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Plot Keywords:

waffles and don | jungle | jazz | fable | See All (4) »

Genres:

Animation | Short | Music

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

6 July 1930 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Van Beuren Studios See more »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono
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User Reviews

 
Chimeras
10 December 2012 | by bobliptonSee all my reviews

In this early synchronized sound cartoon from the Van Beuren cartoon factory, a dog and cat encounter huge, strange and terrifying creatures in the jungle. They seek refuge in a missionary's hut, where they play an organ, which causes the animals to dance. They are captured by cannibals, but escape and lead the jungle animals in song.

There are a few features worth mentioning. First is the cannibals, who look like Ubangi, wearing grass skirts and bones in their hair. Eighty years later, this is a highly offensive image, but at the time it was a standard one, used in Disney cartoons and elsewhere. In fact, the image would not disappear from the cartoons for a couple of decades, until the last Inki and the Myna cartoon, CAVEMAN INKI.

Second, the dog and cat resemble Van Beuren's Tom and Jerry, in movement, in appearance and in the plot, which is a musical one, even though that series would not really begin until the following year. Cartoon characters did not arise full grown as a rule. Elmer Fudd started as "Egghead" several years before his official debut; Betty Boop started as a cartoon dog. It seems that these might be early versions.

Finally, there is a small homage in this one: the cannibal king looks like the Imp from Winsor McKay's LITTLE NEMO IN SLUMBERLAND, an ornately drawn cartoon from early in the century which McKay turned into a cartoon in 1912.


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