It’s hard to believe, but with Pluto’s Heart Throb, we have officially entered the 1950s on the blog, moving into the years where things get a little nuts for the Disney company. Sadly, it seems to show as watching Pluto’s Heart Throb feels like a rehash of previous Pluto adventures, not something new. It’s something that has become a bit of a pattern with Disney in the late 1940s and now the 1950s.
Pluto’s Heart Throb is merely a new way to get into the story of Pluto fighting with Butch the Bulldog over Dinah the Dachshund. While there had not been a short prior to this where the two competed, the bottom line is it’s a combination of shorts where Pluto and Butch have fought over other things, throwing Dinah in the mix as the object of contention. The way this happens is frankly just bizarre.
A little cupid/demon looking thing manages to grab Pluto’s ears as well as Dinah’s, and pushes the two of them to fall in love. It’s not really clear why this happens, what powers the little creature has or what it’s purpose is other than kicking off the action. Regardless of this, when the deal is done, and the two are smitten for some odd reason Dinah introduces Pluto to Butch, and makes some sort of overture for the two to get along. It’s not really clear why she does this, nor why it happens in the story of the short.
The rest of the short plays out with Butch and Pluto fighting with each other. There’s no real way to say it other than that. Pluto tries to sabotage Butch and give Dinah a bone, Butch beats up Pluto and throws him against a tree. There’s no real rhythm to the short, no flow of the story and no way that someone would become invested in what is happening here. It just feels like a collection of gags that someone threw together to put these characters in a short together.
I hate to be negative about a Disney short, because I tend to love watching them, hence this blog. But Pluto’s Heart Throb shows a distinct lack of focus on storytelling. The little cupid/demon creature doesn’t show up again after the start of the short. Why was he there? And why did Dinah want Butch and Pluto to get along? There are no answers coming, so it makes it difficult to enjoy the short and follow what’s going on. Hopefully, the new ideas will start showing up as we progress into 1950.