Saturday, October 17, 2009

Mighty's Benefit Plan 1 -

Hey the Bakshi Mighty Mouse cartoons are coming out on DVD soon.
World famous Jim Reardon wrote the script for this heartwarming episode. It was inspired by Bob Jaques' adventures working on the Chipmunk movie. He and I came up with the idea over lunch one day while working on Mighty Mouse. We were laughing our heads off in the car on the way back, never really thinking we could make the cartoon, but I pitched it to Ralph just for fun. He laughed and said "Make the Goddamn Picture!"
Here's a great couple of BG layouts drawn by Ted Blackman. It was probably painted by Vicki Jensen.
This is the cartoon show where "retro" and "wonky" really took off. It started a lot of trends. Of course, PeeWee was doing it at the same time in live action and he also started the trend. Our 2 shows played back to back on CBS' Saturday Morning block.
http://www.cartoonthrills.org/blog/spumco/MightyMouse/MBP/1MMScrappyFly2.mov

Read more about angry men and talented rodents.
Chipmunk LP
http://www.animationarchive.org/2009/10/animation-history-of-chipmunks.html

I loved this show as a kid!

31 comments:

GoldDarkShadow said...

I cant wait til this series is released on dvd in January. I like this version of Mighty Mouse because it was so twisted like the Ren and Stimpy cartoons that came after that. Did you direct the Elwy and the Tree Weasels episode because that was the funnest episode in the series.

ratigan said...

YES.

Adam Koford said...

I hope the dvd comes with a free box of Ohoorids.

Ian Andersen said...

Finally, I've been checking Amazon every month or so to see when this would show up, I never saw this as a kid but the clips on youtube make it look great, dvd-fidelity will be a welcome treat.

patrick said...

Alright, great news! finally!!!

Pete Emslie said...

I'm very glad to hear that this series will finally get released on DVD, as I don't believe it was ever put out on VHS way back then either. I'd taped about a half dozen of the shows when it originally aired and really cracked up over them. At that time, though, I must admit that I had no idea who John was, and I'd assumed all the credit must go to Ralph Bakshi for how good they were.

My favourite was the one with the League of Super Rodents, but I've been kicking myself for having missed taping that brilliant one with Elwy and the Tree Weasels. Not only was it a funny parody on The Chipmunks, but all those Beatles documentaries too. Great news that I can finally own the entire series soon!

Cody Clarke said...

I'm very much looking forward to this DVD release! I never got a chance to see these when they aired, but I love the look of the stills I've seen!

ThomasHjorthaab said...

WOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOO!:D Hopefully loaded with awesome bonus crap!:D

Klashka said...

Twist and Writhe! That was my favorite Mighty Mouse episode! The runners up would anything to do with The Cow as well as the episode that featured the pathetic little match girl who made MM's arm dissolve from all her mealy mouthed sap:)

"There are other less fortunate than I"

Zoran Taylor said...

The South Asian - looking girl with the Liza Minelli hair who dances to "Twitch & Writhe" with Elwy is SO adorable and hot that I made her the image verification on my email account for about for about a year. Thas was....Jim? Lynne? You?

Corey said...

I LOOOOVED this cartoon as a kid at the age of around 6 ish ..?

Still love it, glad to hear it's getting a DVD release.

I was always disturbed by the Dave character's 3 cheerios on his tongue.

Any explanation for that, just random ? Haven't seen it in ages.

Trevor Thompson said...

Please tell me they interviewed you or got you to do commentaries.

Also, I know you downplayed the look, John, but the truth is this show literally made my morning ( along with PeeWee )! I had to share the remote with my sister, and one day her show on that channel had been canceled and this came on instead.

It grabbed me by the shirt and pulled me in! The drawings were so funny and the movements were itchy and psychotic, unlike anything I'd ever seen before, and I had been looking.

I remember watching Gummi Bears and The Wuzzles just so I didn't have to look at bad drawing from The Real Ghostbusters ( this is before they did those horrid Slimer cartoons ). And then this came in and blew me away.

And when I saw the first ad for Ren and Stimpy I said 'That's whoever did those crazy drawings on Mighty Mouse I bet!'

This is great. With this and an old DVD of Ripping Friends I found on eBay, my Bakshi/Spumco collection will be complete!! I'd like to see how you'd draw this version of Mighty now, John.

- trevor.

HemlockMan said...

Oh, heck yes! Can't wait to get those!

David C. Matthews said...

Oh yes, I remember those shows scheduled back-to-back... one of my friends at the time said you had to watch "Mighty Mouse The New Adventures" in order to prepare your brain for "Pee-Wee's Playhouse".

"Watch me twitch now!"

