Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Chuck Jones' Strangest Cartoon. Ever.

Now Hear This (1962) is a hard to find (and to watch?) cartoon directed by Chuck Jones at Warner Bros. You might describe it as his version of Porky in Wackyland done in a post-UPA style. In any case, thanks to YouTube, you now have an opportunity to see it.


Unknown said...

I probably should take some mind-altering substance and re-watch this for a better understanding of it...

Anonymous said...

Great post. Thanks Mark!

Billy Bob said...

I remember that they used to show this on Nick when I was a lad. I liked it as a child for all it's visual playfull ness, but it's a bit too disjointed now for me.

Michael J. Ruocco said...

I agree with willrmass24. I enjoyed it more as a kid then I do now.

By this time, WB's animation was getting pretty bad. Was this Chuck's last cartoon for Warner Bros.?

Thad said...

Michael J. Ruocco,

Jones' last cartoon for Warners was the Road Runner short "War and Pieces" (released in '64).

This one is pretty intolerable for me as well (though not on my list of 'unmentionable' Warner cartoons).


Tony said...

I first read about "Now Hear This" about 30 years ago and watched for it without success on the first "Merrie Melodies" syndication package (which included other artful Jones one-shot films -- "Nelly's Folly," "Martian Through Georgia," "I Was A Teenage Thumb"). My wait came to an end last month thanks to YouTube.

Jerry Beck called this "a genuine Chuck Jones artistic masterpiece," and I agree. But my guess is that Warner's execs found it too ominous to be shown with films featuring the studio's cartoon stars. So it's interesting to observe that a few folks enjoyed it as kids.

The animation may be simple, but I wouldn't call it bad. There are some good expressions and perspective motions. Watch for evidence of Ben Washam's work -- relatively large pupils with a tiny gleam within.


Anonymous said...

Why is it the strangest?

Because it doesn't look like any of his other Warner cartoons?

You know, he did win an oscar for The Dot and the Line.