Disney / Lady and the Tramp

Annd they caaall it Beeella Notteee...

Originally released in 1955, Lady and the Tramp is the 15th entry in the Disney Animated Canon, and the first that Disney theatrically distributed themselves. It tells the story of a loving couple and their family pet from the dog's point of view. Big changes are coming to Jim Dear and Darling's family, something that the eponymous Lady has trouble understanding. Meanwhile, Lady herself has caught the eye of the Tramp, a stray dog (and ladies' man) who prefers the uncertain freedom of the streets to life in a collar, which he views as slavery. He tries to convince Lady to live more recklessly, but she believes just as strongly in loyalty to her humans and her home. Will The Power of Love convince Tramp to see things her way?

The movie spawned a series of comics, starting with the newspaper strip Scamp: Son of Lady and the Tramp, Scamp also stars in a direct-to-video sequel to the movie, Lady and the Tramp II: Scamp's Adventure, which was released in 2001.

It's the first feature-length animated film created in a widescreen format, making it a landmark in animation history.

Tropes this Disney classic provides examples of:

  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: Invoked by Peg, who sings a whole song about how she loves the Tramp specifically because "he's a scoundrel" and "breaks a new heart every day." Defied by Lady, who gets turned off when she learns this aspect of his history.
  • Alternate Animal Affection: The famous Spaghetti Kiss results in the pair accidentally smooching, despite this not being terribly anatomically practical for dogs. Also, even more improbably, Si and Am use their tails to "shake hands" with each other.
  • Am I Just a Toy to You?: Lady is distraught when she learns of the Tramp's history with dames, as she thinks she's just the latest in a long line of ladies he loves and leaves.
  • Anachronism Stew: Courtesy of Boris, mostly. This is set in 1909 yet he mentions the "Red Flag", which wouldn't make sense before the 1920s.
  • Animal Talk: Except for the rat, and apparently monkeys (too closely related to humans).
  • Asian Buck Teeth: The Siamese cats have slanted eyes and, yes, two prominent front center fangs. They also speekee Engrish.
  • Art Shift: Tramp changes colour from brown to grey several times during the movie, presumably unintentionally.
  • Artistic License – Animal Care: Serving coffee and doughnuts to your dog is not the wisest thing to do. While the doughnuts are simply lacking in nutrition, coffee is outright toxic to dogs.
    • Additionally, leaving a muzzle that prevents a dog from biting on a dog for longer than 30 minutes can be extremely dangerous for the animal.
    • Swatting your dog because it's misbehaving is really not something you're supposed to do.
  • Award Bait Song: "Bella Notte"
  • Babies Ever After: And their puppies make for an adorable closing scene.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: Aunt Sarah, the dogcatcher, and the rat.
  • Bookends: The film both begins and ends with a shot of Jim Dear and Darling's snow-covered neighborhood on Christmas Eve.
  • Break-Up/Make-Up Scenario: One of the first Disney films to pull one, after Tramp accidentally gets Lady sent to the pound and she learns about his womanizing while there.
  • Cats Are Mean: Si and Am, which is completely unlike Real Life; Siamese cats are among the most friendly and sociable of breeds (though they can be loud).
  • Cat Stereotype: Si and Am, being the stereotypically mean Siamese (as noted above, this is contrary to Real Life).
  • Caught in the Bad Part of Town: After being fitted with a muzzle, a distraught Lady runs away and gets lost in the inner streets of town. She is chased by stray dogs and cornered in an alleyway when Tramp jumps in and fights off the dogs, rescuing her.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Tramp and Trusty. The rat also had a brief scene in the beginning before the climax.
  • Chromatic Arrangement: Lady, Jock and Trusty and their Blue, Red and Green collars. This is referenced by how the roofs of their homes are painted their respective colours.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Trusty.
  • Dark is Not Evil: The workers at the pound are not portrayed as villains, they're just ordinary people who have a job to do.
  • Deadpan Snarker: The doctor after Darling has her child.
    Jim Dear: Doctor, it's a boy!
    Doctor: Yes... yes, I know.
  • Digital Destruction: The 1998 Masterpiece Collection VHS and laserdisc releases lacked the audio of Aunt Sarah botching "Rock-a-Bye Baby" after shooing Lady out of the nursery. The restoration used for the 2006 Platinum Edition DVD, and those used for the later home video releases, put it back.
  • Disney Death:
    • Trusty after the dog catcher's wagon accidentally hits him. Justified to a certain extent, as the original screenplay called for Trusty's death to be real. But when the public reacted negatively to Bambi's mom dying several years earlier, Trusty was ultimately spared. This was Disney's first use of this trope, which would become the norm for Disney until The Lion King.
    • The Beaver at the zoo gets a very brief one, after it appears the "log-puller" Tramp gave him worked a little too well...
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Jock saying to Tramp "We've no need for mongrels and their radical ideas!" Oh, Walt, you union-buster, you.
