Posts Tagged ‘Genuinely Good’

h1

Cartoon Hell #33 – “The Little Stranger”

January 15, 2010

Cartoon Hell is TheKarpuk’s attempt to review every single installment in an awful $5 collection called “150 Classic Cartoons” purchased at his local Wal-Mart. Your prayers are welcome.

What? You're telling me no one's ever given you a little stranger?

“Don’t look around, don’t make a sound, there’s a stranger here in town. Where he’s from, nobody knows. Lonely little stranger he looks so alone. He thought he was in danger, the day he was born.”

That’s a bleak opening song for a cartoon. In tandem with a title that sounds like an obscure sex euphemism, it makes for a bad first impression. Even the title card is messed up, giving me low expectations for the fidelity of this transfer. The first shot is damn confusing because it seems darker than originally intended. I’m fairly sure it’s a chicken worrying over a nest of eggs, but it’s doing it in the forest. Do chickens every really come in a wild variety?

The chicken cries over an egg before depositing it in the nest, making the whole scenario clear. This chicken is pulling a cuckoo-bird on some unsuspecting egg-laying species. This whole thing raises a lot of questions this cartoon isn’t prepared to answer. What sin justifies a chicken going to that effort? Is some farmer going to lose his temper from illicit chicken sex? They spoot out eggs and chicks as a lifestyle. Did she breed with another species? Is that a basilisk in there? Oh man, I’m starting to imagine cartoons far more interesting than whatever is about to happen.

Read the rest of this entry ?

Advertisements
h1

Cartoon Hell #21 – “Jingles”

April 5, 2009

Cartoon Hell is TheKarpuk’s attempt to review every single installment in an awful $5 collection called “150 Classic Cartoons” purchased at his local Wal-Mart. Your prayers are welcome.

Maybe it should end with, "...in Color?"

Maybe it should end with, "...in Color?"

There are a few things immediately wrong with “Jingles”, A Musical Sketch in Color. Let’s work from least obvious backwards. Firstly, there’s Christmas music playing, which never bodes well. Second, there is utterly nothing recognizable about the format. As much as I bitch about the Fleischer characters like Popeye and Betty Boop, it’s still nice to have a personality of some sort anchoring the whole thing. Lastly, I don’t think it’s a good start when the title card lies to me, because this bitch is monochrome.

It’s a film by Sy Young, and it all has the amateur feel of something cobbled together in some lightless place in the world where orphans of the Great War euthanize elderly circus animals. The warbly music combines with that effect to make me concerned that I’m watching some old Edison snuff film thrown into the collection because it cost nothing in royalties.

Eskimo law actually requires this.

Eskimo law actually requires this.

Two eskimos turn a crank at the top of the world and a old style traffic sign smacks the sun. Whatever my expectations were, they’ve been defied. The sun starts a locomotive, and every single part twists into a character when it moves. There’s a shot from the trains perspective as it moves through the hillside towards a tunnel that’s eerily well animated, to the point where I felt a little unnerved.

Read the rest of this entry ?

h1

Cartoon Hell #20 – “Wiffle Piffle the Hot Air Salesman”

March 30, 2009

Cartoon Hell is TheKarpuk’s attempt to review every single installment in an awful $5 collection called “150 Classic Cartoons” purchased at his local Wal-Mart. Your prayers are welcome.

It's a growing field you know.

It's a growing field you know.

I discussed the matronly version of Betty Boop I refer to as “Frau Boop” during the saddening review of Henry the Funniest Living American, and it seems as the years went by they emphasized the Frau’s presence less and less. The strategy was to wean people unto other popular cartoon franchises before they could realize that the name Boop no longer involved overt sexual imagery. As weird as it is to find myself saying this, I wish Wiffle Piffle had taken off.

A great man at work.

A great man at work.

I’m immediately thrown off by Wiffle Piffle as he does not resemble any sort of main character I’m used to. He’s dressed like a hobo martian in a Monopoly outfit and his limbs are always in motion and always rubbery.

He goes to the first door and after offering, “something new in household items,” he’s smacked on the head. His response? “What a robust woman!” Awesome.

