Saturday, 21 December 2013

Timberrrrr Santa

Leave it to Tex Avery and storyman Rich Hogan to concoct a Christmas cartoon about a satanic kid (pig) and the wolf trying to kill his family. The little pig is based on Red Skelton’s Mean Widdle Kid on radio and is (thanks to the possibilities of the cartoon medium) far more sadistic than anything Skelton and his writers came up with.

Because “One Ham’s Family” is an Avery cartoon, it means you’ll see signs. And because it’s an MGM cartoon, you’ll see perspective animation drawn at an angle. Example?

The wolf chases the little pig up a long Christmas tree. He gets to the top. The pig’s not there. A sign is. Look at the range of emotions when the wolf realises he’s been had, that the tree is now shaking and it’s because the pig is chopping it down.

Cut to the determined pig.

The Christmas tree falls. A couple of drawings in perspective.

And a pan over to the end result.

Ray Abrams, Ed Love and Preston Blair are the credited animators, with Claude Smith designing the characters.

1 comment:

  1. The perspective fall bit seems itself to fall under the category Mike Barrier described for the early MGM Avery shorts as a bit of a hangover from the Hugh Harman unit's desire to show off their chops and the pedigree of the studio's ex-Disney staff. Barrier said Tex allowed his crew to do Disney-like animation because they could do it and because Metro had the budget to do it -- Had Avery timed the gag a few years later the wolf would have plunged out of the scene to appropriate sound effects, followed quickly by the aftermath shot.