Monday, December 24, 2012

"Animaniacs" Returns To TV on Christmas Eve: 12/24/12

A six hour Christmas-themed marathon of Animaniacs episodes airs today/tonight on THE HUB.  The marathon starts at 4 PM Eastern, 1 PM Pacific, with a partial repeat later in the evening.  Faboo!

Happy Holidays!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Santa Claus by Haddon Sundblom -- Part 2

For most of my younger days (the late 50's and the 60's), every time Christmas rolled around, the Coca-Cola Bottling Company rolled out a new full-color Christmas ad in all the national magazines.  The ads featured what became the definitive image of Santa Claus as rendered by the brilliant artist Haddon Sundblom.

Below, four of Sundblom's non-Coca-Cola Santa images.  

                                 Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Pinky and the Brain Christmas Card

Merry Christmas to all!  

And don't forget The Animaniacs Christmas Eve Marathon, starting on December 24th, 2012, at 4 PM Eastern, 1 PM Pacific, on the HUB.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Monday, December 10, 2012

Rusty Mills -- Animation Director

Liz Holzman, Tom, Rusty Mills, Nelson Recinos, Jon McClenanhan, on their way to the Emmy Awards, mid-1990s
Rusty Mills, the Emmy-winning director and producer of many of the very best episodes of Animaniacs and Pinky & the Brain, passed away on Dec 7, 2012, at the age of 49.     Rusty leaves behind his beloved wife Andrea, his son Evan, his family, friends and colleagues who loved and admired him, and cartoons fans around the world who will be entertained by his great work for years to come.    

Please contribute generously to The Rusty Mills Cancer Fund at --

Friday, December 7, 2012

Editorial Cartoons -- The Bulldog's Bark -- Metuchen High -- Spring/Summer 1972

The Metuchen High School musical in the spring of 1972 was The Man of La Mancha, starring Kevin Campbell, Emily Schlein and Danny Segal.   For the school newspaper, I decided to plug the musical and do my editorial cartoonist thing at the same time.  

By the end of May, graduation was looming, and the two likeliest prospects for post-high school education were college or Viet Nam.

Below, my last editorial cartoon for The Bulldog's Bark, June 16, 1972.  I'd been a friend and classmate of Bulldog's Bark Editor-in-Chief Larry Goldman since first grade.  This was his final edition as well.   Larry gave me some extra room on the page for this last cartoon, so I went with multiple panels. 

I saw Larry and a bunch of  my Metuchen High School classmates a few weeks ago at our class reunion.  What an awesome group!  What incredible individuals!   

And Larry brought along every edition of the Bulldog's Bark... things I hadn't seen in decades.  ( I think Larry has the only copies of some of those!)    

Monday, December 3, 2012

Editorial Cartoons -- The Bulldog's Bark -- Metuchen High -- Summer/Fall 1971

More editorial cartoons from Metuchen High School's The Bulldog's Bark. 

Apparently the open campus concept from last spring did not survive into the autumn at MHS.  That's vice-principal Tim Lear manning the rack.  

In the autumn of 1971, women's sports became a hot topic, and the female athletes at MHS would soon  become full member of the previously all-male Varsity Club.   Hard to believe that hadn't happened back in the early 70's, but it hadn't!  

Caricatures include Bruce Rockman, Patty Germain and Karen O'Shea. 

Friday, November 30, 2012

Editorial Cartoons -- The Bulldog's Bark -- Metuchen High -- Winter/Spring 1971

More cartoons from Metuchen High School's Bulldog's Bark.  

Here's the cartoon that accompanied a smart and insightful editorial by MHS senior David Welkowitz, from the January 29, 1971 issue.  

Caricatures from left:  Diane Ziemer, followed by Pete Carney and Pat Bailey.

Perhaps the funniest of all the editorial cartoons I drew for the Bulldog's Bark,  here's one that appeared in print after a series of bomb scares at the school.  I'm sort of surprised they printed it.  

April 13 1971, The Bulldog's Bark,  Metuchen High School

This next one didn't get printed as originally planned.  I don't remember what my original caption was, but the day before publication it was deemed "inappropriate."  My caption was whited-out and a new one was scratched in by the editor.  I think the editorial was something about loosening the rules and having a more "open" campus.   That's a caricature of Vice Principal Timothy Lear (not Leary) on the left, and I suspect he may have had a voice in the change of caption. 

