Saturday, January 17, 2009

Cartoon a Day: Spies

Directed by Chuck Jones (uncredited)
Available on: Looney Tunes Golden Collection Vol. 3

Today's cartoon, "Spies," is from Warner Brothers' series of Private Snafu films. These films were produced for the military rather than the general public. It shows in the content of these films. The use of the term "Snafu" alone would not generally have been for public consumption (the "F" doesn't stand for fuzzy if you know what I mean). Not to mention the fact that we see Snafu getting drunk and picking up and going home with a strange woman.

This particular short is directed by Chuck Jones and written by Dr. Seuss. Snafu resembles Elmer Fudd to some degree and is likewise a very expressive character. The scene in which a drunken Snafu spills his guts to a beautiful Nazi spy sitting on his lap features a great range of expressions. It's classic Chuck Jones.

Mel Blanc's voice work is also great. In this short the Snafu voice goes from playful to drunk to panic . It's a great example of Blanc's range.

Ultimately this short is a great example of how a animation, a medium so often associated with children's entertainment, can be effective in providing both humor and a message to an adult audience in a very effective way.

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