Monday, 23 July 2012

Porky the Fireman

Today’s cartoon inside jokes come from the Frank Tashlin cartoon “Porky the Fireman” (1938). It features Tashlin’s wide-eyed, squat version of Porky and one of his typical montage sequence toward the end of the cartoon.

Porky’s fire truck rushes past the same wooden buildings four times and comes to a stop. And a fence advertises some cartoons.

Mel Millar wrote the cartoon and his name appears on a couple of stores in the background. Here’s one to the right of another establish run by the illiterate members of Friz Freleng’s family.

The background artists were never credited in the ‘30s. Griff Jay and Art Loomer handled backgrounds for a good part of that decade; these look like BGs from their time a few years earlier.

This is still before 1940 so cartoons don’t have the wild, eyeballs-out-in-two-frames takes that Tex Avery made famous. Tashlin has Porky express surprise by his eyes growing wider (one ones; they take their time). You can see them at their widest above. The eyes kind of grow a second white.

Bob Bentley is the credited animator. I suspect Volney White and possibly Phil Monroe were in Tashlin’s unit at this point.

1 comment:

  1. I always wondered why Tashlin held on to that bulbous, big-eyed Porky model well after Clampett made his refinements to the character. Of course Tashlin would make Porky cartoons in the 40's with the updated model, including the fantastic "Porky Pig's Feat".