May 21 1971,  The Bulldog's Bark,  Metuchen High School

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Editorial Cartoons -- The Bulldog's Bark -- Metuchen High -- Spring/Summer/Fall 1970

More editorial cartoons from the Metuchen High School student newspaper, The Bulldogs Bark, from 1970.  

Being a proud member of the Metuchen High School track team under coaches John Novak and Pete Schuder, I couldn't let our team victory's at the annual Middlesex County Track Meet go unnoticed, especially since our little school knocked off some very big schools to seal the win.  It was MHS's first Middlesex County Track Championship ever. 

June 5, 1970, The Bulldog's Bark, Metuchen High School

These next two cartoons seem to comment more on student mores and changing attitudes than anything too political.    

September 25, 1970, The Bulldog's Bark, Metuchen High School

 November 25, 1970, The Bulldog's Bark, Metuchen High School

And in the December holiday issue, it appears I was still pretty freaked out about the prospect of shipping out to Viet Nam if the war didn't get wrapped up in the next year or two.  

 December 23, 1970, The Bulldog's Bark, Metuchen High School

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Editorial Cartoons -- The Bulldog's Bark -- Metuchen High -- Winter/Spring 1970

From the February 27, 1970 edition of  Metuchen High School's newspaper The Bulldog's Bark, the following cartoon accompanied an editorial on chronic tardiness.

Environmentalism was starting to make its presence felt.  The very first Earth Day was less than one month away -- April 22, 1970 -- when the following editorial cartoon ran in the March 26, 1970 edition of the school paper.


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Animaniacs Marathon on Christmas Eve -- on the Hub

Daily broadcasts of Animaniacs return to your TV starting in late December 2012/early January 2013 on The Hub.    Gooooooooo, the Hub!

As a sneak peak, the Hub is running a four-hour Christmas Eve Animaniacs marathon of holiday themed episodes.  Here's the press release:

As the perfect Christmas gift, Animaniacs will join The Hub on Monday, December 24 with a marathon from 4-8 p.m. (ET).

Here are some of the episodes airing:
  • Twas the Day Before Christmas; Jingle Boo; The Holiday Concert”  – Slappy Squirrel reads a classic Christmas poem to nephew Skippy in “Twas the Day Before Christmas.” Chicken Boo dresses up as Santa Claus in “Jingle Boo.” Wakko performs “The Great Wakkorotti: The Holiday Concert,” and the Warners make mischief in “Toy Shop Terror."”
  •  “A Christmas Plotz; Little Drummer Warners”  – On Christmas Eve, the Warner siblings subject Warner Bros. chief, Thaddeus Plotz, to a Dickensian nightmare in “A Christmas Plotz.” Later, the three Warners star in “Little Drummer Warners,” a musical version of the nativity.
  • My Mother the Squirrel; Oh Say Can You See; 12 Days of Christmas”  – In “My Mother the Squirrel,” the Bluebird thinks Slappy is his mother. The Flame helps Francis Scott Key write our nation’s anthem in “Oh! Say Can You See,” and the Bluebird returns to sing his version of a holiday song in “The Twelve Days of Christmas.”
  • Cutie and the Beast; Boo Happens; Noel”  – The Tazmanian Devil plays the Beast and Dot is Cutie in “Cutie and the Beast.” In “Boo Happens,” Chicken Boo relives the life of “Forrest Gump.” Then, the Warners have fun with puns in a Randy Rogel musical number sung to the tune of classic Christmas carol, “Noel.”
  • The Christmas Tree; Chicken Part 1; Prom Night; Chicken Part 2”  – Slappy Squirrel awakens to find her house is now “The Christmas Tree” at “Rockyfellow” Center, Katie Ka-Boom tries to negotiate a mutually acceptable curfew for “Prom Night” with her dad, and the entire cast appears on the TV news program “Punchline.”

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Editorial Cartoons -- The Bulldog's Bark -- Metuchen High -- 1969

Directly below is my first illustration for the Metuchen High School newspaper, The Bulldog's Bark.  This cartoon was published the week before the big Thanksgiving Day football game against arch rival Highland Park.

