Sunday, 14 August 2011

11. Yodeling Yokels (1931)

Warner cartoon no. 10.
Release date: June 1931.
Directors: Hugh Harman and Rudolf Ising.
Producers: Hugh Harman, Rudolf Ising and Leon Schlesinger (associate).
Starring: Johnny Murray (Bosko).
Animation: Rollin Hamilton and Norm Blackburn.
Musical Score by: Frank Marsales.

This short is more or less sort of an action-climax short where it would involve Bosko or Honey in peril, and it's also a "cutaway" short where it has two stories, and a minor, unimportant piece of a particular mouse. Let's see when we roll the review:

The short opens with Bosko up in the Alps and he is yodeling, playing the accordian and is jumping from Alp to Alp. He seems to be exploring around the mountains and is having fun yodeling happily. What you will also notice is that there is an alp that comes to life and yodels. Now that, (in my opinion) is kind of creepy in a way. Of course, Harman-Ising used this a lot where objects or non-living objects come to life, and the alps is kind of scary, because imagine me being Bosko and yodeling, and I saw an alp yodeling, I'd probably fall off by a fright.

Bosko also uses his accordion to move to different alps, and even moving upwards to a higher alp, and the accodion lowering down to a lower alp. It's kind of a bland gag if you ask me. There is also goats, and even bears that appear to be dancing to Bosko and playing leap-frog.

Bosko encounters an owl sleeping on an oak tree (because they sleep during daytime), and Bosko yodels at the owl first, maybe as a greeting or something. The owl, a rather grumpy owl - blows a raspberry to Bosko either because he disturbed his sleep or just isn't interested in any yodeling whatsoever. So, as part of Bosko's vengeance, he brings out a gun and shoots at the owl, with all of his feathers been blown out and the owl is now naked and embarrassed, and walks away from Bosko disgusted.

Wow, I thought the whole time that Bosko was an animal lover, and that he wouldn't kill them - and yet he would shoot an owl, and blow it's feathers off. I suppose, that's because the animal was not nice to him and he thought it was okay to shoot him. Wow, that's kind of dark; and yet I thought he loved animals, and his character personality always seem to vary in different shorts - and is usually a happy chappie and (a little bit menacing), but that 's in the singing and dancing shorts, he's different in the story shorts. I wonder if Harman-Ising wrote all the shorts themselves, or had various storyguys doing different shorts, like one story guy would do the singing and dancing, and the other would to the story shorts with climaxes.

Meanwhile, Bosko notices a hut in the alps, and yodels and then is replied by Honey - who yodels as well. As Honey yodels, even a cat pops out of her underwear in a washing line and yodels. Honey decides to join Bosko outside and runs down the stairs. In the meantime, a curious mouse walks out of his mouse hole and walks through the house. As Honey skips along yodeling happily, and as Honey is waiting by a tree where Bosko is standing, Bosko jumps off and slides down the tree and breaks the branches while reaching down.

So, Bosko ends up on a ski ride with Honey surprisingly, and then Bosko and Honey hit a rock, and it leaves Bosko flying up and hitting back down on the ground and Honey ends up sliding down a hill and she rolls down, and more snow goes onto Honey, and soon afterwards she turns into a snowball, she then slides off the hill and lands into dangerous icy water, where she could perish.

So, Bosko is still skiing downhill, and it's his duty to save Honey from the icy water, and he has to slide down with a bunch of trees and he has to avoid from being hit by them. The gag is sort of reused from Sinkin in the Bathtub. Now, Bosko is at risk himself, as the same with Honey.

Meanwhile, the mouse continues to wander around the house, and climbs on top of a kitchen board, and discovers a loaf of cheese on the ground, and a pile of peas on a plate. He's not going to eat the cheese (as you probably thought that was the plan), instead, the gag here shows the mouse breaking a piece of dried spaghetti and uses it as a golf club, uses the peas as golf balls and the cheese holes as putting. He keeps missing the holes, and that angers him with frustration every time.

I find those cutaway scenes with a mouse pointless, and I mean it has nothing to do with alpine, or the concept of the story here. This would be better off being featured in a Merrie Melody cartoon in the future, but not for Bosko. The audience need to focus on Bosko trying to rescue Honey, and come on - I don't care about a mouse trying to score a point while putting, I'm more concerned on Bosko rescuing Honey (even though it's just a cartoon and I'm not really THAT concerned). This is sort of pointless to me, and I think it ought to be cut, although I suppose if it was cut that the whole cartoon would be too short, and Harman-Ising must add something that has nothing to do with the story.

So, Honey is stranded in an icy field and she cries for help (particularly calling Bosko for help), and she nearly drowns in freezing water, and in this type of temperature - I never thought she would panic and just freeze in the water and get hypothermia, but I suppose that she has to the energy to panic and that's keeping her slightly warmer.

In the meantime, while Bosko is at the rescue, and he spots a first aid station where a Saint Bernard dog comes out and Bosko warns him about danger head, and so the first aid Saint Bernard and Bosko run on the way to save Honey from being killed. They have to go through ice blocks through the icy waters so they won't freeze, and they are trying not to fall over.

As the dog and Bosko finally discover Honey (as she is about to fall down a waterfall), Bosko saves Honey by "extending" the dog's teeth to grab her in time, and that's a pretty useful gag, and it just goes to show that it's just a cartoon and anything could happen. Well, in a cartoon like Disney - it would have to be believable and they would use ropes.

Well, all's well - end's well. Bosko and Honey are reunited again, and the dog barks happily and even a bear comes by and joins the celebration. Bosko and Honey kiss as they reunite and then the cartoons ends a happy ending. I guess it's also a happy ending for that mouse who's still playing golf, as he's finally got the ball into the hole after too many strokes - and that's all folks!

Overall, this cartoon was not as good as the others that were improving. It's a climax short, and yet I find most of it quite boring. The beginning scenes were quite boring with the dancing going on, and the only parts that were the highlight were the climax scenes which were always exciting. The mouse scenes were really not worth being placed in that short, and they could've extended the short with something better (chances are, they couldn't think of anything better). The reused gags that usually appear to get very dull and boring, and that's why after too many of the gags - there is no original gag in this short, to be honest. I suppose what I did like was the title card with a background by it, and it's a change from the plain black background in the title cards. More or less, it wasn't a cartoon I particularly enjoyed. But oh well, maybe the next short might be better watching.

Next up: Bosko's Holiday

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