Sylvester Shyster is a crooked lawyer and evil criminal mastermind who generally teams up with Peg-Leg Pete. The character has been described by some as a weasel or a rat (the latter being Gottfredson’s own interpretation), but his ears suggest that he is rather an anthropomorphic canine. His name in Italian translations is Lupo, meaning Wolf, even though he is clearly not one.
He first appeared in the comic strip adventure “Mickey Mouse in Death Valley”, the first real Mickey Mouse continuity, which was partially written by Walt Disney and drawn by Win Smith and other artists, before being taken over by Floyd Gottfredson (plot and art). In this story, Sylvester Shyster was a crooked lawyer who attempted, with the help of his henchman Pete, to deprive Minnie Mouse of her inheritance.
Shyster and Pete have been causing trouble for Mickey and his friends since then. Shyster is generally depicted as the duo’s brain, with Pete acting as the brawn. He is probably the only person Pete will listen to without rebellion. After Shyster’s first appearance, Gottfredson made no further references to his profession as a lawyer, apart from his name; one might theorize, though it is not canon, that Shyster was disbarred due to his arrest and imprisonment at the end of “Mickey Mouse in Death Valley.” Later creators occasionally referenced Shyster’s role as a lawyer, with one story (“Trial and Error,” 2007) forcing Shyster to defend Mickey himself in an overseas courtroom.
Shyster disappeared for a time after 1934, but made comebacks in 1942, 1950, and again in various 1960s Italian-created stories. More recently, publisher Egmont Creative A/S (in Denmark) revived Shyster as a regular character, a capacity in which he continues today. In “Race to the South Seas” (March of Comics #41, 1949), a Donald Duck story by Carl Barks, a variant of Shyster appeared as Scrooge McDuck’s lawyer, but his appearance differed from that in the Mickey Mouse strip and he was not depicted as a villain in that story.
Seamus O’Hara is the Chief of Police in the Mickey Mouse universe. He plays a supportive role in Mickey Mouse’s comic book mysteries as a police officer. Along with Goofy, Detective Casey and Shamrock Bones, Mickey and Chief O’Hara chased and outsmarted villains like the Phantom Blot, Peg-leg Pete & Catfoot, and Idgit the Midget and Dangerous Dan McBoo. The character was conceived by Floyd Gottfredson (and Merrill De Maris) for Disney as a stereotypical Irish cop. He first appeared in the newspaper strips in May 1939, in the serial “Mickey Mouse Outwits the Phantom Blot”.
O’Hara would later go on to be a supporting character in Mickey Mouse Worksin which he would occasionally show up to arrest the villains Mickey has defeated, such as Pete after trying to steal Minnie’s purse. In Mickey Foils the Phantom Blot, O’Hara awarded Mickey, Donald and Goofy medals for saving the city from the blot. O’Hara also made a special appearance in House of Mouse in the episode “House of Crime” he visited the club after mysterious guest disappearances. It would soon be revealed that the Blot was behind it and with Mickey’s help the villain was defeated. Later on he arrested Ludwig Von Drake for creating a cartoon that he said had him dying of laughter.
Willie the Giant is a giant that appeared in the Disney cartoons Mickey and the Beanstalk (from the film Fun and Fancy Free, voiced by Billy Gilbert) and Mickey’s Christmas Carol (voiced by Will Ryan). He has also made cameo appearances in Disney’s House of Mouse and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. He is incredibly powerful, demonstrating amazing magic powers such as flight, invisibility and shapeshifting. Despite this, he is portrayed as immature and dimwitted, given his fondness for toys. He also seems to enjoy chocolate pot roast with pistachio, but as he can’t pronounce pistachio correctly, he replaces it with a different word (green gravy or yogurt).
In Mickey and the Beanstalk, part of Fun and Fancy Free, Willie kidnaps a singing harp, who has the ability to make people happy by her singing, for his own personal pleasure. But when peasants Mickey, Donald, and Goofy stumble upon Willie’s castle, they rescued the singing harp and barely escaped from Willie. At the end of the film, Willie, who is not dead at all, is still searching for Mickey.
In Mickey’s Christmas Carol, Willie is portrayed in a much more positive light than he was in Mickey and the Beanstalk, serving as a supporting protagonist rather than a villain. Here, he plays the role of the Ghost of Christmas Present and helps show Ebenezer Scrooge (Scrooge McDuck) the error of his ways. He later makes a brief cameo in the 1988 film Who Framed Roger Rabbit on a poster in a movie theater in Toontown and is also a minor recurring character in the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse children’s series. Here he is friends with Mickey and still lives in the sky, only this time in a giant farm house.