We lost the game.

The following month, my first cartoon on the editorial page referenced the holiday season, the ongoing war in Viet Nam and Neil Armstrong's walk on the moon earlier in the year.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Editorial Cartoons From "The Dartmouth" --1975

In both high school and college, I drew editorial cartoons for the school newspapers.   Here are two from "The Dartmouth," the oldest college newspaper in America.  The first one was an illustration for a fourth of July 1975 editorial.  The second one, from January 1975, accompanied an editorial questioning the college's purchase of Honeywell computer equipment when Honeywell was expanding its defense industry contracts. 

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Animaniacs DVD Volume 4!!! At Last! February 5, 2013

Animaniacs Volume 4 DVDs!

The show's run will be finished on home video at last. Those are the facts.

by David Lambert10/16/2012
    Animanical Fun for Everyone! The Fourth and Final Volume of Emmy Award Winning Series! Reunite with your favorite cast of characters: Yakko, Wakko, and Dot from the Warner Movie Lot in their fourth and final volume of the outrageously zany Animaniacs adventures! Anytime this rowdy bunch of misfits comes together, whether they are putting a twisted spin on a classic tale or charting insane new territory, hilarious hijinks are sure to follow. So catch up with the whole gang including Slappy the Squirel, Goodfeathers, and Dr. Otto Scratchansniff as they set out to conquer the world, seek answers to life's biggest questions, and skewer entertainment's most treasured icons along the way. This gut busting 3-DVD set saves the best laughs for last!
Sit back and relax, because on February 5th, it's time for Animaniacs - Volume 4 on DVD! This final volume brings the remaining episodes to home video for the first time, with a 3-disc set priced at $29.99 SRP. You'll get all the rest of the third-season episodes, plus the entire run of the fourth and fifth seasons in this package. The only Animaniacs installment not on DVD now is the direct-to-VHS 199 release called Wakko's Wish; hopefully Warner can put that together for us in the not-too-distant future.
  • Disc 1:
    1. Gimme the Works / Buttons in Ows / Hercules Unwound
    2. This Pun for Hire / Star Truck / Go Fish / Multiplication Song
    3. The Sound of Warners / Yabba Dabba Boo
    4. My Mother the Squirrel / The Party / Oh! Say Can You See / The Twelve Days of Christmas Song
    5. Dot's Entertainment / The Girl with the Googily Goop / Gunga Dot
    6. Soccer Coach Slappy / Belly Button Blues / Our Final Space Cartoon, We Promise / Valuable Lesson
    7. Wakko's 2-Note Song / Panama Canal / Hello Nurse / The Ballad of Magellan / The Return of the Great Wakkorotti / The Big Wrap Party Tonight
    8. One Flew Over the Cuckoo Clock

  1. Disc 2:
    1. Cutie and the Beast / Boo Happens / Noel
    2. Jokahontas / Boids on the Hood / Mighty Wakko at the Bat
    3. A Very Very Very Very Special Show / Night of the Living Buttons / Soda Jerk
    4. From Burbank with Love / Anchors A-Warners / When You're Traveling from Nantucket
    5. Papers for Pappa / Amazing Gladiators / Pinky and the Ralph
    6. Ten Short Films About Wakko Warner / No Time for Love / The Boo Network
    7. Pitter Patter of Little Feet / Mindy in Wonderland / Ralph's Wedding
    8. Moosage in a Bottle/Back in Style / Bones in the Body

    1. Disc 3:
      1. It / Dot- The Macadamia Nut / Bully for Skippy
      2. Cute First (Ask Questions Later) / Acquaintances / Here Comes Attila / Boo Wonder
      3. Magic Time / The Brain's Apprentice
      4. Hooray for North Hollywood (Part I)
      5. Hooray for North Hollywood (Part II)
      6. The Carpool / The Sunshine Squirrels
      7. The Christmas Tree / Punchline (Part I) / Prom Night / Punchline (Part II)
      8. Birds on a Wire / The Scoring Session / The Animaniacs Suite
      1. Taken from:

        Thursday, September 27, 2012

        "Tiny Toon Adventures" Volume 3 on DVD: January 8, 2013

        At last...some forward progress on the release of more Tiny Toons to DVD, including Baby Plucky's premiere in "The Potty Years."   Coming January 8, 2013, volume 3:  

        Sunday, September 23, 2012

        "The Jetsons" 50th Anniversary -- "His Boy Elroy" Cel

        Happy 50th Anniversary to "The Jetsons," Hanna-Barbera's futuristic answer to the prehistoric Flintstones.   The show premiered on ABC at 7:30 PM on Sunday September 23, 1962.  

