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Don't Give Up the Sheep (1953)

A sheepdog thwarts the efforts of a thieving wolf whose tricks include altering the time clock, hiding in a bush, imitating Pan, digging a tunnel, unleashing a wildcat and disguising himself as the dog's coworker.

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(as Charles M. Jones)

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Ralph Sheepdog / Ralph Wolf / Fred Sheepdog / Wildcat (voice)
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Storyline

In this matchup of wolf and sheepdog, the sheepdog is identified as Ralph, and the wolf isn't named and doesn't punch the clock. The sheepdog is also not as good at anticipating the wolf's moves. But the wolf is, ultimately, no more successful; his Acme wildcat turns on him; his Tarzan-like vine swinging gets him only the sheepdog, no sheep, and the subsequent war of cutting down tree limbs, the tree, and ultimately the cliff where the tree grows, is done in by cartoon physics. Ultimately, he tries posing as Fred, the night shift dog, with no success. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

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Plot Keywords:

wolf | sheepdog | tree | clock | sheep | See All (74) »


Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

3 January 1953 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Schäfchen zählen  »

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(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

First appearance of Sam Sheepdog (referred to here as "Ralph") and Ralph Wolf (unnamed here). See more »

Connections

Referenced in Looney Tunes: Space Race (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

William Tell Overture
Music by Gioachino Rossini
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Ralph Wolf and Sam the Sheepdog at their best
13 September 2016 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The Ralph Wolf and Sam the Sheepdog series was short-lived and overlooked, and unjustly so. It was a very good, and at its best brilliant, series of cartoons, and some of the best of Looney Tunes/Merrir Melodies later output.

'Don't Give Up the Sheep' is perhaps the series at its best. The concept sees Chuck Jones at his most creative and interesting, and describing the cartoon as making the most of it don't justify it enough, it practically has a field day with it. 'Don't Give Up the Sheep' is filled to the brim with gags and laughs that come thick and fast, but not in a way that feels rushed.

Animation-wise, 'Don't Give Up the Sheep' is animated beautifully, for a series of cartoons made late in Looney Tunes/Merrie Melodies' prolific output the Ralph and Sam cartoons were generally some of the better-looking cartoons from this period, being colourful and inventively detailed with smooth and fluid character designs. The music is lushly and cleverly orchestrated, with lively and energetic rhythms and fits very well indeed.

Chuck Jones' trademark visual style and humour is all over the cartoon, and has lost none of its imagination or the clever and razor-sharp wit present throughout his career. The sight gags are unmistakably Jones and there is not a misfire among them, all of them are hilarious, unpredictable, inventive and remarkably for so many in a short space of time never feel incomplete. The panpipe, wildcat and extended sequences are especially good.

The two sheepdogs are strong characters and very likable, but Ralph Wolf makes even more of an impression, being funnier and more interesting (agree with the Wile E. Coyote comparison). Mel Blanc is characteristically fantastic, how can he not be when he was one of the greatest and most consistent voice actors who ever lived.

In summary, sees an unjustly short-lived and overlooked series of cartoons at its best. 10/10 Bethany Cox


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