Mickey Mouse turned 88 today and somehow he doesn't look at day over 12. If anyone knows what face cream he's using, please tell us immediately. In honor of his birthday, we uncovered some very interesting mouse facts that perhaps even the biggest of fans know nothing about. We find out if he and Minnie are actually married (shocker!), why Walt Disney stopped voicing Mickey and what the mouse's first name originally was. If you're curious about his early cartoons, and everything in between, you'll want to read ahead. Find out when we first heard him talk, and discover why his cartoon shorts weren't a big hit with early audiences. At the very least, you'll have some epic conversation starters to bring to the Thanksgiving table.
1. Mickey and Minnie have been together for 87 years. Mickey and Minnie became official back in 1929. At least, that's when he first called her his girlfriend. The romantic reference appeared in Mickey's Follies while he sang a song with the lyric "got a sweetie…she's my little Minnie Mouse." Aww.
2. Mickey is a Hollywood pioneer. Why? He happens to be the very first character from a cartoon to get his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. We can't make this stuff up.
3. Mickey's voice has changed over the years. At first, the famous mouse was voiced by none other than Walt Disney. In addition to voiceover, Disney was becoming increasingly busy with being the boss man of the studio, meaning he had to step down as the voice of Mickey. Rumor has it that his major cigarette habit also contributed to the fact that the voice of the mouse was handed over to a man named James MacDonald.
4. Mikey and Minnie made their debut in Plane Crazy. Despite the fact that he didn't refer to her as his girlfriend until a year later, they appeared together in the cartoon short. Surprisingly, viewers thought Plane Crazy was super lame and were not into it at all. Mickey wouldn't be a crowd favorite, as we know him today, until his third cartoon, Steamboat Willie.
5. Mickey Mouse was not his original name. Disney's wife, Lillian, was the one who came up with the name we know him by today. Walt had named him Mortimer, which is just so wrong and weird on so many levels.
6. Mickey didn't always have boatloads of merch. Mickey mania is real these days, as tons of people collect his mouse-themed memorabilia. Mickey has everything you could think of plastered with his name, face and logo. The first Mickey-themed piece of merch was made for kids and was a measly tablet of paper. What a time to be alive.
7. Mickey made his Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade debut in 1934. And he looked a lot different than he does now. The ad for the parade read, "See gigantic balloons designed by none other than Walt Disney, creator of Mickey Mouse himself!"
8. Mickey didn't speak in his early cartoons. The first time we heard Mickey talk was in the 1929 short, The Karnival Kid. His first words? "Hot Dogs!"
9. We never see Mickey and Minnie get married. Walt Disney says that although they never had an on-screen wedding, "in private life, Mickey is married to Minnie." Aww.
10. 'Mickey Mouse' is a slang term. Unfortunately, it doesn't have a positive connotation, however. The name has been used in pop culture to mean "amateurish or trivial." Watch anything from Space Jam to The Godfather Part II and you'll hear it there. To most, however, Mickey is always a good thing.
Happy Birthday, Mickey Mouse!