Merlin the Magic Mouse and his sidekick Second Banana encounter a rascally leprechaun named O'Reilly in Ireland.

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(as Bob McKimson)

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Merlin the Magic Mouse / Second Banana / O'Reilly the Chief Leprechaun (voice)
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Storyline

When Merlin the Magic Mouse and Second Banana travel to Ireland via magic carpet and crash-land in a shamrock patch, they come across a crazy old leprechaun named O' Reilly. When the mystical creature doesn't believe Merlin can do magic tricks, the magician rodent performs for him. Then thanks to his OWN magic, O' Reilly steals Merlin's pocket watch, resulting in a crazy chase to get the watch back, ending with a collision course on Big Ben! Written by Wile_e2005

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G
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28 June 1969 (USA)  »

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The worst of the Merlin the Magic Mouse cartoons since 'Merlin the Magic Mouse'
16 August 2016 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Most of what is going to be said is going to be worded very similarly to my review for 'Merlin the Magic Mouse' because both have pretty much the same problems.

Have always been a huge fan of Looney Tunes/Merrie Melodies, which in their prime were beautifully made, scored and hilarious cartoons with some of the most iconic characters in animation.

None of these are present in in the five Merlin the Magic Mouse cartoons where it was very easy to see why this series of cartoons was short lived. They are classic examples of how badly the decline in quality was, with the least bad being 'Hocus Pocus Powwow' and 'Fistic Mystic' (if not by much) and the worst being this and 'Merlin the Magic Mouse'. Most of these cartoons are even worse than the worst of the Daffy/Speedy cartoons and the worst of Roadrunner/Wile E. Coyote, and also on the same level of 'Pre-Hysterical Hare' and 'Devil's Feud Cake'.

Sure there are more inept cartoons than this, where looking for a redeeming merit is impossible. Oddly, 'Shamrock and Roll' is redeemed by the spirited voice work of Larry Storch, stumbling only in the very stereotypical and somewhat annoying voice work for the leprechaun.

On the other hand, the animation clearly suffers from smaller budgets and tighter deadlines. Everything looks so flat, scrappy and rushed, none of the colour, liveliness and fluidity seen with Looney Tunes at its best. Have also rarely been a fan of the stock/canned music that Bill Lava adopted, and 'Shamrock and Roll', as with all the Merlin the Magic Mouse cartoons, contains some of his cheapest-sounding, annoying and ill-fitting.

The writing is incredibly lazy, nothing sticks out as remotely amusing let alone hilarious and there's nothing endearing or anything in the gags that sticks out. The most memorable bit is the ending, but there are far funnier gags and endings around. The story is tired and disjointed, Looney Tunes/Merrie Melodies at their best are some of the zaniest, wildest, wittiest and liveliest cartoons ever. The Merlin the Magic Mouse cartoons, especially 'Merlin the Magic Mouse' and 'Shamrock and Roll', are an extremely pale shadow of all that, and actually doesn't feel like Looney Tunes, actually feeling a rejected and very low-budget Hanna-Barbera effort.

While one doesn't expect the iconic Looney Tunes characters to stick around forever, surely they could have come up with more memorable, interesting, likable and funnier characters than the characters here. Was especially irritated by Second Banana and the leprechaun is unfunny, charmless and too much of a stereotype. Meanwhile, Merlin lacks the charisma, charm or comic timing to be a good lead character

Overall, a classic example of Looney Tunes in decline. Apart from Larry Storch, nothing works. 2/10 Bethany Cox


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