Monday, March 12, 2012

Misrepresenting Mickey

   One thing that comes with the level of recognition of characters like Mickey Mouse, is that it becomes really tempting to others to use that likeness for profit. In most (if not all) cases, the people stealing these Characters do not possess the artistic skill or know how to pull it off convincingly. As a result, they usually fall flat and create something that is obviously fake, boring and is not even worth looking at. However, occasionally these ripoffs can be wonderful in the way great folk is wonderful. We recently had the pleasure of experiencing something just like that.

   My family is from Staten Island and they don't mess around when it comes to a party. We were lucky enough to attend our new cousin's 1st bday party. The celebration was Mickey themed including Mickey balloons, cake pops, cake and most importantly Mickey and Minnie themselves!!

   Andrew and I seemed more excited than the kids when the DJ announced Mickey and Minnie were on the way. We in no way expected them to be as wonderful as they were. Yes...they were totally unlicensed, cheap and worn out, but they sort of made us feel like we we were meeting Mickey and Minnie at Disneyland in 1965. (See picture below for reference) There heads were not quite paper mache but something very similar in texture. Mickey's ear flopped in different directions and Minnie had a weird tail. Their outfits were well put together, but it was all about their slightly lopsided heads and lifeless eyes.

   We are huge fans of American folk artists like Henry Darger and these costumes really reminded me of artwork you would see featured in the American Folk Art Museum in New York which we love. Not much more can really be said about them except that sometimes something as culturally important as Disney manages to inspire new things that are, in a way, as terrific as the original. 


   P.S. Did I fail to mention they did the chicken dance??!?


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