I just want to offer my sincerest apologies for bringing this post extremely late! I had some delay in obtaining a copy of today’s film!
And what is today’s film, you may ask? Well, it’s Disney’s 26th animated feature, “The Great Mouse Detective” or as it’s sometimes been known, “The Adventures of the Great Mouse Detective” (which is kinda misleading, since the movie is really only about one particular adventure of the great mouse detective)! Regardless, let’s take a look at this movie!
Released in 1986, this film gave Disney the comeback that they were seeking after “The Black Cauldron” critically and financially embarrassed them and their forefathers!
That’s not to say that this film didn’t have its problems too! After the executives at Disney decided to re-name the film to “The Great Mouse Detective” instead of its original title, “Basil of Baker Street”, the filmmakers were not happy! One of the animators actually wrote a fake memo, supposedly from one of the Disney executives, stating that most of the previous animated Disney films would be re-named with generic titles!
Anyway, the movie, based on a series of books, is pretty much the “Sherlock Holmes” stories told in the world of mice and rats! Our hero is the Sherlock Holmes of his people, Basil of Baker Street, and solves crimes for people much in the same manner as Sherlock Holmes!
Heck, he actually lives inside the house of the real Sherlock Holmes himself!
But Basil’s main crimes are those correlated with the evil mastermind, Professor Ratigan, a sewer rat/gentleman wanna-be voiced by Vincent Price himself!
Many a time has Professor Ratigan slipped through the hands…umm…claws…umm…paws…umm…appendages of Basil; and Basil is given one more chance to capture the culprit when a young mouse girl, Olivia comes to him seeking his aid! She is accompanied by mouse doctor, David Q. Dawson, who would play as Basil’s Watson!
Olivia informs Basil that her Scottish father
has been kidnapped by a peg-legged Candy Candido-voiced bat;
and Basil puts the clues together and realizes that Ratigan is behind the kidnapping! The rest of the movie sees Basil, Dawson, and Olivia try to find Olivia’s father and stop Ratigan and possibly even save the kingdom!
Our forgotten/minor character today is Mrs. Judson, Basil’s housekeeper! Based on Sherlock Holmes’ housekeeper, Mrs. Hudson; Mrs. Judson is seen briefly near the beginning of the film and is never seen again! So, not all that much is known about her! But, seeing as this is a “Sherlock Holmes”-type film, let’s put on our deerstalkers and see if we can deduce anything about her!
Well, first of all, we see that she is a somewhat elderly woman-mouse! This implies that….umm…the best housekeepers in the world of mice are elderly and female?
Oh well, moving on! We know that she seems to have a special bond with her pillows which is evident after Basil shoots them to smithereens…with a gun…and on purpose, to top it all off!
It seems as if she is a quite patient lady mouse to put up with Basil’s antics and near-manic behaviors! Maybe she secretly sees Basil as a son and adores him and although she may get annoyed now and then because of his inconsiderate actions, she will stay by his side until the very end!
Or, the absence of her character from the rest of the movie could mean that she’s snuck off under Basil’s nose, boarded a ship, crossed the ocean, and got a job working for the Antarctic branch of the “Rescue Aid Society” in order to stay as far away from Basil as she can!
Whatever the case, Mrs. Judson definitely had to put up with a lot from our friend, Basil, and for that I award her with the “Forgotten/Minor Character” badge for one of my favorite animated Disney films, “The Great Mouse Detective”!
P.S. We are officially halfway through my “Disney Canon-Forgotten/Minor Characters” project! Applause, people, applause!