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We're in the Honey (1948)

Approved | | Animation, Short | 19 March 1948 (USA)
The Queen Bee is busily supervising the production of honey in a modern Bee-Hive plant equipped with some unusual gadgets. The busy-bee work is interrupted by a television broadcast which ... See full summary »

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, (uncredited)

Writers:

(story) (as I. Klein), (story)
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The Queen Bee is busily supervising the production of honey in a modern Bee-Hive plant equipped with some unusual gadgets. The busy-bee work is interrupted by a television broadcast which reports a bear-raid disaster in Beeville. A young bee sounds the bear-raid alarm and ingeniously delays the menacing bear, until the bee squadron arrives and drives off the raider. The hero is rewarded with a kiss from the Queen Bee and the workers get back to the busy-as-a-bee assembly line. Written by Les Adams <longhorn1939@suddenlink.net>

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Genres:

Animation | Short

Certificate:

Approved
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Release Date:

19 March 1948 (USA)  »

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(RCA Sound System)

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(Technicolor)
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Political undertones from the year this was made make this a surprisingly good cartoon

This is a one-shot short produced by Famous Studios. There will be spoilers ahead:

Judged solely by its surface, this is a rather run-of-the-mill time filler (albeit a reasonably nice looking time filler) about bees making honey running afoul of a bear going around raiding hives and leaving bees without food.

But this was made in 1948. Tensions between the US and the Soviet Union over the treatment of Germany and more specifically the city of Berlin had been coming to a head in late 1947 and early 1948. While it's possible that I'm reading more into this than is there, this short was released in mid-March and about two weeks later, the "Little Lift" began because the Russians had ordered all supplies by train coming into West Berlin stopped.

This short opens with industrious bees working to produce honey, with various verbal and visual puns being made. Suddenly, a bee version of Walter Wichell comes on reading the news when there's a newsflash-a bear has eaten all the honey in Beeville and the bees there will starve without help.

The queen bee sings a rather forgettable song urging her bees to produce more honey to help those less fortunate. There follow scenes of bees gathering nectar from flowers (including one semi-risqué for 1948 gag involving a female bee) and then ramping up production of honey.

Meanwhile, a bear (with an eye-patch no less) comes upon the hive, intent on taking the honey there. One bee spots it and raises the alarm of a "bear raid". There follows here scenes of the bees preparing to fight and then doing so, with the bear suffering as a result. The bees rout the bear and send him running. The short ends with the bees in flight (literally) to take honey to their less fortunate fellows. The last shot convinces me that the political climate was a factor in the making of this short.

This short deserves to be more widely seen.


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