- “One of the greatest satisfactions in our work here at the studio is the warm relationship that exists within our cartoon family. Mickey, Pluto, Goofy, and the whole gang have always been a lot of fun to work with. But like many large families, we have a problem child. You're right, it's Donald Duck.”
- ―Walt Disney
Donald Duck (full name first revealed as Donald Fauntleroy Duck in Donald Gets Drafted) is a character created by Walt Disney. He is a white duck with a yellow-orange bill, legs, and feet. He usually wears a sailor shirt, cap and a red or black bow tie, but no trousers at all. He is presented as a best friend of Mickey Mouse, who he sometimes envies.
Known for having a fiery temper, humorous voice and mannerisms and having appeared in cartoons, films, video games, comic books and more, Donald is one of the most iconic Disney characters of all time, as well as among the most popular.
Donald's most famous personality trait is his uncontrollable temper. This has gotten him into some tight spots with his relationship with Daisy, as she is easily annoyed by his constant anger issues. However, things always turn out right in the end. Donald's jealousy towards Mickey's popularity sometimes gets in the way of their friendship and causes him to almost be a villain at times because of his angry temper. Although Donald can be loud, rude and selfish, he is extremely loyal and will do anything to help a friend in need. Donald also has an obsession over being Disney's most famous and popular star and also obsessed with money, treasure, gold, etc., which he gets from his Uncle Scrooge, and can sometimes be found participating in a get-rich-quick scheme.
Donald's aggressive nature is a double-edged sword however, and while it at times is a hindrance and even a handicap for him, it has also helped him in times of need. When faced against a threat of some kind, Donald may get frightened and even intimidated (mostly by his nemesis Pete), but rather than getting scared, he gets mad and has taken up fights with ghosts, sharks, mountain goats and even the forces of nature. And, more often than not, Donald has come out on top.
In spite of the negativity, Donald is a generally easy going person. Most of his cartoons start with Donald relaxing, enjoying an activity, or simply not having a care in the world until something or someone comes along and ruins it, resulting in the duck exploding in rage. When not dealing with his scenes, Donald can often be found snoozing in his hammock.
Donald has also been shown to be a bit of a show-off (especially towards his nephews). He likes to brag, especially when he is very skilled at something. This has a tendency to get him into trouble, however, as he also tends to get in over his head. In spite of their rivalries, Donald shares a very loving relationship with his nephews and treats them as his own children. They obviously love their "Unca Donald" with a particular scene in the first episode of DuckTales showcasing them having a heartfelt goodbye moment as Donald prepares to leave for the navy.
Among his personality traits is his stubbornness and commitment. Even though Donald at times can be lazy, and he has stated many times that his favorite place is in the hammock, once he has committed to something he goes in for it 100%, sometimes going to extreme measures to reach his goal. It has been shown several times that Donald is rather sensitive/embarrassed about his voice and often begins an uproar if someone notes their difficulties in understanding it.
Donald has a few memorable phrases that he occasionally comes out with in given situations. "What's the big idea?" is a common one, which Donald usually says when stumbling across other characters in the midst of planning some sort of retaliation or prank, and sometimes when certain things do not go as planned or do not work properly. "Aw, phooey!" is another memorable saying Donald makes, usually after giving up on a particular action or event. "So!" is Donald's usual declaration when confronting someone (or something) antagonizing him. Another popular phrase Donald says, in particular to Daisy, is "Hiya, toots!". "Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy!" is yet another common phrase Donald uses, usually muttered to himself when he's very excited about something.
Rivalry with Mickey Mouse
Throughout his career, despite Donald being best friends with Mickey, he has shown that he's jealous of Mickey and wants his job as Disney's greatest star. In the early Disney shorts, Mickey and Donald were partners (except for The Band Concert, Magician Mickey and near the end of Symphony Hour), but by the time The Mickey Mouse Club aired on television, it was shown that Donald always wanted the spotlight. One animated short that rivaled the famous Mickey Mouse song was showing Huey, Dewey, and Louie as Boy Scouts and Donald as their Scoutmaster at a cliff near a remote forest and Donald leads them in a song mirroring the Mouseketeers theme "D-O-N-A-L-D D-U-C-K-! Donald Duck!" The rivalry would cause Donald some problems, in the 1988 TV special Mickey's 60th Birthday, where Mickey is cursed by a sorcerer to become unnoticed, the world believes Mickey to be kidnapped. Donald Duck is then arrested for the kidnapping of Mickey, as he is considered to be the chief suspect, due to their rivalry. However, Donald did later get the charges dismissed, due to lack of evidence.
Walt Disney, in his Wonderful World of Color, would sometimes make reference to the rivalry. Walt, one time, had presented Donald with a gigantic birthday cake and commented how it was "even bigger than Mickey's", which pleased Donald. The clip was rebroadcast in November 1984 during a TV special honoring Donald's 50th birthday.
The rivalry between Mickey and Donald has also been featured in House of Mouse. It was shown that Donald wanted to be the Club's founder and wanted to change the club's name from House of Mouse to House of Duck. However, in later episodes, Donald accepted that Mickey was the founder and worked with Mickey as a partner to make the club profitable and successful.
Mickey Mouse has failed to realize how much Donald does not like him at times, and always counts him as one of his best friends. Despite the rivalry, Donald seems to be an honest friend of Mickey's, and will be faithful to him in tough situations, such as working with Mickey and Goofy as a team akin to the Three Musketeers. In the Kingdom Hearts games, Donald is quite loyal to Mickey, even briefly leaving Sora to follow King Mickey's orders.
