- “It ain't over 'till the fat man sings!”
- ―Alameda Slim
Alameda Slim is a cattle rustler said to be capable of stealing five thousand cattle in one night. The secret to his success is in his yodeling skills, which are capable of hypnotizing any cows that hear him. His partners in crime are his steed Junior the Buffalo, his assistant/business partner Mr. Wesley, and his nephews the Willie Brothers. He also has the dreaded bounty hunter Rico as a secret partner.
Alameda Slim was present in the early drafts of the film, when it was to be a supernatural western called Sweatin' Bullets. In this version, he was an undead cattle rustler who plotted to run numerous herds of cattle off cliffs to their deaths in revenge for having been trampled down in life. When this version of the film was canceled and reworked into Home on the Range, Alameda Slim was reworked into the master yodeler, though his original scheme was to storm Washington, D.C. with an army of hypnotized cows in an attempt to become president.
Slim is an obese man with long, dark red, mullet-style hair, thick red eyebrows, a short red goatee on his chin, a long angular mustache, and large gray bags under his murky-green eyes.
In his traditional outfit, he wears a large brown coat, orange sparkly shirt, red frills, a blue tie, both tan gloves and chaps, both brown pants and leather belt with gold buckle, gray Stetson hat with black band around on its brim. He's mostly seen stealing cows and selling them to Wesley.
In his disguise as Yancy O'Del, he wears a navy top hat with a teal band around its brim, a navy tuxedo suit coat with 3 black buttons lined vertically, black spectacles, deep blue suit pants, a teal bow tie, a black cravat, a white dress shirt with both a collar and cuffs, white gloves, and black shoes with white spats on them, and he carries a black cane with a gold hooked head.
Slim is an evil, rude, greedy, egotistical and arrogant man. While he mostly does his deeds for money and power, he openly states that he intends to make others lose as much as possible in his revenge plot.
Slim takes pride in his yodeling, which he uses to hypnotize cows for theft, and gets angry if anyone, including his nephews, disrespects his talent, which he considers to be an art form.
As cunning as he is though, Slim doesn't show much knowledge or intellect. Slim has little patience and a short and easily-provoked temper, shown with anger at his plans failing and at his nephews' vast stupidity at failing to recognize him through his Yancy O'Del disguise (even when they watch him put on the disguise) and interrupting him when he's counting the cows.
- Hypnotic Yodeling: Slim has this special talent to hypnotize cows by yodeling, he uses this to steal and lead them to his prison hold. He effectively uses this power a few times during the movie.
Role in the film
At the beginning of the film, Alameda Slim targets the Dixon Ranch, home of Maggie. All of the cattle disappear in one night, leaving only Maggie, who had been securely penned up. As a result, Mr. Dixon is forced to sell Maggie to a small farm called Patch of Heaven, and heads out west for a new start. Later, Mr. Dixon's ranch is bought by a Yancy O'Del. As a result of his numerous thefts, it is revealed that a $750 reward is out for the capture of Slim, which Maggie and two other cows, Mrs. Calloway and Grace, decide to claim in order to save their home from foreclosure.
Later, Alameda Slim commits another theft, and his unique technique is revealed: Alameda Slim is able to hypnotize cattle through yodeling. He captures all the cattle, and takes them to his hideout, located in an old mine named "Echo Mine". At the mine, he reveals his plan; Slim had once been a talented farm hand, but had been repeatedly fired. It is hinted that this was because his employers hated his yodeling ("singing"). As revenge, Slim has been using his abilities to steal the cattle of his former employers, and sell them. When the ranches are put up for auction, he uses the money to buy the property, under the name Yancy O'Del. At that moment, one of his henchmen moves from his spot, revealing the location of the Patch of Heaven farm on his map of ranches. (The farm is shown to be the exact shape of the minion's head, and had never been seen before because it was always blocked.) Upon learning the farm is being auctioned on Thursday morning, Slim's fury is promptly replaced with eagerness, and he decides to buy the farm under his alter ego's name.
Later, Slim's assistant Mr. Wesley arrives to make cash out of the stolen cattle. Wesley buys the cattle, and Slim uses the ill-gotten money to buy the now-bankrupt farm he stole the cows from. The Willie Brothers finish counting the cows they captured, stating that the total is 4,997. Wesley tells him that they are supposed to be 5,000. Slim tells him that one of his nephews just simply miscounted, but he hears Grace's moo and sees her by the entrance and decides to bring her to him. Slim begins to yodel at Grace, not knowing that she is immune to his hypnosis. When Slim sees Grace not even respond to his yodeling, he is completely confused. So he decides to confront the cows head on. However, Slim is captured by Maggie, Grace, and Mrs. Calloway, who plugged their ears to avoid his yodeling. The cows headbutt Slim, sending him into a mine-cart. Lucky Jack (the jackrabbit who helped the cows reach Echo Mine) then whacks Slim in the face with a pot, knocking him unconscious.
A chase between the cows, the Willies, Buck and Rico ensues throughout the mine. Soon, Slim regains consciousness--just in time to see to his horror that he's headed straight for the train, and all groups collide with it.
An enraged Slim grabs the three cows and ropes them and prepares to place them on the train. He then reveals that Rico is actually a mercenary working for him, to Buck's disappointment and heartbreak. Rounding up the three cows, Slim obtains the money and attends the auction of Patch of Heaven under his O'Del identity, attempting to buy the farm.
However, the cows escape thanks to Buck, and they manage to finish off Rico, Wesley and the Willies before freeing the rest of the cattle. The cows later use Wesley's train to head back to the farm, where they throw Slim in a chimney of the train and expose him to Sheriff Sam Brown and Pearl Gesner, who are both are horrified that the man who is buying the farm is the wanted outlaw.
Refusing to accept defeat, Slim tried to yodel, but Grace kicks Maggie's cowbell in his mouth and gags him. The Sheriff binds Slim and gags him with a cloth. Eventually, Slim is then put into a police car and taken to jail, still unsuccessfully trying to untie himself as he is about to face trial for his crimes.
- The defeat of Alameda Slim shares some similarities with the defeat of Governor Ratcliffe. They are both (in fact) kidnapped in the moment of achieving their goal, tied up, gagged and transported to law system for punishment.
- Slim's Yancy O'Del alias is a reference to his love of Yodelling, this is shown in sign he places in Dixon Ranch after buying it as the sign reads "MR. Y.O'DEL, ESQ."