Thursday, March 25, 2010

039 The One Armed Bandit

Title: The One-Armed Bandit
Studio: Walter Lantz
Date: 3/27/39
Alex Lovy
Story .... Vic McLeod .... James Miele
Music ... Frank Marsales
Geo. Granpre ... Hicks Lokey
Running time (of viewed version): 6:47

Synopsis: Old man gambles his welfare check away, then his mortgage (I think they meant "deed"; a mortgage is a debt secured with real property; in order for it to have value to someone it was traded to, the person giving it away would need to be in the position of the lender or the lender's successor in interest; while this is not impossible (see the securitization of sub prime mortgages recently), it seems more likely they just don't know what they're talking about); the gambling house proprietor Ratbone offers to give up the "mortgage" if the gambler's daughter Nell will marry him; instead, she hussies herself close enough to steal the mortgage, a blonde hero beats up the "villain", and the gambler shoves metal into the unconscious Ratbone and steals back the mortgage.

Comments: The hero is the same guy (Dan) who was mated to a tree in Birth of a Toothpick; he seems to have at least some interest in human women in this, even if she is kind of wooden. I can't tell if the daughter is supposed to be hot; she's kinda like a sack full mostly of hubcaps but also with a ham in it. Little man in a tall hat and dark glasses was used in a Bugs Bunny cartoon I think... The dance between nature boy and the villain is very fluid; I suspect they reused reference footage from the earlier jitterbug cartoon. A self reflexive "movies are your best entertainment value" banner moves through the cartoon. Plus a reference to Bank Night, which was a movie theater prize giveaway (I'm not sure if it existed outside theaters; the reference in the cartoon implies it will take place in the gambling parlour, but that may just be comedy). Nell's waggle reminds me a bit of Coal Black. Then there's the southern accent. There's a ladies' entrance. There's a mat with the Greek letters Rho Delta Kappa on it. This does not seem to be an actual sorority. I wonder if there is a joke in it as an acronym for something (RDK if they're proper, PDK or PAK if they're going by what Roman letters they look like). Ratbone chokes Nell on a cycle. Afterwards her tongue just hangs out. At least, it's probably her tongue. She's a regular Krampus. Ratbone has a portable phone in his cape, but it ends up working like a safe. I suppose Nell kissing the downed Dan was a role reversal at the time.

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