Saturday 28 August 2010

Huckleberry Hound — Nottingham and Yeggs

Produced and Directed by Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera.
Credits: Animation – Ed Love; Layout – Walt Clinton; Backgrounds – Joe Montell; Story – Warren Foster; Story Sketches – Dan Gordon; Titles – Art Goble; Production Supervision – Howard Hanson.
Voice Cast: Huck, Sheriff, Rabbit, Traveller – Daws Butler; Narrator, Tax Collector, Cat, Merry Men – Hal Smith.
Music: Geordie Hormel, Jack Shaindlin, Spencer Moore, Bill Loose/John Seely.
Episode: Huckleberry Hound Show K-032, Episode E-77.
First Aired: week of November 23, 1959 (rerun, week of June 13, 1960).
Plot: Robin Huck tries to regain his castle and fortune.

This is a fun cartoon and everyone pulls together to make it that way. Warren Foster came up with everything you’d want in a story. It has a plot, it has spot gags, it has visual gags, it has silly stuff and it even has a pop culture reference. I really like the character designs and long-shot backgrounds. And Daws Butler does his usual fine job. Don Messick isn’t in this one; for some reason, he was restricted to Yogi Bear and Pixie and Dixie in the early part of the 1959 season and other voice actors were brought in. So, we get one Harold Jay Smith, known to us all as Hal.

A couple of left-to-right pans open the cartoon, the first one with representational trees, a nicely-brushed sky and a simple castle in four different shades of brown, and the second one with an ogre-looking Sheriff of Nottingham, his dogs, and Robin of Locksley (Huck) “now playing jester in his own castle.”

You can tell by the bit-lip and two-tooth facial expressions that Ed Love animated this. He tries to get as much as he can out of limited animation in the opening, when Huck licks his lips as the Sheriff eats. Ed has Huck move his head up and down and turn to the side instead of remaining stationary and moving a mouth on his face, which is the way H-B cartoons soon devolved. There’s something slightly different in almost every frame, whether it’s an eyelid half closing (Love has four eyelid positions) or a teeth moving to form syllables.

As mentioned above, this is another cartoon where Huck is a person-dog and there are dog-dogs. But obviously Huck’s native instinct is at work when the Sheriff tosses the dogs a bone.

I’m a sucker for silly dialogue.

Narrator: For food, poor Robin would steal into the forest to set snares. But even the lowly animals would sneer at lowly Robin.
Rabbit: Sneer, sneer, sneer, sneeeer.

The next brief scene has Robin doing his taxes, reading ridiculous instructions on a form. He’s interrupted by the sound of squealing and we see Huck’s last pig being taken away by the tax collector. The scene cuts to Huck and a cat sleeping on a table.

Huck: Garsh. I won’t have me no meat to eat. Unless’n I thinks a-somethin’.

Huck then does a realisation take. Unfortunately, it’s thrown away. The stock music just keeps playing before, during and after, the take. And Huck turns his head then only holds it in position for five frames before turning it the other way. It would have been better if it had been held a longer to register or if Huck’s head snapped into position then out instead of turning it on ones.

Huck looks at the cat. The cat gets the idea. He suddenly stands up in a Jackie Gleason pose and delivers Gleason’s line “And away we go!” Exit cat.

Now Huck is “strolling through the forest.” Except there must have been a fire or something because the shot is of Huck walking along green grass with a ploughed field and a few trees in the background. There’s no forest. Anyway, Huck has an idea.

Huck: Why not, you know, take from the rich and give to the poor? Which includes me.

Oh, the forest is in the next shot. ‘Robin Huck’ is emulating Daffy Duck in Robin Hood Daffy (1958) as he swings on a vine “to swoop down on fat, loaded travellers.” He bangs into a tree the first time.

Traveller: We’ll have an early winter. The nuts are beginning to fall out of the trees.
Narrator: But, with hard practice, Robin Huck’s dreaded cry soon sent chills up the spines of wealthy tourists.
Huck (swinging): Ya-hoooooo!

