 7 : The Chronological Donald Volume 3
Germany
Disney Treasures : Wave 7 : The Chronological Donald Volume 3

Television

The Ink and Paint Club: Episode 8: Bugged
Mickey's Mouse Tracks: Episode 12
Donald's Quack Attack: Episode 18

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 : After seeing the Donald Duck shorts so far in 1947, I think it’s safe to say that Disney was losing confidence in the duck as their leading character. Remember, Mickey was no longer en vogue, and outside of Pluto, there were not a lot of shorts coming out each year. What’s interesting is the extent to which Disney has gone to work around Donald while still putting his face on the short.

We saw Daisy as the narrator, Goofy sharing the billing and now we get an entirely new character, the Bootle Beetle. Very strange, no doubt, but it gives us a really cool new character to enjoy. The Bootle Beetle is presented as the main protagonist in this short, battling against Donald for its survival. Donald is the villain of the piece in this telling.

The Bootle Beetle is introduced by an omniscient narrator who tells us that the beetle is one of the rarest bugs around, and highly valued by collectors. What follows is an older beetle cautioning a younger one from venturing forward into the world at large and then relating the story of his encounter with a “giant monster” which was also Donald Duck.

While the story and the gags are somewhat entertaining, there isn’t a whole lot here to get excited about. The beetle’s escapes from Donald’s clutches are not thrilling or funny, just sort of routine. The interactions are notable mainly because of the beetle’s narration not recognizing Donald but continually referring to him as a monster. While that’s somewhat amusing, it’s not enough to hold up an entire short.

What’s more intriguing to me is the movement we are seeing here that minimizes Donald in his own cartoons. The shorts of this era lack the anger we saw earlier from Donald and seem to rely on gimmicks and changes to the storytelling rather than solid gags. It’s clear the attention of the staff has turned over to the features program, and it’s possible walt has also turned his attention away at this point. That leaves poor Donald fighting it out with a bug in an obscure short.


From Ryan : In this short, Donald is a collector of the rare Bootle Beetle. Bootle Beetle tells the story two his grandson of how he almost got caught by Donald Duck. The animation of this short is good and I enjoyed the ending showing an elderly Donald still searching for the beetle.
From Christian : Are you nuts? I love this short! I always get a good laugh at the part at the end where an elderly Donald is still trying to catch the Bootle Beetle.
From Grace : This is the best cartoon ever! It has tons of gags, and I had fun watching this short. Rating 10!