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The Woods Are Full of Cuckoos (1937)

A program for radio KUKU set in the woods, mostly starring birds as caricatures of celebrities of the day. The MC is bandleader Ben Birdie, heckled by Walter Finchell. Wendell Howell ... See full summary »

Director:

Frank Tashlin

Writer:

Melvin Millar (story)
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Cast

Uncredited cast:
Sara Berner ... Louella Possums / Martha Bray / Various (voice) (uncredited)
Mel Blanc ... Mr. Growlin / Alexander Owlcott / Milton Squirrel / Walter Finchell / Jack Bunny (voice) (uncredited)
Peter Lind Hayes ... Ben Birdie (voice) (uncredited)
Tedd Pierce Tedd Pierce ... Tizzie Fish (voice) (uncredited)
Georgia Stark Georgia Stark ... Grace Moose / Lily Swans / Deanna Terrapin (voice) (uncredited)
Danny Webb Danny Webb ... Joe Penguin / Andy Bovine / Various (voice) (uncredited)
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Storyline

A program for radio KUKU set in the woods, mostly starring birds as caricatures of celebrities of the day. The MC is bandleader Ben Birdie, heckled by Walter Finchell. Wendell Howell prepares to lead a singalong; he gives several different page numbers in the songbook, then says, "Never mind, we won't use the books." The audience, responding "Oh yes we will" pelts him. Billy Goat and Ernie Bear introduce and sing the title song. Everyone sings along, except a fox, who informed he's singing the wrong song, responds, "Why don't somebody tell me these things?" We pan across a series of celebrity guests, like W.C. Field-mouse, Dick Fowl, Deanna Terrapin, Bing Crowsby, and the high-note competing duo of Grace Moose and Lily Swans. Tizzie Fish has a cooking segment. Finally, Louella Possums introduces a company performing a scene from The Prodigal's Return. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Certificate:

Approved
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 December 1937 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Unlike all the other caricatures which are of real people, "Tizzie Fish" is a parody of Tizzie Lish, a wacky old lady known for her crackpot recipes, who was a character played by Bill Comstock on the radio show Al Pearce and His Gang. See more »

Connections

Edited from My Green Fedora (1935) See more »

Soundtracks

Old Folks at Home
(1851) (uncredited)
aka "Swanee River"
Written by Stephen Foster
Sung by Mr. Growlin through Mel Blanc
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Late 1930's Capsule of Radio
24 November 2017 | by VimaconeSee all my reviews

The artists of the Schlesinger studio enjoyed poking fun at popular culture, chiefly Hollywood and radio. This no doubt got hearty laughs from audiences, but has made the shorts dated. It's kind of a wonder that these shorts continued to be shown on television decades later, considering most of the celebrities referenced aren't well remembered.

THE WOODS ARE FULL OF CUCKOOS is a tribute to a west coast radio show, The Community Sing, which ran from 1936-37. It serves as a framing device, but several other radio shows from that time are referenced along with several caricatures of well known radio personalities and performers. It's basically a capsule of what was on the radio in the late 1930's.

The caricatures are all in animal form with an animal name to match, adding to the humor. The Tizzie Fish caricature is not an actual person, but Tizzie Lish, a fictional character on the Al Pearce show that gave outrageous recipes to listeners. She was impersonated in several cartoons during this time frame and ironically the impression sounded better than the real thing.

This short will not play well with modern audiences due to the obscurity of the celebrities and jokes, but will be enjoyed by those with knowledge of American radio.


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