Old Cartoons in New Times

By Lobsang Dolma

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Animation has had a long history. When we think of the animated shows we watch today like Adventure Time, Regular Show, and The Legend of Korra, we seem to forget or dismiss the original cartoons that kept us entertained like we are now. However, thanks to the Museum of Moving Images, we are able to get a flashback of some of the older cartoons that many are finding themselves still enjoying today.

This museum held a special screening known as Duck Amuck and Other Characters on January 20 to add to their new exhibition What’s Up Doc? The Animation Arts of Chuck Jones. Charles Martin “Chuck” Jones was a director of the Looney Tunes show when he worked with Warner Bros. The movie was presented in the museum’s first floor theater and was available to watch for those seeking nostalgia or newcomers curious to see these classic cartoons.

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A few episodes were played back-to-back with an overall time of fifty-six minutes. Much of the audience consisted of parents and their children, which enabled the parents to relive and share a part of their childhood. A classic scene of cartoon character Elmer J. Fudd hunting for some rabbits with the comical Bugs Bunny disguised as a human woman, effortlessly drew much laughter from the audience. Elmer is completely deceived and falls in love with Bugs. He eventually finds out about the disguise, and in his anger, he kills the bunny. Afterwards, he feels really upset about his actions and cries while cradling the seemingly lifeless body, but in the end, Bug Bunny gets up and says, “Well what did you expect in an opera, a happy ending?” Though cartoons in the present have come to hold deeper and sometimes darker meanings, it’s cartoons like these in the past that never fail to make us laugh or shake our heads in amusement.

The second floor of the museum showcases the exhibit. This is where you can find pictures and short scenes from the movie, as well as biographies of Chuck Jones,including some of his photographs and sketches. Some sketches showed images of his famous characters in different positions. For example, one would be facing you, another would be the profile, and the last position would be showing the characters’ backs to you. There were also sketches juxtaposed to demonstrate how a plain pencil sketch of a character could turn animated after adding color and shadow effects. Overall, the exhibit is fun for people of all ages and together with friends and family.

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