Monday, November 8, 2010
Title: Fresh Fish
Studio: Warner Bros.
Credits: - (but directed by Tex Avery)
Series: Merrie Melodies (on Blue RIbbon retitle)
Running time (of viewed version): 7:36
Synopsis: Puns abound in this documentary about what goes on under the sea.
Comments: I'm not sure what the opening bit about Santa Anita, a race course, means. Maybe a fish is a sucker. It's not even the only horse racing joke; there are seahorses who race, and one with crutches and a mustache named Malicious wins. Seems pretty specific. Second cartoon in two days with a direct overhead shot, this one form a glass bottomed boat, which makes it a more natural choice than over Swee'Pea. Lots of familiar tunes in this one; One little two little three little Indians, that standard barnyard music that isn't Turkey in the Straw, You Must Have Been a Beautiful Baby... The old crab looks like a turtle and may sound like Fred Allen, or else possibly that guy who looks like Fred Allen (the teacher fish may also be a Fred Allen impression). The water effect lens is too much. I like the "taxi crab" joke. Hepburn impression on the starfish. Fin is/was slang for a five dollar bill, and the obvious pun shows up here, as puns would show in Avery's later work, at its most extreme in Symphony In Slang (the whole cartoon is more or less the same idea). A two headed fish is looking for Mr. Ripley, as in Ripley's Believe it Or Not (it's the repeating gag in the cartoon). Prof. Fishface is dressed like Egghead. The WHim Wham Whistling Shark is thuggy with the egghead hat on, like the fish in Small Fry. He also quotes the line "how do you do", which is a lift from someone I'm blanking on at the moment. The pickled herring looks a lot like Michigan J. Frog (or rather vice versa).
First of three Schlesinger cartoons in one day (tho making this first is strictly an alphabetical thing).