Starring Goofy appears in an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 on this single-sided, single-layered DVD; due to those dimensions, the image has not been enhanced for 16X9 televisions. All the Disney sets present good visuals, but Goofy was one of the best-looking of the bunch.
With material of this vintage, print flaws usually cause the most substantial problems. However, Goofy seemed surprisingly clean from start to finish. The worst concern related to light grain, which presented a small distraction, but it showed up pretty frequently. The shorts also appeared slightly dirty at times. Nonetheless, they displayed almost no signs of grit, speckles, scratches, or other issues that one would normally find in older films. The cartoons looked nicely fresh given their advanced age.
Sharpness consistently looked better than adequate. Some of the shorts displayed minor softness, but those concerns remained fairly insubstantial. As a whole, the cartoons came across as well-defined and clear. Jagged edges and moiré effects also presented no problems, but I did notice some slight edge enhancement at times. A few shorts also displayed an odd streaky glow that came from the tops of characters’ heads.
Colors appeared generally positive. The grain and dirt made them seem slightly dingy at times, but usually the tones came across as nicely vivid and bright. The cartoons mostly featured hues that looked as lively as we’d expect of this sort of material. Black levels were deep and rich, while shadow detail appeared appropriately heavy in the few scenes that featured low-light material.
On a positive note, the quality of the picture improved noticeably as the years passed. While the early cartoons still looked quite good, the later ones presented very solid visuals. At their worst, the elements of Starring Goofy still definitely surpassed those of most older films, but the more modern – though still fairly aged – shorts led me to give the set a “B+” for image.
The monaural audio of Starring Goofy also seemed fairly solid given the age of the material. Dialogue – which appeared mostly via narration – occasionally displayed some slight edginess and could sound a bit brittle. However, speech usually came across as acceptably natural and distinct, and I encountered no issues related to edginess. Effects sounded mildly distorted on occasion, but they also showed no substantial problems. They lacked great dynamic range, but they were reasonably clean and accurate.
Finally, music seemed a little rough at times. Nonetheless, the score and songs heard during the cartoons mostly sounded bright and lively, and the minor distortion created no real issues. Between the music and the effects, some moderate bass response appeared at times. Nothing terribly deep showed up, but the low-end seemed more than acceptable for films so old. The majority of the shorts suffered from no problems related to hum, popping, or other noise, as those issues seemed almost totally absent from the cartoons.
Although the improvements seemed more modest, the sound quality also improved noticeably as the shorts became newer. They still didn’t appear particularly special, but the more recent cartoons presented somewhat cleaner and more vibrant material. In the end, Goofy provided audio that has held up fairly well over the decades.
No significant extras appear on Starring Goofy. We get a collection of ads in the Sneak Peeks domain. This includes promos for Bambi, Cinderella, Mulan II, and a two-disc set with Porco Rosso, Nausicaa and The Cat Returns
Of all the Disney regulars, Goofy remains my least favorite. Despite the studio’s many attempts to rework the character, few proved satisfying, and that comes through in this erratic set of shorts. None are bad, and a few are pretty good, but they don’t rank with Disney’s best stuff.
The DVD offers consistently good picture along with adequate audio. No real extras appear on the disc, though. Anyone who already owns the Complete Goofy set has no reason whatsoever to pick up this one; they’ll already have all of its cartoons. If you just want a small sampling of Goofy’s exploits, however, Starring isn’t a bad place to go.