Chip 'n' Dale are a pair of chipmunks and are very popular Disney characters. Although the duo have similar looks and rarely appear separately, they both have distinct personalities and a few distinguishing physical features.
Chip can be identified by his small, black nose and two adjacent front teeth, whereas Dale has a larger nose which is alternately brown, black or red, and he has a gap between his two front teeth. Chip is also usually the more logical and cunning of the two, with Dale being the more dimwitted one who can be smart at times.
While they most frequently appeared in theatrically-released cartoons under the Donald Duck and Pluto series, they were also featured in three shorts under their own banner, "Chip 'n' Dale"--these were Chicken in the Rough, Two Chips and a Miss and The Lone Chipmunks.
The duo also starred in their own television series, Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers.
Chip 'n' Dale first appeared in a 1943 cartoon starring Pluto called "Private Pluto." In this appearance, they look a lot more like realistic chipmunks and did not have names. The two then-nameless twin chipmunks were never intended to be used again after that short, but when Walt Disney needed new characters to challenge Donald Duck, Walt decided to revive these two chipmunks, leading them to acquire their now-familiar names and personalities. Ever since, they have appeared primarily in Donald Duck and Pluto cartoons.
Chip 'n' Dale became so popular that they were able to star in their own series of cartoons joining Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy and Pluto. Only three shorts were created in that series. The first was Chicken in the Rough, where Dale becomes trapped in a chicken coop. The next and most famous one was Two Chips and a Miss, where Chip 'n' Dale go out to a night club and battle for the attention of female chipmunk Clarice. The last was The Lone Chipmunks, where Chip 'n' Dale capture the outlaw Pete.
Their names are a pun on the name "Chippendale" (a reference to furniture-maker Thomas Chippendale). This was suggested by Bill "Tex" Henson, a screenwriter at the studio.
Chip has darker fur with a small black nose. Chip is the brains of the duo and thus is shown to be clever, fearless and a little bossy. Unlike his best friend, he's a fast thinker and far more active. When dealing with Donald, Chip shows to be much more of a threat than Dale, both mentally and physically. In Rescue Rangers, Chip constantly thinks about being on duty to the point where he is thought to not know how to be fun; because of such, Dale's blundering causes him nothing but headaches.
Dale is much lighter than his partner. He sports two buck teeth as a symbol of stupidity and a seemingly large red nose. He is lazy, dim-witted and clumsy. In earlier appearances, he was completely foolish to the point where he can truly be called an idiot. In later years, that aspect of his personality was toned down to just being carefree and fun-loving. In Rescue Rangers, Dale wears a Hawaiian shirt, possibly to show how relaxed his personality it; he gets along easier with Monty and Zipper than Chip.
While the two are nearly inseparable and count each other as their closest friends, the one thing that can tear them apart is a romantic interest. They have been known to have feelings for the same girl most of the time and battle each other for the affections of the girl in question. In Rescue Rangers, both are in love with Gadget, but can't seem to be open about their feelings.
Chip 'n' Dale began their careers in Private Pluto. In that cartoon, Pluto is apart of the army and runs into trouble when it appears that two nameless chipmunks are hanging around the site in a pillbox. In this appearance, the two were completely indistinguishable, in terms of both appearance and personalities. Afterwards, the two would later appear in several of Pluto's cartoons, as well as those including Mickey Mouse.
The chipmunks did not get their names until the short Chip an' Dale. In that short, they meet their new nemesis, Donald Duck, whom they would make countless appearances with, even beyond the animated short films. The chipmunks became far more famous for antagonizing Donald and are possibly best known for appearing in his shorts, having gained their trademark appearances and personas when dealing with the hot-tempered duck.
Quite often in these shorts, their tails flicker and sometimes they are both seen running on all fours, much like actual chipmunks. An interesting note is that, in earlier shorts, they had the appearance of more realistic chipmunks (much like the woodland creatures in Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs), only to gain their iconic, far more cartoony designs once their popular and screen-time grew.
