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color rhapsodies | scrappy | See All (2) »

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Animation | Short

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13 May 1938 (USA)  »

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Spoofs The Big Broadcast (1932) See more »

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For the Birds
4 December 2015 | by (New York City) – See all my reviews

The colors in this Columbia Technicolor cartoon are quite lovely -- particularly the blues. However, the gags and characterizations are weak. Like Frank Tashlin's "The Woods Are Full of Cuckoos", it concerns itself with caricatures of contemporary radio personalities. That results in a lack of universality. If they were good caricatures, visually and vocally, they would be difficult for modern audiences. However, the visuals range from good to very good; the vocals range from good down to poor; whoever was in charge of voicing the Jack Benny character sounds nothing at all like him.

There is a good deal of reliance on catchphrases, like Joe Penner's "Wanna by a duck?" Perhaps that was why Mr. Penner was popular. You could say the line and everyone would know the reference. The same sort of thing goes on these days. Well, except that I don't waste my time learning the modern equivalent. I waste my time learning about Joe Penner.


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