Friday, 28 December 2012

233. Porky's Tire Trouble (1939)

Warner cartoon no. 232.
Release date: February 18, 1939.
Series: Looney Tunes.
Supervision: Bob Clampett.
Producer: Leon Schlesinger.
Starring: Mel Blanc (Porky Pig) and Billy Bletcher (Porky's Boss).
Story: Warren Foster.
Animation: Norm McCabe.
Musical Direction: Carl W. Stalling.
Sound: Treg Brown (uncredited).
Synopsis: Porky's dog ends up following Porky to the rubber factory - until he already ends up caught in many episode problems.

It felt at the time in 1939 where it was almost compulsory to add a 'starring Porky' title afterwards that we see in some of the cartoons released of that year - even in the cartoons that already bear Porky's name there; and it feels like an assurance or something.

Although the Warner Bros. cartoons were already growing, they were also adding in some new characters who would regularly appear in the cartoons. Porky and Daffy already had that, and even in the Sniffles cartoons so it could possibly attract more audience members by adding in regular characters.

You will hear in the background to the music of Monday Morning which was a popular song composed by Frank Worrel. As the cartoon begins (after the 'starring Porky' and the animation is a cool effect) - we find the cartoon opening as we see a kennel. We hear the music play along to the cue of Mary Had a Little Lamb as the rubbery dog is introduced named Flat Foot Flooky which is a reference to the popular song Flat Foot Floogie (with a Floy Joy). The music cues that we have already heard so far were later reused for the Termite Terrace gag reels that were made in '39 for Christmas parties.

That is an awesome design for the Flooky the rubbery dog there as it looks really cartoony and appealing. I love the fluidity of the animation where he scratches and he pulls a flea out of his body. A very cutesy looking flea there that he has pulled out.

Porky walks out of the house as he is on his way to work as he works for a rubber company. Flooky follows him along to work without Porky's noticing and even appears to copy Porky's quirks as he walks.

As Porky and Flooky walk down to the hill to where he works there is a sign at the door that reads 'No Dogs Allowed'. Porky finishes off that quirky walk (as he appears to stop and use some movement with steps) before he enters the factory. As he is about to enter - the dog walks through his legs and the Porky grabs his tail and tries to stop him from entering. He then warns Flooky he would lose his job and he ties his tail to a hook so he wouldn't escape. The music in the background is Mutiny in the Nursery which is one of my favourite Stalling cues. After the door closes - the dog then digs his way to the ground to enter the factory.

Meanwhile inside the factory we find Porky walking over to his boss who is an oversized walrus. Porky greets his boss.

Porky: Good morning, boss.
Boss: What's good about it? Get to work!

Porky walks over to do his job. The walrus then pulls the machine as there is a bulldozer that moves in perspective to pick up and munch some rubbery items. The bulldozer then grabs out (and I like how it looks like a mouth) and reads the rubbery tree.

There is a very juicy and appealing animated shot as the crawler then munches up the tree like good and then has hands sticking out like chewing gum which is a very appealing animated scene where you can feel how juicy and fluid the animation is. It's also a rather wacky gag to actually give the dirt digger some personality there. I also love how that it then spits out the rubber out of the mouth and it lands inside a waffle iron. Porky opens up the iron and the complete tire is revealed; and it certainly is some clever and inventive ideas on how to create a tire.

Afterwards Porky continues his job routine as he takes the tires out of the iron an the stacks them up. During the horizontal pan; we find he has already stacked up a number of tires. After the pan we notice that the wooden floor is already popping out and it turns out to be Flooky who steps out and wonders inside the tire factory. He struggles to step out, but we know he still has his tail attached to the car - which certainly is funny as he hadn't bothered to untangle himself.

Meanwhile Porky is having his lunch break and he opens his lunchbox to have a slice of some cherry pie. Flooky arrives at the spot and barks. Porky has a jump and then the cherry pie lands on his face. Porky then spots exit and warns him to leave at the exit but Flooky is not uninterested and just licks the pie off Porky.

As he walks on - Porky trips because of the car attached to his tail and it beeps - the dog already tries to 'hush' the car to stop which is certainly a funny effect. The dog then tiptoes out of the scene and is standing on a stool as he is walking around the factory. As he doesn't look where he is going - he ends up falling and splashes off-screen. Some good timing there with the dog falling as we saw the splash.

Flooky then ends up inside a barrel full of rubberising solution and of course, as he accidentally swallows it. It causes him to act so strangely like he wraps a tongue around his head. Afterwards he then tips over the barrel as it splashes.