        Here's my one cell from "The Jetsons" -- and it's from the Main Title as George drops off Elroy at school.   I bought this one at a little art store on Ventura Boulevard in Studio City back in the 80's.   I had Bill and Joe sign it for me a few years back.  

                                                                      Meet George Jetson.
                                                                         His Boy Elroy.

        And below is an image for a proposed series of Warner Bros./Hanna-Barbera mash-ups called "Mixed Nutz," where the Jetsons meet Marvin the Martian.  

        Of course, Elroy was voiced by the one and only Daws Butler.

        Friday, September 21, 2012

        The Space Shuttle Endeavor at Disney in Burbank, CA

        The Space Shuttle Endeavor arrived in Los Angeles today, and during its approach it flew over different parts of town, including the Disney animation offices near the Burbank airport.   Here, some of the members of "The 7D" crew watched Endeavor from the roof of the 3355 North Empire building.   From left to right, that's Frank Montagna, me, Sherri Stoner, Dan McHugh, Tina Kugler and Alfred Gimeno.  Thanks to Alfred for capturing this magic moment.

        Sunday, September 2, 2012

        Bogart Addresses FDR's Empty Chair -- 1944

        In 1944, at the height of World War II, both the Republican and Democratic Parties held their national conventions in Chicago.    It was at the Republican convention on June 29th that an inebriated Humphrey Bogart took to the stage and told off-color jokes about Wallace Beery, Joan Crawford, Peter Lorre and Ingrid Bergman.   He directed his punchlines at the empty wheelchair of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, whom Bogart insisted was sitting there but preferred to remain invisible since Nazi spies were lurking everywhere.   In fact, FDR would not arrive in Chicago for the Democratic convention until late the next month.   

        This was a strange and unexpected performance, especially since Bogart had been and would continue to be a lifelong Democrat. 

        So, as they say, there's nothing new in Hollywood, except the same old stuff.  

        Tuesday, August 21, 2012

        ANIMANIACS: "Smell Ya Later" with Jonathan Winters

        Here's one of my favorite Slappy Squirrel cartoons, directed by Rich Arons and Lenord Robinson, written by Earl Kress and yours truly, and starring Sherri Stoner as Slappy, Nate Ruegger as Skippy, and guest starring Luke Ruegger as Bumpo Basset and the one-and-only comedy genius Jonathan Winters as Stinkbomb D. Basset.  

        Bumpo and Stinkbomb D. Basset planning an attack on Slappy and Skippy Squirrel in "Smell Ya Later" from Animaniacs

         Watch "Smell Ya Later" here.

        A major highlight of my career in cartoons was getting to work with Jonathan Winters -- and one of the highlights of being a dad was being able to introduce my sons to one of the greatest comedians of all time.   I am still thrilled that they had the chance to work alongside Sherri Stoner and Jonathan Winters in the same cartoon.  "Smell Ya Later" is one of my all-time favorite segments from Animaniacs

        Monday, August 13, 2012

        Steven Spielberg Bop Bag by Bruce Timm

        Here's a caricature of Steven Spielberg as drawn with markers by Bruce Timm on the back of a Yogi Bear Bop Bag.  Circa 1992, back in the Tiny Toons/Batman era.   

        The inflated has been inflated since '92!

        And below, the deflated version. 
         ....and signed by Bruce Timm. 


        Sunday, July 8, 2012

        Cartoonatics' 2nd Anniversary: July 9, 2010-July 9, 2012

        Thanks for stopping by over the past two years.  

        Gnu with the Gnews.

        Platypus Duck, checkerboard, incoming.

        Red Zebra in shades.

        Rex at dinnertime.

        The Alps.