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I love this cartoon, it is one of my favorite Donald shorts from
1941. I love it when Donald flips the record from "Lazy Daze" music
to "Hot Stuff" jitter-bug music to speed up production (with eggs 85
cents); And also when encounters the rooster :
It is funny to see Donald as a hen, and it's amazing that Ducky Nash
could cluck like a chicken in his Donald voice; Donald is the first
duck to be masquerading in the guise of a chicken, because it was also
done in a Daffy Duck cartoon "You were never Duckier" but in a different
Maybe that's how the cartoon was initially planned, too? But I can't say I know. I always had the "but it's Donald's house" problem with the finished film, too.
After seeing that the price of eggs is up to $0.85/lb, Donald decides it’s his time to strike it rich by harvesting the eggs in what one presumes is his chicken coop. After all, Donald leaves his own house, steps into his own yard, and begins collecting the eggs. He even puts on a faster bit of music to speed up the egg production. So where’s the problem?
Somewhere in the middle of all this, a rooster shows up and boots Donald out of the coop. What? I get that the rooster is “in charge” of the hens, but isn’t Donald the owner of the coop? Shouldn’t he be able to kick the rooster out?
This is where the problem of having your lead character be an animal kick in. Donald, as a duck, is about the same size as the rooster, so it really seems he has no authority in this situation. Which leads to an inevitable silly solution of putting on a female rooster costume, of course.
That’s the entire plot of the short, really, is Donald’s attempt to get past the rooster and capture the eggs using this “female” trick. And it’s funny watching Donald try to maneuver himself closer to the eggs without alerting the rooster to his duplicity. There’s complications of course, such as the red rubber glove that refuses to stay on Donald’s head, or the caterpillar that crawls inside the glove.
In the end, though, it was really hard for me to get past the whole “this is Donald’s house” thing. I know, I should suspend disbelief and move on, but this was just such a stretch that it was hard to overcome. Outside of that, though, the short is quite good.
One thing I find interesting is that in the way this plays off the rising price of eggs, this is the first time that the effects of World War II are starting to creep into the shorts. It would not be until 1942 that rationing and the conservation of resources began in earnest, but prices for goods were starting to rise as the war intensified. Eventually, Disney would become much more embroiled in the war effort with propaganda shorts and more, but that’s in the future.