Hello and welcome to In Too Deep, where I over-analyse a certain section of pop culture.

A few weeks ago I headed along to Disney on Ice: Treasure Trove and it was fun. Enjoyable. Exactly what you expect from it really. Mostly it was a check-list of all the really big movies Disney has put out. Which leads me to wonder, what if they did the reverse? What if they made a movie about their most obscure animated movies instead?

Now the Disney on Ice started with a random and somewhat unconnected ice skating number featuring the cast of Toy Story, which really seemed to only be in place because they’d already done Toy Story on Ice in the past (since a)the other set pieces on display were from the animated canon and b)there was an overall story wrapping it all together). So what would be the most random thing to put here? Well I’m going to go with Oliver and Company on the basis that it has exactly one really, really good song (“Why Should I Worry”). So they’d go out there and have a fun little dance number before we meet our main cast.

Now in Disney on Ice we had the standard Big Four (Mickey, Minnie, Donald & Goofy), so in this version it’s only fair that we have the somewhat forgotten three, aka The Three Caballeros (Donald, Jose and Panchito). They come skating onto stage and come up with the main plot of our show, that is looking for the forgotten Disney movies in order to do a big comeback. Their first clue is a cowbell, leading us into…

A rather over-long and somewhat pointless re-enactment of Home on the Range, based on the two songs found within the film. Lots of cows getting on stage and skating about because why not I ask you. We can have yodelling on Ice. But once this horrible excuse for a show is said and done, we move onto the next part of the show, a tribute to…

Chicken Little. The characters come out and do an ice ballet with the aliens from the movie, re-enacting some of the plot in interpretative dance. Who could forget the scene where Chicken Little wins at baseball but otherwise has no impact on the plot whatsoever (seriously, a good third of this movie is ultimately extraneous). I mean they’ve already got the costumes, it wouldn’t be totally surprising if these guys made a comeback on ice. But this is all paving the way for the big ‘end of Act 1’ story re-telling, none other than…

Okay there are two things that surprised me recently. One, that this film got a 25th anniversary re-release on DVD and two, that my sister actually thinks this film is good and was upset I didn’t buy it for her for her birthday (I was going to, but I thought it was a joke too obscure). I am, of course, referring to the classic The Black Cauldron. We get a heavily condescended but still surprisingly faithful re-telling of this movie, but with more interpretative dance and skating about. And a giant cauldron spinning about on stage because why not? Put some dry ice and green lights in it and it’s good as gold. Still, seeing the Horned King skating around on stage will be worth the price of admission alone, since it’s such an incredibly silly idea. But that leads us into intermission. So when we return…

Okay, what was odd about the Disney on Ice that I saw was that it was structured very poorly. Act 1 consisted of about four movies, with the Peter Pan section taking up a disproportioned amount of time (In fact there may have only been three movies shown in the beginning, instead of the four I listed). In contrast Act 2 was a lot shorter, with some of the classic movies being boiled down to just one dance scene (mostly the princess stuff). So what would I have for Act 2? Well firstly we’d have the cast of Meet the Robinsons skating on to do a dance number, even the Bowler Hat Guy (who, for some inexplicable reason, actually turned up at the Disney’s Villain Night because he’s really that popular?). So lets them skate about. Then we’ll follow that with the cast of The Rescuers (both movies) and Bolt (who also made a comeback at Disney last year), each having their own song and dance number. Finally we finish off with a two-part celebration of The Great Mouse Detective. One part deals with the fantastic song by Ratigan, while the other is a battle atop Big Ben (somehow, don’t ask me how). With that we have one big grand finale where all the characters come together and beg the audience not to forget them, since they don’t want to be doomed to obscurity. And curtain.

So there you have it. A very tongue-in-cheek look at a Disney on Ice that could never happen because the characters are just that unmemorable and unloved. If you disagree with anything, or have anything to add, feel free to leave a comment. Till next time.

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