  • The Drifter: Tramp.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: In a deleted scene, the Siamese Cats are shown to have just as much concern for the baby as does their mistress and are shocked when they find out the baby was in danger.
  • Expy: Mr. Busy looks an awful lot like Gopher from Winnie-the-Pooh, except for color and a few other minor differences. Both even have the exact same speech impediment (a whistling sound in their "s"'s).
  • Falling in Love Montage: "Bella Notte"
    • And in the sequel, "Can This Be Love".
  • Foreshadowing: When Tramp introduces Lady to Tony and Joe, Tony comments on Tramp bringing in a new girlfriend and suggests Tramp should settle down with "this one". When Lady asks what he means, Tramp quickly changes the subject. It foreshadows the scene where the dogs at the pound tell her that Tramp has had multiple girlfriends.
  • Furry Confusion: Dogs, cats, alligators, and beavers can talk, but birds, fish, and rats apparently can't.
  • Gender Equals Breed: Lady and The Tramp's puppies are them in miniature.
    • Subverted in the comics - the pair had four puppies, two boys and two girls. One of the boys looked like the Tramp, but the other looked like Lady. This was changed in the sequel film, which played the trope straight.
  • Gender Flip: As an extension of the above Gender Equals Breed for the sequel. The puppies' genders were never established in the first movie, so the comic strip established that there were two of each gender — Fluffy and Ruffy were female, Scooter and Scamp were male. The sequel, which disregards the comics turns Scooter into a female (as well as giving all the puppies except Scamp new names; instead of Fluffy, Ruffy and Scooter, they are Colette, Annette, and Danielle).
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Lady and the Tramp waking up on a hill together the next morning could possibly imply they got much closer overnight.
    • Confirmed in an interview on the 50th anniversary DVD release. They worded it has having 'a romantic night'.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Lady, partly because Jim Dear and Darling get short-tempered when Darling is pregnant. This changes once she meets the baby and instantly becomes protective of him.
  • Heel–Face Turn: It's hinted that Aunt Sarah does this at the end of the movie when she sends the dogs biscuits for Christmas.
  • Heel Realization: Jock, Trusty, and Aunt Sarah have one when they find out that Tramp was protecting the baby from a rat.
  • Humans Are Bastards: Tramp's attitude, though the only unlikeable human we actually meet is Aunt Sarah.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: Jock and Trusty with Lady, at least by dog standards. When they discuss marrying her to protect her, they note how much older than her they are.
  • I Was Named "My Name": Averted: Tramp is called different names by all the humans he befriends and only called "Tramp" by other dogs. Played straight in the various sequel materials, where Jim Dear and Darling call him "Tramp," but not in the original film.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Aunt Sarah is mean to Lady, but truly cares about her two cats and the baby, and sends the dogs a box of biscuits for Christmas in the end.
  • Just for Pun: This gem from Tramp, when he's in trouble with Lady:
    Tramp: It looks like I'm the one who's in the doghouse.
  • Karma Houdini: The Siamese Cats get Lady in trouble with a Wounded Gazelle Gambit and go unpunished for the trouble they cause. They originally showed a bit more concern (as did Aunt Sarah) upon finding the rat in the house but this was cut.
  • Ladykiller in Love: Tramp has a long background with other... dogs.
  • Letterbox: In 1998, this became one of the lucky few Disney movies to receive a widescreen VHS. The first DVD, released the following year, also presented the movie in this format, due to Disney porting over the laserdisc transfer, as opposed to striking a new anamorphic presentation (which they fortunately did accomplish for the 2006 and 2012 DVD releases).
  • Lovable Rogue: Tramp.
  • Make-Out Point: Seen at the end of the "Bella Notte" scene, complete with couples snuggling in carriages.
  • Mama Bear: Lady to the baby. See also: Papa Wolf.
  • Match Cut: One particularly amusing one: After puppy Lady begs for Jim Dear to let her into bed, he gives in, but says, "Just for tonight..." We then cut to a near-identical shot of Lady sleeping on the bed in the morning several months later... as a big cocker spaniel.
  • Meaningful Name: The majority of the cast:
    • Consider the fact that the most common foreign title for this film is "The Lady and the Vagabond."
    • Lady does act quite refined and ladylike...most of the time. When she's not digging up the garden (to be fair, she tried to put the flower back) or chasing pigeons around.
    • The Tramp owes his life to Trusty because of his integrity.
    • Peg was named for her voice actress, Peggy Lee.
    • The Darlings' baby is eventually named Junior (younger person).
  • Mood Whiplash: The transition to the ending scene.
  • Never Smile at a Crocodile: At first, Tramp asks an alligator at the zoo to remove Lady's muzzle. The reptile seems a stand up guy, telling them he's "glad to oblige," but his maw is too big and dangerous and Tramp pulls Lady away just in time.
  • No Name Given: Jim Dear and Darling's baby. By the sequel, he is a toddler, so he's called Junior out of necessity.
    • Also Darling herself, Lady mistakenly thinks it's her name but it's really Jim's term of endearment for her and her actual name is never mentioned.
