The Return of Talking Time

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  #91  
Old 04-26-2019, 04:20 PM
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The names in the credits almost sound made up but I guess they're real people.

Note: Credits are first show at 9 seconds.
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  #92  
Old 04-29-2019, 07:28 AM
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We see Snooper. We see Blabber. We see their names. But I'm not 100% sure which one is which.
The seems 100% clear to me. The visual designs of the two characters are very clearly intended to communicate "detective" and "snitch" respectively.
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  #93  
Old 04-29-2019, 10:22 AM
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The Space Explorers/The New Adventures of the Space Explorers

This is a bit of an odd one (and I had to do some rare "before I watch it" wiki searching to make sure I had the right shows). This was created as an animated TV movie in the 1950s and was later re-edited and serialized on various kids shows like Captain Kangaroo, Captain Video, Romper Room and countless local shows. There was eventually a sequel show, which we will spend a little more time on than the first. That's because the first is this.



It's just some guy intoning the title while the title is on the screen. I can't quite tell because of the image quality but it looks like a weird (and not good) rotoscoping-type deal (which would become much more of the thing in the two following decades) and some live models. It doesn't quite look good but... its something. At least it feels more animated than Clutch Cargo.

The sequel series has more of an intro (and it was in 1959, according to the video, so it still counts as the 50s.)



Across a barren, presumably alien landscape, we see the title as dramatic music plays. It's a bit dull, sure, but its seems quite serio--



WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT!?! Some... astronaut just bounced across the scene with non-specific space sound and... a sigh. WHAT IS GOING ON! This is like my journey with the Godzilla cartoon, but replace the cool opening with a dull one and the awful turn into a bewildering one.

Oh, and BTW, that's basically it. We get more credits and right before the thing ends that little... guy just does it again. Does he do it all the time? Are you the main character? Is this a normal sound for Space Explorers? Because I hesitate to describe that as a normal sound for anything.

Did it make me want to watch it?

Confusing me into watching is usually a good move but it didn't work.

Now I look on Wikipedia to learn more about the show

Not much. NASA and the Hayden Planetarium consulted on it. Presumably the science but maybe also "I think you'll get more viewers if a little guy bounds across the screen and makes a weird noise."

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This is the best I can do. I don't think it has anything to do with the show, but it should.
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  #94  
Old 04-29-2019, 10:51 AM
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BRB, editing that dumb spaceman and his dumb sound effect into everything ever.
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  #95  
Old 04-30-2019, 08:48 AM
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BRB, editing that dumb spaceman and his dumb sound effect into everything ever.
I think this is an important artistic endeavour.
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  #96  
Old 04-30-2019, 06:16 PM
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I think this is an important artistic endeavour.
I agree. We must do everything in our power to encourage and support it.

JBear, do you have a Patreon or are you planning on starting one? Or will you be placing these as monetized videos on Youtube?
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  #97  
Old 05-01-2019, 01:39 AM
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Maybe one of those little animations that play when you send out certain text messages.
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  #98  
Old 05-01-2019, 11:02 AM
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That li'l spaceman has a very "inserted at the last minute" look to him. Like, the team had made their super serious pan over a drawing of a planet and then some suits were like "needs more space explorers" and bam, li'l bouncing spaceman.

Very different in tone from the previous series' intro, too. I've no doubt it used stock animation from the show, but the older intro gives off very much of a serious space adventure vibe, like one of those early space animes or something.

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Originally Posted by JBear View Post
BRB, editing that dumb spaceman and his dumb sound effect into everything ever.
By "everything ever" you mean primarily scenes that are supposed to be serious in tone, right?

Li'l spaceman bouncing around during the Red Wedding slaughter.
Li'l spaceman bouncing around as Obi Wan leaves Anakin to almost burn to death in lava.
Li'l spaceman bouncing around as Snape kills Dumbledore and reveals to an angry Harry that he's the Half-Blood Prince.
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  #99  
Old 05-02-2019, 09:57 AM
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Spunky and Tadpole

Finally, a show about semen. I assume. Based on the title. WHY ELSE WOULD YOU CALL IT THAT?!? I mean, this is not a title that has aged well, has it? It sounds like the name of a wacky duo in a frat from an 80s college comedy. Well, I can't promise this is Safe for Work but lets take a look.



