[Editor’s note: A previous version of this story was published on Oct. 14]
In case you still need a reason to subscribe to Walt Disney’s streaming service, the Mouse House has literally hundreds of them. After months of hype, Disney+ officially launched on Nov. 12, with a line-up of new shows like the hugely anticipated Star Wars series The Mandalorian, original reality programs like Encore!, as well as original movies like a live-action version of Lady and the Tramp. But the real jewel in the Disney+ crown has to be access to the studio’s enormous library of classic and cult titles dating all the way back to the very first Micke Mouse cartoon, “Steamboat Willie.” Instead of waiting for releases from the infamous Disney Vault, you’ll have movies and TV shows like Ice Princess, That’s So Raven and That Darn Cat — the 1965 and 1997 versions—instantly available at the click of a button.
It. Is. Time. From Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs to The Mandalorian, check out basically everything coming to #DisneyPlus in the U.S. on November 12.— Disney+ (@disneyplus) October 14, 2019
Pre-order in the U.S. at https://t.co/wJig4STf4P today: https://t.co/tlWvp23gLF pic.twitter.com/0q3PTuaDWT
But That Darn Cat just scratches the surface of the deep cut titles that are available to subscribers now. Disney fans on Twitter have combed through the selections, marveling at what will be freshly available — and which are still hidden from public viewing for now. Here’s a round-up of the weirdest Disney movies you can watch now, and the ones you’ll have to experience again... or for the first time.
Must-Watch: The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes (1969)
Before he was Jack Burton or Snake Plissken, Kurt Russell was Dexter Riley, a college student who gets a serious upgrade into a human computer courtesy of a short, sharp electrical shock. Probably the pinnacle of the actor’s Disney years, The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes is the kind of nutty retro-futurism we love about the ’60s.
The definitive ranking:— Ryan Littlefield (@RyanLittlefiel7) October 14, 2019
1. The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes
2. The Strongest Man in the World
3. The Barefoot Executive
the number of people only now learning about the computer wore tennis shoes is frankly shocking— Rollin Bishop (@rollinbishop) October 14, 2019
Whoa. Easy now. “The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes” was a little Sean’s favorite. Dexter was my idol. https://t.co/A1U82fanS6— Sean Montgomery (@gomery) October 14, 2019
Most-Wanted: Condorman (1981)
Michael Crawford may have won a Tony for playing the Phantom of the Opera, but in our hearts, he deserves an Oscar for suiting up as Condorman. Made in that odd era after Richard Donner’s Superman: The Movie, but before Tim Burton’s Batman, Condorman was Disney’s attempt to launch an original square-jawed superhero in a suit that has to be seen to be believed. So it would be great if we could actually, you know, see it.
Ok yeah, its a heck of a lineup...but call me when @disneyplus announces Condorman.— Devil Fleming (@dfdfleming) October 14, 2019
(This will be my ONE Disney+ joke)
Over 600 titles and no Condorman?!— Joe Marchese (@ItsJoeMarchese) October 14, 2019
Must-See: The Cat From Outer Space (1978)
Keep your shaggy D.A.’s: we’ll stick with this intergalactic feline. Disney’s attempt to update its tried-and-true animal movie formula for the Star Wars era is a furry favorite of cat lovers around the globe.
Just saw the new Disney+ list, and it has 2 of the live-action Disney movies that I loved when I was a kid: Escape to Witch Mountain and The Cat from Outer Space. I watched them over and over. Perhaps this explains why I still really want both telekinesis and a talking cat.— Sarah Beth Durst (@sarahbethdurst) October 14, 2019
#DisneyPlus My first week of watching on Nov. 12th— Michael Green (@hucgreen) October 14, 2019
The Cat from Outer Space
Spider-Man: The Animated Series (1994)
X-Men: The Animated Series
The Black Hole
What is your list?
If the Cat from Outer Space series reboot starting Phoebe Waller-Bridge as the space cat and Brian Cox as the evil can of intergalactic tuna doesn’t arrive at Disney + in a year then I think we can all agree it’s a shameful missed opportunity. pic.twitter.com/i1UpBmeslL— Boo Wolkoff👻 (@flying_lobster) October 14, 2019
Most-Wanted: The Watcher in the Woods (1980)
Disney cartoons have their fair share of scary moments, but The Watcher in the Woods remains the studio’s most famous dip into full-fledged horror. The movie was famously pulled from theaters days after its initial premiere to tone down the scares. Even in its neutered form, though, The Watcher in the Woods remained a formative scary movie experience for an entire generation. Too bad they won’t be able to scare their own kids by “accidentally” playing it on Disney+
While I love the Disney+ announcements, there is one obscure Disney film I didn't see I hope gets added later.— Ant 🎃🎃🎃 It's Halloween Month!!! (@AGramuglia) October 14, 2019
The Watcher in the Woods
Can't imagine why Disney would be nervous to add it...https://t.co/2GSRgYrxkJ
Things Disney is apparently to Cowardly to put on their streaming service :— Trickster-Requiem-Belle (@Tricksterbelle) October 14, 2019
SOMETHING WICKED THIS WAY COMES
WATCHER IN THE WOODS
THE TOWER OF TERROR MOVIE
Imma be binging SO WEIRD but I see y'all.
