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Tag Archive: Friz Freleng


LTPC_Volume_3_Cover    superman_ga_sundays_2_pr

Philosopher George Santayana once said, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” and so revisiting history via its primary sources should be no less important in studying the history of comics and animation.  And with the benefit of our own personal wayback machines (spelled WABAC for you Mr. Peabody fans) sometimes our looks to the past are full of imagery and stories that make us squirm as our sensibilities have improved over time.

We visited this concept here at borg.com with our review of the even-too-sexist-for-a-Bond-novel The Spy Who Loved Me and racism-heavy Live and Let Die.  Can you still enjoy these works knowing how skewed the world view was?  I think the answer can be yes, as long as you maintain your critical eye and acknowledge the improvements we have made.  Ignoring or dismissing these works outright would be worse.

Thanks to the folks at Warner Bros. we previewed a copy of Looney Tunes–Platinum Collection, Volume 3, on Blu-ray, and courtesy of IDW Publishing we have a preview for you of Superman: The Golden Age Sundays (1946-1949), after the break.

Gossamer and Bugs

Who doesn’t remember and cherish the great Looney Tunes cartoons of the mid-20th century, recycled decades after their creation for a 1970s and 1980s cable viewing audience thanks to Saturday morning cartoons?  But, like many comic books and superhero movies today, you might use discretion before sharing with young audiences.  Even the originals were intended for adult movie audiences and it’s amazing networks thought these were once appropriate for kids each Saturday.  And where you may think you watched these cartoons and turned out fine and bigot-free, what about that guy across the street?

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Robinson Robot

I was lucky to catch up with an aspiring creator of short films who has a love for the sci-fi vision of the future as seen through the viewfinder of the past–U.S. filmmaker Michael Prestage.  His films harken back to everything from 1950s serials and commercials to 1960s cartoons like Fractured Fairy Tales, old NASA films, and even the live-action series Tales of the Riverbank.  Michael has a great eye for styles of the past and you could easily see his work used in modern marketing and commercials or to help create the setting for motion pictures taking place in decades past.

I interviewed Michael about three short films, which I am posting in their entirety here.  First, check out Michael’s recent competition entry in the 2013 Firefox Flicks contest:

CB:  Michael, thanks for sharing your work with us today.  Please tell us about your work on Tale of the Firefox.

MP:  Tale of the Firefox was a project that came ridiculously close to never happening.  It was past midnight when I remembered I’d left my PC on in the other room and went to go shut it down.  I got there and there was this little blurb that had popped up sometime in the interim, imploring Firefox users to enter their short film contest proclaiming the virtues of Firefox.  I like Firefox as much as the next person, I’ve been using since the 56k days, but I ran the prospect over my brain cells and I came up dead empty.  I said to hell with it, shut the PC down and forgot about it… or, so I thought.  Lo and behold, I wake up the next morning, grab a scrap of paper and start madly scratching out this offbeat story about a cherubic little kid suddenly finding himself tossed into this creepy netherworld.

CB:  I love the narration that sounds just like someone out of the 1960s.  Was that you or someone else’s voice?

MP:  I’d hit upon the idea of placing my pocket voice recorder inside this old NASA floodlight that I’d been noticing for some time to have unusual resonating properties.  I spent the rest of an afternoon reciting my narration into the amphitheater-shaped lamp, and by that night I had my narrative track laid down exactly as it plays in the completed short.

CB:  How long did Tale of the Firefox take to create?

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