We start on a stage with a the words "Beverly Hills Productions Presents" on the curtains. Pink curtains appear over them. They draw back and HUZZAH! the original curtain is gone. Then another curtain drops down with the show's title and I can't help but wonder if all of these curtains are necessary. Do big theatres have this many curtains? I'm curious because maybe that kind of redundancy is necessary in show biz but I think we could do without it. Also, I hope the words wash off that curtain, otherwise they might have a short shelf life.

Anyway, the words sparkle. Then pink curtain closes and when it reopens, we see a boy in a newsboy cap and... a big mouse? A misshapen bear? A wallaby?

Anyway, these apparently are the title characters. I guess one of them could be described as spunky but neither seem particularly "tadpole"-y to me.

Anyway, the end.

Did it make me want to watch it?

Originally, no but I kind of wanted to get a feel for what the show was. The answer is pretty bad. But it did have this disturbingly prescient scene.



"You all saw it... RIGHT?"

Well, Tadpoles a murderer. That's my only takeaway from the show now.

Now I look on Wikipedia to learn more about the show

Quote:
The show's characters were a boy and a bear who hunted down bad guys in a string of made for TV installments...
By hunting down, do you mean like detectives or like for sport? And, OK, it's a bear. A weird looking bear.

Quote:
According to Television Cartoon Shows: An Illustrated Encyclopedia, 1949 Through 2003:

"Ultra-chintzy both in concept and execution... Spunky and Tadpole was given a big-bucks promotional sendoff in 1958 by its first syndicator, Guild Films. A major TV distributor of the period thanks to such valuable properties as the Liberace Show and the Warner Bros. Looney Tunes theatrical cartoons, Guild secured bookings for Spunky and Tadpole in several top markets, promising a series that would appeal equally to grownups and children. Competition from stronger syndies like Huckleberry Hound and the Three Stooges shorts caused Spunky and Tadpole to fall by the wayside, and when Guild disappeared in a merger at the end of the 1950s, the cartoons were shunted around to several minor distributors. Offered at bargain rates to less affluent stations in smaller markets, Spunky and Tadpole continued to play unobtrusively into the mid-1960s."
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Nothing but here are some vintage vinyl squeaky toys.



Horrifying.
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  #100  
Old 05-02-2019, 10:07 AM
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It's amazing how much Spunky's hair looks like a creepy-ass bulging bald forehead on that cheap squeaky toy. Kid looks like he's part Ferengi.
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  #101  
Old 05-06-2019, 10:23 AM
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Tom Terrific

I have no idea what this is. Look forward to finding out.



Hey, this one is... animated. Certainly more animated than a lot of these intros, that that is in its favour.

Anyway, we begin with the Terrytoons logo and a voice announcing it is a Terrytoons joint.

"Terrytoons Presents!" says a high-pitched voice. Then we cut to a young boy wearing a funnel thinking about something before having some sort of... attack. This ends with steam/smoke coming out of his funny then transforms into the show's title. "The real, great adventures of me, Tom Terrific!" Then he pops up from the bottom, then points downward. The camera pans what he is pointing to and we see he is standing on a very large gormless dog. "With Mighty Manfred the Wonder Dog!"

I should point out that both characters are... transparent? They are outlines without cores. Should I see this in real life, I may be terrified (Tom Terrified) but even though it was likely just a money/effort saving decision, it works (especially since the actual animation looks solid).

We then see the episodes title "Episode 2 of the Pill of Smartness" but it doesn't end. Oh, no, this is simply the forward to the into. We see a little kids tree house labeled "Tom Terrific World Headquarters" in the middle of a field. Tom rides out on Manfred.

"TEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-RIFIC!"

Tom then begins to bob to the music and then sings the theme song

"I'm Tom Terrific
Greatest hero ever!
Terrific is the name for me
Because I'm so clever!"

I'm curious if the character is someone who over estimates himself or if he earned his arrogance with his legendary deeds.

