Sunday, July 29, 2007

Bobe Cannon-"The Dover Boys"

If you read this blog often enough you probably know that Bob Cannon is one of my favorite animators. I've been studying his animation in the "The Dover Boys" a lot in order to understand the whole "smear" technique. I had saved an ass load of frame grabs and was going to post them but I realized that the page would probably go on indefinitely. So instead I'm just posting the scenes at regular speed and also at two frames per second. Can anyone think of cartoon that used smeared drawings since "Big House Blues"? I can't.






15 comments:

Micah said...

Oh my goodness. How I love those smears.

Whe I was in school I saw a ratty VHS of this cartoon and I went nuts for it. I used smears overmuch. I finally consented to moderation for the duration. Once I got to a final project though...

I love Backslide's monologue in the poolhall and his zipping from the run about to the cabin door. His line: "I'll steal it. NO ONE WILL EVER KNOW!" was a class gag.

Thanks for showing those at reduced frame rate. Seeing those drawings stretch out and become so insane is great education.

Anonymous said...

Ya those are some fun clips! But i was woundering where this cartoon can be found?

Kevin Langley said...

Ya those are some fun clips! But i was woundering where this cartoon can be found?

It's on the Looney Tunes Golden Collection Volume 2, disc 2 to be exact.

Bruce said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bruce said...

Now that I think about it, Dan Backslide bears a rather uncanny resemblance to Ken Harris, what with both having a huge nose, as well having semi-huge buckteeth. Ken also had a big collection of automobiles, and he could have been a luring wolf or a lady's man. Could Charles M. Jones have modeled Backslide after Ken? Or was it a flattering caricature? Which ever the case, The Dover Boys is still a classic, regardless of the context of the villain.

In case if you are interested, John Dyson, the grandson of master animator Ken Harris (1898-1982) started a website last year to post artwork, photographs and ephemera Harris had saved. Recently, the kid received a box from his granny when she died a few years back. In this box contained a bunch of old office caricatures done by his co-workers back at Termite Terrace. A lot of the drawings were based on events that had spire at the studio, or were inside jokes, mostly about Ken or someone else.

Kevin Langley said...

Hey Bruce, yeah I remember stumbling onto that site last year but forgot about until it popped up on Cartoon Brew recently. I could definitely see some of Ken Harris in Dan Backslide. That wouldn't be surprising if he was based on him.

Mark Mayerson said...

Great examples, Kevin. I show the same scenes to my students to make them understand what's possible when using drawings.

Okapi Figment William said...

I've alway liked this cartoon. Its quite fast and funny at points. very cool villain.

Tom said...

Note how carefully soft airbrushed the key backgrounds are, so that the hard smears read well. Jones and Bobe Cannon knew exactly what they were doing.

J. J. Hunsecker said...

One of my all time favorite cartoons! I could watch it in its entirety in slow motion just for the smear blurs alone. (However, it helps that it's also a very funny and attractive cartoon, too.)

You asked what cartoon since Big House Blues has used smear blurs? Well, in actuality those type of blurs have been bastardized and overused a lot in the past 15 years of tv animation. Johnny Bravo only moves using a poor man's version of Dover Boys style blurs. I remember even seeing an episode of The Simpsons (early season, probably 1 or 2) that used it too! Even the Simpsons!! The Prince's dog in The Little Mermaid moved with some Cannonesque blurs, too.

Rogelio T. said...

Ya those are some fun clips! But i was woundering where this cartoon can be found?

You could also watch a copy of it here on the ReFrederator website.

Kevin Langley said...

J.J.- Now that you mentioned it I remember seeing it in Johnny Bravo and even those early Simpsons.

flashcartoons said...

wow! that animation in slow mo is very inspiring

Dr. Sabotaje said...

Hi, i saw the cartoon when I was a kid, and soon became one of my favorites.

When I saw your post I remembered this one and wanted to do an article about it. I hope you don't mind if I do. The article it's in spanish, I don't know if you'd be able to read it.

Anyway, it's in here: http://diogenes-producciones.blogspot.com

Kevin Langley said...

-Dr. Sabotaje, nice article. I had to use the google translator but I was able to get the idea from it.