  • Officer O'Hara: The policeman at the entrance to the zoo.
  • Old Dog: Trusty.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Jim Dear and Darling, the couple's pet names for each other. In Darling's case, it overlaps with No Name Given.
    • At the baby shower, Darling's guests call her by that name as well.
  • Overly Long Name: The Chihuahua's sister.
  • Parental Bonus: Loads, and none are risque innuendos: expectant mothers, promiscuity, a lady's dishonor, newspaper headlines, Sundays.
  • Papa Wolf: When Lady is unable to stop the rat from entering the baby's room, without hesitation, Tramp takes on this role to kill the rat and save the baby.
    • He's also this to his only son in the sequel.
  • Pounds Are Animal Prisons: Probably the Trope Codifier for this, up to and including Death Row. Also a subversion, interestingly enough — the pound workers themselves are gentle dog lovers, Lady is quickly reunited with her owners via her license, and a sign on the door reads "give a dog a happy home."
  • Precious Puppy: Lady and her puppies at birth.
  • Really Gets Around: Tramp, at first.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Lady gives one to Tramp, believing him responsible for her getting sent to the pound.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Al the alligator, briefly seen at the zoo.
    • Could be a subversion, as he seemed to merely be trying to help get the muzzle off of Lady and simply didn't realize that his mouth was too big to do the job safely.
  • Rescue Romance: Played with. Tramp saves Lady from the pack of savage dogs chasing her in an alley, but the "romance" doesn't happen until later, after they've gotten to know each other.
  • Running Gag: "As my grandpappy, Old Reliable, used to say... Don't recollect if I've ever mentioned Old Reliable before...."
    Jock: Aye, ye have, laddie. Frequently.
    • Unfortunately, Jock cut Trusty off from saying Old Reliable's saying so many times, that by the time the puppies were born, Trusty had forgotten what Old Reliable used to say!
  • Senile Badass: Trusty.
  • Shown Their Work: The film portrays angry dogs and dog fights quite realistically in that dogs will often growl warningly before they attack, contrary to some other animated works that simply shows dogs or other canines attacking right away upon triggered.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: Lady falls for the Tramp after he saves her life and starts being kind and helpful towards her. She's less than pleased to learn of his history with "dames," but forgives him when he heroically saves the baby from a rat.
  • Spaghetti Kiss: The dogs' Accidental Kiss during the "Bella Notte" scene provides the Ur-Example, if not Trope Maker.
  • Spoiled Sweet: Lady.
  • Surprisingly Good English: Averted with Si and Am. They can speak English, but they have trouble conjugating verbs. It's actually a surprisingly realistic portrayal of this phenomenon, especially for its time.
  • That Nostalgia Show: Still qualifies, despite being made nearly 50 years after the era it is looking back on (the 1900s). This era was when Walt Disney had his childhood, so it's no surprise that a lot of Walt-era Disney films take place then.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Si and Am.
  • Those Two Guys: Jock and Trusty.
    • Also, Tony and Joe.
  • The Unreveal: We never actually learn what Old Reliable's advice was, because by the time Trusty tells it to Lady & Tramp's pups, he's totally forgotten it.
  • Uptown Girl: Tramp thinks that he can't hang with a pampered dog like Lady.
  • Villain Song: "We Are Siamese (If You Please)"
  • Villainy-Free Villain: Well-meaning but prissy Aunt Sarah. Her main flaw is being a Horrible Judge of Character. She fails to recognize the only two (okay, three) true villains of the film: the rat that Tramp kills and Si and Am, her two Siamese cats. She remains convinced that her cats are incapable of doing anything wrong and blames all of their misdeeds on Lady.
  • Violent Glaswegian: Jock, the Scottish terrier, shows some shades of this.
  • Wacky Cravings: Darling, whilst pregnant, requests Jim Dear to go out in the middle of a January snowstorm at night to get watermelon and chop suey. note 
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: We never see Si and Am again, after their One-Scene Wonder, despite the fact that Aunt Sarah is still there.
    • Did the language professor Tramp tricked to get in the zoo ever talk his way out of getting thrown in jail by the police officer guarding the gate?
  • What Measure Is a Non-Human?: Only a handful of four - legged animals in the Disney Animated Canon can read, including Tramp.
  • What Are You in For?: Lady gets this question in the dog pound.
  • What's an X Like You Doing in a Y Like This?: The dog catcher says that Lady is "too nice of a girl" to be in the dog pound.
    • Also, after saving Lady from the vicious dogs in the alley, Tramp asks her, "Hey, pidge, what are you doing on this side of the tracks?"
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: Si and Am act like Lady hurt them and trashed the living room. Unfortunately, it works.
  • Yellow Peril: Si and Am.
  • You Are Grounded: Because of some misunderstandings, Lady gets muzzled and, eventually, chained to her doghouse.
  • You Dirty Rat!: A particularly nasty one lives in a wall outside the fence of Lady's backyard. It appears once early on, but Lady chases it away. However, it returns in the climax, and tries to attack the baby, but fortunately, Tramp kills it before it can do so.