He walks over to the dog to continue his song while walking around him.

"I can be what I be what I want to be
And if you'd like to see.
Follow, follow me."

It's a good sales pitch, I got to admit. The dog literally twists his body keeping his eye on Tom in classic cartoon fashion and falls over.

"If you see a plane on high."

Tom then turns into a plane and does a loop de loop, scaring Manfred.

"A diesel train go roaring by."

He then turns into a large train.

"A bumblebee or a tree."

He turns into both, then waits a beat.

"IT'S ME!"

It occurs to me at this point we are in a sort of proto-reverse Adventure Time series, which is certainly a selling point for me.

"When there is trouble,
I'm there on the double.
From Atlantic to Pacific"

Tom then turns his body into a globe and spins it.

"They know Tom Terrific."

Meanwhile, Manfred leans over a little to far towards Tom and falls over. Then he gets up and starts talking.

"And-and-and I'm Mighty Manfred The Wonder Dog and Tom's ever faithful companion." Says the dog, who then smacks his lips in a delightfully deflating climax to the theme.

Did it make me want to watch it?

This looks like it could be genuinely quite good. The animation actually looks good (in the intro at least), there's a charm to it and it is largely clear about what kind of show it is: a whimsical adventure show. This is a really solid opening so I might end up watching an episode or two if I think about it.

Now I look on Wikipedia to learn more about the show

Loosely adapted from the creators earlier comic strip "Terr'ble Thompson" (about a boy who imagines himself as a time travelling hero), this was another serialized adventure airing each weekday with every story starting on Monday and ending on Friday. Tom could shapeshift and had a "thinking cap" which gave him super intelligence.

Fan Art



That's about it. Not bad, and I like that they incorporated the transparent aspect.
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  #102  
Old 05-07-2019, 09:50 AM
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Tom Terrific

Hey, we are back. Seems there was a second intro for the show starting with season 2!



We start with Tom front and center in a blank background yelling "Teeeee-rific!"

We see the Terrytoons logo and here Tom say "Terrytoons presents" followed by a gurgle and a cranking sound because I don't know. I think they might be related to Tom's thinking cap because we then cut to Tom's cap going off. As it expels steam that covers the screen, Tom says "The real, great adventures of me, Tom Terrific" as the titles appear.

We then see Tom running, holding Manfred over his head and with some credits branded into his tummy because it was the 50s and animal rights weren't really in vogue at the time. Also, the credits change so I imagine they stopped filming, healed his flesh, removing any scars, then rebranded him with more credits.

"With Mighty Manfred, the Wonder Dog!"

"I'm Tom Terrific
Great adventure lover
With mighty Manfred at my side
Villains run for cover."

Tom looks throw his funnel for such villains but luckily for a slightly preturbed Manfred, none appear.

"I can be anything I see,
change my shape most readily
How I do it puzzles me!"

Once again Tom walks around the dog and causes him to tip over. Also, looks like they never gave Tom an origin story so the answer is "Idunno, he just can, OK," which I'm pretty cool with.

"If you see a rocket blast!"

Tom then turns into a rocket to Manfred's surprise and blasts off.

"A sailing ship go sailing past!"

Tom, as a ship, then pushes Manfred for a bit (also, I guess there's water in the weird white void).

"A little flea
A golden key!"

He turns into both again.

"It's me!"

Tom then turns into a balloon, a traffic light, a tuba, a light bulb, a baseball bat and a bone (which Manfred almost dives for.

"All kinds of fun things,
I'm never just one thing!
T-E-R-R-IFFIC!
I'm Tom Terrific!"

Sings Tom, clearly giving up lyrically in those last two lines.

Manfred once again speaks up in the end.

"And-and-and I'm Mighty Manfred The Wonder Dog and Tom's ever faithful companion." Says the dog, who then smacks his lips in a delightfully deflating climax to the theme.

(Similarly, I just copy and pasted this from my last post)

This intro isn't as good as the first, but animation wise it still seems a fair bit stronger than a lot of the show's contemporaries, complete lack of background aside.

Did it make me want to watch it?

I might. I'll let you know.

