That Time Donald Duck was a Nazi

By

3rd Dec, 2013

Disney has its fair share of questionable cartoons in the archives and over the years, the company has been accused of everything from racism to sexism, the promotion of drug use and even pedophilia. And then there was that time that Donald Duck was a Nazi.

In 1943, Walt Disney productions released the American animated short propaganda film, Der Fuehrer’s Face, featuring Donald Duck as a reluctant factory worker in Nazi Germany. While I think most will agree that you can never have too much anti-Nazi propaganda, did Disney really need to go and masquerade it as children’s/ family entertainment? I suppose the answer is that they did, because they bagged themselves an Academy Award for it that year (the only Donald Duck film to ever win an Oscar).

The cartoon begins with a marching band composed of WWII Axis leaders including Mussolini on the base drum, Heinrich Himmler on the snare drum, Joseph Goebbels on the trombone and Hideki Tōjō on sousaphone, parading through a small German town. They’re playing the title song “Der Fuehrer’s Face”, also known as the “Nazi song”, by Oliver Wallace, which was actually released before the cartoon’s release to parody the Nazi anthem.

Here’s a sample of the lyrics:

When der fuehrer says we is de master race
We heil heil right in der fueher’s face
Not to love der fuehrer is a great disgrace
So we heil heil right in der fuehrer’s face

We then meet Donald Duck in his house, decorated with swastika wallpaper and Fuehrer cuckoo clocks. He begins his 48-hour daily shift at the factory’s conveyor belt of artillery shells, all the while being bombarded with Nazi propaganda about the Aryan race and the glory of working for Hitler.

In the end, Donald wakes up safe and sound in his star-spangled banner decorated bedroom and realises that he hadn’t actually defected to the Nazi regime and it had all been a very bad dream. But will you ever get the imagery of Donald Duck in full Nazi regalia out of your head?

Watch the 8-minute cartoon below*:

*Your childhood may or may not be ruined.
YouTube Preview Image

:::

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:

.

 

You Might Also Like

Comments

More in Art & Design AwesomenessHot WheelsInspiration VaultNostalgiaPeople / Icons / MusesTime travel

Hot Off the Press

Editor's Picks

funkyjunk

The Vintage Trailer King lives on a 1920s Fish Farm

I came across this guy when I was discovering the incredible retro photographs of Ryan Schude last week and immediately had to know more about him. Johnny Agnew is not your average vintage collecto...

Trending 12,217
schude7

The Photographer Re-inventing American Retro

Every once in a while, a photographer comes along and just blows you away. Today, Ryan Schude is that guy. The fascinating scenes, the colours, the cars, the people, the places– there's just so ...

Trending 14,493