Episode 130: Early Warner Brothers


Today we have a rather short episode in which Ben and I discuss early animation at Warner Brothers. We’re rather glib about the short careers of Buddy and Bosko, but honestly there’s not much to say about them.

What I personally find more interesting is what went on at the studio around that time as the animation industry was taking shape. Animation was in its infancy. Characters barely had personality. Many old cartoons were played with the accompaniment of music. It wasn’t until cartoons could be timed to their soundtrack that the medium we know of today was born.

So sit back and listen to about twenty minutes of Ben and me gabbing about this stuff. Afterward, you can hear us babble on about stuff in the webcomic world and other random cartoon topics. In all, it’s still an hour-long show. Our main topic is just dreadfully short this week.

Also, be sure to check out my hosting of The Tonncast. I was a bit clumsy in my duties, but it was a fun show. My surprise shocking guest for the show was the ever gracious Todd Robert Anderson!

16 thoughts on “Episode 130: Early Warner Brothers

  1. I learn a lot from this episode, I have no idea Buddy was a real cartoon character (I thought they made him up). I agree that Plucky Duck and Hamton J. Pig are the best parts of Tiny Toons, they was the only reason I watch it as a kid and are the only two characters I remember clearly
    For some reason I keep watching TGWTG stuff, but I found it to be unfunny. I guess I have a habit. Anyway, I find NC Sailor Moon episode to be really unfunny and not well research. I really wonder why he didn’t look at a wiki.
    Anyway, here some more things to add to your list Neil
    Ace from One Piece
    Chōjirō from Bleach
    Leomon from Digimon
    Kuwabara from Yu Yu Hakusho
    Jason Todd from Batman
    Superman from Death of Superman
    Bleeding Gums Murphy from The Simpsons
    Fry from Futurama (also are you going to do a Futurama episode in the future?)
    Warren McGinnis from Batman Beyond

    • I thought about some of those. I wanted to avoid having too many resurrections and cheat deaths (deaths that don’t actually die). That said, Fry probably would have been a good one to add, because although he doesn’t really die, his apparent death does advance the character of Leela.

      And yeah, we’ll probably do a Futurama episode at some point.

      Although, it also occurred to me since recording this is that Sarkeesian lies by omission a lot, and so she presents a lot of examples of women in refrigerator who don’t fall into the trope the way the Green Lantern example did. For example, Gwen Stacy. If you watch the video in which she talks about this, you’re left with the impression that Gwen’s death was just another example of every-day disposable female characters, and she references the fan reaction as though it has anything to do with her bullshit. In actuality, the event was so shocking because killing off a major character like that was unheard of at the time. It’s not like this was a thing that happened in comics on an issue-by-issue basis.

      And of course, Anita just ignores the fact that Gwen Stacy isn’t the star. Spider-Man. So of course the tragedy is going to be from HIS perspective.

      But you know, that’s Sarkeesian. Doesn’t ever put things into perspective.

  2. Interesting, its kind of the similar problem I have with a lot of silent movies. You kind of have to keep in mind they were for meant for solely for audiences of that time (1910s-1920s in most cases) when viewing them, there is an inherently primitivity to them because of that, and with that considered it also fair for you to not fully enjoy them because of modern standards and tastes.

    • Yeah, but one thing I wish we would have expressed more during the show was that it’s not fair to really compare them to modern animation. My stance is that extremely primitive animation is just *not entertaining*, because I don’t want it to sound like we think that they could have done a better job. What these cartoons did for their time was amazing.

      As with any medium, it takes some time to grow into something special, so I wince a little whenever we trash stuff like this.

      The comparison to video games was my attempt to bring this sensibility to listeners, because a lot of modern gamers understand that while stuff like the Fairchild Channel F and Magnavox Odyssey 2 were really primitive and offer very little in the way of entertainment, it’s still something that ought to be preserved and honored for what it did.

  3. I knew Homer and Krusty looked alike, now I know why! I didn’t know Porky’s first actor had a stutter. That song at the end is hilarious.
    I found out something a few days ago about Daffy. You two may already know this, well here it goes. Matt Bozon of Wayforward explains it well: “Leon Schlesinger reference, he’s the producer who started up *Warner Bros Cartoons* studio during the Golden Age of animation.  After hearing “Roll the garbage!” one time too many, animators retaliated by creating a obnoxious caricature of Leon, called Daffy Duck.”

    • Kickstarters aren’t a dirty word with me. I don’t use disparaging terms like “e-begging”, and I don’t think that voluntary transactions are a crime. I heartily encourage people to support both Mighty No. 9 and Shantae.

      Awesome gaming for the win!

      • YEEEESS!

        And yes!

        You do care! I REALLY want the goal with Shantae with Mighty Switch Force clothes and ability. I’ve lost so much sleep on this stuff. River City Ransom Underground and Mighty No.9 these are the games I want, now there a way for them to happen. Meanwhile developers have to fight for the right to put a female on the cover.

        It’s like the mid-90s again. Bozon kept trying to get the original Shantae published in 1996, but publishers would say gamers won’t buy a game with a female lead. Later that year the first Tomb Raider came out.

        I’m a backer of course, and now a Becker, thanks for the response Mr. Neil. I’d love to be on that new Sailor Moon cast.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *