Friday, 1 December 2017

The Judge Spells It Out

There’s a running gag in Betty Boop’s Trial (1934), where a judge bangs his gavel and his chair twirls into his bench with a little portion of his beard sticking up.

In one version of the gag, his beard spells SOS.

In the final scene of the cartoon, mice jump out of his beard and help spell a phrase before the iris closes.

Myron Waldman and Hicks Lokey are the credited animators. There’s a perking trumpet version of Betty’s theme song that opens the cartoon. You can read about the actual Betty Boop trial HERE (the cartoon mimics the actual trial with a jokes about the words being used in testimony).


  1. Pretty much the last carton with Betty before the full hammer came down from the Production Code (the series had been trending towards less overt sexual gags for several months before this one was released -- Waldman would introduce Pudgy a couple of cartoons after this one, which really began the trend of marginalizing Betty within her own cartoons).

    1. You're right, J.L. You can see the shorts becoming a little tamer and less bizarre. Too bad. (The unexpected drop-in gags were one of the best things about Fleischer cartoons).
      The less said about Pudgy, the better. Things went so wrong for the studio in so many ways. To think the same studio made Bimbo's Initiation and those Stone Age cartoons.