The Original Mickey Mouse Club Show


Lost Episodes 9: Selected "Fun with Music Day" Shows

"Lost Episodes" is an irregular series highlighting shows from the Mickey Mouse Club's first two seasons that for one reason or another are not readily available for viewing today. The shows are not truly lost, as the 35mm film masters are presumably archived by Disney. However, photos and information about the shows are so rare as to render them "lost" to general knowledge.

This page contains storylines and production details for rare first season Fun with Music Day shows. They are not available on YouTube, Disney official DVD releases, nor are they circulated among private collectors. Most of the content here comes courtesy of Randall Nakashima. Due to the rarity of these shows, few photos are available to illustrate them. Song recordings where present are from Mickey Mouse Club records, not from the original episodes.



The Pencil Song



  Prod No: 8206-0??
  Filmed: June-July 1955
  Broadcast: January 23, 1956
  Intro: None
  Lead: Jimmie Dodd
  With: (In order of appearance) Karen, Darlene, Johnny, Don, Lee, Cubby, Mike, Dennis, Bobby, Mary E., Nancy, Sharon, Mark, Bob, Bonni, Mary S., Lonnie, Doreen, Mickey, Paul, Roy
  Song: The Pencil Song (Jimmie Dodd)


Synopsis: Jimmie’s song about daily situations in which someone uses a pencil told from the Pencil’s Point of View, with the Mouseketeers portraying the users.

Storyline: The camera opens on Jimmie, dressed in a full-body “pencil suit” with a hat shaped like the sharpened end of a pencil (See photo). Jimmie is standing on a large platform that looks like an open three-ringed binder loaded with lined filler paper. As Jimmie sings, the camera dissolves into various scenes in which the Mouseketeers act out Jimmie's lyrics.

The band starts playing and Jimmie begins singing:

      I’m a pencil straight and tall,
      As I grow older I grow small
      All the world depends on me
      I’m a pencil yes, sir-ee!
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


(1) The scene shifts to Karen with her back to the camera, standing next to a wall with a large pencil in hand. (You can tell it’s Karen from her blonde hair in ringlets and she’s wearing her outfit from The Shoe Song).

      (Jimmie) When baby first decides it’s time
      To go out on a lark,
      She takes me by the hand
      And then I help her make her mark
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


The camera pulls back to show the stick figure Karen has been drawing on the wall.

(2) The scene shifts to a classroom, with Darlene wearing thick glasses and dressed like a schoolmarm, hovering over Johnny, who is wielding his pencil on his test paper.

      I go to school with all the kids
      And try to pull them through
      But sometimes things don’t work out right
      Cause I’m with Teacher too
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot

Darlene begins reviewing the test paper, making large X’s next to the numerous wrong answers.

(3) The scene shifts to a corporate board room with Lee, Don, Cubby and an unrecognizable Mouseketeer (Mike?) huddling together, working on a document. They are dressed in business suits and ties. A sales chart is on an easel behind them.

      At meetings and in conferences
      I’m always in plain view
      Without me there I don’t know what
      The businessmen would do
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


The camera pulls back to reveal that the four are working on a game of tic-tac-toe, which somebody just won.

(4) Scene shifts to Dennis, pencil in hand, sitting at a drafting table with plans for an urban landscape in the background.

      Architects have mighty minds
      They build the world of man
      I’m proud to say they all use me
      In each and every plan
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


Dennis looks down at the table and draws a straight-line with his drafting triangle (which is not resting on his T-square). The drawing turns out to be the plans for a bird house.

(5) Scene shifts to Bobby in golf attire, addressing the ball at the last tee. He whiffs and breaks his driver over his knee.

      When golfers go out on the course,
      They’re happy as can be
      They’d like to score real well
      But then they have to deal with me
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


Bobby brings out his scorecard and pencil, and writes in his score of 275 next to par for the course of 75.

(6) Mark, Sharon, Nancy and Mary Espinosa are sitting down to dinner at a candlelit table in a swanky restaurant. (With a checkered tablecloth?) The girls are all wearing evening gowns and have their hair done up (they look very nice). Mark wears a tuxedo and is obviously wearing a dark wig with the hair parted in the middle.

      In night clubs and in restaurants
      I always play a part;
      They’d like to score real well
      But then they have to deal with me
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


Bob Amsberry, dressed as a waiter walks up to Mark and totals the check with his pencil and hands it to him. Mark’s jaw drops and his wig flies off.

