Welcome back to Disney Stuff.
My wife and I don’t really share the collecting bug. She has a few things that she enjoys collecting, but on a far smaller scale than I do. The one exception to that rule was Pez dispensers. For a while she was an avid Pez collector. She had a great display of at least 100 or so Pez on the shelves in her office at work. People would bring them to her when they found one that they thought she didn’t have. We would search for them at antique fairs. She even brought some unique ones home from a trip to Germany once. We were always on the lookout for that next rare dispenser to add to the shelf. When she formed her own company and left the office building, her primary office space became our home and thus, the collection now rests in boxes in the attic. Perhaps that box has a date with eBay in the future? Only time will tell.
There were some great Disney Pez in that collection and I'm sure there’s an article in that box waiting to be written once I dig them out. Pez and Disney have worked together since the candy dispensers were introduced here in America in the early 50’s. Many of Disney’s most famous characters have graced the top of a Pez dispenser. The only Pez in my Disney collection was this set that I stumbled upon in a Walgreen’s about 5 years ago in 2007. By that time, Diane’s collection had been boxed up. But wherever I go, Pez will always catch my eye as will a certain famous mouse. When I saw the two together…obviously I had to make it mine.
This set celebrates a combination of anniversaries. 2007 and 2008 respectively marked the 80th anniversary of Pez and Mickey Mouse. Pez was founded in Austria in 1927. The Disney animated short Steamboat Willie, of course, marked Mickey’s introduction to the public in 1928. Even though Pez and Mickey don’t fully share an 80-year relationship, it was obviously a nice bit of marketing synergy.
This is a great little set. It comes in a small tin with the classic Mickey head shape cut out for the window:
The Pez dispensers themselves are quite unique in that they are full figures as opposed to just the typical character heads or head and torsos that Pez usually features. There’s the black and white 1920s version of Mickey:
Then there’s what you could refer to as a pie-eyed Mickey circa the 1940’s:
Finally there’s a contemporary looking Mickey:
The set is a limited edition and each is numbered. As you can see I got # 124,371 out of 400,000.
The back of the tin has some Pez history as well as some Mickey Mouse history.
To top things off, there’s a great vintage looking Wayward Canary poster included inside from the 1932 Mickey Mouse short of the same name.
And of course, there are three packs of Pez candy…just in case you actually want to use your collectible dispensers for their intended purpose.
This set was a great find. I had no idea they were making these, so I wasn’t out looking for them. They just appeared there on the shelf at the drug store one day. There's something very cool about unintentionally coming home with a great collectible when all you went out for is shampoo and Advil. This set sits proudly on my desk surrounded by all of my other Disney bits and pieces. I keep it intact, in the package. However, I’ve certainly considered raiding the Pez collection in the attic and displaying some of my wife’s Disney dispensers on a shelf. Maybe then I’ll take these out of the box. After all, they are some of the most unique Pez dispensers out there.
People always seem to have a soft spot for Pez. When my wife had them all in her office, everybody seemed to get behind her collecting. Her co-workers would always stop by and check them out and see if they could add to her growing collection. People always identified with Pez candy from their childhood, and the Pez dispensers always seem to have the ability to make people smile.
After writing this article…I feel I really need to scavenge through the attic and find the boxes of Pez. Then I can dust off the Pez Collectibles Price Guide and see what we have up there. A future Disney Stuff article is definitely brewing!
What do you readers think of these Mickey Pez dispensers? Have you seen them before? Are there any Disney Pez collectors out there? Click on the “Discuss this article on MousePad” link below and let’s hear what you have to say.
(Send an email to Chris Barry)
Chris Barry lives on Long Island in New York with his wife and three kids. He has had a lifelong love of cartoons, comics and animation. Those who know him well say he has truly, "earned his Disney PhD." Chris has been involved with Television Production for 20 years and began his career working with The Muppets at Jim Henson Productions in NYC. Currently teaching TV Production to high school students, Chris has been writing about many different facets of The Walt Disney Company for several years now.