Watching Wiffle meander around town is oddly hypnotic, his body swaying as he goes down winding walkways, dodges guard dogs, and boards and disembarks from a trolley without it ever moving. I wish I could get a screen saver of him moving. It entrances and delights.

In the thirties a door-to-door salesman apparently received all the warmth and regard of a rabid bulldog dressed like a gypsy, as Wiffle gets treated like a plague rat wherever he goes. This could also have something to do with his resemblance to an extra-terrestrial crossed with a Stretch Armstrong.

Read the rest of this entry ?

h1

Cartoon Hell #15 – “Me Musical Nephews”

February 22, 2009

Cartoon Hell is TheKarpuk’s attempt to review every single installment in an awful $5 collection called “150 Classic Cartoons” purchased at his local Wal-Mart. Your prayers are welcome.

I'm I nuts or does Popeye have the grammar of a leprechaun?

Am I nuts or does Popeye have the grammar of a leprechaun?

Cartoons often take plagiarism to a high art. If one company succeeds with a cartoon mouse, everyone else will make mascots that resemble him as closely as the law allows.

I mention this because in later years Popeye took care of a cluster of Nephews all resembling miniature versions of himself. Named Peepeye, Poopeye, Pipeye, and Pupeye, these are children destined to learn Popeye’s fighting methods simply to deal with the school yard taunts. Pipeye and Pupeye are borderline, but Jesus Christ, Poopeye? That sounds like a mystery ailment diagnosed on, “House,”, not the name of a human being.

Since anyone reading this is probably at least somewhat acclimated with cartoon history, I won’t belabor the fact that this scenario involves a sailor with nephews who physically resemble him. I respect your intelligence too much.

They look more like dwarves than children.

They look more like dwarves than children.

In “Me Musical Nephews” Popeye is attempting to drift off to sleep while his nephews practice what  looks like an impromptu ragtime band performance. Whenever Popeye succeeds in drifting off to sleep, they break out into some improvised jazz, because if there’s one thing Popeye can’t stand it’s a jazz man.

Read the rest of this entry ?

h1

Cartoon Hell #3 – “The Friendly Ghost”

January 8, 2008

Cartoon Hell is TheKarpuk’s attempt to review every single installment in an awful $5 collection called “150 Classic Cartoons” purchased at his local Wal-Mart. Your prayers are welcome.

CH003-001

Unlike the previous two entries in this series, today’s cartoon is a change of pace, which surprised me considering the wasteland the “150 Classic Cartoons” appeared to be on the outset. I knew a few famous Paramount and Fleischer characters would appear sooner or later, but they’ve actually included the first appearance of Casper the Friendly Ghost, appropriately titled, “The Friendly Ghost”.

CH003-002

This short opens with a set of credits that I found to be genuinely creepy. A few of the pictures would actually make cool posters if properly cleaned up and enlarged. Considering this is effectively a children’s series, I’m actually kind of impressed.

A friendly and folksy narrator says something approximately like the following as we zoom in on a spooky house: “If you believe in ghosts, this is the story for you. If you don’t believe in ghosts, well I suppose you can just fuck right off.” I’m probably paraphrasing.

In the interests of full disclosure, I must point out that I’m thoroughly unconvinced that ghosts exist. In my estimation, they fall somewhere between “wishful thinking” and “bullshit”.

I mean really, let’s do some math here. Let’s suppose that only .01 percent of all people who die become a ghost. An average of 150,000 people die worldwide every day, so that would mean 15 ghosts a day, 105 ghosts a week, and 5460 ghosts a year. People seem to believe that ghosts haunt an area as long as need be, so we can basically assume that this trend goes back to the dawn of man. Even going with such a slim percentage, we’d have been up to our assholes in ghosts years ago. If ghosts were that common, ghostbusting wouldn’t be cool, it would be just another form of pest control. You’d be able to buy ghost traps at the local Wal-Mart.

“Booooooo-SNAP!”

“Oh, honey, could you deal with that. I hate throwing out the dead ghosts.”

Read the rest of this entry ?