When Street Urchin Tom Canty is brought to the royal palace, he meets the young Prince Edward...who just so happens to look exactly like him. After Tom and Edward swap clothes for fun, Edward is mistaken for Tom and thrown out of the palace. From then on it's a race against time to find the real prince before Tom is crowned in his place.
The Prince and the Pauper provides examples of the following tropes:
- Abusive Parents: Tom's father is abusive both physically and verbally.
- Animate Inanimate Object: Edward's royal possessions, for some reason.
- Animated Adaptation: Of Mark Twain's famous novel.
- Animated Musical
- Drunken Song: The appropriately named "Drink to the King".
- Identical Stranger: Tom and Edward could be twins.
- Jerkass: Tom's father is an abusive, thieving jerk.
- Karma Houdini: Tom's father thanks to his just disappearing from the movie. See What Happened to the Mouse?
- Limited Animation: As par the course for Golden Films.
- Nice Guy: Tom never once thinks of stealing Edward's throne, despite his life of poverty.
- Royal Brat: Edward is pretty high-maintenance. He has a good heart, though.
- Street Urchin: What Tom is and what Edward becomes for a while.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: What happened to Tom's father? The last we see of him is when he kidnaps Edward and then he just vanishes from the film.