Humphrey the Bear is a cartoon character created by the Walt Disney studio in 1950. He first appeared in the Goofy cartoon Hold That Pose, in which Goofy tried to take his picture. After that he appeared in four classic Donald Duck cartoons: Grin and Bear It, Bearly Asleep, Rugged Bear, and Beezy Bear. Disney gave him his own series in 1955, but only two films resulted (Hooked Bear and In the Bag) before Disney discontinued making theatrical short subjects. When the shorts division closed, Humphrey was the last of only seven Disney characters who had been given a series of their own, starring in cartoons who opened with their own logo (the six others were Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, Pluto, Chip ‘n Dale (counting as one), and Figaro). The Humphrey cartoons have been aptly described by Leonard Maltin as “belly-laugh” shorts, and they feature a broader, wilder style of comedy than the usually cute or coy Disney gags.
Humphrey is a big, dumb, opportunistic, neurotic brown bear who lives in Brownstone National Park. He is constantly trying different ways to catch food and/or shelter from unsuspecting visitors. Unlike other Disney characters, Humphrey does not speak, but makes inarticulate noises expressing satisfaction, resignation, and anxiety. Those grunts were supplied by Disney staffer Jimmy MacDonald. When stricken by worry or panic, Humphrey runs desperately in place, with his feet seemingly headed in all directions. Humphrey’s foil is usually Donald Duck, one of his antagonist; otherwise it is an officious park ranger voiced by Bill Thompson. The ranger was never identified in the theatrical shorts, but when the films were re-edited into an hour-long Disney TV episode, the ranger was given a name: J. Audubon Woodlore.
Although the series Humphrey starred in enjoyed only a short run, a later generation of Disney artists and directors remembered Humphrey fondly, and cast him in episodes of Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers, Goof Troop, Mickey Mouse Works, House of Mouse, and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Humphrey also made a cameo appearance during the final scene of Who Framed Roger Rabbit with other toons. Humphrey returned to the screen in three new shorts: Donald’s Grizzly Guest and Donald’s Fish Fry reunite Humphrey with Donald Duck, and in Hot Tub Humphrey Humphrey is once again in the title role, alongside Ranger Woodlore. In these appearances his vocals alternated between Frank Welker and Jim Cummings. Due to adding Humphrey to these Disney programs he can be seen in more Disney-related merchandise such as watches, cards, pins, t-shirts, and posters. He is currently the spokes-character for Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort at Walt Disney World in Florida and is featured on the totem pole in the lobby along with Mickey, Donald Duck, and Goofy
Jack Hannah, who directed the 1950s Humphrey shorts, revived the “dumb bear” idea for Walter Lantz’s “Fatso Bear” cartoons in 1960 and 1961. It would also seem probable that the Hanna-Barbera animation studio was somewhat inspired by Humphrey in its creation of the somewhat smarter Yogi Bear (from 1958), who lives at Jellystone National Park, begs, steals, and plays tricks to steal picnic baskets from campers, and is constantly on the lookout for Ranger Smith.
J. Audubon Woodlore is the park ranger of Brownstone National Park (a play on Yellowstone National Park), one of the features of which is a geyser named “Old Fateful” (a play on Old Faithful). He was originally voiced by Bill Thompson. Woodlore’s name is a reference to John James Audubon, the famous 19th Century ornithologist/naturalist/painter. He is currently voiced by Corey Burton.
He first appeared in two 1954 Donald Duck cartoons Grin and Bear It and Grand Canyonscope. (It is revealed in the latter that Woodlore was a postal worker prior to his Ranger days.) One year later, in Breezy Bear, he repeatedly admonishes Humphrey the Bear “You bathe too much!”, not realising that the bear is really just hiding in the pond from the bees whose honey he was trying to steal.
Woodlore prides himself on running a tight ship, and is frequently oblivious to those (particularly Donald) who are humiliated and/or insulted by his constant scoldings and criticisms. Despite his somewhat authoritarian attitude, he cares about the bears as if they were his children - although he once bamboozled them into cleaning up the park for him (so that he could nap in a hammock) by singing the jazzy ditty “In the Bag”:
First you stick a rag, put in the bag, bump bump Then you bend your back, put it in the sack, bump bump That’s the way it’s done, it’s a lot of fun, bump bump Oh yeah Cuttin’ capers puttin’ papers in the bag
When Woodlore’s lazy motive became apparent, the bears irritably bagged him along with the litter. Usually most of the bears are respectful of Woodlore, though. Except Humphrey the Bear, whom the Ranger often lectures.
The Ranger also made an appearance in A Duckumentary, a mockumentary about Donald Duck’s infamous temper, and most recently appeared in an episode of Disney’s House of Mouse. Woodlore’s name was on the entrance sign at Disneyland’s Bear Country land, as the resident park ranger.
Eega Beeva, also known by his full name Pittisborum Psercy Pystachi Pseter Psersimmon Plummer-Push, was a Floyd Gottfredson creation and ran in Mickey’s daily strip from 1947 until the mid 1950s, when Eega took Goofy’s place as Mickey’s sidekick. Since then he has been in a handful of stories in the United States, however Italian artist Romano Scarpa had adopted Eega for Italian Disney comics where he even headlined his own title for an extended run. Very few of Scarpa’s stories have been translated and reprinted in the United States.
