Sunday 30 April 2023

Tally Ho Ho Ho Backgrounds

Fernando Montealegre was among the first staffers at Hanna-Barbera, jumping over from MGM where he started as an assistant animator and became a background artist. In keeping with the times, his work on Mike Lah’s Droopy shorts (in Cinemascope) at MGM are quite stylised.

He has some fun shapes and colour choices in his early work at H-B, starting with Ruff and Reddy. One cartoon I like is “Tally Ho Ho Ho,” a Yogi Bear adventure that was the third animated short put into production for The Huckleberry Hound Show (first aired Monday, November 10, 1958).

In this cartoon, Monty creates trees using geometric figures of various shades of yellow, with stick-figure trunks and branches. Here are two reassembled pans, though both are, in reality, shorter, as you can see the same clump of trees at either end. In the first, the sign and tree in the foreground are on a cell overlay. See how he handles patches of grass, large rocks and clouds. (You can click on them to enlarge them).

While you’re seeing them in colour, I watched Huck and Yogi in black-and-white. Monty had to make sure the colour choices would look good on non-colour sets.

Lah was the layout artist on this cartoon, and also provided some of the animation.

By the way, this was the sole H-B cartoon where the sound cutter chose what became The Donna Reed Show theme, also in 1958. It was from the Capitol Hi-Q Library, reel L-40, entitled TC-430A Domestic (also known as “Happy Days”). There was a slow version and a fast version.

5-TC-430A Domestic

Read about the cartoon in this post and this post.