We’re throwing way back to the vintage age of Disney and a simpler time of fun and music in Latin America courtesy of this wonderful Saludos Amigos puzzle by Jaymar.
It’s colourful. It’s dynamic. It looks like a lot of fun! Let’s have a closer look:
Let’s meet our main cast of characters. First, and most obvious, is Donald Duck. In the original film he stars as a tourist taking in the sights and sounds of Latin America. This came out of Walt Disney’s goodwill tour to build relations between America and its Southern cousin Nations. World War II was raging and the concern was that Germany might gain a foothold a little too close to the Allied border.
Another familiar character appears in a fitting instructional segment called El Gaucho Goofy. We learn everything not to do if you want to be a native gaucho.
Aquarela do Brasil (Portuguese for “Watercolor of Brazil”), the finale of the film, involves a brand-new character, José Carioca. He’s playing some kind of accordion instrument in the puzzle above. We’ll touch on the other two characters in the puzzle a little later.
A strange detail in the puzzle is that it has the Mickey Mouse Club logo, which has absolutely nothing to do with the film in question, as the Club didn’t even come into existence for at least 10 years after Saludos Amigos was released. But it does help us to date the puzzle to after 1954. However, Disney slapped the MMC logo on random merchandise for years after the show faded from televisions, so we can’t assume an exact date from this information. The general consensus on the All-knowing Internet is that this series of MMC branded puzzles from Jaymar are from the 1960s.
Also, it just says ‘Walt Disney’s’… but, Walt Disney’s what? This might have been a good place to put the name of the film, no?
The branding is found at the bottom of the puzzle in the border. Jaymar Specialty Company Inc. is the manufacturer and it was made in the U.S.A. Now there’s a rarity!
Nope. And not even her sister, Aurora Miranda, for she wouldn’t star with Donald until the sequel called The Three Caballeros. So for this puzzle, the young lady is just a local dancer enjoying the attention of only two of the Caballeros: Donald and José Carioca.
And the boy with the flute? It’s been awhile since I watched this film, but I think he shows up in the opening segment entitled Lake Titicaca where Donald visits the famous location in Peru and meets some of the locals, including an obstinate llama, and perhaps, this little boy.
FUN FACTS: Saludos Amigos is Spanish for ‘Greetings, Friends!’