Why do modern Looney Tunes look so worse than the original theatrical cartoon shorts?

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by Matheus Bezerra de Lima, Jul 24, 2021.

  1. jh901

    jh901 Forum Resident

    Off topic, but what lead to Woody Woodpecker becoming assimilated into Brazilian culture? He is sort of a pileated woodpecker, which is a North American bird. So, it isn't that (which was a reach at best).
  2. Bluesman Mark

    Bluesman Mark But I'm innocent! Swan stole my music & framed me!

    Virtually any of the MGM toons from the 40s-early 50s have those lush backgrounds. Once Fred Quimby retired as producer in 1955 & Hanna/Barbera became producers for all the MGM toons, they eventually adapted a simpler UPA design & style in the toons released before MGM shut down the animation dept in 1957.
  3. Matheus Bezerra de Lima

    Matheus Bezerra de Lima Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Brazil, Pará
    I can't give you a easy answer, I don't know. If I'm not mistaken, Woody Woodpecker was one of the first cartoons (or anything really) to get a dub here in Brazil. And it remained a mainstay in brazilian TV for many decades. I guess the brazilian dub really must take a lot of credit, not only the voice actors are amazing, but they weren't afraid to recontextualize jokes and puns, the brazilian dub is filled to the brim with brazilian slangs, references and so on. I don't exaggerate when I say the brazilian dub of Woody Woodpecker is a work of genius in all aspects.
    entropyfan and jh901 like this.
  4. Matheus Bezerra de Lima

    Matheus Bezerra de Lima Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Brazil, Pará
    I would like also to add that I don't think that the Looney Tunes got the same consistent high level of dub here in Brazil. Cinecastro first dubbed Looney Tunes, and they are fondly remembered by many, but I feel their voice actors are often too stilted (or maybe the audio quality being so poor gives that impression), and they replace the original scores with BGMs. Herbert Richers did a dub of many episodes later, and there are many episodes to get a great dub by them, Bugs Bunny and Yosemite Sam cartoons so far seem flawless (High Diving Hare is an amazing cartoon with great dub. Bugs Bunny Rides Again is also is hilarious, this is all prime Looney Tunes). And I look forward to watch more Bugs Bunny vs. Yosemite Sam cartoons. All directed by Friz Freleng.

    But there are others, such as the Hunting Trilogy and Duck Amuck, whose dub I don't think is quite good (Mel Blanc sells the jokes in Duck Amuck far better than anyone else could). And the "Pronoun Trouble" line from Rabbit Seasoning should have been translated more accurately (but I think the jokes have sadly been ruined for me due to all my common difficulties and tension when having to listen to verbal comedy in other language, the unsatisfying brazilian dub, and having read and tried to understand an entire transcription of the Pronoun Trouble joke in the book 50 Greatest Cartoons written by Jerry Beck, I should know better than seeing the jokes in written form first, that often kills the comedy)

    Overall, the inconsistent quality of the brazilian dub across many Looney Tunes shorts is being a problem for me. Because I realize that I often have a far harder time to laugh and have fun when I have to watch comedy dialogue in a language that is not brazilian portuguese, which is my native language (this is not a knock on Mel Blanc or any voice actors from other languages). Rabbit Hood, which I just watched, I feel I would have far more fun with it if there was a perfect brazilian dub of it.

    Outside of Looney Tunes, I have a feeling that I'm gonna really love Tex Avery's MGM work. I watched King-Size Canary, I love it and even made and downloaded some GIFs of that cartoon, it's brilliant! His brand of non-stop wackiness and constant visual jokes seems to transcend language more easily and be more universal than some of the the more dialogue-heavy jokes in Chuck Jones' cartoons such as the Hunting Trilogy. I prefer stuff such as One Froggy Evening, Bully For Bugs, Feeding The Kitty and so on far better.

    But again, I really shouldn't be judging, I have watched too few Looney Tunes cartoons yet (and I plan to rewatch some ones with a fresher mind, I shouldn't watch comedy when I feel tense and nervous due to language), their catalogue is so huge and intimidating. But I really love the endless creativity often in display. Like The Great Piggy Bank Robbery by Bob Clampett. It's such an awesome cartoon, an absolute masterpiece in all regards. I don't laugh out loud at its jokes, but they are all so creative and amusing. Playful, nothing is off the grounds. The villains are amazing. The cartoon looks amazing too. It's a work of ART!
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2021
  5. Dillydipper

    Dillydipper Sultan Of Snark

    Central PA
    I think it was because Walter Lantz was willing to buy into the U.S.Department Of State investment in relations with South America, at the same time Disney did (remember Saludos Amigos?). He allocated some resources towards making some product that addressed the continent as well. I remember as a child having a Woody album with a couple of South-American-targeted songs on it. Apparently the short (shorts?) did well enough with audiences down there, they resonated.
  6. Matheus Bezerra de Lima

    Matheus Bezerra de Lima Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Brazil, Pará
    Woody Woodpecker was the very first cartoon to be shown in brazilian TV ever, in 1950, though with subtitles. It would first gain a dub in 1957.
    jh901 likes this.
  7. entropyfan

    entropyfan Forum Resident

    Funniest cartoons ever made - especially the ones done after Mike Lah joined his unit.
  8. Derek Gee

    Derek Gee Senior Member

    And Walt HATED the look! He was convinced by brother Roy they needed to use the system to cut costs.

  9. Matheus Bezerra de Lima

    Matheus Bezerra de Lima Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Brazil, Pará
    I made a quick Google search, to see the names of the background artists. Bob Gentle was responsible for the backgrounds in the vast majority of Tom & Jerry cartoons. Tex Avery cartoons had backgrounds by John Didrik Johnsen, who had also worked for Tex at Warner Bros. and, unusually for background artists of the era, painted them in oil.
    Bluesman Mark likes this.

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