Release date: November 30, 1935.
Series: Merrie Melodies.
Supervision: Friz Freleng.
Producer: Leon Schlesinger.
Starring: Elmer Vincent (Megaphone director).
Musical Score: Norman Spencer.
Animation: Paul Smith and Don Williams.
Sound: Treg Brown (uncredited).
Well, you'd probably have expected for The Fire Alarm to have been the next cartoon if you were following Dave Mackey's site - but this cartoon has an EARLIER release date than 'The Fire Alarm' so - I'm reviewing them via release date order. It's also believed to be the first cartoon to go into 3-strip Technicolor.
We see these bluebells that then start to use their bells to go into chorus rhythm to the title song. The next sequence then shows these group of flowers who are placing some petal over their stem bodies.
The bumble bee couple look at the audience as they are being watched and rush out of the scene. The ballerina dance by the petal flowers isn't very special animation in my opinion but I imagine that all the animators probably studied this by live-action; maybe but it's highly improbable that Schlesinger would EVEN hire actors to perform live-action footage; so they probably used some old film of dancing in the Warner Bros. library - perhaps.
The Harpo Marx flower (who is playing the harp) is doing the music for the group of lady flowers that are doing a walk-pose by holding plants as though it's their umbrellas. They walk in a sophisticated attitude which is pretty neat animation although it's really simplistic. It's not the most interesting piece of animation to look at but at least it's sophisticated movement - I have to say.
All of the contestants are eager to take place in the competition. Microphones (flower type of course) then announced about the pageant about to begin and this is Elmore Vincent's voice in this cartoon. The voice speaks very quickly and I can't quite understand the exact words coming up but all I can assume is that it's just announcing the competition; what else could it be about - the announcer talking about what he had for breakfast? Nah-ah.
There is also traffic in the parade that is controlled by the firefly that uses their behind to "STOP". The next part of the parade are these Scottish thistles that are doing the Highland fling. Well, I can tell you that I am in fact half-Scottish but as for Scottish dancing. I've seen better!
The cactus decides to make it look fancy by adding some flower seeds to the ground; then covers the hole in the ground where the seeds are. The cactus sprays it with a water can in which there are roots that grow all over the train with lovely timing of flowers plopping up one at a time. The cactus then starts to unwind the train in which he jumps onto the train to join in the parade. The crowd all seem to appreciate him in the crowd but the judges however aren't impressed and disapprove of the cactus. The cactus' toy train then explodes into pieces leaving him falling flat. Due to his humiliation all of the flowers laugh at the poor cactus.
The plants are still laughing at the cactus' humiliation until they notice the fire (so what was the point of the fade out sequence)? The fire is continuously spreading as all the flowers and plants start to run for their lives. The flowers keeps on being flamed numerous times.
The snail is trying to pace up away from the fire but also suffers a slight turn at it's end which causes the snail to speed up. The snail speeds up in a fast pace (although the animation doesn't seem to move for a while; only backgrounds are). The snail then ends up sitting on a lily pad where it will be safe since he's surrounded by water. See, I told you that the speed in Gold Diggers of '49 was impressive at Warners compared to what you're seeing - now that's definitely nothing special. Although it is fluid animation.
The fire doesn't seem to be going out anytime soon in which there is a tiny flame that runs out of the scene and runs behind the cactus. The baby flame then starts to run through the cactus' legs causing him to scream in pain. The baby flame then turns off the hose in which he leads the other fires to come and chase after the cactus. The entire group of flowers are still leaving as the cactus hasn't shown any improvement in stopping the fire.
The flowers all cheer in which the cactus blushes since he is considered a hero for stopping the fire - most of the fire. Except that the baby flame is the only one left and is hiding behind a soap box. Note that the box reads Pierce's Pine and Tar Soap and of course the background artist used Ted Pierce who would've mean a story writer back then for those cartoons.
and that's all folks.
Overall comments: This cartoon was better than the previous Warner cartoon that was most recently came out although the beginning of the cartoon was pretty soppy stuff to look at. The rest of the cartoon was just pretty bland. I couldn't criticize most of it. It was just a repeated formula (except; no villain chasing girlfriend rubbish). It wasn't a really great cartoon at all; and nothing surprised me about it. I personally didn't see a highlight in the cartoon at all - nothing special to see; it was just really boring. Watching flowers are boring to me. Well, that's the 1935 Merrie Melodies now polished and out of the way and the 1936 Merrie Melodies can hopefully be an improvement since Friz Freleng was still at a low position of the Merrie Melodies but we did get a chance to see him improve on his cartoons in terms of gags which mostly occurred in mid-1935.