Friday, 3 July 2020

The Living Rocketship

It’s just an ordinary rocket ship, built by a bunch of mice out of things around the house.

But wait! It has eyes! It’s alive!

This is from Little Buck Cheeser, a 1937 cartoon by Hugh Harman and Rudy Ising released after they left the studio. In it, Cheeser (played by Berneice Hansell) and his mousey friends zoom to the moon to see if it’s made a cheese. It is. But the space ship fights any attempt to stop and land.

Breaking free of a line attached to a toilet plunger stuck on a mound of green cheese, the rocket ship lands in a smelly lake. It has eyes but evidently no nose as it has to read a sign (in perfect English) to realise where it is.

It squirms and struggles but finally frees itself before blowing up in an effects animation explosion and plummeting, on fire, out-of-control with the frightened mice on board.

“Aw, this’ll be a cop-out. It’ll be a dream,” I can hear you saying. Yes, that’s the plot. That’s even though at no time in the cartoon does Cheeser look tired, let alone fall asleep.

No animators are credited. The score is by Scott Bradley.

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