Saturday, December 10, 2016

Looney Tunes: "Gift Wrapped"

Premiered February 16, 1952.

On Christmas morning, Sylvester (Mel Blanc) wakes up and sneaks a peek at his Christmas present.  It's a rubber mouse, which doesn't satisfy him.

He hears the song "Jingle Bells" emanating from a present for Granny (Bea Benadaret).  Sylvester looks inside and sees Tweety (Blanc).

He switches the gift tags and when Granny hands him the present which now has his name on it, proceeds to swallow the bird!  Granny quickly knocks the bird out of the cat.

Sylvester tries to get Tweety several more times, always coming up empty.

Tweety points to a giant box and tells the cat it's his present.  Inside is Hector the bulldog (Blanc again), who swallows Sylvester.

Granny forces Hector to "drop him!"

It appears that Granny will spend Christmas day disciplining her pets!  Will any heavenly peace be found in the house this Christmas?

J.A. Morris says:

This short can be summed up in one sentence: It's like most other Sylvester & Tweety shorts, except it takes place at Christmas.  If you enjoy their cartoon battles, you'll like "Gift Wrapped." There's lots of great gags, involving fishing rods and pop guns.  And because it's a Warner Brothers cartoon, we get the obligatory stick of dynamite.  Sylvester tries to catch Tweety in many clever ways, my favorite is directing a toy train into his mouth!

The character Granny is usually associated with voice actress June Foray, who voiced Granny for sixty years.  However, in Gift Wrapped, she's voiced Bea Benaderet, who originated the role.

Benaderet was a veteran of many film, TV and radio programs.  She's somewhat forgotten today, but she performed on radio shows like The Jack Benny Show, Fibber McGee and Molly and The Mel Blanc Show.  Benaderet also provided the original voices for Miss Priss (Foghorn Leghorn's love interest) and Betty Rubble in the original Flintstones series.

Bea Benaderet poses with her "alter ego," Betty Rubble.
Her most prominent "live action" role was Kate Bradley in Petticoat Junction.

Gift Wrapped is available on DVD, it can be found on volume 2 of the Looney Tunes Golden Collection.  

I've been a fan of Sylvester and Tweety shorts for as long as I can remember.  Placing these characters in a Christmas setting makes them even more enjoyable!

J.A. Morris' rating:

4 candy canes!

RigbyMel says: 

I remember seeing and enjoying this short when I was younger,  whether on Saturday mornings or as part of some sort of holiday programming, I am not certain.   It's still pretty darned funny and the Christmas-ness of it lends itself well to cartoon gags and mayhem around the tree in classic Warner Brothers style.

Don't know that mistletoe will go over well in this scenario ... ! 
Fun fact:  the "Night Before Christmas" narration at the beginning of this short was performed by Daws Butler who is probably best known for his work in various Hanna Barbera cartoons.  He voiced Huckleberry Hound, Yogi Bear and Elroy Jetson among other characters.

Shish-kebab!  (Oh dear!) 
This is a great Looney Tunes short wrapped up with Christmas packaging to excellent effect.

Plus we get gorgeous background paintings like this one! 
If you're a fan of Warner Brothers cartoons, this one is well worth adding to your annual viewing.

RigbyMel's rating: 

4 candy canes!

1 comment:

diego78 said...

There was always something to learn from this show. Be it about friendship, trust or happiness. It used to be fun watching these shows along with my siblings. I do plan to download whole series for my kids as well. Recently, found some great shows on Netflix in which Andy Yeatman has made a huge contribution in framing the content.