Yowp side-note: Isn’t “Yahoo?” what Fred Flintstone was supposed to say until Alan Reed changed it to “Yabba-dabba-do?” And didn’t Foster write most of The Flintstones’ first season?

Here are some frames, on ones, of Huck’s thievery. The timing’s perfect here. I love the stunned look on the donkey. Did they simply reverse the cels with the brush strokes to show Huck coming back the other way?

Narrator: Soon, men of ideals flocked to the forest to become known as Robin Huck’s Merry Men.

The Merry Men all have sour looks on their faces. Huck tells them to “yuck it up a bit.” “Yuk, yuk, yuk, yuk,” they say on cue. There are five of them, and Love has their laughing heads and upper bodies move in different, staggered cycles so it looks closer to full animation.

The merriment is interrupted by “a message—comin’ in by arrow.” You can read it for yourself. Huck wonders when he’s going to get a postman. As for the origin of the phrase ‘Tattletale Grey’, here’s a little soap chip jingle from the early ‘40s:

You’ll never be bothered
With Tattle Tale Gray
When you do your laundry
The Fels Naptha Way.

See the things you learn by coming here?

He leaves the Merry Men behind to take from the rich and give to the poor and heads to Nottingham to claim his inheritance. Foster gets to be silly again.

Narrator: Meanwhile, back at the castle, the Sheriff gloated over his good fortune.
Sheriff: Gloat, gloat, gloat.

It’s spot-gag time as Huck tries to get in the castle. No, he doesn’t do the “lower the drawbridge” gag from Knighty Night Bugs (1958)—which Foster also used three years earlier in Sahara Hare. But there’s an anvil gag, a pole vault/moat gag (“soft mud bottom”) and probably the most bizarre gag where Huck climbs the wall “like a human fly” but the Sheriff is ready with “a human fly swatter.” Huck makes appropriate buzzing noises (and has plus-signs for eyes like an old newspaper cartoon) as he lands in the moat.

A catapult doesn’t quite get him over the wall. Finally, he shoots himself into the castle with a bow and arrow. The Sheriff decides to “grab the loot and scoot” and runs past the same door only twice. Here’s the background.

The Sheriff lowers the drawbridge to make his escape. Huck reaches the switch, contemplates for a minute, then raises the drawbridge to end the escape and corral the bad guy.

The final scene ends with Huck on his donkey.

Huck: Hey, fellers! Merry Men! It’s me. Robin Huck. I got my inher-tence, castle, jewels ‘n’ stuff. I’m rich. Real rich.

Ah, but Huck’s forgotten he left the Merry Men behind to rob from the rich. And that’s what they do to him. They even take his donkey (who evidently isn’t surprised as his eyes are closed this time.

As usual, Huck isn’t bothered. “You know,” he says to the camera before the iris closes, “it’s right hard to hold on to money these days.”

Trivia note: the week before this cartoon aired, the Huck show was already into reruns from the first season. Tricky Trapper aired, along with Yogi’s Pie Pirates.

Rely on the Capitol Hi-Q library to provide appropriate Olde England mood music. The speciality cues are some fine Geordie Hormel pieces from reel X-9 Locale-Adventure. When the cartoon gets to the spot gags, Jack Shaindlin’s cues are used and the cutter edits them so there is one for each gag. I don’t have the name for the last one; it has a chorus that goes up and down five notes like a scale.

