recognizing Arthur C. Clarke’s third law

Bugs Bunny had the props on the Eastside spots

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cabcallowayI’m a huge fan of remixing, collage, and other artistic endeavors made possible by technology. I think copyright laws need to be revised to acknowledge the digital age. And I love animation. So I’m unsettled but not dissuaded by a DVD currently being advertised on TV.

Hip-Hop Nursery Rhymes strips the audio from classic public domain cartoons and replaces it with nursery rhymes declaimed in a rhythmic, semi-hip-hop style. Even worse, the ad warns that this is only Vol. 1.

There’s no way I’m going to taint my memory of these cartoons by watching this stuff, but I’m amused at their inclusion of what I’m pretty sure is Fleischer Studios’ wonderful The Old Man of the Mountain. It features Betty Boop at her sexiest, a fabulously rotoscoped Cab Calloway and His Orchestra (the archetypical hep cat, pictured), and an unmistakably lascivious title character; in fact, in its day there were calls for it to be banned from theaters.

There’s a blog, too! My favorite entry so far is a complaint that a major retailer refused to carry the DVD on the grounds that it is “stupid.” The company interpreted that rejection as evidence that major retailers think African-Americans won’t buy “good, clean music for their kids.”

(Title lyric is from Coolio, Ghetto Cartoon.)


Written by chris

May 23, 2009 at 10:37 am

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