- “Donald, I can't understand a word ya say.”
Donald's voice, one of the most identifiable voices in all of animation, was performed by voice actor Clarence "Ducky" Nash up until his death in 1985. It was largely this semi-intelligible speech that would cement Donald's image into audiences' minds and help fuel both Donald's and Nash's rise to stardom. Since 1985, Donald has been voiced by Tony Anselmo, who was trained by Nash for the role.
His form of speech would be duplicated for characters such as his girlfriend, Daisy Duck and his nephews, Huey, Dewey and Louie. However, over the years, these characters were given more distinct voices of their own, most likely to keep Donald's voice a unique aspect to his character.
As a running gag in most of Donald's appearances, mostly in animation, the other characters around him (especially Mickey) prove to have difficulties understanding the duck, especially when he's upset or in a panic, often pointing it out, much to Donald's frustration.
Donald's unique, and nearly unintelligible voice, was the focus of the short Donald's Dream Voice, where the sudden detest for the duck's voice prompts him to purchase pills capable of enhancing his vocals chords incredibly.
Donald in animation
Donald has been in many cartoons with Mickey and Goofy, and has also stared in his own cartoons throughout the years. According to the cartoon Donald Gets Drafted (1942), Donald's full name is Donald Fauntleroy Duck (his middle name appears to be a reference to his sailor hat, which was a common accessory for "Little Lord Fauntleroy" suits). The Quack Pack episode "All Hands on Duck" and Disney's website also stated his full name as Donald Fauntleroy Duck. Donald's birthday is officially recognized as June 9, 1934, the day his debut film was released, but in The Three Caballeros, his birthday is given as simply "Friday the 13th," while in Donald's Happy Birthday, it says his birthday is March 13th.
- “Who's got the sweetest disposition?
One Guess. Guess Who?
Who never never starts an argument?
Who never shows a bit of temperament?
Who's never wrong, but always right?
Who'd never dream of starting a fight?
Who gets stuck with all the bad luck?
No one but Donald Duck!”
- ―Theme Song to most of Donald's Cartoons
According to Leonard Maltin in his introduction to The Chronological Donald - Volume 1, Donald was created by Walt Disney when he heard Clarence Nash doing his "duck" voice while reciting "Mary Had a Little Lamb." Mickey Mouse had lost some of his edge since becoming a role model for children and Disney wanted a character that could portray some of the more negative character traits he could no longer bestow on Mickey.
Donald first appeared in the Silly Symphonies cartoon The Wise Little Hen on June 9, 1934, though he is mentioned in a 1931 Disney storybook. Donald's appearance in the cartoon, as created by animator Dick Lundy, is similar to his modern look, the feather and beak colors are the same, as is the blue sailor shirt and hat, but his features are more elongated, his body plumper, and his feet bigger. Donald's personality is not developed either; in the short, he only fills the role of the unhelpful friend from the original story.
Bert Gillett, director of The Wise Little Hen, brought Donald back in his Mickey Mouse cartoon, The Orphan's Benefit on August 11, 1934. Donald is one of a number of characters who are giving performances in a benefit for Mickey's Orphans. Donald's act is to recite the poems Mary Had a Little Lamb and Little Boy Blue, but every time he tries, the mischievous orphans eat his specially made pie, leading the duck to fly into a squawking fit of anger. This explosive personality would remain with Donald for decades to come.
Donald continued to be a hit with audiences. The character began appearing in most Mickey Mouse cartoons as a regular member of the ensemble with Mickey, Minnie Mouse, Goofy, and Pluto. Cartoons from this period, such as the 1935 cartoon The Band Concert — in which Donald repeatedly disrupts the Mickey Mouse Orchestra's rendition of The William Tell Overture by playing Turkey in the Straw — are regularly hailed by critics as exemplary films and classics of animation. Animator Ben Sharpsteen also minted the classic Mickey, Donald, and Goofy comedy in 1935, with the cartoon Mickey's Service Station.
After the success of Mickey's Service Station, Donald would often be grouped with Mickey and Goofy in several shorts, where the trio's laughable flaws would cause mayhem to befall upon them. This went on from 1935 up to 1938 with the release of Polar Trappers, which would be the first of the cartoon series starring only Donald and Goofy as a comedy duo, with Mickey being taken out of the mix due to his laid back, everyman persona making it difficult for the animates to create gags. However, it should be noted that the trio was reunited that same year with The Whalers.
Donald was redesigned in 1936 to be a bit fuller, rounder, and cuter. He also began starring in solo cartoons, the first of these being Don Donald, released on January 9, 1937. This short also introduced Donald's long-time love interest, Daisy Duck (here called "Donna Duck"). Donald's nephews, Huey, Dewey and Louie, would make their first animated appearance a year later in the 1938 film, Donald's Nephews, directed by Jack King (they had earlier been introduced in the Donald Duck comic strip).
After the 1938 success of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Walt Disney began production and planning for several animated films to follow suit. However, with World War II hitting, Walt Disney Studios was forced to go on standstill, only having the ability to produce package films. Donald, with his stardom rising, would appear in four, usually as the primary draw.
After the war, Donald's popularity continued to grow, and as his cartoon roles expanded, he would be paired with several, recurring foils, including Pete, a villain famous for antagonizing Mickey Mouse, Humphrey the Bear, and most notably Chip and Dale, a pair of chipmunks who were first introduced to Donald in the short 1947 Chip an' Dale. Chip and Dale would go on to become the most iconic costars to ever be featured in Donald Duck's cartoons, regularly appearing in shorts facing the hot tempered duck in comical battle of wits from that point forward.
