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"Baseball Bugs" (1946), Bugs Bunny Pitches As The Gas-House Gorillas Play The Tea Totallers

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On 4/14/2015 at 10:46 AM, Al Dente said:

The fielding has been atrocious.


Baseball Bugs!

This is the episode where Bugs turns to the camera and says, "Watch me paste this pathetic palooka with a powerful, paralyzing, poifect, pachydoimous, percussion pitch."

Full cartoon, streaming on dailymotion.com

Take note of Carl W. Stalling's screamer (*) right after the opening theme is finished (it starts just after the 0:15 mark, and lasts only 12 seconds). This man wrote one complete score every week for twenty-two years! That is Thomas Kinkade-like in its consistency and longevity. Stalling should be better-known than he currently is.

The great thing about frame-by-frame animation (well, other than providing awesome quality), is that you can pick up some funny things, such as the fans throwing bottles of alcohol into the air along with their hats:

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 12.36.02.png

"There goes a screaming liner into left field!"

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I *love* that they used a gentleman of color as the announcer - Jackie Robinson would not debut with the Brooklyn Dodgers until the following year (1947). Was this a subtle middle finger to racism and discrimination?

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 12.40.47.png

This is so funny - as the Gas-House Gorillas are running up the score (the "score board" in the 4th inning shows the score is 96-0, and the opposing pitcher is 93 1/2 years old), with one batter after another hitting homer-after-homer, they form a conga line to march around the bases:

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 12.44.31.png

Food related: Ads for "Manza Champagne" and "Lausbub's Bread." The billboard that says "Ross Co. Finer Footwear For The Brats" is named for animator Virgil Ross (I got that tidbit from Wikipedia): 

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 12.59.41.png

This is just an unbelievable coincidence: The billboard in left field says "Filboid Studge," and "Philboyd Studge" (do a search on it inside that link) was the narrator's nickname in "Breakfast of Champions" which I only recently finished. In a lottery-like coincidence, I've apparently randomly stumbled across the only two modern references to the name in pop-culture history. Its origin is very obscure - it was in a story by writer Hector Hugh Munro aka "Saki." Maybe coincidences like this happen all the time, and nobody ever notices because they aren't paying attention? Or maybe this is just plain weird.

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 13.27.15.png

When Bugs tags the runner in the gut at home plate, four little angels - images of the runner himself - appear over his head, doing a little "baseball dance." It's ingenious details like these that make Bugs Bunny cartoons something more than just special:

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 13.35.10.png

Paying close attention during observation can reap great benefits, and I found a blatant mistake in the cartoon that I don't believe has ever been found before: As we're preparing for the finale at the 5:19 mark, the announcer announces the score: "Bugs Bunny 96, the Gas-House Gorillas 95":

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 13.43.58.png

But if you go back to 1:36 in the cartoon, the Gorillas scored a 96th run which briefly flashed up on the scoreboard:

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 13.40.43.png

My contributions to mankind are now complete.

ETA: Fuck a dog. Why doesn't the person running moviemistakes.com get a damned life?

Ha! Ha! Ha! During the climax, the Statue of Liberty chimes in, and it's none other than Bea Benaderet, using her "Little Red Riding Rabbit" voice.

Screenshot 2015-04-14 at 13.54.20.png

Did I really just spend an hour and a half analyzing a Bugs Bunny cartoon?

(*) More importantly, keep your cod-damp (**) sole away from the gutter.

(**) First recorded usage in English-language history. This is historically important. It is. Really.

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I'm not sure about "Best. Post. Ever." for me but sign me on for "What an awesome post!"

And, Al, nothing personal but I'm hiring Don if I ever start an uber-hip Online Old Cartoon Deconstruction Company. Our IPO would be way more successful than Groupon and Yelp combined, man!

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It's funny, now that I've watched this again, I see that there are *so many* more interesting details I could have given up above - I'd actually love to do more things like this. Everyone seems to enjoy this type of diversion (which doesn't need to be devoid of intellect - remember this Jib-Jab parody? There are a thousand details in here), and this world needs more happiness.

Maybe if I had a do-over in 2005, I'd analyze cartoons for everyone. :)

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