Planetizen - Urban Planning News, Jobs, and Education

65-Year-Old Disney Cartoon Perfectly Explains the Craziness of Driving a Car

In 1950 the Walt Disney Company released a cartoon called "Motor Mania". Starring Goofy, the film chronicles the metamorphosis of the mild-mannered "Mr. Walker" into the terror of the streets, "Mr. Wheeler". It was ahead of its time.
August 19, 2016, 1pm PDT | John Lavey
Share Tweet LinkedIn Email Comments

The short cartoon shows how getting behind the wheel can change one's psychological outlook, channeling road-rage out of even the calmest individual. 

Picking up the story at dawn in suburbia, we witness the transformation of the calm suburbanite (allegorically named Mr. Walker) into the madman driver Mr. Wheeler. We see him careening off other cars like a pinball, calling names and shaking fists, driving curly Q’s on the interstate, and more. 

The film is prescient in many ways. Bloggers and psychologists alike have studied the effects of driving and shine a light on the "dual psychology" of motordom—the “paradox of operating an automobile”. 

"Driving an automobile asks one to exist in a sort of quantum state where our errors are forgiven but those of other drivers cannot be tolerated. Where, on the one hand, the speediest route between origin and destination is demanded when behind the wheel and, on the other, space, safe harbor and time are needed when acting as a pedestrian."

Full Story:
Published on Wednesday, August 17, 2016 in Community Builders
Share Tweet LinkedIn Email