Much like Mickey and Goofy, Donald's role became a tad more time as his fame grew in the late 40's and throughout the 50's. Shorts like Drip Dippy Donald, Sleepy Time Donald, and Crazy Over Daisy, portrayed Donald as an easily frustrated everyman, and most of his cartoons centered struggling with everyday life, parenting his nephews, and battling Chip and Dale. Notably, Donald's first, and only Academy-Award winning animated short, Der Fuehrer's Face, premiered around this era, in 1943.
At this time, Donald Duck had become one of the most recognizable icons in the world, as well as one of the most popular, surpassing Mickey Mouse as the company's biggest animated star. With such a title, Donald would begin appearing in every form of media and merchandise as Disney's poster-boy and primary audience draw. The 1950's also marked Walt Disney's entry into television, in which Donald would become a staple, making regular appearances in the Disneyland television series. Donald's last regular animated, theatrical short was Chips Ahoy, which premiered in 1956. Afterwards, Donald began appearing in several educational shorts, often broadcast on the series, including Donald in Mathmagic Land, How to Have an Accident at Work, and Donald's Fire Survival Plan. However, as the 1960's rolled in, and after the death of Walt Disney, Donald would notably retire from films, along with Mickey and the rest of the classic cast, and wouldn't reappear again until the 1983 short, Mickey's Christmas Carol, where Donald played the role of Nephew Fred.
After the historic comeback, Donald would return as a mainstream icon, along with Mickey and the others, appearing in numerous forms of media from television, to video games, to films and new shorts. Since, he's made appearances in the 1990 short, The Prince and the Pauper, and in 2012, Donald appeared in the animated short starring Minnie Mouse, Electric Holiday, as a brief cameo.
Donald's first film was Saludos Amigos. In the first film, Donald visits the famous real-life lake of Lake Titicaca, located at the border of Peru and Bolivia. He looks around, learns about the lake's traditions and makes a failed attempt at sailing a boat before setting off on a journey through the mountains atop a llama. He panics when the llama is busy walking across a wooden suspended bridge, eventually resulting in his fall. He lands in a pottery shop, shattering some pots and taking others with him.
In the second, Donald meets and befriends the suave Jose Carioca, during his trip in Brazil. Being a huge fan of Donald's, Jose immediately offers to take the duck into a tour through the town, showing him the rhythm of the samba, the fine wine, and one of the popular clubs.
The film consists of several segments, connected by a common theme. In the film, it is Donald Duck's birthday, and he receives three presents from friends in Latin America. The first present is a film projector, which shows him a documentary on birds. During the documentary, he learns about the Aracuan Bird. The next present is a book given to Donald by José Carioca himself. This book tells of Bahia, which is one of Brazil's 26 states. José shrinks them both down so that they can enter the book. Donald and Jose meet up with several of the locals, who dance the samba. Donald ends up pining for one girl. After the journey, Donald and Jose leave the book.
Upon returning, Donald realizes that he is too small to open his third present. Jose shows Donald how to use black magic to return himself to the proper size. After opening the present, he meets Panchito Pistoles, a native of Mexico. The three take the name "The Three Caballeros" and have a short celebration. Panchito then presents Donald's present, a piñata. Pancho tells Donald of the tradition behind the piñata. Jose and Panchito then blindfold Donald, and have him attempt to break open the piñata, which eventually reveal many surprises. The celebration ends with Donald Duck being fired away by firecrackers in the shape of a bull (the firecrackers are lit by Jose with his cigar).
Throughout the film, the Aracuan Bird appears at random moments. He usually pesters everyone, sometimes stealing Jose's cigar. His most famous gag is when he re-routes the train by drawing new tracks. He returns three years later in Disney's Melody Time.
In the segment, Mickey and the Beanstalk, Mickey, Donald, and Goofy portray three commoners living in the wasteland former known as the beautiful Happy Valley. Living in deep poverty and bordering death by starvation, Donald begins losing his sanity, though Mickey decides to sell their cow in exchange for food. However, he returns with only three beans, said to be magic, much to Donald's complete and utter frustration. After discarding them, the beans grow into a beanstalk, accidentally taking the trio to the castle of Willie the Giant, the villain responsible for the despair their kingdom is facing due to kidnapping their ruler, the Golden Harp. After discovering her, the heroes decide to rescue their queen, but are soon discovered. They retrieve the harp and make way down the beanstalk to the kingdom, though Willie is in hot pursuit. Donald and Goofy cut the beanstalk once they reach its end, sending Willie toppling down to his defeat. With the harp rescued and returned home, peace is restored to the land.
Donald appears in the traditional animated Christmas film as a supporting character. He first appears in the first segment, Donald Duck: Stuck on Christmas, where Huey, Dewey, and Louie wish for an everlasting day of Christmas. Little did they know, Christmas everyday would become mundane and beyond annoying, and although they were aware of the course, Donald and the rest of the family were oblivious. Eventually, in an attempt to break the cycle, the boys decide to "livin' things up", causing mayhem and destruction throughout one of the repeated Christmas days, unintentionally causing despair to fall upon their well-meaning family. In the end, the boys finally learn the true meaning of Christmas and do their best to make it the grandest they've ever experienced, going as far as to using their snowboard gifts from Donald to create a new sled-boat, much to their uncle's surprise and happiness. And with their lesson learned, the spell is finally broken. After the last segment, Donald makes a cameo with the other characters, singing a melody of Christmas carols as a grand finale.
