Animation History
February 28, 2013 posted by Jerry Beck

Warner Cartoon Postcards

6X9cleaned_up500

I got a lot of positive response to my post about The Bugs Bunny Show last week – including this postcard from reader DJ Anderson. The image above is a cleaned up version of the original (front and back, below – click to enlarge). This card was created by Warner Bros. Publicity to respond to letters from viewers (essentially the younger ones) in the wake of the debut of the ABC prime time series.

The artwork looks like a hybrid of Jones and Freleng’s (i.e. Levitow and Pratt) styles – a rare attempt to homogenize the art into one house style.

6X9_Postcard_Original 6X9_Postcard__Back

Of course this isn’t the first time the studio authorized a post card – Here’s an rare example from twenty years earlier (1940, below), which I believe was distributed to souvenir stands at U.S. national parks. Great way to promote a cartoon, Leon!

cross_country_postcard

Around the same time as The Bugs Bunny Show, sponsor Post Cereals had the studio create these character postcards (below, click to enlarge). They were featured on the backs of the cereal boxes and it was up to the kids to cut them out – and ultimately put them on eBay (where I found these fine examples):

bugs-card tweet-card pepe-card foghorn-card
porky-card daffy-card three-cards back-card

(Thanks to DJ Anderson, Mark Newgarden and Jon Cooke)

10 Comments

  • An unusual, and quite successful, attempt at trying to simplify the character designs while still keeping the animators’ personalities. Much more appealing than later messes like this 1994 postcard to promote the opening of a Warner Bros. Studio Store in Gatwick airport.
    gatwick

    • Arguably this is the look of the characters I know and loved best. It could’ve stayed that way.

  • It would appear that postcard would be from 1962 or earlier, given the plug for the Warner feature “The Music Man” on the postmark.

  • Beautiful postcard, but where’s Porky?

    • Lost track of his schedule while following the Mad Bomber around town. Rumor has it his time bombs run late.

    • Isn’t Porky also missing from the opening credits of THE BUGS BUNNY SHOW?

  • If it is circa 1962, I’m not particularly surprised Porky Pig isn’t among the characters depicted. There weren’t many post-48 cartoons with Porky as the main figure. I think I remember him more as a symbol than a real cartoon heavyweight (no pun) at the time. What I am surprised by is that there’s no representation of the Tasmanian Devil, which I remember as the real breakout star of the TV series.

    • They certainly weren’t planning on that one.

  • Kevin: Yes, Porky is missing from the opening credits of “The Bugs Bunny Show.”

  • Postmark shows “Aug. 27 ’62″.

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