Saturday, September 21, 2013

Augie Doggie — It’s a Mice Day

Produced and Directed by Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera.
Credits: Animation – Carlo Vinci; Layout – Paul Sommer; Backgrounds – Fernando Montealegre; Story – Mike Maltese; Story Director – Alex Lovy; Titles – Art Goble; Production Supervision – Howard Hanson.
Voice Cast: Doggie Daddy, Filabert – Doug Young; Augie Doggie, Cat – Daws Butler.
Music: Phil Green; Jack Shaindlin, Spencer Moore, Harry Bluestone-Emil Cadkin.
Episode: Quick Draw McGraw Show M-028, Production J-83.
First Aired: week of October 30, 1960.
Plot: Augie deals with a sick mouse friend that a cat wants to catch.

A white cat running from Augie Doggie and his broom slams right into Doggie Daddy, then tries to make pleasant small talk to avoid being clobbered.

Cat: Oh, you look awfully familiar, sir. Didn’t we meet in Cincinnati?
Daddy (to audience): If dere’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s a wise-guy cat from Cincinnati.

And, with that, Daddy drops him into the garbage can.

It’s the best exchange in this cartoon. Mike Maltese tries hard with the mouse at the centre of everything but the character is just too wimpy and needy to be likeable. It’s not that he’s preying on Augie and Doggie Daddy with an act; he’s just a wuss. Maybe the two of them got sick of him, too, because this is the only cartoon he appeared in.

Carlo Vinci’s your animator in this one and his tell-tale signs are all here. Here’s the wide-mouth on the cat.



And diving exits off screen.



And the big row of upper teeth.



It’s the only Augie cartoon that Carlo worked on after the first season of The Quick Draw McGraw Show (1959-60). In fact, he only animated this and one Snooper and Blabber cartoon during the remaining two seasons. Perhaps he was too busy with The Flintstones. This was the second Augie put into production in the second season.

This cartoon features the boy genius version of Augie. He’s mixing with his test-tubes at the start of the cartoon when he tells Filabert, the mouse who lives in a hole in their wall, to help himself to some cheese. “It’s good to have neighbours with miles and miles of heart,” says the wimpy mouse. Watching all this is a white cat with the voice Daws Butler later gave to Fibber Fox and he had used in several other cartoons. To sum up the scene, the cat fails to pounce on the mouse, who runs into its hole. Broom-wielding Augie chases the cat, who runs into Daddy carrying a snack. Daddy drops him in the garbage.



“Alas, Augie, it was too much for me,” laments Filabert. “I’ve been forced to take to my little bed. I’m not too strong, you know. The pathetic mouse groans that he wish Augie could come into his hole and feed him “some strength-giving hot cheese soup.” I’d tell him to get a life, but genius Augie instead drinks what he’s been mixing (four litres of decalcitrating alum and one of tetrahetra) and shrinks, enabling him to take cheese from “generous dad…who shares and shares alike” to Filabert in his bed. “Observant dad, who’s more than a little flabbergasted” then notices Augie has shrunk and after failing to convince him to come out of Filabert’s hole, shrinks himself.

The white cat is watching all this through the window and decides he can take advantage of the situation, being bigger than everyone now. He bashes Daddy onto the floor with his tail (“What a catastrophe!” says, Daddy, correctly pronouncing a word his inspiration, Jimmy Durante, never could). The shrunken dog hides in the barrel of his hunting rifle, which the cat fires, and Daddy rides the bullet into a bottle containing a ship. The cat then walks over to the bottle wearing an old British admiral’s hat and engages in some “Mr Christian” dialogue just for the sake of it. Unfortunately, he doesn’t realise the ship has a working cannon, which Daddy fires at the cat’s face (“That’s a heck of a way to treat an admiral,” is the singed cat’s verbal reaction).




The next scene finds Doggie Daddy being chased by the cat, who tilts his arms in a four-drawing run cycle (one per frame). Augie comes to the rescue by drinking something to grow to normal size (Filabert moans he “can manage somehow” with Augie gone) and then cons the cat to drink some of the shrinking potion. Unfortunately the cat’s holding a firecracker, which explodes after he shrinks. Augie vanquishes the enemy.