0:00 - THE HUCKLEBERRY HOUND SONG (Hanna, Barbera, Curtin, Shows) – Opening titles.
0:14 - ZR-126 ENGLISH MAIN TITLE (Hormel) – Sheriff eats, Huck talks to camera.
0:35 - ZR-127 PERIOD CHASE (Hormel) – Sheriff throws bone, Huck catches it.
0:45 - ZR-103 PERIOD MAIN TITLE (Hormel) – Huck in forest, rabbit sneer, narrator.
1:03 - L-75 COMEDY UNDERSCORE (Spencer Moore) – Huck stares at taxes, cat zips off stage à la Gleason.
1:33 - C-3 DOMESTIC CHILDREN (Loose-Seely) – Huck decided to rob from the rich.
2:02 - ZR-127 PERIOD CHASE (Hormel) – Robin Huck on rope; robs rich guy.
2:40 - C-19 LIGHT ACTIVITY (Loose) – Huck with Merry Men; reads scroll.
3:50 - ZR-103 PERIOD MAIN TITLE (Hormel) – Huck sets out for Nottingham.
3:57 - LAF-10-7 GROTESQUE No 2 (Jack Shaindlin) – Sheriff gloats, Huck hit with anvil.
4:24 - LAF-72-2 RODEO DAY (Shaindlin) – Pole vault gag.
4:41 - LAF-10-7 GROTESQUE No 2 (Jack Shaindlin) – Human fly gag.
5:04 - LAF-21-3 RECESS (Shaindlin) – Catapult-wall gag.
5:27 - LAF-74-2 LICKETY SPLIT (Shaindlin) – Arrow sends Huck into castle, drawbridge scene.
6:25 - LAF-74-4 sporting ‘scale’ music (Shaindlin) – Huck is robbed.
6:58 - THE HUCKLEBERRY HOUND SONG (Hanna, Barbera, Curtin, Shows) – End titles.

Thursday 26 August 2010

Bob Givens

“Someone, somewhere, should interview Bob Givens,” yowped I in some on-line venue recently. There are so few people around who animated on cartoons in the 1930s, and Givens is one of them. He was a part of animation history, for after Tex Avery developed a certain Bugs Bunny in ‘A Wild Hare’ in 1940, Givens was the first one entrusted to draw a model sheet of the wabbit.

Bob vanished from Warner Bros. in 1941 thanks to the draft but returned in the ‘50s to work in Bob McKimson’s unit. Then when Hanna-Barbera expanded in 1959 in the wake of the success of The Huckleberry Hound Show, Joe and Bill grabbed people from everywhere. And while you think of Ed Benedict, Dick Bickenbach, Walt Clinton and Tony Rivera as the layout guys, for a brief period the name ‘Robert Givens’ shows up, especially in the Augie Doggie cartoons.

Anyway, someone was apparently reading my mind. They got ahold of 92½-year-old Bob Givens and sat him down for 93½ minutes to discuss his life in the animation industry. And, better still, a chap named Andrew Dickman was given the okay to record the session on his cell phone camera. Hmm. In animation, shouldn’t it be a “cel phone camera”?

With that weak attempt at humour (no Mike Maltese, I), I’ve linked to the video from one of Andrew’s web pages. The sound quality isn’t great and it’s difficult to make out what Bob says at times, but it’s worth trying to listen to.

Here’s some of what Bob said about his arrival at Hanna-Barbera in 1959, with ellipses in places where I can’t make out the words:

Mike Maltese and I went over from Warners as a team to work for Hanna-Barbera...and they were having money problems, this is before the big-time network stuff. So they were missing payrolls there for awhile, so I said “the hell with that; I’ve got a couple of kids, I’m getting’ out of here” so I went over to TV Spots to do the commercials again. I’m there a week and Joe calls me, he says, the phone rings and he says “Hello, this is Joe.” I said “Joe who?” And he said “Barbera!...kid, come on back” so I packed up and went on back.

Kenny Muse? Oh, yeah. We were over there on La Brea. And Ken’s sittin’ next to me and he was doing something like a hundred feet a day, and a dollar a foot...There I am doing seven [?] feet a day and a buck a foot....There I am sitting with an assembly line making a layout and handing them to Ken and he’s turning his hearing aid down and he’s doing a hundred feet a day for a hundred bucks a day. Augie Doggie. And he’s sittin’ there with his bottle of booze and he’d take a sniff [Bob indicates with his hand that Muse took a swig then made a drawing]...That’s how he got his footage.

Augie Doggie. Yeah, it was a fun little show because it was very limited but it was very good.

The cartoon could be Pup Plays Pop, about Augie and Doggie Daddy switching roles for the day. It’s the only one I can find that’s animated by Muse that Bob worked on. The others with Bob’s name in the credits are Fox Hounded-Hound, In the Picnic of Time (both animated by Lew Marshall), Tee Vee or Not Tee Vee (Carlo Vinci) and Big Top Pop (Gerard Baldwin).