In a 1959 episode of the anthology series, entitled "The Adventures of Chip & Dale," Walt Disney was unable to host the show personally. Instead, he left a message on his tape recorder informing viewers of his arrangements to have Chip 'n' Dale host in his place. The chipmunks use the time to go through an old book which holds memories of their fondest exploits.
In Mickey's Christmas Carol, the chipmunks make a cameo appearance dancing in Scrooge's past during Fezziwig's Christmas party.
After the success of DuckTales, Chip and Dale starred in their own series, Chip 'n Dale Rescue Rangers. They were friends of a famous retiring police dog, whose owner was framed by a crime boss for stealing a ruby. Through the adventure to retrieve the ruby and prove the cop's innocence, Chip and Dale met and recruited Gadget Hackwrench, Monterey Jack, and Zipper, forming the Rescue Rangers. They also get new enemies, most notably Fat Cat and Professor Norton Nimnul.
Chip serves as the unspoken leader of the group, while Dale tends to provide most of the comic relief, though Dale does end up becoming the hero at times. Both chipmunks possess a crush on Gadget, becoming rivals for her affections. A running gag in the show has Chip being constantly interrupted when he attempts to tell Gadget his feelings for her. The two have even been love interests themselves. In Adventures in Squirrel-Sitting, a squirrel named "Tammy" falls in love with Chip and in "Good Times, Bat Times", a bat named Foxglove falls in love with Dale. Both of them apparently don't return these affections.
Chip and Dale are recurring characters in Mickey Mouse Works, where they were recast as enemies of Donald Duck once again. One of the duo's most notable appearance in the series is in the short Mickey's Mixed Nuts, where both chipmunks battle Mickey Mouse for the last bag of nuts at a super market.
Chip and Dale appear in the segment Donald Duck: Stuck on Christmas. The two are seen several times throughout the story. At the beginning, they are seen opening their presents. They appear again when they are hit with a snowball by Huey Duck, who then gets hit back by Chip. Their next appearance occurs near the end when an object is thrown into their home and it tuns out to be a bag of nuts wrapped as presents from Huey, Dewey, and Louie. At the end, they are last seen throwing away their Christmas decorations and cleaning up.
Chip and Dale have recurring roles in House of Mouse, primarily as guests at the club. Both chipmunks are seen shaking hands with Donald Duck in the show's intro. The episode "Chip 'n' Dale" is centered around the chipmunks as they spend their evening stealing bags of nuts from the guests while evading Donald. At the end of the episode, an advertisement is shown in which they seem to have their own storage organization where they store "everything you don't need". In "Ladies' Night", Minnie hires them to perform an act as the "Chip 'n Dale Dancers". In "Ask Von Drake", the chipmunks can be briefly seen during Ludwig Von Drake's headcount of all the Disney character guests. The duo also appear in "House of Turkey", where Donald complains how he can't understand what they're saying, and Daisy retaliates she can't understand him either.
They also appear in Mickey's Magical Christmas: Snowed in at the House of Mouse.
Chip and Dale are recurring characters in this computer animated series. They are some of Mickey's friends and still hold a rivalry with Donald. Chip and Dale play the roles of Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum in Mickey's Adventures in Wonderland. Most of the chipmunks' roles are minor with the exception of the episode "Goofy's Coconutty Monkey". In that episode, Chip and Dale are the culprits behind the mysterious disappearance of the jungle's coconuts. In the end, they returned their stash, thinking they were giant nuts. They play another significant role in the episode "Goofy's Thinking Cap" where Mickey, Donald and Goofy need twelve nuts for Clarabelle's scavenger hunt, to which the chipmunks gladly oblige. In some episodes where Mickey and the gang take a trip to outer space, Chip 'n' Dale's alien counterparts usually appear, acting as sidekicks to Pete's alien counterpart.
Together, Chip 'n' Dale have made many appearances in the world of video games. During the time of Rescue Rangers, Chip 'n' Dale starred in three video games spun off from the show. Chip's likeness was also featured in Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two. They can also be seen, dressed in their Rescue Rangers outfits, in the audience shots at the beginning and end of the Castle of Illusion remake.
