Saturday, 6 January 2018

Yakky Doodle in Mad Mix Up

Produced and Directed by Joe Barbera and Bill Hanna.
Credits: Animation – Bob Carr, Layout – Jack Huber, Backgrounds – Art Lozzi, Written by Mike Maltese, Story Director – Paul Sommer, Titles – Art Goble, Production Supervision – Howard Hanson.
Voice Cast: Chopper – Vance Colvig; Yakky – Jimmy Weldon; Fibber Fox, Mad Scientist – Daws Butler.
Music: Hoyt Curtin.
Episode: Production J-64 (final Yakky production of 1961 season).
Copyright 1961 by Hanna-Barbera Productions.
Plot: A mad scientist temporarily switches the brains of Yakky and Chopper, confusing Fibber Fox.

The best part of this cartoon is Art Lozzi’s establishing shot. Excellent design and colour, and I like the brush strokes in the sky in the background. The next-best part is the takes and expressions that animator Bob Carr gives to Fibber Fox.

The plot is pretty simple. A crazy scientist with a large head and a voice similar to Wally Gator wants to test his Switcho Brain Machine. Yakky and Chopper knock on his door. They’re thirsty from hiking. The scientist offers them Chinese tea (and “Chinese hats”) but switches their brains (and strength) instead. “Hurrah for me!” he shouts.



Yakky and Chopper beat it out of the castle. The scientist tells us the effect only lasts an hour.

The bulk of the rest of the cartoon is spent with Fibber Fox totally baffled about why Yakky can beat him up and Chopper is swimming like a duck.



Anticipation and extremes.



Fibber tries putting on glasses to make sure he’s not seeing anything. Fibber thinks he’s hallucinating (“Well, gosh, I’m entitled to a little hallucination now and then”) so he tries a cold shower, a little exercise and fresh air to snap out of it. Of course, it all fails.



The effect wears off...



Now Chopper as himself bashes Fibber to the ground. “Hallucination or no hallucination, I can go along with the gag.” Fibber starts acting like a dog and a duck. “Look, I’m a dog! Bark, bark, bark!” “I’m a duck! Quack, quack, quack!” (Fibber even flies for good measure).



“Hey,” says Chopper. “What’s wrong with him?” “Maybe it’s something he didn’t eat,” suggests Yakky. Chopper unnecessarily repeats Yakky’s line, adds his “Now, ain’t that cute” catchphrase and the cartoon ends. And so does this post.

8 comments:

  1. This cartoon is similar in theme to ”Switchin’ Kitten,” a Gene Deitch Tom and Jerry cartoon produced in 1960 and released in September 1961.

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  2. One of the better Yakky cartoons imho. Agree, fantastic opening shot by Lozzi!

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  3. This theme had been done for quite a lot:

    the 1947 Bugs Bunny short "Hot Cross Bunny"

    Hanna-Barbera's own earlier Yogi short, 1958's "Brainy Bear" (variations with the scienstist in that one switching Yogi and this chicken in different ways so Daws Butler as Yogi and Don Messick as the chicken and the guy play each others parts...all that was left was Don's Boo Boo and ranger)

    Their later Flintstones 1964 episode MNonsater Fred which also used the "different ways to switch minds", and in this thirty minute format they did! All of the actors involved managaed to play each others parts (even the Ben Casey and Dr.Zorba like doctors involved)

    a Magilla Gorrila around the time

    Switchin' Kitten from 1961 as the first poster revealed

    Gilligan's Island's 1966 episode The Friendly Physician, the classic scare-episode and the only time they got off the island

    the very recent Jennifer Garner/Kevin Spacey film "9 Lives",sort of as we only saw a cat acting like Spacey but not the opposite..

    among others from the top of my headf.:)

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  4. And another reason why Fibber Fox (along with Alfie Gator) are the two best H-B supporting characters ever! And big props to Daws Butler for his role in making them so!

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  5. In the cartoon, the two main characters not only switched bodies, they also switched brawn (strength).

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  6. Chopper,as Yakky reminded me of Tom Crumb(?), a spoof of Tom Thumb in "Touche Turtle".

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  7. Fibber's declaration he's a dog at the end is reminiscent of Maltese's finish for the 1946 Chuck Jones 'Hubie & Bertie' cartoon "Roughly Squeaking", where they convince the cat and the bulldog they're other animals....and the poor bird observing all this insanity goes nuts himself, declaring, "And I'm a THANKSGIVING TURKEY!!! GOBBLE-GOBBLE-GOBBLE-GOBBLE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!", flying off on a platter...........

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