I'm Still Not Over...Tod and Copper's friendship in 'The Fox and the Hound'

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Image Credit: Everett Collection

Growing up on Disney movies, I was constantly learning valuable life lessons while simultaneously crying my eyes out. For example: Simba defeats Scar in The Lion King and the good guys win! I learn all about fighting for what’s right and good overcoming evil. Mufasa appears in the clouds and tells Simba how proud he is of his son! I burst into tears for the hundredth time during that hour and a half. That was simply my relationship with Disney movies. However, there was always one film that filled me with irregular amounts of joy … and ripped my heart from my chest more than the rest. So let’s talk about The Fox and the Hound.

The Fox and the Hound told the story of Tod, an adopted baby Fox, and Copper, a young hound dog in training. Tod and Copper were neighbors, and when they were still young (a.k.a. before their societal roles were forced upon them), they were the best of friends. They hung out every day, even when Copper was told he wasn’t allowed to because he was a hound dog, and Tod would one day be his prey. But Copper didn’t care. He spent his days splashing around with Tod and attempting to howl in what might be the cutest two seconds in cinema history.

There are many things that I’m still not over when it comes to this movie. I’m still not over how freakin’ adorable these two were as young babies running around (See: Tod playing with Copper’s ears). I’m still not over how unfair it was that society pulled them apart when Copper had to become a hunting dog. And I’m really still not over the moment when Copper’s owner threatened Tod’s life, forcing Tod’s mother to drive out to the middle of nowhere and leave Tod on the side of the road in what might be the saddest four minutes in cinema history:

And if I’m able to keep writing through my many tears, I’m definitely still not over the moment when I thought all hope was lost for Tod and Copper, and at the last minute, Copper faced down the barrel of his owner’s gun in order to save his onetime best friend.

But even after all that, they were still forced to go their separate ways. As a young child, I couldn’t fathom the idea that even though they still loved each other, they couldn’t be best friends again. Why was life so unfair?!

I spent weeks trying to figure it out until finally, my mother explained that the movie ending didn’t mean their story ended. So, in my world, Tod and Copper remained secret best friends, society be damned! However, I still feel a constant ache in my heart that the film didn’t end with them side-by-side. If their friendship can’t make it, then we’re all screwed. I apologize if you were expecting this to end on a positive note. If it did, then I’d probably be over it by now.


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