Tag Archives: Mel Blanc

Mouse Wreckers (1948, Chuck Jones)

I have some not insignificant problems with Mouse Wreckers.

First, the cartoon is almost entirely beautiful. Great backgrounds, great talking mice, almost everything. Except the mice’s victim, a cat. The animation on the cat is fine, but the design of the cat itself is awful. It frequently disrupts otherwise fine shots.

Second, the cat’s innocent. The mice go after him because he’s got awards for mouse catching. The cartoon never shows it. In fact, the cartoon shows the cat to be stupid and lovable. He drinks too much catnip, who wouldn’t love a cat like him….

For the first half, the gags the mice pull to get the cat to leave the house are weak. Wreckers is more interesting, during those scenes, in terms of the great animation on the mouse’s pulley.

But the final gag is fantastic. It saves the cartoon, probably because it’s the longest gag as well.

2/3Recommended

CREDITS

Directed by Chuck Jones; written by Michael Maltese; animated by Ken Harris, Phil Monroe, Lloyd Vaughan and Ben Washam; edited by Treg Brown; music by Carl W. Stalling; produced by Edward Selzer; released by Warner Bros.

Starring Mel Blanc (Hubie / Claude) and Stan Freberg (Bertie).


RELATED

Advertisements

Conrad the Sailor (1942, Chuck Jones)

I wasn’t sure what I was going to say about Conrad the Sailor when it started. It seemed pretty simple–Conrad is a lame cat sailor and Daffy Duck makes fun of him. It was a simple case of Daffy being a bully.

Maybe I could have done something about how cartoon icons are often callous and cruel.

Then Conrad escalates the situation and starts trying to kill Daffy. Daffy, while a jerk, was never insane and murderous. He was a jerk.

The role change makes Conrad the Sailor a little more interesting than its content.

As a cartoon, it’s decent. There’s a nice swaying of the ship in the opening titles. There’s a good gag with the ship’s captain coming through (until the final time Jones uses it–as a finishing gag–and it’s too little).

Besides being interesting and mildly amusing, Conrad doesn’t make much of an impression.

2/3Recommended

CREDITS

Directed by Chuck Jones; written by Dave Monahan; animated by Ben Washam and Ken Harris; edited by Treg Brown; music by Carl W. Stalling; produced by Leon Schlesinger; released by Warner Bros.

Starring Mel Blanc (Daffy Duck) and Pinto Colvig (Conrad Cat).


RELATED

n

Easter Yeggs (1947, Robert McKimson)

I’m sorry, I think I missed something… did Bugs Bunny just kill the Easter Bunny?

Or did he just maim him?

Easter Yeggs ought to be a lot better. It’s got an Easter Bunny who conspires to get out of his duties on an annual basis by acting emo, it’s got Elmer Fudd and it’s got a psychotic infant who uses a revolver as a pacifier.

So what’s wrong with it?

Oddly, a combination of weak animation and director McKimson’s reliance on live action directorial mores. McKimson actually uses an over-the-shoulder shot in Yeggs, which makes no sense. Especially since he’s going over Elmer Fudd’s shoulder when he’s not the protagonist….

McKimson’s strange approach aside, there’s some really awful animation too. At times, Bugs appears to have a potbelly. And to be about twelve feet tall.

The last two gags are really great though; they save the cartoon.

2/3Recommended

CREDITS

Directed by Robert McKimson; written by Warren Foster; animated by McKimson, Richard Bickenbach and Izzy Ellis; edited by Treg Brown; music by Milt Franklyn and Carl W. Stalling; produced by Edward Selzer; released by Warner Bros.

Starring Mel Blanc (Bugs Bunny / Easter Bunny / Bratty Kid) and Arthur Q. Bryan (Elmer Fudd).


RELATED