Bob has another interesting revelation about Mike Maltese. He says when he arrived at Warners (for twice as much as he was making at Disney, where he started at $16 a week), he was put in the story department and got Maltese a job there; Maltese had been in the lower rungs of the animation department. Maltese used to make postage-stamp sized sketches and Givens had a way of using a magnifying glass to “decipher” them and create a storyboard.

He reveals that Ed Benedict dated his sister in high school.

And he jokes that he “started Filmation” because Lou Scheimer’s first job in animation was doing backgrounds for Bob at the Kling studios for five years. Anyway, you can hear all this for yourself in the interview.

Andrew made the fine caricature of Bob Givens in this post. You can check out Andrew’s DeviantArt site
HERE, where there are links to a bunch of his other sites.

Wednesday 25 August 2010

The Life of Joe Barbera in Four Drawings

We’ve brought you several old newspaper columns based on the tale of the Tom and Jerry guys who had been kicked out of MGM but now were creating wonderful TV cartoons loved the world over and becoming wealthy through commercial tie-ins. H-B’s PR people must have had the story down pat. Here is it again. What’s different about this syndicated feature is it also includes drawings credited to Joe Barbera.

Barbera could draw. Several of his single-panel efforts were bought by magazines in the early ‘30s. He had animated at the Van Beuren Studio in New York (I’m waiting for the wizards who are able to do this sort of thing to identify his animation in, say, a Molly Moo Cow short) then moved to Terrytoons before heading west and joining MGM where he gave up animating to write for Friz Freleng. Then, after a bit of staffing turmoil, came a partnership with Bill Hanna and a certain cat and mouse.

The feature writer is Harvey Park. He was based in New York, but I don’t know which syndicate employed him. This ran in newspapers on the weekend of January 28-29, 1961.

Bill Hanna, Joe Barbera Make a Mint

AN ORIGINAL painting by one of the old masters brought a fantastic $750,000 at auction a few years ago. Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera, a couple of animation artists, will gross over 40 million dollars this year and will not be represented by any museum in the world.

Naturally the work of men like Rembrandt and Picasso will live longer than the Hanna-Barbera creations, but the current generation of American youngsters will remember Huck Hound and Quick Draw McGraw with the same fondness and nostalgia their parents reserve for Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. This may not bring immortality to Hanna-Barbera any more than it will to Disney, but how many cakes of soap and party tablecloths carry Rembrandt’s self-portrait.

Joe Barbera, the New York-born half of the team, came East recently to visit his old haunts. Barbera studied at the American Institute for Banking and, for a short time, worked as an accountant with a New York bank. “I’m going down there tomorrow morning to visit some of my old buddies,” he explained. “A few of them have made good and hold jobs like chief clerk and assistant manager and even vice president. Not bad for 25 years.” Barbera disclaimed any intention to buy the bank and give it to Yogi Bear as a birthday present.

I asked him to draw the story of his life in a four-panel cartoon and I’m convinced the accompanying pictures are a fraud. His mother, who still lives in Brooklyn, would not have bawled him out for marking up the walls because he wasn’t that interested in drawing as a boy. He wanted to be a writer and still admits to a driving ambition to write a play for Broadway.

Success Record
As far as being expelled from college goes, Joe Barbera has a record for success and people who know him are convinced that if he had stayed with banking it would be known as the Barbera Trust Co. today.

“It may not be exactly my life,” said Joe with a smile as he finished the final frame, “But maybe it’s my partner’s.”

This season Hanna-Barbera have jumped into a night-time programming with The Flintstones (7:30 p.m. Friday, ABC-TV), one of the season’s few hits. I frankly told Joe that I was disappointed in the program and found it less imaginative than Huck Hound or Quick Draw McGraw.

“I know exactly what you mean,” said Barbera. “You don’t consider it ‘adult.’ But we never said it would be. That was all part of a publicity buildup. It was designed for early evening entertainment and the central characters are adults instead of animals. But nowhere in the format did we promise people an animated New Yorker magazine. We’d love to try it, but it would run about one week.”