Donald is the assistant to Noah and husband of Daisy Duck. A storm is near and Donald must round up all the animals and humans onto the Ark. During checking, Donald realizes Daisy isn't aboard the ark. He rushes back to the hut to get her and doesn't notice her walk right passed him into the ark. When a giant wave arrives, Daisy witnesses from the ark's window, Donald trying to escape it. She covers her eyes in fear and fails to see Donald jumping aboard at the last minute. When Donald is aboard he sees his and Daisy's house being swept away with, he thinks, Daisy in it. Both Donald and Daisy believe each other to be dead.
A few days later, Donald sends out a male dove to check for land, while in the process angrily pulling him away from his mate when he tries to sneak back without leaving. Donald realizes that he is missing Daisy more and more. Daisy feels the same.
When the ark lands, Donald looks out as the animals climb off. Noah ruffles Donald's head feathers affectionately as he walks by him. Donald pulls out a picture of him and Daisy and looks at it sadly. Daisy is walking down the plank when she realizes that her locket with a picture of her and Donald inside has fallen off it's chain. Donald is sweeping just inside the ark and sees the locket on the floor. He and Daisy reach for it at the same time and see each other. They are both overjoyed to see the other is alive. Daisy kisses Donald and they walk out together and admire their new home.
Donald is a janitor in Paris, France. Like Mickey and Goofy, he dreams of becoming a musketeer after being rescued by three as a child. The only thing standing in Donald's way is the fact that he's a complete coward. Pete, the leader of the musketeers plots to take over France and after Princess Minnie demands body guards he use Donald, Mickey and Goofy believing they'll do a terrible job. Donald meets the princess and develops a crush on her assistant Daisy.
After proving themselves worthy by defeating the Beagle Boys, Donald is kidnapped in the middle of the night by the Beagle Boys while Goofy is kidnapped by Pete's lieutenant Clarabelle. The Beagle Boys take Donald to Pete's lair, where the duck is nearly decapitated. Fortunately, he escapes his death, and rushes back to the palace to warn Mickey. Mickey however, wants to stay on his job but the fear of Pete prompts Donald to quit. Later on, Goofy, who was freed by his newfound love Clarabelle, convinces Donald to change his mind and the duo rushes to help Mickey.
After the princess was saved, Donald and Daisy proclaim their mutual love and along with Mickey and Goofy, becomes a royal musketeer.
In the sequel, Donald appears in the second story where Huey, Dewey and Louie realize they need to put their names on Santa's List. In the end of the segment Donald's only gift was The Big Book of Manners. Donald later appears in his own segment, where he is exhausted, wanting nothing more than to relax in peace and quiet with a cup of hot cocoa; however, We Wish You a Merry Christmas plays continuously, torturing him. Donald tries relaxing with a cup of cocoa, but Daisy forces him to take the boys to Mousey's holiday display. Donald, tired and becoming increasing angered, starts hearing the song from ANY sound around him; this leads him to destroy the Mousey's display in a panic to end it. Feeling sorry, Donald finds an off-key chorus attempting to sing the song and teaches them to sing in harmony.
Other animated films
Donald also appears in Melody Time, in the sixth segment, Blame it on the Samba along with José where they are seen moping in a cafe. The Aracuan Bird sees them both, and introduces them to the Samba, which manages to cheer them up.
In Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Donald made an appearance at the Ink and Paint Club competing against Daffy Duck in a "dueling pianos" act. He also appears in the end of the movie when the toon characters look at the melted remains of Judge Doom.
In The Little Mermaid, Donald made a cameo with Mickey and Goofy at the beginning of the film, in the crowd of merpeople who were waiting for the concert of Ariel and her sisters. They can be briefly spotted before King Triton illuminates the coral chandelier.
In James and the Giant Peach, a skeletal duck resembling Donald appears.
Throughout the 36-year run of the Walt Disney anthology television series, Donald played a central role in many of the specials that originally aired as episode of the series. These particular specials were all compilation films consisting of various classic shorts featuring Donald, bridged together by new linking animation. Episodes of the series that focused on Donald include The Donald Duck Story, A Present for Donald, A Day in the Life of Donald Duck, At Home with Donald Duck, Donald's Award, Duck for Hire, Two Happy Amigos, This is Your Life, Donald Duck, Kids is Kids, Inside Donald Duck, and Donald Takes a Holiday.
In On Vacation with Mickey Mouse and Friends, Jiminy Cricket has to call the armed forces to search for Donald and bring him to the studio. And in Mickey's 60th Birthday, Donald demands to be featured in Mickey's birthday special; this leads to Donald being falsely accused of kidnapping Mickey when the mouse seemingly goes missing.
Donald had a rather small part in the television series DuckTales. There, Donald joins the Navy and leaves his nephews Huey, Dewey and Louie with their Uncle Scrooge, who then has to take care of them. Donald appears in two parts of the series premiere "Treasure of the Golden Suns", as well as the season 1 episodes "Sphinx for the Memories", "Home Sweet Homer", "A Whale of a Bad Time", "Spies in Their Eyes", "All Ducks on Deck" and "Till Nephews Do Us Part". Aside from making physical appearances, Donald is often mentioned by the other characters in the series, often by the boys and Scrooge.
Donald makes a non-physical appearance in DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp, where a picture frame of him can be briefly but clearly seen in Uncle Scrooge's home when Webby wishes that everything is back to normal.
