A Look Back on Goof Troop

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The Goofy movies have garnered quite the fanbase as they put in far more effort than something associated with Goofy deserved. Both these movies stemmed from the 1992 Disney Afternoon show known as Goof Troop. While by no means a bad Disney Afternoon show, compared to other Disney afternoon shows like Darkwing Duck, Chip and Dale Rescue Rangers, Ducktales, etc. it really didn’t do much hence the surprise at how much the Goofy movies did.

The premise for the show involved Goofy and his son Max living in the town of Spoonerville next door to Pete and his wife Peg, his daughter Pistol, and his son P.J.

The best concept of the show lies in its characters. Each of them has a comical voice and personality to drive the show. This allows the characters and comedy to mesh nicely with one another. Pete pretty much steals the show in his deviousness and aggressiveness. Peg is mostly the straight person to Pete’s antics and April Winchell’s voice acting does well in switching from kind and loving to loud and vicious in a matter of minutes. Pistol has the potential to be annoying but her hyperactivity has a lot of comedy with her constant random ranting. PJ has to deal with his father’s overbearing nature and him and Max have a nice and realistic friendship. Finally there’s the character of Goofy and Bill Farmer’s voice gives it all in reacting to every bit of wackiness provided for the character.

There’s also the wacky physical antics and the animators were capable of exaggerating them well. The visuals are strong enough to make it fun and keep the show’s plot from being too overly boring.

The main problem with the show was its setting of suburbia. The characters are great but there’s not much of a world for them to work their antics off nor is it one that stands out. The characters are cartoony but the same cannot be said for its setting which feels too ordinary. There were some scenarios with Goofy and Pete getting caught up in something together leading to an Odd Couple-like conflict, Pete scheming to get rich and manipulating the other characters to do so, or Goofy telling Max a story involving putting the characters in some fantasy or historical setting. These were fine scenarios made funny by the aforementioned characters but the show feels very confined to these characters. Any secondary characters were merely reduced to being characters of the day. Because of that this formula for the episodes can get rather repetitive and predictable.

This was also a time where the Disney shows was trying to be “with it” and while it’s not annoyingly so in this show, there are definitely points where the show clearly was a product of the times. Examples of this include portions of the theme song and the music video that came out after the pilot.

On the whole, Goof Troop is a show heavily hampered by its setting for a Disney animated show but has just enough characters and humor to keep it afloat. It’s just that the show with these characters was capable of far more and it didn’t feel like the show didn’t take much risks. While the Goofy movies (and Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas) handle these characters a lot better, this can have some level of appeal to any Goofy fan or any cartoon fan.

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