(7) The scene shifts to a house of fashion, with Lonnie at the right, dressed in a coat with an Ascot tie, holding a sketch pad. To the left, Bonni is wearing a dress with a billowy skirt, striking poses. The skirt is dotted with white pom-poms and Bonni is wearing white pom-pom earrings to match. She wears a Mushroom Hat that looks like a large pin cushion. In the background, Mary Sartori is wearing a white dress, similar to Bonni’s, and also striking poses. She is wearing a rather odd hat that appears to be Roy’s Simple Simon Dunce Cap topped with the white bird Billie wore in her hair in the George Givot Guest Star Day.

      Designers of the clothes you wear
      Dream up styles with me
      And if I may quote Shakespeare
      Oh, what fools you mortals be!
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


Lonnie holds his pencil up for perspective at Bonni as she poses. The camera shifts to his sketch of a model wearing a barrel with a price tag of $4,998.00.







(8) Scene shifts to a street where a bus stop is marked “No Parking.” Doreen is dressed in the police uniform she wore in Simple Simon #2, and Mickey (I think) is in the car used in the wedding scene from The Shoe Song.

      Maybe you won’t like me
      When I’m working with a cop
      So, take a tip my friends
      And when the light says red, you stop!
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


The annoyed looking Doreen fills out a ticket and hands it to an apprehensive looking Mickey.

(9) Paul (I think; his hair looks awfully light) is seated at a piano tapping out notes and writing music.

      Composers make some marks with me
      Some sharp, some flat, some round,
      And what a thrill it is for me
      To her the way I sound!
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


Paul continues to write music. The scene then switches back to Jimmie, still standing on the notebook.

Jimmie goes into a dance sequence of sorts as the band plays first a Dixieland segment with Jimmie, twirling his pencil, then a German oompah-pa segment, then an orchestral segment with Jimmie conducting with his pencil as a baton, then a square dance, then a jazz dance with Jimmie “playing” the pencil like Ted Lewis on his clarinet, then a mambo.

(10) After Jimmie finishes, the scene shifts to Roy sitting at a drawing board, looking quite natural holding the oversized pencil.

      One thing out of which I get
      The most tremendous bang
      Is working with the artists
      And this great big happy gang
      Doot dee doot dee doot, doot, doot, doot


The camera shifts to the drawing board, showing Roy’s sketches of Mickey, Donald and Pluto.

The finale is a repeat of the first verse, with the tempo slowed and sped up at the last line:

      I’m a pencil straight and tall,
      As I grow older I grow small
      All the world depends on me
      I’m a pencil yes, sir-ee! (Sped up, with a brass flourish from the band)




Notes
  • It’s nice to see Roy drawing Donald Duck for a change.
  • This song, of course, was the one Jimmie penned the night before his performance/interview with Walt Disney, courtesy of Producer Bill Walsh.
  • Jimmie wore a lot of outlandish costumes in the MMC, including a spaceman suit with helmet, an Indian Chief outfit with full headdress and as Old MacDonald in overalls, but the pencil costume definitely takes the prize. I give Jimmie a lot of credit for being a good sport about it all.
  • This appears to be a very early number, certainly if Paul and Mickey are in it. It shares features with (Let’s Have) Fun with Music and Simple Simon, in that Jimmie is doing most of the performing and the Mouseketeers are simply revolving around him.
  • I guess I can’t recognize Mouseketeers as well as I thought. Viewing this, I found some of the boy-Mice were just plain unrecognizable, and I’m only calling them Mike, Paul and Mickey based on the process of elimination.
  • That’s nineteen Mouseketeers used in this number which is two more than in I Want to be a Fireman. A First Season Record, for anyone who likes to count these things. That was the nice thing about this number: you got to see a lot of Mice.
  • Bonni and Mary are wearing the same satin party dresses that they would later wear in Mousekedance. And here I thought Mousekedance was a big budget number (or least as big as they got in the MMC).
  • Jimmie’s comments about fashion were based on some of the more dramatic fashion statements of the 50’s such as the dresses with billowy skirts which Bonni and Mary were wearing (and really don’t look bad now).
  • Lonnie is wearing the same coat and Ascot tie he wore in I’m a British Grenadier.
  • I’ll just bet the checkered tablecloth was used by the Animation Department for a mock-up of Tony’s Restaurant for Lady and the Tramp.





The History of Drums



  Prod No: 8206-042
  Filmed: August 1955
  Broadcast: January 18, 1956 (on Anything Can Happen Day)
  Lead: Roy Williams, Cubby O'Brien
  With: Unknown Voice-Over Narrator


Synopsis: The History of Drums from Prehistoric Times forward, courtesy of Cubby and Roy. A Fun with Music number that was switched to Anything Can Happen Day because there really wasn’t much music.