Six years after DuckTales ended, Donald starred in his own Disney Afternoon television show, Quack Pack. This series featured a modernized Duck family. Donald was no longer wearing his sailor suit and hat, but instead wore a Hawaiian shirt (which he would wear again as Maui Mallard in the video game Maui Mallard in Cold Shadow). Huey, Dewey and Louie are teenagers with distinct clothing, voices and personalities. Daisy Duck has lost her pink dress and bow and has a new hairdo. Oddly enough, no other family members, besides Ludwig Von Drake, appear in Quack Pack and all the other Duckburg citizens are humans rather than anthropomorphic animals.
In the series' storyline, Donald works under the narcissistic Kent Powers as a cameraman for the latter's television series entitled What in the World?, a new show that features Daisy as a reporter, also working under Kent.
Though the show mainly focused on Huey, Duey, and Louie, several of the episodes revolved around Donald. Some of them included Leader of the Quack, where Donald was revealed to be the ruler of the country of Quaintinia after accidentally saving the land from a dragon during a vacation. In Snow Place to Hide, Donald's terrible jealously is put into the front when he suspects Daisy is having a romantic rendezvous with Kent Powers.
Donald next played an important role in Mickey Mouse Works. In the Mouse Works shorts, his role was more or less the same as in the classic shorts. In these shorts, though, he garnered a new adversary in the form of a baby turtle named Shelby, whom he would often have to look after and have a hard time doing so. The series also featured Donald in a series of mini-shorts titled Donald's Dynamite, in which his activities are interrupted by the appearance of a bomb that he then has to try and rid himself of. At the end of the show's intro in each episode, Donald would attempt to display a large sign reading "Starring Donald Duck" covering the show's logo, but an accident would occur, harming Donald and ridding the sign. A recurring gag is when people mistake his name for Du-Ald instead of Donald.
Donald appears once again in the series House of Mouse as a greeter and co-owner of the club. In the series, Donald secretly despises Mickey's role as the leader and wishes to some day be in charge. A recurring gag in the series is other characters referring to Donald as "Dooald", sometimes by mistake and other times to annoy him.
Several episodes revolved around Donald. In "Donald's Pumbaa Prank", after an April Fools revenge joke from Mickey, Donald was corrupted by Pete who claimed Mickey was the enemy. To get back, Donald was to use Pumbaa to stink up the club. However, after Donald learned he was to be given an award that night, he called off the prank and apologized to Mickey for his actions. In "Dennis the Duck", Donald was shown to have a disliking for some black-and-white characters. In "Donald Wants to Fly", he attempted to gain the ability to fly. The entire evening proved unsuccessful until Peter Pan arrived. With Tinker Bell's pixie dust, Donald was able to live his dream.
Donald also appeared in the show's spin-off films. In Mickey's Magical Christmas: Snowed in at the House of Mouse, Mickey, Minnie and all the Disney guests are snowed in at the House of Mouse on Christmas Eve. While trapped, the gang decides to have a Christmas party, but Donald doesn't have any Christmas spirit. Everyone then tries to change Donald's mood, only to fail. Eventually, Mickey asks Donald to put the star on the tree, finally showing Donald the Christmas spirit. In Mickey's House of Villains, Donald spent Halloween night trying (and failing) to scare everyone.
Donald Duck reappears as a main character in the computer animated series Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. He joins in nearly every adventure Mickey and Friends set off on and helps the gang solve many puzzling problems. But sometimes he lose his temper so mix-up the problems. He is usually an unwitting target for many of the gags on the show and tends to say "Why does always this happen to me?" whenever something bad happens to him. A recurring gag in the series is Donald seeing a Mickey Mouse symbol and muttering to himself "Why is it always Mickey Mouse?". Another recurring gag appears in recent episodes where Donald and Goofy often bicker over childish things.
Donald is also the second main character to be used as a mouseketool which took place in the episode "Mickey's Clubhouse Rocks".
Interestingly at the beginning of the series, Donald's temper was a rarity. However, as the series progressed, his temper, attitude and stubbornness would increase more and more. Many episodes revolve around Donald. Including "Donald's Hiccups", "Donald's Ducks", Donald and the Beanstalk" and "Space Captain Donald". In the series, Donald is also given a new pet and beloved gem, Boo-Boo Chicken. Donald is also the star of the movie/special "Mickey's Adventures in Wonderland". Donald is also a major character in the spin-off Mickey Mousekersize.
Donald returns in the comical animated series starring Mickey and the gang.
Donald's first appearance in the series was in the episode "No Service". In this episode, Donald and Mickey are planning to have a picnic on the beach with Minnie and Daisy and intend on ordering take-out at a snack shack, but Goofy denies serving them, as the shack's policy strictly states "No shirt, no shoes, no service". However, Mickey comes up with the idea to have one of the duo wear a full outfit and go into the shack to order take-out for everyone. They draw straws and Donald cheats his way to victory. Taking Mickey's shorts and shoes, Donald heads inside to order, but spends much of his time laughing at Mickey's expense while the mouse tries to prevent Minnie and Daisy from seeing him nude. In the end, however, Donald is literally kicked out of the shack for attempting to pay with a credit card and Mickey's ID, causing his entire outfit to fall off just as Minnie and Daisy arrive, humiliating the duck.
While Donald was portrayed as a trickster in "No Service", his appearances in "Stayin' Cool", "Potatoland" and "Tapped Out" follow his more dominant personality, where he is easily aggravated by the antics of Goofy and the wholesomeness of Mickey, often leading to the duck getting himself harmed and humiliated comically.
