I’m stepping’ out from Thunderbean for a night and getting some fresh air! News soon as well as something more in depth as soon as I catch up with everything here….
There’s been many times I’ve wondered, after watching an adaptation of a comic character or book, just how they managed to get things so wrong given the fact that the original format is often rich in content and character. Maybe this topic is a well worn path, but here are the things from animation’s history, some less seen things that I think were spot on— and a ones that really, really were not. I’d love to hear your thoughts on these, or others that *you* think got it right.
Whistle for Willie (1965)
I love this simple, straightforward adaptation of this children’s book, written byEzra Jack Keats, and faithfully adapted into animation by Mal Wittman. Somehow the animation timing and style work just perfectly here.
Krazy Kat (1996)
Poor Krazy has been subjected to so many adaptations that often leave out some or all of the wonderful things about this comic strip, while this short adaptation seems to have been done with love and affection towards it’s much deserving world. This sequence was intended to be part of a documentary about George Herriman which, unfortunately, was never produced. It was made at Spitting Image studios in London, working with Hearst Corp for the BBC TV documentary series called ‘Arena’. The director/animator was Derek Mogford, the puppets were made by Mackinnon & Saunders.
Calvin and Hobbs animation (2008)
Creator Bill Watterson is well known to have done his best to not exploit his wonderful characters; so, for better or worse, this has often led to fan animation. Here’s a short piece by student animator Donato Di Carlo.
The Bear that Wasn’t (1967)
I honestly don’t know exactly how I feel about this 1967 Chuck Jones adaptation of Frank Tashlin’s lovely little story. There’s some really nice animation and layout throughout, but somehow it seems to miss the simple heart of the original.
Mike Mulligan and his Steamshovel (1990)
Michael Sporn’s half hour short, produced for HBO, has a lot of things that are really fun about it. I wish I liked the music better, bit I’m quite fond of the Sporn touch in this short.
A Doonesbury Special (1977)
Garry Trudeau’s characters are wonderfully animated by John Hubley’s studio. I had a 16mm print of this special that I never had a chance to watch; it was stolen from a stack of things I had just bought at a film show many, many years back.
Now, what are some things that you think got it right or wrong?
Have a good week everyone!