Clint Clobber in “Flamboyant Arms” (1959)

First — in Thunderbean news:

We’re working on getting a batch of special sets dubbed over here in Thunderbeanland, and getting Technicolor Rainbow Parades cleaned up. We’re also working on some behind the scenes stuff and other projects…slower than I’d like, but progress is going overall well in everything. Summers are great for catching things up here if all the planets align. I love that the accessibility to classic animation is growing— in fact, it’s having a really good year. So many good things happening right now.

Thanks also to everyone that bought one of the limited edition T-shirts – it’s going a long way to helping replication costs right now! They’re available through July 15th, along with a few special sets at the Thunderbean Shop.


Annnnnd… today’s cartoon:

“What a Mouse!” declares Clint Clobber, looking at a Mighty Mouse comic book in the first line of Terrytoon’s Flamboyant Arms (1959) and it’s a wonderful little tip of the hat to their own film legacy. Even if you’ve never seen a Clint Clobber cartoon, it’s pretty clear he’s the maintenance guy within the opening minute of the film. The plot involves Clint trying to prepare an apartment complex for inspection, and hilarity ensues?

The story elements in this particular short just don’t come together very well, honestly, both in humor and overall construction. Because of that, it’s easier to just dismiss the short, but it’s worth a little closer look as an animation fan or filmmaker. The ending is quite odd, and I wish there was a better conclusion in writing and direction. The idea seems to come out of nowhere at the end, bringing an almost magic-fantasy elements to a story that had nothing along those lines otherwise.

I actually really like the animation a lot in the cartoon. If you haven’t seen it, watch it twice, and I’ll bet you’ll enjoy the animation more the second time, and it’s pretty fun in pose and timing throughout if not always the best in execution. Connie Rasinski is directing here, with vets like Manny Davis, Eddie Donnelly, Jim Tyer and Johnny Gent animation along with others. Layout is beautiful throughout the film, giving a good performance space. Still on almost any of them and look at the overall simplicity and cleverness is the design and color use.

The Gene Deitch Terrytoons are a real hit-or-miss period, and while this is far from one of the better of the series, the talent involved and really good elements makes it a worthwhile watch. The short definitely has a UPA flavor in design and story. It reminds me of Magoo Cartoons from the mid-50s.

While not a perfect print, it’s nice to see these how they were made, in scope and in Technicolor. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this short.

Have a good week all!

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