He was introduced trapped in a cave by the weather and a mountain lion. Mickey Mouse meets and befriends this highly intelligent, but strange little being, a “Man of Tomorrow” (from the year 2447), whom he later dubs “Eega Beeva,” a pun on the idiom eager beaver, since he was originally only able to say “eega.” Despite his physical presence, Goofy refuses to believe in his existence, though two professors, Orville and Claude, from the local university want to dissect him. After a skiing accident in which Eega rescues Goofy, the two become friends.
Eega has a strange pet called Pflip the Thnuckle-Booh (a strange dog-like creature). Pflip has a close rapport with Eega, and a built-in ‘early warning system,’ which causes him to change colors to indicate a danger within 300 feet. With Eega’s and Pflip’s help Mickey and Chief O’Hara were able to defeat the Phantom Blot. Eega, himself, is able to sense when Mickey is in danger, and can travel through time and space via the Pfourth Pdimension (from his home in the future), though he cannot transport others, like Mickey, with him. His speech is difficult to comprehend as he tends to add a “P” to most of his words, but Mickey has grown accustomed to it. He also has strange dietary habits which includes ice-cube trays, pigeon feathers and pickled kumquats.
The Phantom Blot, or simply “The Blot”, actually made his first appearance in Mickey Mouse Outwits The Phantom Blot in 1939. In this story, Chief O’Hara hires Mickey to capture this new criminal. According to O’Hara, he is the smartest thief they’ve ever met bu in the end the Blot is captured and unmasked. His gaunt face and thin mustache were reportedly based on the features of Walt Disney himself. Many artists and writers have furthered the Phantom Blot throughout the years. Comic book historian Joe Torcivia notes Armstrong was the first to draw the character with a mouth, making him look like a shadow instead of someone under a black cloak.
He usually prefers pulling strings rather than being directly involved in his crimes. During his career, he has stolen large amounts of money and invested them in business which allows him to finance his ambitious plans. He is a skillful hypnotist and talented actor. He often operates in disguise using various aliases and identities. He has some scientific knowledge and has often used this in his plans to invent various weapons. He has considerable skill in painting which he uses to create forgeries of famous works of art. He seems to have ways to get information about everything that is going on in the city. He has a fairly good knowledge of psychology and is very skilled in spreading fear into his victims. Some of his plans have no monetary gain for him, but their purpose is to further his reputation and feed his desire to immortalize his name in “the annals of crime”.
The Blot sometimes teams up with other bad guys like the Beagle Boys and Mad Madam Mim, who is madly in love with him (while he considers her a lunatic). He also has a daughter referred to as the Phantom Brat. At the height of the villain’s popularity, he was given his own comic book, The New Adventures of the Phantom Blot, which lasted for seven issues. Recently, the Phantom Blot has appeared as a major antagonist in the Ducktales and Darkwing Duck comics published by Boom! Studios, uniting various villains from both series.
The Phantom Blot’s first appearance in animation was in the DuckTales episode “All Ducks on Deck”, voiced by Frank Welker. The Phantom Blot later appeared in a short featured on Mickey Mouse Works, based on the comic strips in which he first appeared. The short was double the length of most of the shorts featured on the series and is considered by many Disney fans to be the best of the Mickey Mouse Works shorts. In both Mickey Mouse Works and House of Mouse, the Blot was voiced by John O’Hurley.
The Phantom Blot, renamed as the “Shadow Blot”, is featured as the main antagonist in the Wii video game Epic Mickey. The Blot, having been accidentally created by Mickey, attacks a world of forgotten Disney characters created by Yen Sid and ruled by Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. He proceeded to corrupt the world into a Wasteland, force Oswald out of power, ally with The Mad Doctor and later plays on Oswald’s envy against Mickey to use him as a puppet. His appearance has also been given an upgrade to a much more sinister look, going from looking like a man wearing all black to an actual monstrous mountain of ink with glowing yellow eyes and demonic growls. Frank Welker reprised his role as Blot, this time through vocal effects.
Gideon Goat or Giddy Goat is an anthropomorphic goat, a supporting character in the Mickey Mouse comic strips of the 1930s and part of Mickey’s original barnyard gang. Gideon first appeared in the 1930 Mickey Mouse Book #1. He appeared in various American and European printed Disney comics until 1938. He was usually characterized as a farmer or the local sheriff. Gideon is married to a female anthropomorphic goat named Gertie (presumably Gertrude) who also appeared in many early Mickey Mouse comics, primarily as a background character.
Promotional materials for the 1935 animated short The Band Concert include Giddy Goat as one of the characters. In the released film, however, he was replaced by a dog trombonist character.