The story follows the evolution of the duck-billed platypus from pre-history to modern day.
The cartoon took almost two years to complete...and I sure learned a lot about the labor-intensive process of animation. While I drew all the animation and hand-inked the cels, I managed to persuade many friends and relatives to pitch in on coloring some of the animation-on-paper, and talked others into painting some of the hundreds of cels.
My best pal Parker MacDonell, an extraordinary singer/songwriter and musician, composed, performed and recorded the score -- which was wall-to-wall! Eleven minutes of music! Much of the animation moves to the score, and the edits are hooked into the rhythm of the evocative music.
The two cell set-ups re-produced here are from the opening scene.
As we hear the strains of an orchestra tuning up, we find the duck-billed platypus floating in the pond next to his burrow. (The burrow has a shape similar to the Sydney Opera House, which is a motif throughout the film.) The platypus looks up at the stars as the music begins, and a fanfare accompanies the sudden appearance of a marquee up in the sky. The platypus seems slightly impressed with himself, since his name is on the marquee.