4.4/10
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Goose Is Wild (1963)

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Bessie Beary (voice)
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Charlie Beary (voice)
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Animation | Short

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12 November 1963 (USA)  »

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Wild it isn't quite, but watchable it is
2 November 2017 | by See all my reviews

Have been increasingly unsure what to make of "The Beary Family" cartoons as an overall series, whether to stand by my initial statement of for Walter Lantz Studios' final series it not being as bad as anticipated or judging from the awfulness of the worst cartoons to take it back. Sorry if this sounds confusing.

Due to that there are some decent or watchable "Beary Family" cartoons, especially 'Fowled-Up Birthday' and 'Mother's Little Helper' (both directed by Jack Hannah, who generally is a much stronger animation director than Paul J. Smith and his cartoons much better). However, there are also a fair share of horrible ones, as seen with the previous two cartoons 'Goose in the Rough' and especially 'Charlie's Mother-in-Law'. 'Goose is Wild', notable for the pet goose's last appearance and an atypically happy outcome for Charlie, is one of the better and more watchable cartoons in the series despite the very low rating here.

'Goose is Wild' is not a great cartoon by all means. Like many 60s Lantz-studio cartoons, the animation is not good. Time and budget constraints shows in a lot of the animation, which is very rushed looking in the drawing and detail wise it's on the simplistic and careless side with colours that lack vibrancy and a fair share of goofs. The story is pretty slight and contains few surprises (with the sole exception of the ending) or much imagination, some of it is repetitive too, while the pace could have been sharper.

Bessie has very little to do and her presence is both bland and annoying and could have been cut entirely easily. It could easily have just centred around Charlie and the goose. Grace Stafford is wasted.

However, the music puts one in a good mood and is rousing and lush. A great job is done with the animosity between Charlie and the goose.

For a Smith-directed "Beary Family" cartoon, while never hilarious or innovative the gags are actually amusing and have much crisper timing to usual, regardless of whether the outcomes are foreseeable. Charlie's dialogue amuses.

While the goose is amusingly acrimonious and cute, well-meaning but havoc-causing Charlie, the most consistently easiest to relate to and funniest, is the best character. The voice acting is very good from Paul Frees, he really succeeds in making Charlie likable and has deft comic timing.

On the whole, not great but watchable. 5/10 Bethany Cox


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