Forbidden Hippo said...

I recently watched that episode of Mighty Mouse. The character that was a parody of Dave was really creepy. Right at the end after the Weasles (or whoever they were) finished their show, the Dave character is hugging them and is getting all emotional then his head sinks down accompanied by a sliding noise. The face he makes when that happens is super creepy and I though was very reminiscent of Ren and Stimpy.

Qestion for ya Mr. K:

What the hell is up with the Dave character having a mouth full of cereal the whole time?

Also, the cutout Bakshi face mask is awesome.

Jeff Read said...

I HAD THAT CHIPMUNK ALBUM WHEN I WAS A LITTLE KID.

The record itself was cherry-soda red. My sister always wanted me to play it over and over on my record player.

:: smo :: said...

just a quick note on the pee wee sets: i think a lot of the set design and wonky sorts of things on pee wee were designed by gary panter. and it has it's roots further back in his live show. it's definitely my favorite visual treatment for a live action show.

that was definitely a great saturday morning to grow up with!

jonathan said...

Hi John, glad to finally see the dvd release. I told you at comic con that this was my favorite and I'll be sure to buy it. Thanks for taking the time to speak with me at your autograph session even though I didn't have a ticket.

Mykal said...

John: I have my set on pre-order from Amazon and am very much looking forward to it. Looking at the stills, I was reminded of an animator that I loved as a kid, but couldn't remember his name - other than he was a Terrytoon guy. Looked up Terrytoons on your search engine, and found Jim Tyer! Wow. I watched the Heckle and Jeckle cartoon where they are selling tickets to a ball game. When Jeckle ate the cop's baton like a hot dog, I knew I had found my man!

What a great blog. -- Mykal

Trevor Thompson said...

Yeah, what was with the cereal on the tongue?

tata80 said...

lololololo i canb't wait!!!
and i have question to another dvd: is ''the ultimative ren & stimpy collection''going to come out one day or did you cancelled that plan john?:(

John said...

Hooray! No more ripping low quality videos off YouTube for me!

Nicolás Rivera said...

"World famous Jim Reardon wrote the script for this heartwarming episode"

So now it's ok to present a cartoon by it's writer?

Oliver_A said...

So now it's ok to present a cartoon by it's writer?

Umm... Jim Reardon was a student of Cal Arts.

Zoran Taylor said...

"So now it's ok to present a cartoon by it's writer?"

Scripts are a reality of the business. John didn't have enough creative control at this point to phase out the use of scripts, so he did the next best thing - get someone who's funny and who can draw to do the best job with it that he can.

Sean Lane said...

It will finally be on DVD?! Great news!

I hope it's complete and lacking DNVR, as studios have a tendency to either butcher cartoon releases or just flat out forget episodes. They figure people will just buy whatever just because there's a cartoon character on the front it seems.

WEIRDY said...

Can't wait! Mighty Mouse and Pee Wee were what I lived for when they were on. I had always loved animation but by that point I had started to lose in cartoons because they were sucking so bad. Both shows had so much wild creativity it was like a bolt of electricity!

Mike said...

This episode's been an inspiration to me since you screened it at the Aero. I can get drunk on epic, Technicolor, suspense and horror pictures and clumsily grope for that level of transcendence, but when I see this I want to gather some buddies and have us all barf out gags on a two-dollar budget. Easily buying the DVD set.

Ted Blackman said...

Hi John. Since you asked, I drew the Conquest Malts BG, and I think I might still have the original. I have a folder full of all the backgrounds that I did for the first season of Mighty Mouse, quite a few. I knocked myself out on those designs, trying to make each one memorable, a few made you laugh, so I'm sorry that you don't remember my efforts. Boo hoo. But you did pay me one compliment after Beany and Cecil got cancelled that I always remembered: When I told you later that I should have taken some of my originals on the last day, you said, "...you should have, I did". So that made me feel pretty good back then. -Ted Blackman

JohnK said...

Hi Ted

thanks! I thought it might be you, but couldn't remember if you worked on Mighty Mouse or not. There were so many people and so many shows happening around that time, but yeah, it makes sense. It looks like a bunch of your stylish Beany and Cecil layouts I found for the book the other day.

Great to hear from you!

I will credit you in this post.

Mashie The Pup said...

I absolutely loved this episode. It's worth the price of the DVD set alone. Can't wait for part 2 of this article. John, wasn't "Twitch & Writhe" written by the late Kent Holday, who was the "mouth animation synchronizer"? (my ancient VHS copies' end credits are surprisingly episode-specific instead of season-lumped as so many other animated shows tended to be in that era, and presumably the upcoming DVDs will reflect that)