Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Toons You Might've Missed: Luno the White Stallion (1963)

Terrytoons had been experimenting with more human protagonists in the 60's, starting with Hector Heathcote. In 1963, Luno the White Stallion made his debut, first appearing in theatrical shorts, just like most of the Terrytoons roster (save for Lariat Sam & Tom Terrific, who were created specifically for television). Luno actually was a figurine owned by a human boy named Tim (voiced by Dayton Allen), who brought Luno to life with the reciting of a short incantation. Bob McFadden was the voice of Luno, and he & Allen did most of the supporting characters as well.

Luno made his TV debut in 1965 as a backup feature on The Astronut Show, but the shorts haven't been seen since that series ended. From 1964, Tim & Luno meet a different kind of Captain Ahab, a bumbling sort given to tall tales, in a subtle send-up of Herman Melville's famous novel, Moby Dick, in "Adventure by the Sea".

Of course you know that 3 years later, Moby was rebooted as a hero by Hanna-Barbera and CBS, in an effort to duplicate what Rankin-Bass did for King Kong a year prior at ABC. This, despite the comic overtones, is closer to Melville's story, even with a happy ending.

Rating: B.

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