Now I look on Wikipedia to learn more about the show

ALL of the voices on the show are by a guy named Lionel Wilson who voiced for a long time on shows including Starblazers, Superbook and, in one of his last roles, the old man in Courage the Cowardly Dog.

Fan Art

Sorry, nothing.
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  #103  
Old 05-07-2019, 05:59 PM
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Tom, as a ship, then pushes Manfred for a bit
Or did Manfred become the figurehead of the Tomboat?
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  #104  
Old 05-07-2019, 06:45 PM
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The animation in that Tom Terrific intro impressed me enough (compensating for its age and pedigree) that I went and looked up the whole series.
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  #105  
Old 05-10-2019, 09:49 AM
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Winky Dink and You

Hey, leave my Winky Dink out of this! Anyway, what's this show?



Well, start with a weird looking elf-like dude with Harley Quinn's original costume, minus the headgear, clinging onto a button that says CBS Presents.

Cheap organ music plays as he "runs" across the screen with his name following close behind. He then backs up because he just seems to have finally noticed what he did!

Winky (I assume) then comes in and does a little leap and the words "with Jack Barry" appear above his head.

We then fade out to the show itself and a man in a suit (kids love men dressed like their Dad going to work. It reminds them of being left alone) and our show begins.

Did it make me want to watch it?

Just curious about what this is. Educational maybe?

*Watches a little*

Not quite. Basically... well, I'll explain it in the wikipedia section.

Now I look on Wikipedia to learn more about the show

It's the first interactive TV show. Basically, at the store you buy a "magic screen" that adheres to your TV screen via static electrcity. Then kids can draw on the screen. For example, the kids are tasked with drawing Winky Dink's uncle's nose. There's the tiniest bit of animation when the host interacts with Winky who appears on a nearby TV.

The magic screen was initially created for advertising execs when they were dealing with a marketing problem and someone realized it could be a hit with the kids.

Winky had a dog named Woofer and a wacky sidekick named Mr. Bungle (it is unclear if he is related to the educational film character of the same name).

There was a revival in the 60s (a proper cartoon, this time) so we might get to that later.

Fan Art



A reminder that this era had some bad cartoons.

Last edited by Johnny Unusual; 05-13-2019 at 10:47 AM.
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  #106  
Old 05-13-2019, 10:31 AM
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The Woody Woodpecker Show

I never cared for Woody Woodpecker all that much. He always struck me as too much of a jerk to enjoy his high jinx. But there's no denying he has been around for a while.



Woody looks at a rather girthy tree and flies around for a bit, before using his beak to carve the show's name into the side of it. Woody himself announces it and we stare at it for a while. Then, after he really lets it sink in, Woody finally gives his trademark laugh. He then jackhammers his face into a branch, creating a line of holes before reaching the end, at which point he falls, hopefully to his death. I told you, I don't like this guy.

Did it make me want to watch it?

Nope.

Now I look on Wikipedia to learn more about the show

[/quote]Movie theater owners in the 1950s were finding that they could release features with reissued cartoons, or no cartoons at all, and the audiences would still come. Because of the practice, the theatrical cartoon business was suffering and losing money. By 1956 there were only seven animation producers in the short-subjects field, and by the end of the decade that number would dwindle down to three. Walter Lantz and his distributor, Universal Pictures, knew that the only way to subsidize the rising costs of new shorts was to release their product to television. Norman Gluck from Universal's short-subjects department made a deal with the Leo Burnett Agency to release some older Lantz product on television. Burnett handled the Kellogg's cereal account, and Lantz soon met with the Kellogg's people to sign the contract.[2] Lantz admitted that he was only working in the medium because he was "forced into TV" and "cartoons for theaters would soon be extinct."[quote]

I guess I knew the 50s were the last days of shorts before the movies (which only happens with Pixar movies these days), so it is interesting to see how it forced the hands of certain creators.