The first episode to fully center around Donald is "Flipperboobootosis", where Donald comes down with a rare foot disease but refuses to have it properly treated because of his fear of the doctor. After several failed attempts to cure the duck themselves, Mickey and Goofy eventually force Donald to the hospital, though it pays off in the end, as the Bear Doctor was able to cure the Flipperboobootosis.
Other television shows
Though he does not appear in that series, Donald was mentioned at least twice in Darkwing Duck. In "Film Flam", when Drake Mallard refuses to believe something Gosalyn is telling him, he sarcastically remarks "Yeah right, and I'm Donald... Duck?" Also, in "A Star is Scorned", when Darkwing and Gosalyn arrive at the studio, the security guard thinks that Darkwing is Donald, saying he didn't recognize him without his sailor suit. Later, when trying to get back into the studio, Darkwing and Gosalyn manage to get in disguised as Donald and Louie, respectively.
Donald made a notable cameo appearance in the first episode of Bonkers, where he is taking a walk through the park before getting captured by a mugger. Bonkers D. Bobcat happens upon Donald and, unaware that the duck is being mugged at the moment, asks for a guest part in his next picture before eventually coming to his rescue when Lucky Piquel shows up to nab the mugger.
In the first episode of 101 Dalmatians: The Series, "Home is Where the Bark Is", when the pups chase Cruella back to the Dearly Farm, they ride on top of a subway train. Donald's silhouette can be seen as one of the passengers.
Donald in comics
- Main article: Donald Duck in comics
While Donald's cartoons enjoy vast popularity in the United States and around the world, his weekly and monthly comic books enjoy their greatest popularity in many European countries, mostly in Norway and Finland, but many other countries are right behind - most notably Denmark, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and Sweden.
Developments under Barks
In 1942, Western Publishing began creating original comic-book stories about Donald and other Disney characters. Bob Karp worked on the earliest of these, a story called Donald Duck Finds Pirate Gold. The new publisher meant new illustrators, in this case, Carl Barks and Jack Hannah. Barks would later repeat the treasure-hunting theme in many more stories.
Barks soon took over the major development of the comic-book version of the duck as both writer and illustrator. Under his pen, Donald developed more in the comics, becoming more adventurous and less temperamental. Pete was the only other major character from the Mickey Mouse comic strip to feature in Barks' new Donald Duck universe.
Barks placed Donald in the city of Duckburg, which Barks populated with a host of supporting players, including Gladstone Gander (1948), Gyro Gearloose (1952), Uncle Scrooge McDuck (1947), Magica de Spell (1961), Flintheart Glomgold (1956), The Beagle Boys (1951), April, May and June (1953), Neighbor Jones (1944) and John D. Rockerduck (1961). Many of Taliaferro's characters made the move to Barks' world as well, including Huey, Dewey, and Louie. Barks placed Donald in both domestic and adventure scenarios, and Uncle Scrooge became one of his favorite characters to pair up with Donald. Scrooge's popularity grew, and by 1952, the character had a comic book of his own. At this point, Barks concentrated his major efforts on the Scrooge stories, and Donald's appearances became more focused on comedy or he was recast as Scrooge's reluctant helper, following his rich uncle around the globe.
- Main article: Donald Duck in video games
Like Mickey, Donald has made numerous appearances in video games over the years, both with major and minor roles. With some titles, Donald appears as a supporting character in the storyline, though with most, he appears as the lead, often following a heroic adventure. Some titles include QuackShot, Donald Duck: Goin' Quackers!, and Maui Mallard in Cold Shadow.
The most prominent game series featuring Donald is the Kingdom Hearts series. In this storyline, Donald is the Royal Magician of Disney Castle and the royal assistant for King Mickey and one of the three main non-original Disney protagonist, alongside Mickey & Goofy. As such, his weapon of choice is a Staff. He often provides comic relief more than advancing the plot despite the amount of camera time he has in the series. He is rash and has an aggressive personality, but he is loyal to his friends.
Though he initially only cares about Sora (the main protagonist of the series) as a means to track down King Mickey, Donald soon grows to deeply care for him as a friend.
Donald is an extremely common character in the Disney Parks for meet and greets and appears in almost every show and parade.
Donald also has a spell card known as "Caballero Donald's Pinata" in the attraction Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom.
In Mickey's Philharmagic, Mickey is the conductor of an orchestra. It was up to Donald to set up the instruments before the start of the show. Donald fell asleep on the job, however, but was woken up by Mickey, who had to rush backstage to finish preparing. As Mickey runs off, he specifically tells Donald not to touch the sorcerer hat. Defying his orders, Donald takes it anyway and begins to play with the now-living musical instruments. Soon enough, Donald provokes them and is attacked. He loses the hat and travels through scenes from various Disney films to try and retrieve it.
In the live stage show in the Magic Kingdom Park, Donald, along with several other characters, celebrates the magic of dreams, although Donald states that he does not believe in dreams. Once Maleficent, Captain Hook and Mr. Smee crash the party, Donald, with the help of Mickey, Minnie and Goofy, uses the power of dreams to foil the three villains. Donald believes again and peace is restored to the kingdom.
In the Gran Fiesta Tour Starring The Three Caballeros, Donald Duck has run off, prompting Panchito and Jose to set off on a frantic search for their missing friend. Donald tours Mexico with Jose and Panchito riding on a magic sarape, looking for him. Later, Donald meets some Mexican girls, which brings Panchito and Jose to pull Donald away from those girls and get to their scheduled concert on time.
