Streaming now on Disney+ is “How to Stay at Home,” a collection of shorts highlighting Goofy’s strategies to staying safe and entertained at home. “How to Stay at Home” features three shorts: “How to Wear a Mask,” “Learning to Cook” and “Binge Watching.”
On the inspiration for the series, director and animator Eric Goldberg said, “I pitched a number of ideas that would be fun for hand-drawn, and they immediately gravitated towards this Goofy idea, this How to Stay at Home. They just thought, ‘Oh my, it’s so relatable. Everybody has been through all of these stuff.’ We wound up making three shorts out of it. One is “How to Wear a Mask,” “Learning to Cook,” which you just saw, and “Binge Watching.” Okay, I’m not a great cook, but I know that I’ve been involved with all three of those, especially “Binge Watching,” because, hey, kind of coincided really well with Disney+.”
Each short is about two minutes long and carry on the long tradition of Goofy’s “How to …” animations dating back to 1942’s “How to Play Baseball.” These timely additions feature a classic soundtrack, familiar credit slides and narration by Corey Burton that transport the viewer back to childhood, whether that was in the 40s or the early aughts.
“We didn’t want it to feel like it just came straight out of the 1940s,” said Goldberg. “Lureline, who did the backgrounds, we encourage her to go more graphic and we gave Goofy a slightly thicker outline just to modernize things a little bit, to show that, yes, we actually made it today, and yet, it certainly harkens back to the traditions that were started with those cartoons.”
“How to Wear a Mask” takes the now common experience of putting on a mask and remixes it with Goofy’s iconic physical pratfall. This short is a good one for kids preparing to mask up as they head back to school, and for that one friend or coworker who just never seems to get their mask on quite right. “Learning to Cook” was my personal favorite, as Goofy creates a culinary creation from a sad line up of ingredients. Finally, “Binge Watching” gives a clever and cringingly accurate instruction on the quarantine past time. As the narrator puts it, “just turn on the TV, find your favorite program, and watch every single episode of it ever made in the known universe, all in chronological order without a break.”
“How to Stay at Home” is a fun watch no matter your age, best enjoyed sat on the carpet directly in front of the television, ideally with juice box in hand.