Must-See: Blackbeard’s Ghost (1968)
Never let it be said that the dread pirate Blackbeard never did anything nice for a landlubber. In this oddball comedy, Blackbeard (played by Oscar-winner Peter Ustinov) is brought back to ghostly life to help Steve Walker (Dean Jones) coach a collegiate track team to victory and woo the lovely Jo Anne (Suzanne Pleshette). Hijinks ensue without any high-seas pillaging.
What if it's possible to be concerned and disturbed about Disney's ever tightening stranglehold on entertainment and still be excited about being able to watch Blackbeard's Ghost again?— Veleda_k (@veleda_k) October 14, 2019
Listen: Blackbeard's Ghost needs to be in the Pirates Cinematic Universe.— 💀 Gravedig Wails 💀 (@mechadaveo) October 14, 2019
Most-Wanted: The Mighty Ducks movies
Ducks fly together...except, apparently, on Disney+. To the shock and dismay of ‘90s kids eveywhere, all three Mighty Ducks movies—aka The Bad News Bears on ice—won’t be streamable at launch. the animated series starring actual ducks (from another planet, no less) is available to binge, though. If you ask us, leaving out Emilio Estevez is a pretty fowl joke.
Okay, so they didn’t put up the Mighty Ducks movies, but THIS made the cut? https://t.co/LjRbA0wLU3— Cody (@reelcodycoco) October 14, 2019
Feel like we are all within our rights to ask Disney+ why the hell the entire The Mighty Ducks franchise is no where to be found at launch— Ñic Gulas (@Nic_Gulas) October 14, 2019
Must-See: Gus (1976)
Move over, Air Bud: the original sports-playing animal is back to score some touchdowns. Don Knotts made better movies during his long tenure at Disney, but none are as weird as the one where a professional football team fields a donkey as its place kicker and everyone is just OK with it.
Buying Disney+ for Marvel and Star Wars.— Nicholas Borelli (@NickBorelli2) October 14, 2019
Staying for GUS. pic.twitter.com/5UeyBk9RYk
If Gus, a movie about a field goal kicking donkey, doesn’t seal the deal for you buying Disney+ I don’t know what will. I’m only half joking about this. https://t.co/RWVss2qxAt— Fido (@Fido1084) October 14, 2019
Disney Plus has far more Don Knotts feature films than any single online streaming service should ever make available at once.— Mercury Crusader (@MercuryCrusader) October 14, 2019
Most-Wanted? Song of the South (1946)
It’s been known for a while now that Song of the South was never going to be part of the Disney+ lineup. But the debate over where when and how the controversial film should emerge from the Disney vault — or if it ever should — flared up again today. Those who are advocating for the film’s release argue that it’s better for Disney to examine its history rather than ignore it, and point to Warner Bros.’s Looney Tunes collections as an example for how to contextualize older cartoons that are deeply offensive today. On the other hand, there’s a strong case to be made that no good can come from making a movie with such a troubled legacy, and painful portrayals, on a streaming service aimed at children.
Lmao they won’t include Song of the South but they’ll include The Reluctant Dragon, a movie that had racist black caricature artwork in it and a guy obsessing over the zebra centaur statue https://t.co/27Hidrz5Dh— 🇭🇰🍫Ty🍬🎃 (@crocsushi) October 14, 2019
i can guarantee anyone advocating to see song of the south go on the streaming service for “education” or “transparency” reasons doesnt understand what it would mean to be a black person having to scroll past a movie with literal slaves on an app they are financially supporting.— [𝙣𝙞𝙣𝙚𝙩𝙞𝙚𝙨 𝙥𝙤𝙥 𝙥𝙡𝙖𝙮𝙨 𝙡𝙤𝙪𝙙𝙡𝙮] (@nwmnsown) October 14, 2019
Song of the South has been largely forgotten despite being a huge box office success, winning an Oscar for best song, and living on in Disneyland's Splash Mountain. Disney doesn't bring it up much, because, you know, the movie is super problematic and pretty racist.— (((peter hanink))) (@phanink) October 14, 2019
Here’s my issue about removing Song of the South: as a film archivist, sanitizing film history seems dishonest.— Yonah Bex (@remembrancermx) October 14, 2019
White people obsessed with Song of the South... nevermind i'll keep minding my business pic.twitter.com/c2CY28x5gW— shanpire 🧛🏾♀️ (@shannbon) October 14, 2019
not saying Song of the South should be released on Disney’s streaming service of all things, but Disney should stop acting like it didn’t happen and release it for historic and educational reasons like Warner Bros has.— belle (@mintfoam) October 14, 2019
Disney+ launches on Nov. 12.
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