Wednesday, October 8, 2014

OSWALD THE LUCKY RABBIT - Walter Lantz - "Spooks" (1930)

 Welcome to Day 6 of the Halloween Countdown down in The Dungeon, and tonight's special little feature called "SPOOKS!"

 Oswald The Lucky Rabbit was actually the first Disney animated character predating Mickey! It's a long, wild, and convoluted story that contains the names of heavy hitters Walt Disney, Ub Iwerks, Carl Laemmle, and Walter Lantz, and can be read in full detail on Wikipedia, and I suggest that you do!

"Spooks" has a real sketchy almost unfinished look to it, but it's the simplicity that makes it work!

I didn't know they had slim fit pants back in 1930! This dude makes Olive Oyl look like a porker!

This shot makes for a perfect Halloween owl wallpaper!

Next thing you see is this phantom of a character entering an opera house! That's right kids, you might not know who Oswald The Lucky Rabbit is, but almost everyone has heard of "The Phantom Of The Opera" these days, and this cartoon was made as a tribute to Lon Chaney and the very first "Phantom Of The Opera" movie that was made in 1926!

See the little guy on the right, that's not Mickey!

"Tongue Tied Tongue Twister" - Try saying that real fast 13 times in a row, and see what happens to you!

The opera house has a pretty tough crowd on this particular night!

The Phantom hooks the young tongue-tied vocalist up with a wind-up phonograph (Record Player) stuffed into her bustle that she can mime to! What you'll hear in the little sound clip is the record skipping, followed by the phonograph running down and have to get wound back up, kind of like one of those bad Superbowl halftime shows!

She's told by The Phantom that everything will always be fine, as long as she doesn't try and remove his mask!

So, what's the first thing the stupid girl does? Remove his mask of course! Now he's mad because his ugly mug has been exposed!!

This is probably the weirdest shot in the whole cartoon! Also, not Mickey again!

Walt Disney and Ub Iwerks created Oswald The Lucky Rabbit in the 1920's! It was later that Walt Disney went another direction and ended up creating Mickey Mouse! Woody Woodpecker's Dad Walter Lantz carried on the Oswald cartoons until 1943! Oswald returned to the Disney family in 2010 in the video game called Epic Mickey!

In an effort to save the young lady, Oswald is of course, put through a series of obstacles like this giant spider.......

.......and then these dinosaur critters that run through Oswald's legs with sharp fins on their backs effectively denutting him! How they used to get away with wanton destruction of the family jewels gags in children's cartoons I will never know!

The story ends with The Phantom chasing Oswald down just in time to get in one last gag!

The Phantom asks Oswald a simple question! "What does a chicken say when it lays a square egg?" When Oswald doesn't respond correctly, The Phantom slaps him to give him the answer to the question, "OUCH!"  It's all that simple, see you on Saturday!

There are many free streaming versions of Oswald in "Spooks!" Here's the link to just one of them!


Dr. Theda said...

we heard that joke as a small child... having lived in a small Southern town all my life....
... Cool looking "Phantom".... always been a Big fan of "Poor Erik".... Read the novel (English version) several times by 8th grade...
the author insisted that "Erik" ("the Phantom") was a real person....

Eegah!! said...

Good memories Doc!! Thanx!!!

Lady M said...

Cute - love those old cartoons.

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