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Robert Niles

Will Disney bring back an old-school Mickey Mouse?

Published: November 4, 2009 at 8:56 PM

200For tonight's open thread, I'll leave you with this article from the New York Times, revealing some of the ways that the Walt Disney Company is looking to revitalize its icon, Mickey Mouse.

Over the decades, Mickey's ossified into a corporate symbol - far from his origin as the "Bart Simpson of his day," as the NYT put it. Heck, even the original Animation tour film at the then-Disney-MGM Studios gently mocked Mickey's corporate status.

I also enjoyed the reveal that the famous "Oswald for Al Michaels" deal wasn't some last-minute, face-saving throw-in, but a calculated move by Disney to regain rights for a character it needed for next year's "Epic Mickey" video game, the first step in the company's re-envisioning of the Main Mouse.

Whaddya think?

Replies (7)

Anthony Murphy

Published: November 4, 2009 at 9:22 PM

Bring him back? Where did he go?

Mickey was a supporting Character in Kingdom Hearts games and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and House of Mouse was popular.

I think another thing to remember is some consider Mickey the alter ego of Walt, who was the creator and head of Disney. It always gives me a smile when I see him on my paycheck. A big company represented by a mouse? I love it!

Yeah, I am a little bias, but I disagree that Mickey has gone down some crazy road. He is here and better than ever! I also do not want to see him be too naughty. I really don't think he was ever a Bart Simpson.

Interesting Article though!

Derek Potter

Published: November 4, 2009 at 9:41 PM

Mickey wasn't always a homogenized symbol of commercialism. Disney's early cartoons had a bit of a political and social satire to them, and Mickey was the central character in many of them. I wouldn't lump him in with Bart Simpson, as Mickey was more wholesome than Bart, but once upon a time, Mickey had a lot more depth to him than he does now.
Robert Niles

Published: November 4, 2009 at 9:44 PM

I so love "Steamboat Willie" Mickey more than "Mickey's Christmas Carol" Mickey. Love that pic of Epic Mickey, too!

One of the reasons that I love the Universal parks is the delicious snark that the parks' attractions sometimes offer, a fun, rebellious spirit that's missing from the Disney parks. (Like that's incompatible with "magic" somehow. Sigh.) I also like what Busch has done with the Shamu character on Twitter, as it evokes that same spirit.

Disney did it first, though, with Mickey. And I would love, love, love to see Disney recapture *that* magic!

Rob P

Published: November 5, 2009 at 5:26 AM

I'm all for revitalising the brand.....even one as big as Mickey Mouse but , and I don't know if it's because I'm a traditionalist, I much prefer the warm 2-D animations to the 3-D versions.
Corbin Barker

Published: November 5, 2009 at 6:44 AM

I'm not sure about "Epci Mickey" but "Epic Mickey" looks like it's going to be awesome. ;)
David Graham

Published: November 5, 2009 at 7:34 AM

I haven't read the article yet in my game informer on Epic Micky but love the cover of MM. Also I got it a few years ago but I love my villians shirt that has a warped Mickey on it all possed looking. I can say I grew up at Disney, from my parents working there to most family to even me in the 90s. I don't go as much, but would love to see Mickey brought back to more his glory days in my opinion they thinking of him now as a corp symbol. I wish WDW the best on this process.
Nathaniel Gillespie

Published: November 5, 2009 at 8:37 AM

I love video games and I love Disney so it's a win-win for me!

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