The Three Caballeros make a short appearance as dolls in the Mexican area of the Disneyland and Hong Kong Disneyland versions of the attraction.
In Tokyo Disneyland, Donald is in love with Hollywood starlet Daisy Duck. He thinks in order to win her heart, he must become an actor. He tries, but the cast and crew won't stop goofing off. He eventually gives up until Daisy informs him she likes the way he is, which pleases Donald.
Donald Duck is the only popular film and TV cartoon character to appear as a mascot for the sports team of a major American university, namely, the Oregon Ducks at the University of Oregon.
Donald's name and image are also used on numerous commercial products, one example being Donald Duck Orange Juice, introduced by Citrus World in 1940.
In 2004, Donald received his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, joining other characters such as Mickey Mouse, Bugs Bunny, Woody Woodpecker, The Simpsons, the Rugrats, Winnie the Pooh, Kermit the Frog, Big Bird, Godzilla and Snow White.
- In the Disney Studios, Donald is often referred to as "The Duck".
- Appearing in over 150 theatrically released films and shorts, Donald has the record for most theatrical appearances for a Disney character.
- Donald often calls himself Walt's favorite. (Which actually was truth, this was even confirmed by Walt Disney himself)
- A duck skeleton that looks like Donald can be seen in James and the Giant Peach.
- Donald's original name was Donald Oliver Duckling.
- A float that looks exactly like Donald Duck appears in the Safety Smart in the Water episode from the Timon and Pumbaa's Wild About Safety Smart series.
- Donald makes a cameo appearance in The Little Mermaid as an audience member with the merpeople in the Concert Hall sequence of the film after King Triton passes him with Mickey and Goofy.
- Because of his middle name, Fauntleroy, Donald is currently the only major Disney character with an official middle name.
- He has a twin sister named Dumbella.
- In the Kingdom Hearts series, Donald has the highest Magic stat in every game he is a playable/party character in and, as shown in 358/2 Days, the strength of his magic surpasses even Xemnas, who's the Nobody of Xehanort who has been said to only be rivaled by Maleficent in magic, making Donald more powerful than even Maleficent, and no doubt all the other magical characters in the series. If this magic were to be carried over in his other appearances, and combine with his anger-induced physical strength, Donald could possibly be one of the most powerful beings in the Disney Universe, possibly even the most powerful in terms of magic.
- Strangely, aside from the first game and 358/2Days, Donald has only been shown to use the four basic spells (Thunder, Fire, Blizzard, and Cure). Though it shown in the series that he's responsible for transforming the gang into underwater creatures and supernatural monsters
- Thunder may be Donald's signature spell, as in each game, it is either the first spell we see him use or the first attack he knows by default (with the exception of 358/2 Days, where him using and learning it first is optional). In Chain of Memories and it's remake he even tries to cast it on a member of Organization XIII in one of the first cutscenes of the game.
- When in the universe based on The Lion King, Donald becomes a flying animal called "Bird Donald". This is strange considering that Donald is technically a bird to begin with.
- Though Donald has black eyes, they sometimes appear to be blue in 2-D artwork or in his 3D models and artworks, such as his Kingdom Hearts III artwork. Donald eyes could possibly really be blue, as when Pete eye had a close up in Mickey, Donald & Goofy: The Three Musketeers, he had brown irises.
- The Scene in Mickey and the Beanstalk where Donald goes crazy with starvation and tries to kill their cow with an axe is considered one of the scariest scenes in Disney History, and has been called "Hungry, Hungry, Donald."
- Donald Duck comics were banned in Finland just because the character doesn't wear any pants.
- Donald Duck's family tree
- Donald's profile in the Inducks
- Toonopedia: Donald Duck
- Donald Duck shorts film
- Disney's HooZoo - Donald Duck
|Mickey and Friends|
|Mickey Mouse | Minnie Mouse | Donald Duck | Daisy Duck | Goofy | Pluto|
|Chip and Dale | Pete | Clarabelle Cow | Horace Horsecollar | Huey, Dewey and Louie | Scrooge McDuck | Max Goof | Ludwig Von Drake|
|Figaro | Mortimer Mouse | Clara Cluck | José Carioca | Panchito Pistoles | Humphrey the Bear | J. Audubon Woodlore | The Phantom Blot | Morty and Ferdie Fieldmouse | Chief O'Hara | Millie and Melody Mouse | Butch the Bulldog | Yen Sid | Magic Brooms | Willie the Giant | Beagle Boys | Oswald the Lucky Rabbit | Ortensia | Amelia Fieldmouse | Gus Goose|
Media: DuckTales (Episode list) | Videography | Gladstone comic | Magazine | Video game (HD remake | Soundtrack) | Disney Comics | DuckTales 2 | The Quest for Gold | DuckTales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp | Raw Toonage | Boom! Studios comic | Scrooge's Loot
