Friday, October 16, 2009

Hold Anything (November, 1930)

So, another post - and it's only been a week or so! We've got another Bosko cartoon. Yay! or something. No, really, not to go all negative on what I'm doing, but it's hard to be very entertained by these early cartoons. But enough about me - on to the cartoon.

We start with another excuse for turning ordinary objects into musical instruments. Today's lesson is how to turn a construction site into a symphony orchestra. After using a rivet gun (or whatever that's called) to make music, Bosko finds an unwitting partner in music in a mouse that he uses to play a saw. And to illustrate the maxim that no good deed goes unpunished, the mouse is rewarded for his volunteer work by getting cut in half - which is funny and not sad because he comes back together and is O.K. The mouse eventually falls into the mouth of a rivet-eating goat. And escapes by walking out of the door that is in his stomach.

After goofing off playing a saw with a mouse, Bosko apparently decides it's time to get some work done and scolds the goat and mouse. But this is really more of his his need to get back to making music. He sees Honey "working" in an office, we know she's working because she is using a typewritter. To bridge the gap between his hanging beam and her window Bosko plays the ropes and creates physical musical notes that he uses as steps.

Bosko gets to Honey's typewritter and inserts the music to the title song and as he types the music plays and types out the words to the song. He continues to play the typewritter as a piano and Honey dances on the ledge. The goat tries to eat the whistle and gets filled with steam - which is very convenient for Bosko who uses him as an instrument I can only describe as "playing a goat full of steam with a whistle in its mouth". Bosko falls, and does a classic split on impact and comes back together, after dancing on bricks like a piano.

Notable Gags:

Dancing/Marching mice extend their legs to stay level instead of going down steps.

The mouse that plays the saw gets his head cut off and his body tries to catch it.

Goats eat everything - classic

Goats have doors in their stomachs, missed that in Biology class

Typewritters are pianos if you put sheet music into them. - A good reason to buy Warner Bros. music.

Honey can detach at the waist - Awesome!

Goats are also very stretchy - points for the best real world application of this fact.


I am unfamiliar with this song, which is not new and will not get old. But that may have something to do with me not really getting these older cartoons. So at the risk of getting too repetitive, I will try not to bring up the fact that I just don't find these old cartoons to be very good.

That being said, Some of the above gags deserve a bit more mention. First the goat. This is the first goat in the Looney Tunes world and it sets the stage for the trope of goats will eat anything. At this point there is nothing too extreme, just some bolts and a bit of string. But its good to know they were thinking along those lines already.

Bosko creating physical notes to use as steps offers up another early beginnings of a cartoon tradition - namely, if you need something - just make it! Sure he plays the notes out instead of just producing them from his pocket, but it's still the same thing.

Well that's really all I have for this one. Sorry if it seems disjointed, I wrote it over a week or so.