November 26, 2015 posted by

The Third Annual Thunderbean Thanksgiving

I'm thankful that rare cels like this turn up on internet auctions - and the images are free to share.

I’m thankful that rare cels like this turn up on internet auctions – and the images are free to share.

I got an email from Jerry earlier today, asking if I’d be doing a third annual Thunderbean Thanksgiving. To be honest, I hadn’t given it a lot of thought until tonight, as I sit here, taking a break from packing the Pvt. Snafu Blu-rays. In between packing, We’ve been busy working on a little surprise set that I’ll talk about next week.

I went back and looked at the posts from last year and the year before, and especially enjoyed reading the comments of what other people were thankful for cartoony-wise. It was also informative – I learned that Peter Monk had been blown into a bunch of tiny copies of himself, and somehow was able to glumph back together. Let’s hope he doesn’t face another stick of TNT this year.

I will do my best to not have this be similar to Steve Martin’s Holiday wish.

So, as this tradition continues, here are my top 10 cartoony things to be thankful for this year-in no particular order:

1) I’m incredibly grateful there are adult fans of classic animation, and that the Baby Boomers though Generation X though the Millennials all have found the films that were made for folks even before their generations entertaining and worth preserving. We’re at a point where the materials will *require* an effort by the companies that own them, the people that want to see them and the people interested in preservation- without *all* of these people working, we will lose many films, forever. ‘Vinegar Syndrome’ (deteriorating acetate base) is much worse that the instability of nitrate film in many ways.

Jerky-Turkey2) I’m ever more grateful to the collectors of original film, paper and other memorabilia. Preservation is a topic covered here frequently of course, but it can not be understated that the history of films often lies in the hands of the archives, the studios *and* the collectors. It is also noteworthy that the collectors also know what they have- and know what the studios have. This is important in that the studios really don’t know that information. They *need* the collectors and folks knowledgeable on the history of the films to preserve them. A case in point is the Willie Whopper collection from this year. All of the films now have all their original titles, and that just would not have been possible without the collectors.

3) Related to this blog, I’m especially grateful for the other writers and researchers here. This place had become a great sort of living book, with information you really can’t find otherwise. For you folks that remember Mindrot / Animania, to me this blog is a continuing, evolving issue, and just as much fun to crack open daily.

4) I’m grateful for the small but scrappy community that writes comments back here- I really like the idea of a living blog- and that’s why I often ask for responses… I love hearing what everything is thinking and the comments on other articles, so please, keep writing away! Thanks to all of you.

5) I’m grateful that new artists love the work of past animators and choose to pick up the pencil, tablet, clay- you name it… in this way, the creations are all related in some way. I wish we could all see what happens 80 years from now- and what the artists of then will be influenced by.

6) I’m grateful for evolving technology. It’s not a secret that many of us are huge fans of *old* technology, but honestly, I wouldn’t be able to do so many of the things related to the DVD and Blu-ray sets without the continual march forward of better and cheaper technology. This year, we were able to do 4k scans of all the 35mm nitrate on the Willie Whopper cartoons, something that would have been prohibitive expense-wise until recently. I hope to have many, many more films scanned in 4k this year- whole series… even though we don’t need them to be that high of quality for the Blu-rays. Having the ability to afford to do this work is something I’m especially grateful for.

7) Having great, dedicated Thunderbean employees. It’s still a tiny company, but I need to thank both publicly and personally the people who play a big roll in helping to make these things possible. They are a small but mighty group: David Gerstein, Mary Dixon, Jerry Beck, Mark Kausler, Thad Komorowski, Mel McCann and David Grauman. Other folks that have been instrumental as well, including John McElwee, Stephen DeStephano, Mike Kazaleh, Eric Goldberg and more. It really isn’t a one man operation in this sense- and I hope to be a good friend & employer back.

snoopy-thanksgiving8) Bill Littlejohn’s animation on the Peanuts specials. How many people does he continue to entertain, bringing a smile to faces of generations.

9) I’m grateful that other small DVD/ Blu-ray companies are popping up, dedicated in the same way I’ve tried to be in producing these sets- AND doing an excellent job of it. If you jump onto or, or others you’ll see some of them. Many are focused on shlock 70s films, but others that are helping to keep classic films alive of many genres. Tom Stathes is producing great cartoon collections, as has B2B with the great Puppetoon set are two examples. If you start one too, say hi- I’ll help whenever I can with any information or figuring out why the H264 Mpeg is adding fields to your progressive files….

10) Finally, I’m grateful to have a forum to talk about all this stuff, when I have something to say that actually is helpful-or just babbling. Thanks to Jerry and all of you for putting up with me!

Of course, we need a Thanksgiving cartoon, so the 1950 Famous Studio’s cartoon ‘Voice of the Turkey’ will have to be it this time.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!


  • Happy Thanksgiving to you Steve, and to all our North American readers of the blog,

  • Thank you to Jerry, Steve, and all the great Cartoon Research contributors. This site is a must-read everyday!

    Favorite Thanksgiving cartoon?

    This year, I’m glad for the release of Q*bert on DVD that gives us the full version of this confusingly fun Thanksgiving special:

  • Those are some great things to be thankful for. Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Happy Thanksgiving Steve, and thanks for all the restoration efforts you’ve done and continue to do with Thunderbean.

    (…and I know “Voice of the Turkey” is basically Tex Avery Thanksgiving leftovers, minus most of the gravy and dressing. But any cartoon that features an Arnold Stang-voiced sharpster confounding a Sid Raymond-voiced dumb antagonist can’t be all bad, despite the negative reactions it gets in come quarters.)

