Thursday 18 October 2012

Deputy Droopy and the Cat

I’m not crazy about most of Ed Benedict’s really flat character designs in “Deputy Droopy.” But I sure like the bizarre scraggly cat.

The cartoon is one of several Tex Avery directed where characters run outside to make noise so they don’t disturb someone sleeping inside. It’s late in Avery’s theatrical career where one gag seems to flow right into the next.

Here’s the bit: the one bad guy rests in a rocking chair to recover from the last gag. Droopy moves a sleeping cat’s tail under the chair. Don’t you love the kitty eyelashes to add innocence and cuteness?

The other bad guy anticipates what’ll happen. Would anyone but Tex Avery try a take like this?

Yup, it happens.

The other bad guy runs to the rescue.

The cat doesn’t like the gag.

Gag’s over. The bad guy dumps the cat, ending its animation career, and it’s on to the next gag.

Avery was not only gone from MGM when this cartoon was finally released, his unit had been let go before the cartoon was finished. So the Hanna-Barbera unit animators were brought in, hence credits go to Ray Patterson, Irv Spence, Ken Muse, Ed Barge and Lew Marshall in addition to Walt Clinton. Mike Lah co-directed. Anyone want to pick out Muse’s and Barge’s animation of these kinds of character?


  1. After most of H-B's animators had done nothing but T&J for the better part of a decade, they probably enjoyed the change of pace here and in "Cellbound" (when MGM reorganized their second unit for CinemaScope production under Lah, the animators seemed to move a little more freely between his unit and Hanna-Barbera's over the final year or so of production).

  2. That was, of course, a reworking of Tex's own "Rockabye Bear" and the gag H-B had used for Tom and KJerry (including one of their acamedy award winners) and several times for Augie Doggie, "A Peck of Trouble" at the open, and more prominently in "It's a WOrm Day" with the "Frank Nelson
    " library floorwalker (Yowp will eventually get around to that one in the future). Grotequde for the bandits going to the length to remove each other's heads!SC

  3. Thank you for posting these images.
    Beautiful artwork!