Sunday, December 1, 2013

Happy post-Thanksgiving! And, a Ludwig Von Drake/Wonderful World of Disney treat...

I hope that everyone had a pleasant Thanksgiving and extended weekend (if you were lucky enough to, in fact, have Thursday-Sunday off.) I went out with family on Wednesday night, and then stayed at my mom stepfather's house, where the next day's gathering took place. Since Thursday night, I've been home, reading, cleaning and organizing (currently doing laundry), and catching up on sleep.

This episode of The Wonderful World of Disney incorporates the 1957 theatrical short "The Truth About Mother Goose" and the widely-known "Mickey and the Beanstalk" portion of Fun and fancy Free (1947). In animated sequences produced explicitly for this episode, Ludwig Von Drake resumes his host role, with his narration edited over both aforementioned features. It first aired on November 17th, 1963, so it's close enough to a Thanksgiving special presentation, I suppose.

Ludwig is as charming and entertaining as ever, though his on-screen bits are relatively sedentary compared to some of his others -- he's mostly seated, reading to us from an armchair, Masterpiece Theater-style. However, when verbally sparring with his bug friend, Herman,  the jumpy, frazzled Von Drake emerges.

Though the gloomy, stately imagery of the "Truth About mother Ghost" short is markedly different from Von Drake's drab office, they complement each other in that they're both UPA esque. (Though the sketch-like outline inks on Von Drake remind me of Chuck Jones' style from the same era.)The lusher, "rounder" animation and backgrounds -- I suppose the "classic" Disney style; e.g., Snow White, Bambi, etc. --  of "Mickey and the Beanstalk" stands apart, clearly from a different era.

Well, back to work tomorrow. (Sigh.) Have a nice week, everyone.

-- Ryan

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