Mickey Mouse Club Serials: What I Want To Be
This was to be an ongoing set of serials, each one focusing on a different career choice for boys and girls. The original idea was developed by writer Stirling Silliphant, a former Disney publicist who returned to the studio for this project. Only the first serial, Airline Pilot, Airline Hostess, was made. The second serial was to be about dairy farming, however the series was cancelled when Stirling Silliphant was fired.
Alvy Moore, Roving Reporter for the Mickey Mouse Club, has been assigned to select a boy and girl to fly to New York as part of a TWA crew. While visiting an unnamed airport, he spots a girl named Pat on a class tour, who pretends to be an airline hostess. Later, the girl leads Alvy to a model airplane flying competition, where her friend Duncan is also recruited. The three of them go to the TWA training school, where Pat is handed over to Virginia, a TWA Hostess instructor, while Duncan tours a variety of flight operations and maintenance facilities. After training in a flight simulator, Duncan is given his TWA uniform, and rejoins Pat for a TWA flight to New York. Duncan joins the flight crew in the cockpit, while Pat helps the cabin crew take care of the passengers. After several mild incidents, like a lost Air Force training jet, a cranky little boy and fearful older woman passengers, the plane arrives at Idlywild in New York during thick fog, where Pat and Duncan bid farewell to the flight crew.
|Episode||       ||Orig Air Date||       ||Summary|
| ||       || ||       || |
|Part 1||       ||Oct   3, 1955||       ||Introduction to Alvy, Pat, and Duncan|
|Part 2||       ||Oct   4, 1955||       ||The model airplane flying competetion|
|Part 3||       ||Oct   5, 1955||       ||TWA Training center: Hostess school and Control Tower|
|Part 4||       ||Oct   6, 1955||       ||Hostess styling and poise; weather maps|
|Part 5||       ||Oct   7, 1955||       ||Passenger relations, flight planning, Pat gets her wings|
|Part 6||       ||Oct 10, 1955||       ||Flight simulator, Duncan's uniform, Hostess crew quarters|
|Part 7||       ||Oct 11, 1955||       ||Arrival at airport, meeting the flight crew, pre-flight|
|Part 8||       ||Oct 12, 1955||       ||Boarding, greeting passengers, checklists, takeoff!|
|Part 9||       ||Oct 13, 1955||       ||Serving meals, lost USAF trainer jet, Grand Canyon|
|Part 10||       ||Oct 14, 1955||       ||Night flying, cranky little boy, landing, New York|
Stirling Silliphant both created the original concept and wrote the teleplay for the series. He also acted as production supervisor for the serial, an unusual role for a writer. His original pitch to Walt Disney emphasized recruiting outside businesses and associations to donate equipment, people, and money to the serial featuring their profession. This worked well with the first serial; TWA was already a concessionaire at Disneyland, and the nature of the occupation required items the studio couldn't readily supply. Filming was done at the TWA Training Center in Kansas City, Missouri, and at the Disney Studio and on location around Burbank, California.
After this serial finished filming, Stirling Silliphant was fired by Walt Disney, and the series concept was discarded. The script for the second career in the series, dairy farming, was rewritten to reflect a more standard Disney storyline.
The writing style and content of this series was pitched at a higher age level than the rest of the Mickey Mouse Club, had dry understated humor, and contained little child-to-child interaction after the first episode. Nevertheles it remains one of the most asked about serials on this website, with many visitors mentioning how it influenced them to pursue a career in aviation.
In 1989 the third incarnation of the Mickey Mouse Club, now just called MMC, featured an ongoing feature called What I Want To Be. These were one-shot interviews with an astronaut, radio DJ, paramedic, and others, rather than a dramatized serial.
|Alvy Moore||       ||Himself|
|Patricia Morrow||       ||Herself|
|Duncan Richardson||       ||Himself|
|(Unknown)||       ||Stuart Morrow (Pat's brother)|
|Mrs. Gordon McLean||       ||Pat's teacher|
Most speaking parts were given out to be uncredited TWA personnel, though it's likely some were extras from a casting agency. Some of the more prominent TWA folks whose names are known are listed below.
|Virginia Hrubant||       ||Herself (Chief Hostess Instructor)|
|Miss Shaw||       ||Herself (Hostess Instructor)|
|Miss Wellman||       ||Herself (Hostess Trainee)|
|Capt Harold Blackburn||       ||Himself (Pilot)|
|Frank L. Dubbs Jr||       ||Himself (Co-Pilot)|
|Joseph Harris||       ||Himself (Flight Engineer)|
|Bill Walsh||       ||Producer|
|Stirling Silliphant||       ||Writer, Production Supervisor|
|Chuck Haas||       ||Director|
|William Lava||       ||Theme Song|
|Marvin Aubrey Davis||       ||Art Director|
|Edward Colman, A.S.C.||       ||Director of Photography|
|Ellsworth Hoagland, A.C.E.||       ||Film Editor|
|Robert O. Cook||       ||Sound|
|Chuck Keehne||       ||Costumes|
|Gordon McLean||       ||Assistant Director|