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Despite the high IMDb rating and the two previous positive reviews, Dr.
Jerkyl's Hide is very rarely shown and is hardly mentioned when talking
about great Looney Tunes. It is a shame, because while it is not one of
the best Looney Tunes' cartoons or among Sylvester's greatest ever it
has very little wrong with it and is deserving of more praise.
As it is with most Looney Tunes cartoons, Dr. Jerkyl's Hide is very nicely animated, perhaps among Fritz Freleng's most visually beautiful cartoons of the early 50s. The colours are rich and vibrant, all three characters are well drawn and the backgrounds are fluid and have lots of detail to admire. Some of the animation is also imaginative, Sylvester in his 'evil' guise is pretty frightening but it's the physical comedy and the expressions of Alfie where the cartoon scores highly in this regard. Carl Stalling's music as ever is outstanding, his music is consistently of a very high standard and are often among the highlights of their cartoons. And this is demonstrated wonderfully in the orchestration, which is lush and clever and the rhythms, which are lively and characterful, it matching with everything seamlessly and even adding to the enjoyment.
While Dr. Jerkyl's Hide is not exactly new concept-wise (Looney Tunes have explored this concept quite a few times), the interplay between the two dogs and the visuals make it seem fresh enough and it never feels repetitive. Watching the cartoon for the first time I did not see the last two minutes coming, and the pacing is the opposite of tired, the cartoon literally whizzing by. The script is razor sharp and hilariously witty, especially between Alfie and Chester, and there are some very cleverly constructed gags, the physical comedy between Sylvester and Alfie and the last two minutes being particularly good. Sylvester does not have an awful lot to do despite being the star, other than showing this Jekyll and Hyde personality, but he is amusing enough and works really well with Chester and especially Alfie.
Chester has some hilarious dialogue that is voiced with gleeful relish by Stan Freberg, but the standout character here for me is Alfie, who bags most of the laughs and he is also the character that you feel sorry for. The voice acting from Mel Blanc for both Sylvester and Alfie is terrific, as ever he excels in voicing more than one character, making them individual and giving them completely different intonations and personalities from one another. In conclusion, a very good and underrated cartoon. 9/10 Bethany Cox
Fun Sylvester short directed by Friz Freleng, in many ways a remake of
Freleng's earlier Sylvester short Tree for Two. In that cartoon,
Sylvester is on the run from a pair of dogs (bullying bulldog Spike and
his mouthy sidekick Chester, who eggs him on constantly) at the same
time a panther has escaped from the zoo. So what follows is a series of
bits where Sylvester hides in an alley where the panther also happens
to be hiding. Every time Spike goes down the alley looking to beat up
Sylvester, he is mauled by the panther instead. So here we have
Sylvester also on the run from a British version of Spike and Chester
(although Spike is named Alfie here for some reason). But in this short
Sylvester drinks Dr. Jerkyl's potion and every time Spike tries to beat
him up, Sylvester transforms into Mr. Hyde and easily kicks the crap
out of the bulldog. So a little is changed but it's basically the same
Much like John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men, Robert Louis Stevenson's Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde was a constant source of parody for the animators at Warner Bros. In fact, Friz Freleng did three such cartoons himself, this being the first. It's fun for what it is but if you've seen the prior short, it will probably suffer by comparison. If there's one negative I can point to, it would be the voice work of the usually excellent Mel Blanc and Stan Freberg. They're both doing British accents and, frankly, they're pretty bad. Freberg's seems to be half Brit and half Australian I think. At any rate it's not the best work either of these legends did.
While Sylvester usually is lovable sap getting his comeuppances for
chasing Tweety or Speedy, he occasionally got used in different kinds
of roles, namely when he co-starred with dogs Spike and Chester (Spike
is named Alfie in "Dr. Jerkyl's Hide"). In these cartoons, the big,
menacing Spike would go try to make mincemeat out of Sylvester, but
something would always happen to make Spike believe that Sylvester was
some sort of monster...at which point Sylvester would show up and puny
Chester would clobber him.
So it goes here, in which Sylvester runs into Dr. Jerkyl's laboratory, drinks a certain potion, and...well, you can probably guess what happens. It's a quite enjoyable cartoon. Mel Blanc and Stan Freberg were always a cool voice combo.
this is among my all time favourite looney tunes.
the characters of the two dogs in it are hilarious and sylvester is great
a more catty role than usual.
when he transforms into the giant monster cat and beats the you know what
out of the bulldog, hahaha, it is so funny and the look on the little dogs
face everytime it happens, this is what cartoon comedy is all
it is to bad we will never see cartoons like this again, instead we have to put up with animaniacs and all this speilberg produced wannabe bullsh*t. Well at least we can always return to the classics like these. thank god for mel blanc and croonies
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