Proud of Series
Barbera is actually quite delighted by its success. He personally supervises the writing and prefers all his story-line writers to be animators. “A man who draws will always write about situations that lend themselves to animation,” he explains.

Hanna and Barbera met some 24 years ago when they were both working for MGM. They created a series called “Tom and Jerry” and they stayed with MGM for 125 cartoons, and seven Academy Awards. In 1957 they left MGM and tried to crash into TV with their revolutionary ideas for creative TV cartoons within the limited budget of the medium. Screen Gems finally decided to take a chance with them and the results have been phenomenal.

I went home that night and found my wife preparing for our daughter’s fourth birthday party. The paper tablecloth with Huckleberry Hound; the hats had Yogi Bear on them; the paper plates had both Huck and Yogi; and for favors there was an assortment of Huck soap and a group of Hanna-Barbera dolls.

I guess next year no kiddy birthday party will be complete without a big bowl of Fred Flintstone 100-proof punch.

Though Barbera had an ability to quickly draw story sketches during his years co-directing at MGM, he didn’t design the characters (Harvey Eisenberg perhaps?). And when the TV animation studio started he had Ed Benedict, Bick Bickenbach and Dan Gordon do that for him. So if those cartoons are Barbera’s work, it’s remarkable to my admittedly untrained eye how much they look like Bickenbach’s style, right down to the shape of the letters ‘e,’ ‘y’ and ‘g’ in the third panel, drawn the exact same way in the “Except Yogi” handwriting in the famous opening of The Yogi Bear Show.

Sunday 22 August 2010

Learn to Speak the Huckleberry Way

“Them’s mighty purty words. Mighty purty.” – Huckleberry Hound.

Huckleberry Hound’s command of the vernacular would seem suspect, at first sight, er, sound. You won’t hear it taught in English classes at Oxford, Yale or Pumpkin Center Intermediate in Lincolnton, North Carolina. Huck graduated from the Charlie Shows-Warren Foster Academy, magna cum lousy. But .... hey, Foster would appreciate that really bad old pun .... but someone appreciates the way the happy hound dips his dipthongs.

As odd as it may seem, Huckleberry Hound has been used to teach English in Malaysia. I couldn’t make this up. Check out THIS story from the Malaysian Star.

It’s nice to know Huck’s not forgotten. And he certainly isn’t by the good denizens of friendly little community of Wallace, Idaho. Unfortunately, you’ve just missed this year’s Huckleberry Festival there, as reported HERE by the Shoshone News Press. One of the highlights of the event was the Huck Hound contest. The paper doesn’t reveal what it was about, but we don’t believe dogs were entered in an event to bite the enticing rumps of mailmen. Appropriately, the Huck fest raised money for the food bank in Kellogg, Idaho.

So that’s our Hanna-Barbera news roundup.

But, as a bonus for you putting up with a pun even the Jay Ward studios wouldn’t touch (on second thought, I paraphrased Boris Badenov’s ‘magna cum louse’), I’m going to post something that was in the music widget when the blog first got underway. It’s a 1959 Colpix LP featuring audio tracks from three cartoons from the Huck show of the 1958-59 season—Yogi’s Hide and Go Peek, Pixie and Dixie’s Jinks Junior and Sheriff Huckleberry. Yes, this is the real thing starring Daws Butler and Don Messick, with Huckleberry Hound as our host introducing each little adventure. And you can read the liner notes by clicking on the album back cover.

A minor disappointment is a game-show Wurtlizer has replaced the usual background music, but I suspect the Hi-Q and other assorted libraries couldn’t have been licensed for recordings. Anyway, it’s always a treat to hear Daws and Don in action. Just click on the name of each cut and your computer’s mp3 player should do the rest.

The Missing Eleyphint Pt. 1
The Missing Eleyphint Pt. 2
Ain’t So Easy to Catch a Meecy Pt. 1
Ain’t So Easy to Catch a Meecy Pt. 2
Dinky Dalton and the Showdown at Hoedown Corral

This should be especially useful for our readers in Malaysia. I done reckon. For an old LP, the sound is mighty purty.

