Friday, 6 January 2012

Porky’s Continuity Hunt

Gags are going to win over consistency any time. At least that was true in the cartoon that introduced Daffy Duck to the world.

At the beginning of “Porky’s Duck Hunt,” young Mr. Pig lives in a home with a dresser against the wall by the door. But at the end of the cartoon, a window is there.




The window’s only there to allow Tex Avery to set up a gag where Porky can look out it to see a bunch of ducks taunt him. It makes even less sense considering Porky is in an apartment building, as you can tell by the shot of the neighbour going back to his suite upstairs. Any window in the previous shot would look out into a hall, not outside. But the neighbour’s part of a running gag so the cartoon has to be set in an apartment.



Porky’s got a pretty big apartment. It’s even got its own upstairs. Note the staircase to the right.



It just proves anything’s possible in a Tex Avery cartoon.

The background artist isn’t credited in any of the ‘30s cartoons. Art Loomer was in charge of the Warners background department but whether Johnny Johnsen worked on this cartoon, like he did for Avery a few years later and then at MGM, is your guess. It doesn’t look like his work; there are lots of wonky angles on pictures, door frames and so on in the interior shots; a style that died in the ‘30s but was really popular at the Fleischer and Iwerks studios a few years before this.

2 comments:

  1. The "magic staircase" was always a bit of a bump on the road to fully enjoying the end gag, but Tex immediately follows with Bob Clampett's Daffy-on-the-titles animation, so I would guess audiences of 1937 didn't have much time to think about the pre-iris out continuity violation (and along with Daffy's debut, Mel's arrival as Porky's voice and the new slimmed down Porky Chuck Jones came up with -- not to mention Tex's drunk, singing fish -- the cartoon has more than enough pluses to make people willing to overlook the end gag's illogic).

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