Monday, June 24, 2013

On DVD: Droopy: The Complete Theatrical Cartoons (2007)

Fred "Tex" Avery left Warner Bros. for MGM, and cemented his status as a cartoon icon with the introduction of Droopy in 1943. A sad-eyed, slow talking basset hound (often referred to mistakenly as a poodle in a couple of films), Droopy was also blessed with a brilliant mind and the uncanny ability to appear wherever his adversary was in the blink of an eye.

However, that gimmick, Avery knew, would wear out rather quickly, so he had Droopy move on to other things and situations. There are some all-time classics included in WB's 2007 2-disc DVD release that covers all 24 shorts, with the last few produced by William Hanna & Joseph Barbera, which would explain why they acquired Droopy in 1990 to use as a backup feature on Tom & Jerry Kids.

Radio actor Bill Thompson voiced Droopy in most stories, and was otherwise subbed by Avery himself or another legend, Don Messick, which would represent Don's earliest work.

I've seen these shorts many times over the years, and now, I'm very happy to have the complete set in my DVD collection.

In 1957's "Sheep Wrecked", Droopy is a shepherd, or, as billed in the story, a sheepherder, protecting his flock from a beatnik wolf (Daws Butler).

Watch for more classic shorts.

Rating: A.

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