Saturday 21 August 2010

Pixie and Dixie — Rapid Robot

Produced and directed by Joe Barbera and Bill Hanna.
Credits: Animation – Carlo Vinci; Layout – Dick Bickenbach; Backgrounds – Joe Montell; Story – Warren Foster; Story Sketches – Dan Gordon; Titles – Art Goble; Production Supervision – Howard Hanson.
Voice Cast: Pixie, Robot Cat, Robot Dog – Don Messick; Dixie, Jinks – Daws Butler.
First aired: week of Sept. 21, 1959.
Plot: Pixie and Dixie and Mr Jinks use a robot cat and a robot dog in a spirited effort to best each other (Chicago Tribune summary).

For some reason, when Warren Foster arrived to write for the second season of The Huckleberry Hound Show, he felt he had to re-work the first season cartoon Kit Kat Kit. This cartoon suffers from the same problem Charlie Shows’ story did in the first season—it takes too long for anything to happen and it isn’t really laden with gags. About all you can say is the dialogue’s better than the earlier cartoon, but dialogue is about all you’ll find in this one. Even Carlo Vinci’s animation isn’t very inspired, though he gives us lots of tongue.

Robot cat-chase-mouse cartoons don’t always work very well. David Mackey points out in the comments that the germ of this one is in Hanna and Barbera’s fast-paced MGM short Push-Button Kitty (1952), another ‘replace-lazy-Tom’ cartoon, where Mechano and his remote control arrive in a package by mail. Chuck Jones did a couple of ‘robot’ Tom and Jerrys that, frankly, induce boredom (one with the subtitle Science on a Wet Afternoon that’s pure Pretentious Jones). Far better was the (mouse-less) Bugs Bunny short Robot Rabbit (1953), with funny dialogue and strong gags. I’ve always like “The rabbit kicked the bucket” scene for pure silliness. Foster wrote that one, and it’s a shame he couldn’t have imbued this short with some of the same humour, though perhaps that’s asking a bit as Pixie and Dixie are not aggressive characters like Bugs.

Even their lippiness is tamer than Bugs, and that’s about all we get in the first scene of the cartoon. The meece stroll past the sleeping Jinks to get some breakfast (“We’ll be as quiet as mice,” puns Dixie). The cat wakes up and threatens the calm mice with “Endsville.” “Talk, talk, talk, talk,” responds Dixie. “Actions speak louder than words, Pussycat!” adds Pixie. That’s Jinks’ cue to start the chase. The angular, jerky animation, big wide mouth on the cat and the diving exit off scene should tell you right away that Vinci drew this cartoon.

“Come on, Jinks, we can’t wait all day,” goads Dixie. “Humilerate me, will ya?” shouts the cat. The mice run into their hole. Jinks doesn’t quite make it. The dialogue isn’t exactly brimming over with Bugs Bunny-type wit.

Pixie: Every day, the same thing—chase, chase, chase.
Dixie: Yeah. Then ‘bam!’ and his eyes roll around.
(Mice laugh)
Jinks: Awwwww-wl right, you meeces. Uh, you will not be yuckin’ it up when a certain thing comes from a certain place.
Dixie: Yack, yack, yack, yack.

Just then, the doorbell rings. We get a two-drawing head shake. This is the showed-down version.

Jinks gets a package at the door. Inside is the title character. Jinks gives him a little test drive. There’s nothing funny here. It’s just action to fill time. So, we’re almost three minutes into the cartoon and we’ve had one chase, cycle animation of a metallic cat and some unbiting sarcasm. This is not one of Foster’s best.

Finally we get to a facetious conversation between the mice and the cat wherein Pixie and Dixie inform Jinks what they plan to do that day (in short, watch him fail) and he replies that he’s through chasing them and “I ain’t goin’ a bang my head no more, no more” (Foster seems to have resisted the temptation to add “Hit the road, Jack”). That’s the cue for the robot cat to chase (and pass them), suck them inside him like a vacuum (except there’s a magnet sound effect; are the meece made of metal?) and deposit them outside.

