Wednesday, January 20, 2010
FLIPPING FOR THE FROG!
It all started when I was a little kid, with a book called “The Great Movie Cartoon Parade” by John Halas and David Rider. That was the first time I saw this strange frog character named Flip. I soon learned that he was created by an artist named Ub Iwerks whose previous claim to fame was designing Mickey Mouse. That’s right, Walt may have conceived the little bugger but his iconic image came from the pen (and creativity) of Iwerks.
I collected Super 8 films when I was a kid. One of the highlights of my hobby was waiting for the Flip cartoons to go on sale in the Blackhawk Films catalog, and then waiting in anticipation of the UPS man to deliver the packages. Flip never disappointed. His was that bizarre, sometimes surreal world that only black and white cartoon characters of the 1930s inhabited.
A big part of that world involved Flip getting menaced by ghosts, monsters and rampaging robots. He wasn’t alone. The theatrical animated cartoons of the 1930s, ‘40s and ‘50s often featured the same “horror-comedy” trappings as the comedy shorts and features of the day.
Of course, today you can get a DVD with dozens of cartoons for the same price I used to pay for a one reel, eight minute Super 8 film. In fact, you can order this nifty Flip the Frog collection right here:
While I won’t be covering these cartoons in my book due to space limitations, I do have the opportunity to share some of them here on this blog, and one of my favorites is Flip the Frog in “Spooks” – so while you patiently await my East Side Kids’ “Spooks Run Wild” review, please enjoy this classic cartoon!
BE SURE TO RETURN ON FRIDAY FOR MY REVIEW OF “SPOOKS RUN WILD” FEATURING THE EAST SIDE KIDS AND BELA LUGOSI!