Walter Lantz appeared in the show in "A Moment with Walter Lantz", at which points I bet the kids realized they could go get a peanut butter sandwich. But it featured some behind the scenes stuff that some kids might be interested in. Less interesting is "Woody's Newsreel", which was just a Universal Newsreel placed in the show for kids who wanted to watch, I dunno, clips of HUAC trials or something. "Around the World With Woody" was also a segment but wikipedia wasn't forthcoming with what that entailed (though I would assume looking at cultural differences in other countries or something).

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He also likes making love at midnight.



This one isn't bad but he does look kind of bow-legged.



Ugh, somehow human Woody Woodpecker seems even worse. Love human Chilly Willy, though.
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  #107  
Old 05-13-2019, 10:47 AM
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That's it for the 50s!

My general impression: lots of not-so-good shows, but I actually feel it feels slightly less cynical than 70s animation. There are some shows that seem to be trying but as awful as Clutch Cargo looks, at least it seems to be trying something with its limited budget. Something bizarre, but that's still something.

But I may have found some interesting hidden gems, like Colonel Bleep and Tom Terrific (I don't know if they are actually good, but they certainly sound quite interesting and Tom's intro was genuinely good.)

And it looked like Hanna Barbera was actually trying some times. That Quick Draw McGraw intro was quite solid.

That said, it looked like adventure cartoons had yet to be watchable, outside of adventure comedies such as Rocky and Bullwinkle. It also seemed like serialized comedy was a recurring element. So it seems like the earliest days of TV animation had some interesting stuff going on. Thank for joining me on this adventure into the past and until the next time I do one of these.

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  #108  
Old 05-13-2019, 11:28 AM
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Woody Woodpecker was an asshole for sure but that's why I liked his old TV cartoons when I was a kid. Older me has a greater appreciation for stuff like the comparatively more grounded Disney shorts, but when I was preschool aged the stuff that appealed to me (besides He-Man) was the stuff where cats get brutally beaten by mice and ducks get their beaks blown off by hunters.

So naturally, a 'protagonist' who was just a straight up violent jackass who reveled in causing pain to his enemies appealed to me a lot back then. Probably not so much now, but it was a thing to watch.

Anyway I look forward to the day you decide to take on the 60s or 80s.
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  #109  
Old 05-13-2019, 02:05 PM
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I think Woody Woodpecker may be a worse funny talking cartoon man than Screwball Squirrel. He's perhaps less of an asshole (debatable), but there's so many more Woody cartoons than Screwball he wins by merit of volume.

Also, Screwball was eventually redeemed by the existence of Slappy in Animaniacs, nothing has ever made me like Woody by proxy
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  #110  
Old 05-13-2019, 03:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Octopus Prime View Post
I think Woody Woodpecker may be a worse funny talking cartoon man than Screwball Squirrel. He's perhaps less of an asshole (debatable), but there's so many more Woody cartoons than Screwball he wins by merit of volume.

Also, Screwball was eventually redeemed by the existence of Slappy in Animaniacs, nothing has ever made me like Woody by proxy
I'm not sure which character sketches (other than obviously the Warners and Pinky and the Brain) will make it into the alleged new Animaniacs episodes set to air on Hulu in 2020, but I really hope that Slappy Squirrel will still be around. She was one of the good ones.

Just please don't have another Slappy ep like that one where she got put in an insane asylum and Skippy got taken away by child protective services. Please. Slappy works best as comedy, not Emmy bait drama.
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  #111  
Old 05-13-2019, 03:17 PM
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Look, Steven Spielberg can’t not try for the award.
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  #112  
Old 05-13-2019, 03:57 PM
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Oh I know, but you wanna try for that Emmy you can just have that cartoon flame kid engaging in a one-sided conversation with old dead famous people doing the stuff they're famous for again or whatever.
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  #113  
Old 05-13-2019, 08:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Unusual View Post
Hey, leave my Winky Dink out of this!
C'mon man - don't dinkshame.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Unusual View Post
That's it for the 50s!

Thank for joining me on this adventure into the past and until the next time I do one of these.

Thanks for doing these - they're always pretty entertaining and interesting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MetManMas View Post
Anyway I look forward to the day you decide to take on the 60s or 80s.
Doing the 80s or beyond seems like a massive undertaking but I don't know how much Johnny values his free time (or how long he would want to do something like that).
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