Heroes and Allies: Scrooge McDuck | Huey, Dewey and Louie | Launchpad McQuack | Webby Vanderquack | Betina Beakley | Duckworth | Gyro Gearloose | Doofus Drake | Fenton Crackshell | Donald Duck | Bubba the Cave Duck | Tootsie the Triceratops | Gene the Genie | Glittering Goldie | Admiral Grimmitz | Duchess of Swansylvania
Villains: Beagle Boys (Big Time, Burger, Bouncer, Baggy, Bankjob, Bugle, and Babyface) | Ma Beagle | Flintheart Glomgold | Magica De Spell | Poe De Spell | El Capitan | Merlock the Magician | Dijon | Cinnamon Teal | Dracula Duck | Armstrong
Organizations: Junior Woodchucks
| Melody Time | Who Framed Roger Rabbit | House of Mouse
Characters: Jenny | Joe | Johnny Appleseed | Johnny's Angel | Old Settler | Little Toot | Big Toot | Police tugboats | Whitey | Donald Duck | Jose Carioca | Aracuan Bird | Pecos Bill | Slue-Foot Sue | Widowmaker | Rustlers |
Locations: New York City
|Official Disney Princes|
|The Prince | Prince Charming | Prince Phillip | Prince Eric | Beast | Aladdin | John Smith | Li Shang | Prince Naveen | Flynn Rider|
|Future Disney Princes|
|Other Lead Male Protagonists|
|Mickey Mouse | Donald Duck | Bambi | Peter Pan | Arthur | Robin Hood | Taran | Simba | Quasimodo | Phoebus | Hercules | Tarzan | Milo Thatch | Sora | Yao, Ling and Chien Po | Prince Edward | Rei|
Characters: Donald Duck | Daisy Duck | Huey, Dewey and Louie | Kent Powers | Antoinette | Gwumpki | Knuckles | Gustav Goose | Ludwig Von Drake | The Roborsons | Helga Needlehopper | Leslie J. Clark | Sir Harold | Nelly the Dragon | Cal Crudon | Flint Steel | Beef Jerky
Villains: Colonel | Colonel's Thugs | Horst and Klebb | Henry Villanova | Prince Gaylord | The Claw | Captain Storm | Agent X | The Green-Eyed Monster of Jealousy | Commander Buck Burpelson | Doug Slackwell | Fred | Dr. Horton Letrek | Moltoc | Soo Ling | Tasty Paste Monster | Vampire | Siegmund | Viking | Werewolf | The Hermit | Shark | ZO | Dr. Nocturno | Chundel | Dr. Emile Crocker | Dr. Tobar | Germs
Incorporated Films and shorts: Alice in Wonderland | Aladdin/The Return of Jafar | Beauty and the Beast | Cinderella | Fantasia | Hercules | The Hunchback of Notre Dame | Lilo & Stitch | The Lion King | The Little Mermaid | Mickey, Donald and Goofy: The Three Musketeers | Mulan | The Nightmare Before Christmas | Peter Pan | Pinocchio | Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl | Sleeping Beauty | Steamboat Willie | Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs | Tarzan | Tron/Tron: Legacy | The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Villains: Master Xehanort | Ansem | Xemnas | Maleficent/Dragon Maleficent | Pete | Organization XIII | Vanitas | Xigbar/Braig | Xaldin | Vexen | Lexaeus | Zexion | Saïx/Isa | Demyx | Luxord | Marluxia | Larxene | Terra-Xehanort | Young Xehanort | Xehanort's Guardian
Other Characters: Jiminy Cricket | Naminé | Ansem the Wise/DiZ | Yen Sid | Xion | Axel/Lea | Master Eraqus | Dilan | Even | Aeleus | Ienzo | Lingering Will | Data Sora | Data Riku | Data Naminé | Data Roxas | Hayner | Pence | Olette | Riku-Ansem | Kairi's Grandma | Riku Replica | Anti-Saïx | Anti-Sora | Anti-Riku | Sora-Heartless | Jiminy's Journal
Disney Characters and Villains: Queen Minnie | Daisy Duck | Pluto | Tarzan | Winnie the Pooh | Aladdin | Genie | Tron | Magic Brooms | Peter Pan | Quasimodo | | Merlin | Tigger | Eeyore | Rabbit | Ariel | Mulan | Mushu | Jack Sparrow | Chernabog | Simba | Timon | Pumbaa | Nala | King Triton | Jafar/Genie Jafar | Alice | Cheshire Cat | Jack Skellington | Esmeralda | Phoebus | Beagle Boys | Scrooge McDuck | Huey, Dewey and Louie | Master Control Program | Sark | CLU | Rinzler | Beast | Stitch | Hercules | Tick-Tock the Crocodile | Snow White | Wendy (More coming soon)
Objects: Sea-salt ice cream | Wayfinder | Door to Darkness | Keyblade | X-blade | Mickey's Letters | Thalassa Shell | Kingdom Hearts Encoder | Keychain | Gummi Blocks | Bug Blox | Black coat| | Keyblade Armor
Locations: Land of Departure | Disney Castle | Disney Town | Timeless River | Datascape | Radiant Garden | Keyblade Graveyard | Destiny Islands | Traverse Town | Hollow Bastion | Dive to the Heart | End of the World | Realm of Darkness | Castle Oblivion | Twilight Town | The World That Never Was | Castle That Never Was | Halloween Town | Neverland | Wonderland
Music: Dearly Beloved | Simple and Clean | Sanctuary | Mickey Mouse Club March | Swim This Way | Part of Your World | Under the Sea | Ursula's Revenge | A New Day is Dawning | Destati | Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo | He's a Pirate | Beauty and the Beast | This is Halloween | It's a Small World | Night on Bald Mountain | Winnie the Pooh | The Sorcerer's Apprentice | The Pastoral Symphony
Soundtracks: Kingdom Hearts Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts Final Mix - Additional Tracks | Kingdom Hearts II Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts Original Soundtrack Complete | Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep & 358/2 Days Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance Original Soundtrack