Storyline: The scene opens at the front of a cave dwelling. Cubby, dressed in leopard skin as a caveboy, is at the right, gnawing a bone. Roy, also dressed in leopard skin as a caveman, is to the left, fast asleep.

The narrator begins:

This is Conrad Cavedweller, Jr. He is A boy. This is Conrad Cavedweller, Sr. He is A father. He is also A-sleep. These are bones. And this is the History of…. Drums?

Yes, this is the History of Drums… Those age-old instruments of communication that have marked the rhythm of Man’s progress from the very dawn of time.

Cubby strikes Roy on the belly with his bone and it makes a “boing” sound. Cubby continues to strike Roy on the midsection, delighted by his discovery.

(Narrator) And there it is, the first drum! The first beat! The first rhythm! But it is not enough, because… the knee bone’s connected to the thigh bone, and the thigh bone’s connected to the hip bone, and the hip bone’s connected to the…

Roy wakes up, annoyed. The scene changes to Cubby, still dressed as a caveboy, sitting at his drumkit, playing a drum solo.

(Narrator) Now, where were we? Oh, yes. (primitive, Rite of Spring-type music plays in the background) In a remote village, deep in the teeming jungles of Africa, a native witch doctor puts the finishing touches on a ceremonial drum he has just constructed from a log and the hide of a rare, pygmy… Aardvark.

The ceremonial drum is about four feet long and log-shaped. As Roy dusts one end, Cubby goes to the other end and pounds it. Roy grouses in gibberish and turns the drum around, whereupon Cubby pounds the other end. Roy again grouses and turns the drum around. Cubby pounds the end of the drum again and Roy grouses even more and turns the drum around yet again. This time, Cubby plays a fast beat on the drum causing Roy to jump around spasmodically. (This would have been funny to kids in the ‘50’s).

Cubby, dressed as a native boy plays another drum solo.

(Narrator) In ancient times, the drum came into use as a method for attracting multitudes of citizens to hear the Emperor speak.

(Trumpets sound fanfare to the beat of pounding drums). Enter Cubby playing a drumbeat to accompany the trumpets. Enter Roy carrying a rolled-up scroll. Both are wearing togas. Cubby moves downstage while Roy remains upstage. Roy unfurls the scroll, which rolls out about ten feet forward to where Cubby is standing.

Roy, in voice-over, speaks:

Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears! I have a few words to say about… (in a drawl) the great State of Texas…

Cubby, dressed in a toga, plays still another drum solo.







The scene changes to a forest. In the background, stalking Indian Music plays.

Narrator: Through the great forests of North America, reverberated the elusive drum of the American Indian. (The beat of a tom-tom plays continuously in the background). Where did it come from? Sometimes even the Indians themselves had to search out its source.

Roy, dressed in Indian garb, walks through the forest scenery and looks around. Still uncertain of the location of the drumbeat, he moves downstage and looks around again. Still not certain of the location of the drumbeat, he shrugs, turns around and walks back upstage, revealing Cubby, carried as a somewhat large papoose on Roy’s back, beating a small drum.

The scene shifts to Cubby, dressed as an Indian boy, playing an increasingly irritating drum solo on his drumkit.

(Narrator) Throughout the pages of American history, the beat of the drum has measured out…progress… and signaled our victory.

Gunshots heard in the background. Roy and Cubby march from the background to the foreground as two-thirds of the Spirit of ’76 with Roy on fife and Cubby… well, you know.

The scene shifts, and Cubby, dressed as a Revolutionary War soldier plays another drum solo, less irritating this time because it is the last.

Notes

  • Kubrick clearly got his idea for bones as tools in 2001: A Space Odyssey from Cubby. He must have watched the Mouseketeers.
  • The aardvark reference is an allusion to an animal in Old MacDonald, as an inside gag to the kids who watched. Or Roy having fun.
  • Only partway through transcribing the dialogue, I began to feel like I was in the middle of a Goofy cartoon.
  • Like A Cowboy Needs a Horse, this was probably a story written by Roy which would have played better in animation than live.
  • I’m betting that Roy’s Texas reference was to someone in the Animation Department or another part of the studio.
  • Those who attended Rock Concerts in the ‘70’s will remember the drum solos as the most boring parts.
  • When I met Cubby in 2014, I told him I never realized as a kid how good he was and that I thought he was a prodigy. Cubby laughed.








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