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Western Animation / Sea Scouts

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Sea Scouts is a 1939 animated short film from Disney starring Donald Duck.

Donald Duck takes Huey, Dewey and Louie out on a sailing trip, but things go wrong as they have difficulty with the anchor and the sails. And then a shark arrives on the scene...


  • Attack! Attack... Retreat! Retreat!: When the sail breaks off from the boat, Donald gets caught with it when his foot is caught in a rope. Raised high into the air, out over the water, he calls for his nephews to pull him down, which they start to do. But as he is lowered then he spots a shark in the water and calls for his nephews to pull him back up.
  • Berserk Button: Do not hurt Donald's Nice Hat.
  • Bird-Poop Gag: Implied. A seagull looks at Donald's hat, so Donald moves away, the implication being that the seagull wanted to poop on the hat.
  • Chekhov's Gag: Donald's admiral hat, which he tries to protect early on in the short. And then it gets damaged during the shark chase...
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  • Fortune Teller: At one point Donald finds himself wrapped up by some flags holding a flagpole ball which makes him resemble a turban-wearing fortune teller with a Crystal Ball.
  • Green and Mean: The shark is colored green, oddly enough. It does suit its villainous role nicely, though.
  • Hat Damage: The shark chase results in Donald bumping his head against the side of his boat so hard that his head goes through his beloved admiral's hat.
  • Let's Get Dangerous! / Unstoppable Rage / Megaton Punch: When the shark chase results in Donald's admiral hat getting destroyed, he stops fleeing from the shark and instead charges head-on at the shark and lays it out cold with a single right cross.
  • Literal-Minded: When Donald demands that his nephews lower the boat's boom, they accidentally do so right on his head. This is immediately lampshaded by Donald...
    "Sometimes they take me too literally."
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  • More Teeth than the Osmond Family: The shark has a mouth full of them. Oddly, though, its plan seems to be to swallow Donald whole rather than chomping.
  • Nautical Knockout: Donald orders his nephews to hoist the sail, but instead of unfurling the sail, they accidentally hoist the boom. Donald orders them to lower the boom, which they do... right on Donald's head. Provides the page image.
  • Nice Hat: Donald's admiral hat, which proves to be a plot element.
  • Reused Character Design: The green shark is the same that appears in the 1934 Silly Symphonies short Peculiar Penguins.
  • Say Your Prayers: When it looks like the shark might actually get Donald, Donald folds his hands and begins to pray.
  • Scenery Porn: There's a remarkable amount of detail in the animation, especially the sea effects.
  • Shark Fin of Doom: The shark's fin appears in the water next to Donald's hat to signal things have gone From Bad to Worse. At one point, the fin even slices through a log like a bandsaw.
  • Threatening Shark: A shark comes in to eat Donald.
  • Visual Pun: The cartoon ends with the nephews rowing Donald back to shore, the latter sitting on the stern with a life preserver in his rear and the words "S.S. Rear Admiral" written on it.