Saturday, February 12, 2011

Spotlight on The Goofy Gophers

When it comes to manners and politeness, no one can beat Mac and Tosh. These two little upper crust rodents who are frequently confused with Disney's Chip and Dale were minor characters in the Warner Brothers cartoon stable beginning in 1947. Unlike their Disney counterparts, they never bickered or competed with each other. These two woodland creatures (one or both of whom were voiced by Mel Blanc) prided themselves on their civility. They're said to be based on character actors Franklin Pangborn and Edward Everett Horton. Their first short subject together was the eponymous The Goofy Gophers. Mac and Tosh matched wits against a nameless dog (somewhat reminiscent of Wile E. Coyote) whose job was to guard a prized vegetable garden. In the grand tradition of cartoons, they, of course, wiped the figurative floor with him. They made a series of 8 shorts during the time Warner Brothers had an animation studio. Below is Lumber Jerks from 1955, uploaded to the Romanian YouTube, Here the boys are pitted against a lumber mill and furniture factory that has appropriated the tree they live in.

In the same year, they were paired with Elmer Fudd, who was furnishing his home and happened to pick a chest that they had chosen to use for nut storage. Pests for Guests is uploaded to YouTube by jgbennie.

The gophers have been retired, for the most part since their last short in 1965 (Tease for Two). There have been a few cameos in later films, but they remain mostly forgotten characters in the WB stable. They're available on some of the WB cartoon compilation DVDs, and you can find several of their shorts on YouTube and other video aggregating sites, as above. It's a shame they're not better remembered. The world needs their civility.


  1. Oh I love these dear little rodents, and they star in one of my absolute favorite cartoons "I Gopher You"- I can still hear that famous cartoon tune "powerhouse" playing as they enter the big vegetable processing plant, while they go looking for their "lovely ve-ge-tables"! Thanks for letting me know more about them - I always swore they were not Chip n Dale. So polite these two!

  2. Glad you enjoyed the post! I looked for I Gopher You, but couldn't find it online.