Pixie (stuttering): Eh, wa-wa-wa-dih-dih-dih-dee-dih...
Dixie: Pixie, you took the words right out of my mouth.

While Jinks snoozes, the mice bring in a box containing an electric dog. They test it out and it growls and barks. “Save me, Dixie!” cries Pixie after jumping on the other mouse. Carlo’s phoning it in. Pixie doesn’t look frightened.

Jinks hears the mice and presses a button to active his robot. Dixie does the same. But the mechanical dog swooshes past the robot cat to go after Jinks. The metal cat continues on after the mice. The funniest animation comes here where the dog, in a couple of quick drawings, swallows Jinks. Dogs don’t normally consume cats, but they do in Warren Foster’s world. He wrote Gift Wrapped (1952), where Hector the Bulldog swallowed Sylvester. In fact, Foster loved the gag so much, he did it twice in this cartoon (the second time, with re-used animation after the dog chomped on a broom handle).

Jinks yells for help. I love the floppy tongue here. Four positions.

More floppy tongue as Jinks screams while he’s being chased. Finally, Jinks and the meece meet at a vent in the wall. They all dive through before the two robots smash into each other. But all the collision does is create a two-headed robot, with the cat’s head at one end, and the dog’s at the other. So the conjoint contraption now chases Pixie, Dixie and Jinks.

The final scene has the three of them up a tree while each of the heads of the bizarre robot take turns growling and screeching at them.

Dixie: When do you think we can get down, Jinksie?
Jinks: Ah, when their batteries run down. And they’re, like, uh, guaranteed for six months. Wow.

That’s the end. Less than a wow.

There’s a rarity in this one. Jinks actually says the word “mice” early in the cartoon, though he uses it as a singular noun.

All you favourite Pixie and Dixie composers are here and, as usual, we get Jack Shaindlin’s ‘Toboggan Run’ and ‘On the Run’ during the chase scenes.

0:00 - Pixie and Dixie main title theme (Curtin).
0:13 - ZR-51 LIGHT ANIMATION (Geordie Hormel) – Mice stroll past Jinks with cheese.
1:05 - LAF-5-20 TOBOGGAN RUN (Shaindlin) – Jinks chases mice into hole and crashes.
1:20 - TC-300 ECCENTRIC COMEDY (Bill Loose-John Seely) – Mice in hole, Jinks gets package, presses gold button.
2:13 - ZR-47 LIGHT MOVEMENT (Hormel) – Robot cat shakes; goes for a test run; skids to a stop.
2:35 - L-81 COMEDY UNDERSCORE (Spencer Moore) – “Welcome back, slave”; Jinks talk to mice, “Yikes! What’s that?”
3:38 - TC-221A HEAVY AGITATO (Loose-Seely) – Robot cat chases mice; plops them outside.
3:54 - L-81 COMEDY UNDERSCORE (Moore) – Pixie at a loss for words.
4:03 - L-1139 ANIMATION COMEDY (Moore) – Jinks decides to nap, mice bring box into house.
4:34 - L-1121 ANIMATION NAUTICAL (Moore) – Mice test robot dog, “Sounds like those meeces are back.”
4:55 - TC-303 ZANY COMEDY (Loose-Seely) – Jinks presses button.
4:59 - TC-221A HEAVY AGITATO (Loose-Seely) – Robot cat goes after mice, robot dog chomps down Jinks.
5:34 - TC-303 ZANY COMEDY (Loose-Seely) – Jinks opens mouth; runs off; is swallowed again; zips out of scene.
5:55 - LAF-5-20 TOBOGGAN RUN (Shaindlin) – Jinks and mice dive into vent, robot dog and cat crash.
6:14 - TC-202 ECCENTRIC COMEDY (Loose-Seely) – Jinks and mice look at damage, cat/dog robot shakes.
6:26 - LAF-2-12 ON THE RUN (Shaindlin) – Cat/dog chases Jinks and P&D up tree.
6:58 - Pixie and Dixie end title theme (Curtin).