WHAT ABOUT THAD?
September 22, 2014 posted by

Fleischer Promo Art #17: “Ko-Ko, Wiffle Piffle and Adolph Zukor!”

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The “Any Language” theme continues. Now you can see not just one, but two Olive Oyl navels, and Pudgy makes his debut in Paramount Sales News, finally reflecting what’s actually happening in the Boop series. But more interesting is the Nov. 25 panel, which is a direct nod to A Language All My Own from the previous season. Betty’s Japanese imitation here is more blasé than in the actual cartoon, which head animator Myron Waldman explained to Jerry and Will Friedwald over 30 years ago:

“I did one with Betty Boop in Japan. I’ll tell you what was interesting about that. We knew it was going to… the Japanese were crazy about her and we did it especially for them. But we had to be careful about the gestures, it could be obscene (in their eyes). So, we had a student from International House check it out and make sure we didn’t do anything offensive to the Japanese.”

I think everyone will get a big smile from the Dec. 9th cover (above) celebrating Adolph Zukor’s twenty-fifth anniversary in motion pictures. It should warm every Fleischer fan’s heart that Ko-Ko and Wiffle Piffle shared the spotlight not just once, but twice during this month. (click images below to enlarge)

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Here are a few samples of what cartoon shorts the Paramount salesmen were pushing to theaters at the time these promotional pieces appeared in print.

BE HUMAN (November 20th 1936)

POPEYE THE SAILOR MEETS SINDBAD THE SAILOR (November 27th 1936)

4 Comments

  • Funny that they advertised Wiffle Piffle as much considering he was only in two cartoons. Clearly they were hoping he would be the next Grampy or the Betty Boop equivalent of Wimpy.

    Did Wiffle Piffle get notable negative reception? Or did they just drop him once they realized he wasn’t really working as well as they hoped?

    All I can really remember about him was that goofy walk cycle e had.

  • Wiffle Piffle was in more than 2 cartoons. He appeared in many Screen Songs – ‘I Wished on the Moon’, ‘Talking Through My Heart’, ‘I Don’t Want to Make History’, ‘I Never Should Have Told You’ and ‘You Took the Song Right Out of My Heart’.

    • Forgot about those screen songs, my mistake.

  • The Original Betty Boop

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