Monday, June 29, 2009

Cartoon a Day: The Bowling Alley-Cat

The Bowling Alley-Cat
Directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera
Available on: Tom and Jerry Spotlight Collection Vol. 2

With my Father's Day gift card I managed to pick up Volume 2 of the Tom and Jerry DVD sets. So here is one of the shorts on that collection, and early one called "The Bowling Alley-Cat."

This is an early short for the cat and mouse team. The design of Tom is quite a bit different than what we'd come to know. His head seems rounder, eyes a bit larger and he's a bit more scraggly looking.

You can probably figure out the plot from the title, Tom and Jerry try to kill each other in a bowling alley. It is a great location for them as there are lots of new ways of causing injury to each other.

Actually, the film seems somewhat tame for a Tom and Jerry short, until about halfway through...right about the time Tom gets a bowling ball in caught in his mouth and then is creamed in the face by about half a dozen more. It actually goes to show one of this cartoons greatest strengths, it builds. The level of violence/humor keeps ramping up as the short progresses. Hanna and Barbera are patient with their best bits which shows their skill as directors.

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