Monday, May 14, 2007

More Psychotronic Cartoons By New York's Van Beuren Studio

Here's Gypped In Egypt, a 1929 B&W classic from those prolific purveyors of low-budget surrealism, the ex-Paul Terry staffers of New York's Van Beuren Studio. Utterly jam-packed with that distinctive early sound era blend of laughs and utter bizarreness, it's just one of at least eight Van Beuren cartoons that consist entirely of all principals getting chased around by skeletons, mummies, apparitions and ghouls for no apparent reason. The ersatz stars: a Mutt & Jeff-like duo known as "Don & Waffles", who do a most excellent job of falling into a cartoon universe abyss - and then really getting into trouble.

"Don & Waffles" would soon be redesigned as goofy-looking humans and christened "Tom & Jerry". . . eight years before the debut of Bill Hanna & Joe Barbera's cat and mouse duo.

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