Saturday, January 10, 2015

Toon Legends: Chilly Willy in Fish Hooked (1960)

Walter Lantz had a full stable of characters besides Woody Woodpecker, and it's way past time we took a look.

We'll start with Chilly Willy, a penguin who always seems to be 1) hungry, and 2) looking for a warm place to stay. Now, that's odd. You'd think a penguin would be accustomed to the cold.

Director Paul J. Smith created Chilly in 1953 for Lantz & Universal, but Fred "Tex" Avery & Alex Lovy would also helm the series until it ended in 1972. Daws Butler was one of three actors to voice Chilly during this period, and in "Fish Hooked", it's a 1-man show, with Butler doing all the voices. Smedley, for example, will vocally resemble Huckleberry Hound as well as the nameless wolf who often hassled Droopy. Poor Smedley. Today, he's forgotten, almost like he's inherited Rodney Dangerfield's rep for not getting any respect.

Oh, this was fun.

Rating: A.


magicdog said...

It's been forever since I've seen a Chilly Willy cartoon! They were bundled as alternate toons with the Woody Woodpecker cartoons for syndication along with other Walter Lantz characters.

As a kid I remember being confused as to why Smedley spoke with Huckleberry Hound's voice! At the time I didn't know the voice was created long before HB created the character.

hobbyfan said...

Butler had developed the Smedley/Huck voice at MGM with the wolf I referenced, then went to Universal, then H-B. Quite the talent.

Silverstar said...

Man, I haven't seen a Walter Lantz cartoon on TV in a looooooong time. Pity Universal has no outlet to run their shorts on currently.

hobbyfan said...

Universal has a lot of stuff, not just Woody, Chilly, Andy Panda, and the rest of the Lantz line, in the vaults that they won't release or place on a cable network. However, since NBC-Universal now owns Sprout outright, maybe that's an avenue.