The vast majority of my first five years as a parent have been spent watching "Mickey Mouse Clubhouse." If you aren't familiar with the show, you are probably an awful parent and should be ashamed of yourself. So, let me fill you in: Mickey and the gang live in a clubhouse and go on adventures. Each adventure has a few mishaps and they have to pick an object out of Toodles, a flying robot Mickey, to help them along the way.
The show is bizarre, shrill and clinically proven to cause migraines. So it makes sense that kids love it. But after countless hours of watching and analyzing, I am dead inside and I also have a few questions for the makers of this show.
1. Is Mickey a narcissist?
Everything is shaped like Mickey's head. Anything that can possibly look like Mickey does. There are Mickey trees, a Mickey balloon, a Mickey robot, a Mickey-shaped clubhouse. I imagine Goofy asking, "Hey, can we have a square cake?" And a drunken Mickey throwing a Mickey-shaped bottle of Jack Daniels against the wall and screaming, "IT'S ALL MICKEY! EVERYTHING IS MICKEY! EVERYTHING IS ME!"
Yes, these are real questions and I demand real answers.
2. Is Mickey an evil cult leader?
That is really the only other conclusion I can come up with. There is no one else in this world. Mickey controls everything. And even that one time, when Donald tries to build his own clubhouse, Mickey manipulates it so that Donald comes back. And they all learn a lesson about friendship, if friendship includes having complete control over your friends. Does Donald need a safe place? Are they all being harmed? Will Mickey make them drink the red Mouskool-Aid? I'm getting concerned.
3. Why do you hate ducks?
Seriously, what did Donald ever do to you? His only problem is that he is not Mickey. Other than that, he's the only character on the show to actually call bullshit on Mickey's rule of terror. He's also the only character routinely subjected to violence and abuse. Coincidence? Let's stop with this anti-duck agenda and embrace all animals.
4. How come Goofy is a dog and he can talk, but Pluto is a dog and he can't?
Pete the cat can talk, but Figaro the cat can't? Do you all ever talk to each other when you write this or is the writer's room just 50 people sitting in cubes coming up with storylines and then you all just kind of smush them together? Yes, these are real questions and I demand real answers.
5. Why is there always a baby elephant inside Toodles?
First of all, how can Toodles even lug half that crap around? I mean, a baby elephant and a giant marshmallow? OK, guys. There are episodes of "Dinosaur Train" that are more realistic—and that show has time-traveling dinosaurs who ride trains! But there are a lot of baby elephants and I'm beginning to get worried about how well they are being taken care of inside a flying robot Mickey head. Doesn't this violate some sort of law about exotic animals? #FreetheBabyElephants
6. What is a Toodles?
As far as I can tell, Toodles is a Mickey robot that can fly. But he can't be full robot, because he is also sentient. As we learn in the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Road Rally, where his feelings get hurt. Why doesn't he have a body? How can he fit all that stuff in his head? Is he going to stage a coup and take over this bleak show?
7. Please, will you just give Minnie a pair of sneakers for once?
Am I going to die for stumbling onto this truth?
8. On a scale of one to sexist, how sexist are you?
Look, let's level: It's clear that Minnie and Daisy only get to keep their story lines as long as they stay pretty and wear their heels. I mean, look at Clarabelle. Shoved off into the corner as an ancillary character and called a cow. Most of these episodes don't even pass the Bechdel test.
9. What world is this set in and what has Mickey done to all the people?
Is this some post-apocalyptic Disneyland, where Disney owns everything and has razed the entire world to be Mickey's playground? Is this show Disney's roadmap to the future? Am I going to die for stumbling onto this truth?
10. Everything about Mickey Mouse is monetized, so why is there is no Toodles toy?
I mean, if you are taking all my money anyway, at least let me buy something my kids want.