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The Isle of Pingo Pongo (1938)

A travelogue spotlights the tropical island of Pingo Pongo, showing the unusual flora and fauna and the lives of the happy natives.

Director:

(as Fred Avery)

Writer:

(story) (as Geo Manuell)
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Cast

Uncredited cast:
...
Native Calling Football Signals (voice) (uncredited)
...
Egghead (voice) (uncredited)
Robert C. Bruce ...
Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
Danny Webb ...
Various (voice) (uncredited)
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Storyline

A travelogue spotlights the tropical island of Pingo Pongo, showing the unusual flora and fauna and the lives of the happy natives.

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Details

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Release Date:

28 May 1938 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

One of the "Censored 11" banned from T.V. syndication by United Artists in 1968 (then the owners of the Looney Tunes film library) for alleged racism. Ted Turner continued the ban when he was hired and stated that these films will not be re-issued and will not be put on Home Video. These cartoons will probably never air on television again, and only non-Warner Bros. licensed public domain video tapes will probably ever have these cartoons on them. See more »

Connections

Featured in Bamboozled (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Wiegenlied, Op. 49, No. 4
(uncredited)
aka "Brahms' Lullaby"
Music by Johannes Brahms
Played during the baby canary gag
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Travelogue spoof
20 January 2016 | by See all my reviews

Merrie Melodies short, directed by Tex Avery, notable today for being one of the Censored Eleven. For those who don't know, the Censored Eleven are cartoons that were withheld from syndication because they were considered to be too offensive due to their use of racial stereotypes and imagery. This one is a spoof of the travelogues that were popular at the time. Avery did quite a few of these and this is the first (and the only one on the censored list). The cartoon follows an ocean liner as it leaves New York and visits various tropical islands with some rather obvious gags that play off their names (Sandwich Island has a large sandwich on it, Thousand Island has a large jar of salad dressing, and so on). Finally the ship arrives at the island of the title, Pingo Pongo, and it is here we get to why the short has been banned. On the island are black natives who are drawn in the exaggerated and offensive style black people were drawn in cartoons back then. Other than the depiction of black people, the animation is quite nice and colorful. Carl Stalling's music is lively and upbeat. The gags range in quality with some, like the aforementioned island gags, not really working but others, like the mockingbird (who mockingly repeats whatever the narrator says in a snide tone) providing some chuckles. Also featured in this is Egghead, Tex Avery's largely forgotten creation that many people believe became Elmer Fudd. It's not a great cartoon, controversy aside, but it is worth a few laughs. It's probably one of the less offensive shorts that were on the Censored Eleven list but would still upset sensitive types today.


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