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This is one of the earlier Betty Boop cartoons featuring a celebrity artist: in this case, Rudy Vallee. Although it does not measure up to the three great Betty Boops with Cab Calloway, it is very amusing. Notice the use of the Bouncing Ball. This device dates from Fleischer's first musical talking cartoons in 1924!
This short is actually part of the Screen Songs series that were done by Fleischer Studios as part of the once extremely popular sing-alongs that were part and parcel of a night out at the movies, long before television. Think of them as early forms of today's music videos. Listen to the song Rudy Vallee sings, in particular to the spoken jokes between choruses. Some of the may surprise you! This is very early Betty Boop, so she doesn't look quite the same as she did later. This could accurately be described as a formative cartoon for Betty Boop. Well worth watching. In print and available. Recommended.
"Kitty from Kansas City" begins with Betty Boop going to the train station to take a trip. She is dropped off in the town of Rudy Valley--at which point the crooner Rudy Vallee appears and sings an enjoyable but mean song by the same title as the cartoon. In this song, you hear about an obese, unattractive and very stupid girl named Kitty--and during the song Vallee tells jokes about just how incredibly dumb this lady is. There are lots of nasty jokes--though I must admit that this was a HUGE improvement over the typical cartoon like this by the Fleischer Brothers. So, in this case, following the bouncing ball as Vallee sang was enjoyable. Then, like other Talkertoons shorts, at the end the live action portion ends and there is a bit more cartoon. Oddly, we now see Betty again but this time very obese and lots of fat jokes ensue. Not at all nice but funny at the same time. I enjoyed this but felt a little guilty laughing at the lyrics!
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