The final scene has Augie delivering “some hot liver soup to a sick friend.” “Dear old inquisitive but sensitive-to-others’-pain dad” then peers into the mouse hole. Both the cat and Filabert are in separate beds and thank Augie for his thoughtfulness. “After all,” Daddy says to us to wind up the cartoon, “how many boys can bring hot soup to a sick cat in a mouse hole?” So it is that everyone comes out a winner in this cartoon.

As for the stock music, the cutter uses Spence Moore’s oboe workpart piece L-1158 Animation Comedy for the shrinking and growing, and Moore’s ‘Animation Nautical’ is heard during the ship-in-a-bottle scene.


0:00 - Augie Doggie Main Title theme (Hanna-Barbera-Curtin).
0:24 - GR-65 BUSH BABY (Green) – Filabert walks, cat crashes to floor.
0:55 - fast circus chase music (Shaindlin) – cat slides to mouse hole, runs into Daddy, laughs.
1:21 - GR-65 BUSH BABY (Green) – “You look awfully familiar,” Daddy tosses cat in garbage, Augie mixes and drinks formula.
2:25 - L-1158 ANIMATION COMEDY (Moore) – Augie shrinks.
2:26 - GR-255 PUPPETRY COMEDY (Green) – “It worked,” Augie takes cheese, Daddy sees he’s shrunk, Daddy drinks formula.
3:31 - L-1158 ANIMATION COMEDY (Moore) – Daddy shrinks.
3:33 - COMEDY SUSPENSE (Shaindlin) – “I guess dis is known…” Daddy picks up cat.
4:00 - fast circus chase music (Shaindlin) – “Hey!” Daddy hides in gun, rides bullet, lands in bottle.
4:41 - L-1121 ANIMATION NAUTICAL (Moore) – Daddy falls to bottom of bottle, fires cannon at cat.
5:17 - SIX DAY BICYCLE RACE (Shaindlin) – Cat chases Daddy, Augie runs to rescue.
5:38 - PG-161H LIGHT MOVEMENT (Green) – “This’ll make me big,” Augie drinks formula.
5:45 - L-1158 ANIMATION COMEDY (Moore) – Augie grows.
5:49 - CB-83A MR TIPPY TOES (Cadkin-Bluestone) Daddy in sugar bowl, cat drinks formula, explosion, Daddy watching TV, peers in mouse hole, “how many boys can bring hot soup…”
7:01 - GR-79 CUSTARD PIE CAPERS BRIDGE No 2 (Green) – “to a sick cat…” iris out.
7:10 - Augie Doggie End Title theme (Curtin).

10 comments:

  1. I like this cartoon because it shows Doggie Daddy acting like a dog for once and clobbering an annoying cat early in the cartoon. I also like the cultural reference to the musical Damn Yankees ("miles and miles of heart"), and the cute happy ending.

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  2. The Terrytoons disciple Carlo Vinci, who animated this Augie Doggie & Doggie Daddy episode, was involved, at this same season, on a frequent form, in The Flintstones.

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  3. One thing that always stuck out for me is the odd image on Doggie Daddy's TV Screen - finally seeing it up close now, it looks like a very distant cousin of "Snidely Whiplash". At least from what I can make out...

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    1. It just looks abstract to me, Chris.

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  4. I was waiting to see the review of this: I spell "Filabert" Fillibert.."L-1121" is played two times or one and a half back to back...I've seen this on YouTube. Steve

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    1. And I thought that was "Philbert"...

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    2. Steve, as I don't have a model sheet, and TV listings for this cartoon aren't name-specific I'm just spelling it phonetically.

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  5. This seems to be the only Augie cartoon with a music cue from THE HUCKLEBERRY HOUND SHOW, specifically "Animation Nautical" during the ship scene. As a situational cue, it fits remarkably well.

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  6. And DOggie Daddy returns to normal size somehow.,.,:)

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  7. I've seen this cartoon and the mouse in this short sounds a lot like Ding-a-Ling, Hokey Wolf's sidekick on the "Hokey Wolf" cartoons.

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