Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sunday afternoon toons: Special "Tweening" Edition

Jeff Danziger has a good week at Bob Geiger's toon review. (Note that Geiger's review comes out on Saturdays; I like to give my list a little more time to ripen.)

Daryl Cagle's round-up focuses mainly on the economy, and the flight of the GOP into the wilderness.

p3 Picks of the Week: Larry Wright, Bob Englehart, John Darkow, David Fitzsimmons, Jimmy Marguilies, Michael Ramirez, Jerry Holbert, and R. J. Matson.

I expected the toonosphere to come down harder on the Proposition [H]8 victory in California--especially on the heavy support from the Mormon Church, those arbiters of marital propriety--by now, but it hasn't happened yet. So while we wait for the rest of the tooniverse to catch up with him, here's Mark Fiore's take on what heterosexuals in California (and elsewhere) have preserved for themselves. Two key thoughts: "State-run sacraments" and "I decided to stop boinking Shelly down at the diner."

p3 World Toon Review: Ares (Latin America), Hasan Bleibel Al-Mustakbal (Beirut, Lebanon), and Shekhar Gurera (India).

More on the ongoing romance between Stephen Colbert and Marvel Comics:

Ann Telnaes detects a little bit of the wealth-redistribution thing going on out there. I particularly enjoy the little air freshener.

Portland homeboy Jack Ohman tours the majestic headquarters of the big car makers.

"King-Size Canary" is a 1947 gem from Tex Avery while he was doing his stint at MGM. In classic animation lingo, Avery was a cartoonist of "extremes." In an animated character's movement, there are "extremes" (the furthest reach of a movement, the broadest expression on his face, etc.) and there are "in betweens" (the motions between and leading up to the extremes.) In olden days, most animators got their start as "in-betweeners"--they'd laboriously draw the minute differences for individual cels connecting one extreme point in the movement (drawn by a master animator) with the next. (Software like Adobe Flash automatically handles that now, at least within its limits, in a process called "tweening." It's the end of the world as we know it.) Avery was all about extremes--eyes bugging out, jaws hitting the floor, tongues unrolling like New Year's Eve party favors, body parts exploding in astonishment, and any sight gag taken to its (il)logical extreme, as in this toon, which well deserves its spot on #10 on the list of the 50 Greatest Cartoons.

And for those of you with no interest in the fascinating technical history of animation, you might still be interested to know that both the "sleeping pill" and the "Jumbo Gro" gags got this toon severely edited, if not outright banned, on television for years. (Double points if you get the "Lost Squeakend" gag--hint: it's 1947.) Also, near the end, you'll hear the canary's appearance paired with a few bars of "Listen to the Mocking Bird," which was also the theme song for the Three Stooges short films.

p3 Bonus Toon: You could kill the Frankenstein monster, or Michael Myers, or Freddie Kruger, and yet they'd keep coming back . . . as long as there was franchise money to be made. But that could never happen in Oregon.

. . . or could it?

Jesse Springer brings us the ugly truth: the undead continue to walk among us. (Click to enlarge.)

1 comment:

Katie said...

Call me crazy, but it seems like outlawing divorce would be a more effective way to keep marriages in tact. In the words of Wanda Sykes, gay marriages isn't the biggest threat to marriage, divorce is the biggest threat to marriage.