Monday, 11 March 2019

The End of Wellington

Wellington the dog beats himself up out of frustration at the end of Doggone Cats, a 1947 release from the Art Davis unit at Warners.

Here he is bashing his head with the two garbage can lids he used to abuse two cats at the outset of the cartoon. Each drawing is shot twice for a 16-frame cycle.

The general consensus is that because Davis used Sylvester’s design, this is a Sylvester cartoon, even though the cat doesn’t speak, has a completely different personality (dopey but scheming) than in any other cartoon, and hangs out with some cat that appeared in no other Warners release.

Emery Hawkins animated on this short, as did Don Williams, Basil Davidovich and Bill Melendez.


  1. The closest Davis came to the actual Sylvester was in the two pantomime gag scenes near the end of "Catch as Cats Can", with the magnet and the vacuum cleaner.

    Neither of Artie's two Bill Scott-Lloyd Turner cartoons that featured a black-and-white cat really cared about using that type of scheming personality (and really, Sylvester's personality was pretty much in flux until 1949 or so, as all five directors used him a little differently, so Davis, Turner, Scott and Dave Monahan weren't trying to turn a well-established character into something he was not when this cartoon was made).

  2. The same consensus seemed to carry over in Odor of the Day (1948), where Davis uses a skunk design that looks exactly like Pepé that it is occasionally labeled a Pepé cartoon despite lack many of the usual hallmarks (funny enough it also stars Wellington as the antagonist).

    1. According to the Looney Tunes wiki and the Pepe Le Pew: Zee Best of Zee Best DVD, Odor of the Day does count as a Pepe Le Pew cartoon (as does Dog Pounded, even though that was a quick and dirty cameo, and Really Scent, even though that flipped the Pepe formula on its head by making the chase somewhat consensual). I think, since Eddie Selzer hated the Pepe character as done by Chuck Jones, Davis tried to make Pepe a typical comedic Looney Tunes character so he can kiss up to Selzer (or maybe Davis didn't think Pepe Le Pew as done by Chuck Jones was good either and did it his own way).

  3. I think the cat in “Catch as Cats Can” is probably Sylvester's dumb brother Lennie.

  4. On occasion, I've even seen that unnamed monkey-faced cat that McKimson used in a few cartoons erroneously attributed to Sylvester as well.

  5. Since he was supposed to deliver meat, never let it go, only to lose it to those two cats, only to find out that when they delivered it to (presumably their master and Wellington's mistress's Uncle) Uncle Louie, Wellingtonm didn't have to worry (like THE BEE-DEVILED BRUIN and BEAR FEAT where Pa Bear found out he didn't have to carry out those family projects to get honey and do a circus at the end...)

  6. Don't forget he returned almost a year later in ODOR OF THE DAY with "Pepe Le Pew".