Chip and Dale are recurring characters in the Kingdom Hearts video game series. In the series, they are once again voiced by Tress MacNeille and Corey Burton.
Chip and Dale appeared in Disney Town, hearing the conversation between Terra and Queen Minnie. They tell Terra that Pete is playing unfairly in the Raceway game and ask him to help. After Terra wins and beats Pete, they both offer their votes to Terra, in hopes that he would win the Dream Festival.
Chip and Dale have limited roles in the first game, appearing briefly at the start of the game to send Donald, Goofy and Pluto off to Traverse Town. By now they serve as the royal engineers. They announce events like when a new competition is being held at Olympus Coliseum. They are seen during the end credits with Queen Minnie and Daisy.
Kingdom Hearts II gives the two chipmunks a larger role than the first game. This time, they accompany Sora, Donald and Goofy around to different worlds in two miniature Gummi Ships that fly alongside the actual Gummi Ship. They also appear in Disney Castle, warning the visitors of the invasion of Heartless in the castle. They also contact the trio when a strange universal reading appears in their radar, eventually the reading is turned out to be the World That Never Was. They are also present when Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, Scrooge McDuck, Pluto, Jiminy Cricket and Donald's nephews return to the castle together.
Both Chip and Dale appeared in the first episode of this game, alongside King Mickey, Donald, Goofy and Jiminy Cricket at Disney Castle. They both are the engineers of the computer. When Donald, Mickey, Goofy and Pete were sucked into the data world, Chip and Dale remain behind and try to contact them, but are blocked by the signals.
Chip 'n' Dale appear as meet-and-greet characters in front of their treehouse in Mickey's Toontown and also dance alongside Mickey's float in the Mickey's Soundsational Parade mini-game. At one point, the duo asks the player to locate some acorns for them to eat.
The classic voices of Chip 'n' Dale were mostly provided by Helen Silbert, Dessie Flynn/Dessie Miller and James MacDonald. The earliest voices of the chipmunks were provided by female office staff, without credit. In Private Pluto, the chipmunks' speech was created by speeding up sound clips of normal speech. In a number of the shorts that followed, many of these same sound clips were re-used again and again, though later shorts used dialogue specifically recorded for that short.
At one point in Winter Storage, Chip 'n' Dale get into an argument while caught in a trap. When the scene switches to an outside view of the box (with Donald Duck sitting on the box), the dialogue being heard is actually a sped-up segment of the voice-over narration from the Goofy short A Knight for a Day.
As of today, Chip is voiced by Tress MacNeille and Dale is voiced by Corey Burton. However, in Mickey Mouse Works, House of Mouse', and the Have a Laugh! versions of the shorts, Tress voiced both chipmunks.
In the Disney parks, Chip and Dale are some of the most common and popular characters. In the parks, they are once again voiced by Tress MacNeille and Corey Burton.
Chip 'n' Dale can be found for meet-and-greets in a wide variety of locations, including Main Street, USA and Mickey's Toontown. They appear in almost every parade and live show, including Mickey's Soundsational Parade, SpectroMagic, Fantasmic!, One Man's Dream II: The Magic Lives On! and many others.
The two have a small statue dedicated to them in the central hub, surrounding the "Partners" statue.
In Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom, the two have their own spell card called "Chip 'n' Dale's Bag of Tricks". This card was only available to guests that attended Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party in the fall of 2012.
The Disney Afternoon Live!: Plane Crazy
In this stage show that ran at Disneyland in 1991, Chip 'n' Dale are recruited along with Baloo and Launchpad McQuack to recover the X-22 spy jet when it is stolen by Don Karnage and Fat Cat. At one point, Chip has a brief sword fight with Don Karnage, tricking the pirate into believing he's fighting Dale.
Chip 'n' Dale make a cameo appearance among the baggage claim scans at the ride Star Tours: The Adventures Continue, when they appear on-screen, the robot G2-9T remarks that the two are "clones", although their noses don't make them perfect clones.
- Main article: Chip 'n' Dale Filmography