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Jeff Smith and “Bone”

Suspended Animation #309 In October 2019 it was announced that Netflix in an attempt to more aggressively compete with Disney+ would be producing an animated series based on Jeff Smith’s Bone, the beloved whimsical fantasy epic. “I’ve waited a long time for this,” Smith said. “Netflix is the perfect home for Bone. Fans of the books know that the story...

UPA’s “Outlaws” (1956)

I haven’t had as much of a chance to go through any films over the last few months since it’s usually late in the day or early when that can happen. School has been especially consuming this year, but there’s good work from the students despite some of the limitiations. I went into the basement to look over the stack of things that are ready to scan...

Courtroom Drama: Bench Warmers (Part 4)

Life for a judge in the human world can be challenging enough – but life for a judge in Toontown has to be absolutely “trying”. Imagine dealing five days a week with determining the outcome of the frenzied disputes animated characters get into, or their fate when such critters go feloniously over the line. Instead of merely keeping a bench warm, such...

Disney “Winnie the Pooh” Stories That Premiered on Records

After The Sword in the Stone in 1963, the next feature-length Walt Disney animated film with all the songs by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman was to be Winnie the Pooh. Then Walt had a different idea. As they explained in their autobiography, Walt’s Time (edited by Bruce Gordon, David Mumford and Jeff Kurtti), “We had completed songs for about...

In His Own Words: Mel Blanc’s Last Interview

Mel Blanc was born May 30, 1908 and passed away July 10th, 1989. Certainly he is one of the most prominent voice artists of all time and the first to receive an on-screen credit for his work. While perhaps best known for his work on the Warner Brothers Looney Tunes characters like Bugs Bunny and Porky Pig, he also originated the voice and laugh...

Ward Kimball, Escapader

Suspended Animation #308 With the success of Playboy magazine in the 1950s, the market was flooded with competitors who tried to mimic the same spirit and allure with their magazines. One of the many men’s magazines to do so was Escapade. In its January 1957 issue, the magazine gave its first Escapader award to someone who they felt demonstrated...

Projects That Need a Champion to Complete (and it’s not Thunderbean for now!)

With things wrapping on many projects here and pieces falling into place for others, I find some comfort in archiving things and organizing the files from the finished things. As the pieces neatly (or if I’m honest only semi-messy) are put in the archive, it’s easier to turn to look at all the possible projects that have *some* pieces but not all yet....

Courtroom Drama (Part 3): Very Cross Examination

“Innocent until proven guilty” is a standard maxim of jurisprudence. Sometimes it takes a great deal of proving to convict a toon, and a great deal of effort after that to make the sentence stick. This week’s roster of line-mileage litigants chalk up a substantial score for the defense attorneys, and even some of the convictions entered on the books...

WB 1957 and Beyond: The Final Hit Parade

The Oscars kept coming for the Termite Terrace crew, with Bugs finally getting his statuette (instead of his 1940’s “Booby Prize”). Franklyn and his confederates, to their credit, did not avert their emphasis to rock and roll, only occasionally lampooning the medium with the likes of an Elvis impression. They instead preserred swinging jazz, and knew...

Ten VHS Cartoon Tapes I Won’t Sell, Throw Out or Give Away

For the last ten years, well meaning friends whom I invite to my vault… err, storage garage… ask me why I still hold onto approximately ten boxes filled to the brim with VHS tapes. I never watch them any more. And don’t I have all those cartoons, animated features and TV series on DVD or blu-ray? Yes I do. In fact, I have much of the same material on...

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