  • My Favorite Thanksgiving Cartoons are
    Pilgrim Popeye (what’s weird is in the LATAM Spanish version of Pilgrim Popeye was that Popeye was known as a Boy Scout instead or a Pilgrim or Peregrino in Spanish.)
    Tex Avery’s Jerky Turkey (uncensored and with all those fun WWII Referances)
    The Thanksgiving That Almost Wasn’t
    Garfield’s Thanksgiving Special
    The Mouse on the Mayflower
    JoJo’s Circus’ The Hip Hop Hooray Thanksgiving Day Parade special
    The Thanksgiving episode from Minnie’s Bow-Toons
    Thanksgiving in Oz starring Sid Ceaser as The Wizard
    Johnny Smith and Poker-Hantas
    And A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving (1973) /This is America Charlie Brown:The Mayflower Voyagers (1988),(a wonderful combination of two Peanuts specials which were animated fifteen years apart)
    Happy Thanksgiving!

  • Fun Fact on A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving:
    In the scene where Snoopy was setting up the chairs for Charlie Brown’s Thanksgiving “dinner”. Snoopy got into a fight with a unruly deck chair. Bill Melendez was credited with the voice of Snoopy in that special,but in that one scene where Snoopy was being chased by the deck chair during the brawl and yelping in terror….that was the voice of Mel Blanc (uncredited) as the SFX of Snoopy’s yelping the same SFX that was used in several WB Looney Toons and several Pink Panther cartoons.

  • What was the color process on Harvey films when they took over older paramount cartoons. If it was technicolor I’m sure the name would be on there

    • The HARVEYTOON prints were Eastman Color.

      Paramount supplied Harvey with one brand new 35mm Technicolor print of each cartoon – Harvey spliced it’s new Eastman titles into each print – heads and tails – they created a duplicate negative made off that print! All the 16mm TV prints were made from these second (or third) generation negatives.

      When I did my tribute to Famous Studios at MoMA in 1995, while I did my best to only show prints with original Paramount titles, I had to borrow a few of Harvey’s own 35mm vault prints. The Harvey titles were faded red-as-a-beet – but the Technicolor prints were drop-dead gorgeous.

      Paramount cartoons in original Tech are some of the most glorious color films I’ve ever seen. Most of us, in our lifetimes, haven’t seen them the way they were intended. I’m thankful to Steve Stancfield for his efforts to preserve these and (even more important) make them accessible. Thanks, Steve!

    • The HARVEYTOON prints were Eastman Color.

      Paramount supplied Harvey with one brand new 35mm Technicolor print of each cartoon – Harvey spliced it’s new Eastman titles into each print – heads and tails – they created a duplicate negative made off that print! All the 16mm TV prints were made from these second (or third) generation negatives.

      When Worldvision released those tapes in the 1980’s of many Harveytoons, it was pretty clear to realize how different the edits were sound-wise given how slightly inferior the cartoon sounded during the “Harvey Films” titles. It’s not as noticeable in those multi-gen 16mm blowdowns.

  • Thanks Jerry, Happy Thansgiving

  • Steve, you’ve done it again! Oddly enough, I was revisiting this cartoon on the HARVEYTOONS SHOW set (thanks to Jerry for putting that together), and now I get to hear a complete print of that same cartoon.

    The HARVEYTOONS set is magnificent for its choices of titles; I only keep wishing that they were all there totally restored and complete as they can be instead of stuffed into half-hours, but those half-hours feature some of the wildest gags ever devised on the East Coast. A Nice choice of Thanksgiving cartoon. I’m thankfull for all of the good cartoons I’ve gotten to see in some form or other in my lifetime, and I’m so glad I’ve found most of ’em thanks to collectors and, yes, we must constantly be appreciative of all the collectors who gladly do the legwork to find the rarest of the rare before the second or third generation prints are totally useless.

    And Mark Arnold is still out there looking as well and coming up with books and art around the last of the classics; I’d love to be able to read his latest book…and maybe, someday, I’ll collect the remainder of the DePatie/Freleng cartoons that I missed the last time. They were once part of a thriving Saturday morning; so every time we see good old classic animation, I still hope that better elements show up on the next go-round.

    Thank you, Steve, Jerry, Mark (Arnold and Kausler), Eric (Goldberg and Grayson), Mike Barrier, Thad Komorowski and so many others. At least I won’t be entirely subjected to mass disinterest as I grow older, and I never thought I’d see the day when something like the WILLIE WHOPPER series would look and sound so fantastic! That set should win an award! Happy Thanksgiving, all!

  • I’m grateful for you Steve and all the people at Thunderbean. I’ll always be grateful for the dedication and work you all put in. Don’t ever let any criticism get you down. Happy Thanksgiving

  • Back a million years ago when I was reading each new issue of Mindrot/Animania and trading cartoons on Beta tapes – sometimes multi-multi-multi-generation – well, I don’t know exactly how to follow through on that, but the idea that some of those very people today are the ones scanning, restoring replicating and distributing ultra-rare cartoons from original 35mm materials in high definition video – well, holy cow if that isn’t something to be not only thankful for but astonished by, I’ll eat my hat. If I only had a hat. Thank you Steve Stanchfield and your bunch!

  • I’m thankful for being able to see an annual collection of fantastic cartoons on 35mm at a beautiful classic movie house. Thanks Steve.

  • Bill Littlejohn’s the man! I’m so glad you met him!

    He did the wacky full-moving Snoopy scenes!

  • I am wondering if you would be so kind as to tell me what cartoon is the cel at the top of this article from?
    I have been looking for the cartoon where the female character keeps taunting “you missed me”, until they don’t miss. Any jogs to my memory would be appreciated.

    • It’s from a cartoon called “Johnny Smith and Poker Huntas”

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