He picks himself up and then starts to stick himself out of the solution. As he walks - his legs and body all start to move rubbery which is some very fun animation animated there by Bobe Cannon. As he walks on and his legs continue to wobble - his whole body then shoots up in the air automatically and then he crashes down again. He keeps on bouncing.

This is certainly a Clampett celebration for his black and white cartoons with animation experiments. Here, Clampett is engaged with a typical sequence he would come up with (as we saw many times of this in earlier cartoons) and yet he comes up with cool ideas. Afterwards; the dog realises that he can stretch his whole skin and he stretches the skin on his face which is all kooky animation. He then forms different heads into celebrity heads for laughs - he forms into Edward G. Robinson, Edna May Oliver, Clark Gable and even Hugh Hebert.

Flooky doesn't understand what he is doing to himself so he just carries on walking as normal. As he carries on - he tries to walk up that bench but he has his own legs that are just too stretchy that one pair are standing on one bench and the other on the floor which is solid stuff!

It then causes some more trouble as his feet step back down again and he ends up bumping around all over the place and crashing as well. After all the bumping, he ends up caught inside a bottle that also attached is a funnel.

He notices that his own head is caught in the bottle and he uses a lot of his strength to try and get the bottle off his head. After setting the bottle from his head free - he then has to deal with the funnel. He does so with success but he flies out of scene. He then has his own body caught up on the stairs, and as his body is so rubbery his body is in line with the stairs. The dog then walks out with his body caught in a zigzag form which is rather cool.

The boss then arrives as he is already carrying some tires - and finally, something is actually going to happen in the cartoon that is another character as we have focused on almost two minutes of just antics. The boss and the dog are about to talk towards each other but instead the boss walks up the steps of the dog's body and ends up falling.

After the fall, he finds that he has tires that are covering him. He notices that it is a dog and burns up about the fact there are dogs inside the factory. He then gets up as he shouts out, "I hate dogs!". After that tone there is a scared hot dog lying in the table that becomes afraid of that tone, and believing he is going to be attacked. Now that is just a wacky gag that would usually go beyond me - even though the pun is silly.

The boss then finds the dog who is inside the factory and we follow on with a typical chase sequence. There is a scene where the boss grabs the dog's tail so he can be tossed outside. "Now I got ya!" he shouts, but Flooky is so stretchy that he runs over and bites the boss in the behind. The boss yelps and lets go of the dog where he is knocked over.

The boss then tosses him out of the scene, as Porky approaches asking the boss not to harm him. Mmm, it feels like a while since we last saw Porky Pig, didn't we? So there is a sequence that follows as the boss attempts to toss Flooky out of the factory and then Flooky ends up hitting the tree and then back into the factory.

So - the boss pushes Porky out of the way as he tries to save his pet but the boss just tries to toss him out of the window but fails each time. The boss them thinks of an idea as he tosses him out and looks out the window. While it worked for a few seconds, Flooky just shoots straight through the door. This then causes the walrus to fly inside the waffle iron as he steams up. Afterwards - he has a tire that is on his body as he looks at the audience rather worried.

Overall comments: I thought that the cartoon had some pretty cool scenes and sequences for the 1939 Clampett cartoons, and in the era where Clampett's quality deteriorate. This cartoon feels a bit like 1938 again with the quality of the cartoons still shining there. I love Clampett's design of Flooky, the rubbery dog who is really the main focus (and probably) the highlight of the cartoon. It's another cartoon where Porky appears in less screen-time which is pretty common for quite a number of the Porky cartoons of that period. But I feel that in this cartoon Clampett has managed to establish a one-off character who appears more screen time than Porky rather well as he has managed to come up with more tricks up his sleeve like coming up with the ideas for the rubbering solution gag which is just genius animation.

However, I do find that the pacing of the story is certainly slowed down as the scenes with the dog going through a lot of accidental antics does go on for too long and almost takes up about half of the cartoon's running time - even though the cartoon falls rather short, it felt impossible for the writers to come up with a whole story of Porky's job in the rubber factory. Some of the Carl Stalling music cues of this cartoon are one of my favourites ever like Mutiny on the Nursery which is a really catchy tune. Overall, I find that this cartoon is one of the stronger 1939 cartoons.


  1. too bad they couldn't come up with more gags or cartoons with that dog. LOL

  2. I love the way you write and share your niche! Very interesting and different! Keep it coming! mobile truck repair