Tuesday, July 24, 2007


Will be at the San Diego Comic-Con this whole week. See youse there! Look for the kid with the stubble in the Andy Panda t-shirt... That'll be me.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Hep Cat Symphony

I really like this cartoon. Along with the usual fantastic work by Marty Taras and Morey Reden, this one shows that the Famous crew could have as much fun with classical music as the West Coast could. (They also did a Popeye short, "Symphony in Spinach" the same year.)

Monday, July 16, 2007

New Camera

Testing my new digital camera. Works well for a hundred bucks. Ignore if you like.

16mm film running...

Friday, July 13, 2007

Abou Ben Boogie

I was talking with Larry tonight, and we both agreed that "Abou Ben Boogie" alone would've been worth the $35 (actually much more), seeing as though it's impossible to find. (Larry was only able to locate, not obtain, a 35mm in Denmark of all places).

Here are a few clips from that sloppy Shameless Culhane!!!

Woody Review

I've written a review of the new DVD set due out on July 24th. You can read it here.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Woody Woodpecker is in!

The new Woody Woodpecker set (due out July 24t) is in my disgusting grubby little hands. And it's great!

I've noticed some DVNR, but it's not really noticeable, and I am not going to be an asshole and raise a big stink about it. This collection was something I really never thought would happen. I'll have a formal review up later this week but just take a gander at these framegrabs.

It's a Living

Someone posted to YouTube the last(and probably best) Dinky Duck cartoon, "It's a Living" (1957). It's fun to see self-satire in animation, and it's more surprising to see it come from Terrytoons.

(Thanks, Jon)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Schlesinger Studio Photos

The auctions for these vintage photos ended some time ago.

Jerry Beck passed them onto Martha Sigall and she was kind enough to ID who she could in them.

This first one is of Bob Clampett's black-and-white Looney Tunes unit.

TOP ROW: Bob Cannon, Leahdora DaSilva, Ernest Gee, Izzy Ellis, Bob Clampett, George Jordan, Helen Curry, Dick Thomas, Kay Vallejo, Lu Guarnier, Dick Jones (Chuck's brother, partially hidden), Dorothy Worth, Mary Tebb, Silvia Rogers, Vannie Baker, Virginia Slaughter, Onita _______ (Martha couldn't recall her last name) and Unknown.

Sitting is Left to Right: Sid Farren, John Carey, Jack MacLaughlan, Vive Risto and Leon Redman.

She said the photo must be from 1938 because Leahdora DaSilva died in 1939 of TB of the Spine. Slyvia Rogers married Al Tarter (The guy with mustasche and glasses in the photo below) and they moved to England.

Here's some real animator manliness! I wish I knew who else were in these hysterical gag photos.

Thanks for the IDs, Martha! You're one of the good ones.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Johnny Gent- For Better or Nurse

Ask and ye shall receive! Someone in the comments wanted a piece of Johnny Gent's animation of a Popeye fight scene... This clip here is my favorite piece of animation by him, from "For Better or Nurse" (1945). It's funny, I've noticed that Gent's animation was not often in the best Famous Popeyes. This is one of the exceptions, as I think this one is funnier than the Fleischer short it's a remake of, "Hospitaliky". Maybe I'll upload the whole thing later...

Elmer's Enlightenment

I don't know who drew or wrote this first page from the "Elmer" story of Looney Tunes & Merrie Melodies Comics #11 (Sept. 1942), but it's priceless and has its own kind of hate-mongering charm.

I don't have many other issues from this early, but Dave Gerstein tells me Sambo was a regular character in the books, with the same characterization and receiving similar treatment from other characters. Daffy also talked like a black guy.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Johnny Gent- A Lamb in a Jam

Johnny Gent really didn't do a lot of funny animal animation at Famous Studios, but what little he did is top-notch. Gent animated mostly the very end of the picture in Wolfie's cave (thanks, Bob J.). There is some excellent phrasing here, as he really struggles to get what comes after five... and then machine guns "ten!" (For the record, this came out before any Bugs Bunny uses of the gag.)

I only have a copy with a time-code... Sorry! It's a good cartoon though.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

I Don't Give a Rat's Ass

I've been meaning to use that phrase for awhile, so where better than here? Like everyone else, I just saw the latest Pixar flick, Ratatouille, and it's great! I should point out a few biases I have beforehand though...

Firstly, I really vehemently dislike at least 90% of all the animated features ever made. The exceptions of course being most of the Walt Disney features, Fleischer's Mr. Bug Goes to Town, Bakshi's Fritz the Cat, and the ones done by Pixar. Most of the others I've seen (and I've seen a lot) lack just about everything that made the Disney pictures great (sincerity, competence, artfulness). Fortunately Pixar isn't lacking in it entirely, and this feature isn't.

Secondly, I'm still not entirely warmed up to CG animation. Even with the best Pixar film, The Incredibles, I couldn't warm up to the computer animation. Something about it just doesn't seem right to me, like the average animation of the 1940s and 1950s does. Ratatouille, however, has made me change my mind on what can be done with computer animation, and I can say (with no regrets) that this is some of the best animation done since the 1950s (not saying that it's better, but it's really on par). Even the design of Skinner looks like something out of a Bob McKimson cartoon (that's probably not flattering to some people).

It makes someone like me, who is just entering the field, feel great to see something with competence and artistic merit being done, as it gives me some lingering hope that I'll be able to work on something like that some day (probably not).

Some of the writing was a little contrived, but hell, what romance in a cartoon isn't? Everything else about the picture was great and I have a new favorite. Congrats to Brad Bird and all the others who gave us this great summer treat to remember.

(BTW, wasn't Brad Garrett great in this film? I didn't know it was 'Robert' until the credits. It's nice that they used a celebrity in the picture without drawing attention to the voice.)

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Happy Independence Day!

It's raining and I have to go to work. Happy 4th!

(I don't know what the f**k is wrong with the sound here... The guy on youtube took his down)

(I only added this one to make Bob happy... Holy shit, I'd have let those nephews die if I was Popeye... Say, why are there only TWO nephews here? Didn't Popeye have four? Did they go the way Shorty did in "Happy Birthdaze"?)

Richard Thomas - A-Lad-In His Lamp

I usually don't really care for Richard Thomas' backgrounds on the Warner cartoons. I much prefer those of Paul Julian, Phil DeGuard, and Pete Alvarado. "A-Lad-In His Lamp" is an exception, as I absolutely love the BGs in this cartoon!

This is a case where the BGs are just the icing on the cake, as this is a really great (and funny) cartoon with lots of bombastic animation by Manny Gould of Smokey the Genie (Jim Backus).

Monday, July 2, 2007

Tex Avery Documentary

Somebody has posted John Needham's documentary on Tex Avery (from 1988) to YouTube. This is absolutely fascinating, and features interviews with Joe Adamson, Heck Allen, June Foray, Chuck Jones, Mark Kausler, Heck Allen, Mike Lah, and Ed Love.

Pt. 1

Pt. 2

Pt. 3

Pt. 4

Pt. 5