Have you ever been exploring a Disney park and seen a duck pass you by? Like me, have you ever stopped to think “Well yes, if I were a duck, I would most definitely live in Disney too”? Well, on Christmas Day, Disneyland Paris released a new TV advertisement, featuring a whole narrative on this basis. And boy, is it cute.
“The Little Duck” follows the story of a fluffy little duckling who stumbles across a copy of “Walt Disney’s Stories” comic, and instantly falls in love with Donald Duck. Incidentally, Donald is my favorite of the Fab Five so I was very emotionally attached to the story from this point, and I’m sure I won’t be alone there.
Reminiscent of how Stitch studies “The Ugly Duckling” in Lilo & Stitch, our eponymous ducky becomes truly enchanted with the comic, copying Donald’s movements, pouring over the pictures and lighting up in a way only true Disney ducks can.
Then, one stormy night, the duckling’s family declare it time to head south for winter. Baby duckling tries to carry his comic in his adorable little beak but just can’t as it is too heavy. Cue emotional music and teary-eyed viewers. Through the storm they go, until they are struck down in the rain. Oh no!
But, the next morning, Little Duck wakes up and sleepily goes off to explore their new location. And guess who he bumps into? Donald himself! Little Duck charges at his idol for a hug (we’ve all done it). Where could he be? Only the Disneyland Park itself, “Where Magic Gets Real”. N’aww.
What is interesting about this ad is that it’s strikingly different to the park ads we’ve had historically. In this story, there’s no children laughing in Minnie ears, there’s no princesses twirling, and the castle is only really shown as a background at the end. No rides, no Main Street. It all comes down to the adorable little fluffy duckling, dreaming of meeting his hero in a way to which we can all relate.
And here I am, reaching for my wallet, sold on booking my next trip. Partly because I’m interested to see if I can spot Little Duck in the outdoor loading area of “it’s a small world” (those of you who have visited DLP will know that’s a key meeting point for the Disney Duck Community). I’ll let you know.
So what did you think of this advert? Were you a fan of Little Duck? Let us know!