Wednesday, January 27, 2010

015 Seal Skinners

Title: Seal Skinners
Studio: MGM
Date: 1/28/39
Credits: (none on print; but it's in the Friz Freleng at MGM section of the LTGC disc...)
Series: A Captain and the Kids Cartoon
Running time (of viewed version): 8:31
Synopsis: Homesick seal escapes trainers; Captain and others attempt to reclaim her for the huge reward. As they work against each other, the seal escapes.

Comments: It's a bit off put-ing that the first Looney Tunes Golden Collection short for 1939 is a black and white MGM cartoon directed by Friz Freleng. This has significantly longer generic titles than the copy of Petunia Natural Park I looked at. The ice totem pole when the seal arrives in the arctic (via the sewers) looks great. The cockney (?) voice on the adversary uboat captain (Tom Silver, I think the kids say) is quite irritating. While the seal has a husband and kids who she wants to return to, she flirts real hard with the adversary dressed as a seal. This feels like a fully formed golden age cartoon, but it's not especially good. The music gives it a real MGM feel. There are lots of camera moves in this. There also seems to be double exposure for a cross fade in the first gull crowd shot, which is another bit of off put-ing. The crowd looks a bit Milt Gross-like. Influence from the forthcoming Milt Gross shorts?

1 comment:

  1. The adversary's name is John Silver; he's the Captain's friendly rival from the comics, though generally played as more of an out-and-out villain in the cartoons.

    He's got the Cockney accent in some of the comics, too. Sorry to hear you don't like it—I always enjoyed his hammy performances.