Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Big Man From The North (Feb 1931)

A Plot! A Plot! Finally A Plot! Well, sort of. The cartoon starts off at a Mounted Police station in the middle of a blizzard. Bosko enters causing the storm to blow hard into the building. In the process of re-shutting the door, the Captain loses his pants. He tells Bosko to go "get your man", a mean looking figure with no name, but he's wanted dead or alive whoever he is. Bosko goes out to his dog sled, with a team of dogs in no way prepared for life in the snow. And one not prepared to pull a sled, since he is about a fifth the size of the other dogs. Bosko goes on a sled ride involving a couple of gags and ends up slamming into a bar in the middle of nowhere. Inside, Honey is singing and Bosko sings with her. This is the only vestige of the random music making of the earlier cartoons. Eventually, the Bad Guy comes in and Bosko plucks up the courage to fight him. They have a gun battle in the dark and Bosko stabs the guy in the rear with an ENTIRE SWORD, no really, up to the hilt! Oddly, that does not dispatch the villain, it doesn't even really phase him. Eventually Bosko shoots off his fur, leaving him a skinny weakling and he runs off embarrassed.

Notable Gags:
Bosko pulls off the pants of his boss while being blown by the wind.
Bosko has a tiny dog on his sled team that doesn't reach the ground as they run.
The dogs legs adjust to the up and down landscape, classic gag.
When the dogsled slams into the bar, the dogs meld together and walk off.
Bosko's Gun is apparently a cork-gun
Bosko uses a machine gun on Mr. Baddie
Bosko Sticks an entire sword into Mr. Baddie's rear-end
Bosko shoots off Mr. Baddie's fur, leaving a skinny weakling

I have to say I like this one a little. It's about time we got to an attempt at a plot. I know that even in the Golden Age toons plots were mostly thinly veiled excuses for gags, and that's ok. But even a weak plot is better than random, unconnected gags. The fight at the end isn't as clever as say, Bugs v. Sam, but I can see how blowing the fur off of the villain would have been at least entertaining in the early days.


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