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Director: ?
Release Date: May 20, 1933
Stars: Scrappy, Oopy
Rating: ★★★★
Review:

Technoracket © ColumbiaPenned by Sid Marcus and animated by Art Davis, ‘Technoracket’ is one of those cartoons inspired by rumors of robots taking over, like Fleischer’s ‘The Robot‘ from 1932, and ‘Mickey’s Mechanical Man‘ from one month later.

Unlike those boxing-themed cartoons ‘Technoracket’ is surprisingly prophetical. In this cartoon Scrappy has a farm, in which Oopy does all the work, with help of the farm animals. But when Scrappy reads about the new age of technocracy he fires all animals, switching to robots, instead. Because it’s a cartoon, even the cows and chickens become robots, with the cows producing bottles of milk instantly. There’s also a scene in which a robots plants bolts to grow plants of canned tomatoes.

At one stage, however, Oopy sneaks into Scrappy’s house and destroys his controls, making the robots go wild. This leads to some nightmarish scenes. There’s for example a robot which devours a pig to spit out hams, another robot brutalizes a mechanical chicken forcing it to produce numerous eggs. Soon the robots create havoc in Scrappy’s home, and he himself removes the controls, which explode in the backyard, destroying all robots.

‘Technoracket’ illustrates the 1930’s fear of work replacement by robots very well. Nevertheless, its predictions have somewhat become true, albeit in a less cartoony fashion, as farms are all but mechanized factories, today…

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Directors: Tony Benedict, Gerry Chiniquy, Art Davis, David Detiege & Friz Freleng
Airing Date: April 1, 1980
Stars: Daffy Duck, Foghorn Leghorn, Miss Prissy, Sylvester, Speedy Gonzales
Rating: ★
Review:

Daffy Duck's Easter Egg-Citement © Warner Brothers‘Daffy Duck’s Easter Egg-Citement’ is an Easter-themed Looney Tunes television special produced by DePatie-Freleng.

Unlike Chuck Jones in ‘Bugs Bunny in King Arthur’s Court‘ Friz Freleng doesn’t attempt to tell one long story in the 25 minutes he’s got. Instead, we have three: the first evolves around Miss Prissy, who, in Foghorn Leghorn’s egg farm, lays a golden egg. Daffy and Sylvester find it, and fight eachother for it. This episode contains the only fine piece of animation of the whole special: the depiction of a paranoid Daffy in a car.

In the second episode Daffy is a guard at a chocolate bunny factory, protecting it against Speedy Gonzales, and in the third Daffy tries to go south, trying several options, including a horse. This part reuses the horse from the Pink Panther cartoon ‘Pinto Pink’ (1967) and some of its gags, too.

These stories are framed with Daffy in a very ‘Duck Amuck‘-like setting. Like ‘Bugs Bunny in King Arthur’s Court’  ‘Daffy Duck’s Easter Egg-citement’ suffers from bad designs (especially Foghorn Leghorn, who’s not a Freleng character, is badly drawn), can music, slow timing and excessive dialogue.

Director: Art Davis
Release Date:
 June 4, 1949
Stars:
 Bugs Bunny
Rating:
 ★★½
Review:

Bowery Bugs © Warner BrothersIn the opening scene of ‘Bowery Bugs’ Bugs Bunny is a tour guide talking about Brooklyn Bridge and why Steve Brody (a historical character) jumped from it in 1886.

A flashback shows Steve Brody, pictured as a typical bully, being out of luck and looking for a rabbit foot as a lucky charm. He encounters Bugs who then drives Brody mad, making him jump from Brooklyn Bridge in the end.

‘Bowery Bugs’ was the only Bugs Bunny cartoon directed by Art Davis. He does a fair job, although the cartoon suffers from erratic timing. His designs on Bugs Bunny are very reminiscent of those by Robert McKimson.

Watch a clip from ‘Bowery Bugs’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Bugs Bunny cartoon No. 60
To the previous Bugs Bunny cartoon: High Diving Hare
To the next Bugs Bunny cartoon: Long-Haired Hare

Director: Art Davis
Release Date:
 February 12, 1949
Stars:
 Porky Pig
Rating:
 ★★½
Review:

Porky Chops © Warner BrothersIn ‘Porky Chops’ a squirrel from Brooklyn is having a holiday in a forest where Porky is working as a lumberjack.

This outlandish idea creates a rather routinely conflict with loads of dialogue. The result is one of Art Davis’s weaker cartoons, particularly because of the squirrel’s rather unpleasant character. This makes it difficult to sympathize with either protagonist.

The cartoon shows an interesting mixture of styles: the squirrel looks vaguely like a Robert McKimson-character, while Porky is designed and animated in a toned-down Clampettian style.

Watch ‘Porky Chops’ yourself and tell me what you think:

http://www.supercartoons.net/cartoon/650/porky-chops.html#.URQKvKU9R8E

‘Porky Chops’ is available on the DVD set ‘Looney Tunes Golden Collection, Vol. 1’

This is Porky Pig cartoon no. 122
To the previous Porky Pig cartoon: Awful Orphan
To the next Porky Pig cartoon: Paying the Piper

Director: Art Davis
Release Date: October 21, 1949
Stars: Porky Pig
Rating: ★★½
Review:

Bye, Bye Bluebeard © Warner BrothersPorky tries to get rid of an annoying mouse.

When it’s announced on the radio that brutal killer Bluebeard is in town, the mouse disguises as the criminal. Porky quickly discovers his disguise however, but then the real killer shows up, too. Porky faints on the spot, and is tight to a rocket and put under a guillotine. It’s the little mouse who saves the day by blowing up the killer, and in the end he’s allowed to stay in Porky’s house.

This story is not presented very logically, nor is it very well executed. Therefore, one doesn’t care for the characters, nor is it very funny. Art Davis definitely could do better, but unfortunately this was his last cartoon at Warner Brothers. He would not direct again until 1962, when he directed the Daffy Duck short ‘Quackodile Tears’. In the meantime Davis returned to animating, joining Friz Freleng’s unit.

Watch ‘Bye, Bye Bluebeard’ yourself and tell me what you think:

http://www.220.ro/desene-animate/10-Bye-Bye-Bluebeard/2Z9yE6bPnU/

This is Porky Pig cartoon no. 128
To the previous Porky Pig cartoon: Dough for the Do-Do
To the next Porky Pig cartoon: Boobs in the Woods

Director: Art Davis
Release Date: August 14, 1948
Rating: ★★★★
Review:

Dough Ray Me-ow © Warner BrothersArt Davis is one of the unsung heroes of Warner Brothers animation. His unit existed for only three years, but in this short time period he released many fine cartoons, with a distinct and recognizable style.

‘Dough Ray Me-Ow’ is one of his best cartoons, and a rather macabre one, too. This short features a cat, called Heathcliff, who is even too dumb to breathe. Heathcliff, without knowing it, inherits an enormous sum of money. When his ‘pal’ Louie, a cynical parrot, discovers that if Heathcliff dies, this fortune will come to him, he tries to kill Louie in great, funny gags. Surprisingly, in the end he even succeeds, but when he tells the dying Heathcliff his secret, the cat’s nine lives simply refuse to go to heaven!

Apart from the main story, the cartoon contains a small running gag in which we see Heatcliff cracking nuts in ridiculously elaborate ways, always involving his own head.

‘Dough Ray Me-Ow’ features watercolor backgrounds, very unusual for Warner Brothers at the time.

Watch an excerpt from ‘Dough Ray Me-ow’ yourself and tell me what you think:

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