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Western Animation / Lonesome Ghosts

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"Here are Mickey, Goofy and Donald; the world's first ghost busters. They're about to have a close encounter of the weird kind."
The Magic Mirror, DTV Monster Hits

One of the most popular Classic Disney Shorts, this Mickey Mouse cartoon from 1937 is centered around Mickey, Donald Duck and Goofy, who are running a Ghost Exterminating business as they are tricked into looking around a haunted house by the titular quartet of ghosts, who proceed to unleash their wrath upon our heroes. Unlike previous shorts themed around spooky stuff, Hilarity Ensues.

On a side note, these ghost characters (or at least ghosts similar in appearance) would later make an appearance, not in a Disney cartoon, but in a Walter Lantz cartoon "A Haunting We Will Go", featuring the Mel Blanc voiced Lil' Eightball being tricked into coming into their house. That short was also directed by the same director of this short, Burt Gillet.

It has been included as part of A Disney Halloween and Mickey's House of Villains.


Tropes Used By This Short:

  • A Taste of Their Own Medicine: As Donald said, the ghosts may love to scare people, but when it comes to being scared themselves, they're big sissies.
  • Animation Bump: This is a very lavishly animated short in general, even by Classic Disney Shorts standards. The ghosts in particular have very impressive glow effects, transparency and fading.
  • Big Boo's Haunt
  • Coincidental Accidental Disguise: Mickey and friends get covered with molasses and flour, making them look like ghosts, which scares away the real ghosts.
  • Cross-Dressing Voices: In-Universe. Done in the actual short by one of the ghosts in order to trick Mickey and co. into coming to the house.
  • Evil Laugh: The ghosts. Though they're not evil, just (mostly) harmless pranksters.
  • Exactly What It Says on the Tin: Not quite. The ghosts in question aren't so much lonesome as they are just bored that there wasn't anybody around their house to scare. (Since they already scared them off.)
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  • Excuse Plot: Bored with nothing to do (no one to scare, cause they're too good), the ghosts tricked a ghost-busting crew to come to their house.
  • Face Fault:
    Ghost #1 (in convincing woman voice): Do you chase ghosts?
    Goofy (chortles on phone, lowers to speak to Mickey and Donald): Do we chase ghosts?
    Donald: (falls from the chair, landing tailfeathers first)
  • Ghost Butler: The front door falls over when Mickey and Co. knock on it. As they walk in, the door suddenly lifts itself up, flips over our heroes and replaces itself on the frame.
  • Haunted House: Doy!
  • Horrifying the Horror: The ghosts get scared off when they mistake Mickey and friends covered in molasses and flour for much bigger, scarier ghosts.
  • Kicking My Own Butt: After Goofy tries to ambush a ghost hiding inside a dresser, he ends up fighting his own limbs inside the piece of furniture.
  • Let's Split Up, Gang!: Mickey suggests that they "separate and surround" the ghosts.
  • Mind Screw: The part where Mickey is messing with the door, only for it to peel off the wall, fall on him, and then open up to have the Ghosts marching out of the floor to a classic army tune.
  • Mirror Routine: One of the ghosts does this to Goofy.
  • Off-Model: Played with when Mickey and co. enter the house. The door initially falls inward, then it slides backwards and returns to its frame (as opposed to simply flipping back up), causing the doorknob to appear on the wrong side.
  • Overly Long Gag: Goofy looking at the ghost in the mirror.
  • Rule of Funny: The ghosts being afraid of other ghosts and seemingly forgetting that they are ghosts themselves. It's even funnier considering they outnumber the fake ghosts 4 to 3.
  • Scenery Porn: This short has some very lovely backgrounds. Just look at the opening shots!
  • Silly Spook: The ghosts only want to scare Mickey and the gang for laughs.
  • Standard Snippet: "The World Owes me a Livin'", originally written for The Grasshopper and the Ants, later associated with Goofy beginning with "On Ice", plays in a minor key when Goofy looks at his "reflection" in the mirror.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Gee Goofy, you didn't get the hint that your reflection was really one of the ghosts sooner? Of course, it is Goofy.
  • Who You Gonna Call?: Probably not these guys. Conventional weapons don't work as well for Ghostbusters as proton packs.