What If Pixar Decided To Do Pulp Characters?

When it comes to Pixar there really isn’t much they touch that doesn’t turn to gold. Having said that however there are genres they’ve yet to tackle. Sure, they have given friendly monsters a go as well as a sentient vehicle universe. Not to mention moving films dealing with growing old in addition to the greatest Fantastic Four movie made. That was of course not an official film of Marvel’s First Family – but it was…INCREDIBLE…nonetheless.

See what I did there?

Ahem. While 2004’s The Incredibles marked Pixar’s first foray into superheroes. The talented Phil Postma is always eager to present different genres that Pixar has yet to approach. You might recall some of the other artwork of Postma’s that we’ve shared on The Retroist before. Like what if Rankin and Bass had produce a 1977 stop motion version of The Hobbit. Or perhaps Fisher-Price had produced Adventure People Killers to their toy line?

Back in 2013, it turns out that Phil presented Pixar versions of some legendary pulp characters. Such as Alex Raymond’s Flash Gordon, Dale Arden, and Ming the Merciless of course.

Images courtesy of Phil Postma.

He also shared a look at what Pixar could deliver with Lee Falk’s The Phantom.
Pixar - The Phantom - Phil Postma

Last but certainly not least and the film I wish Pixar would truly deliver is The Shadow!

Make sure to hop on over to Phil’s official blog – The Minion Factory. You can check out even more of his fantastic artwork and even purchase merchandise.

Now that we’ve seen what some pulp characters would look like if Pixar was in charge of character design. How about re-watching what an animated series for The Rocketeer might look like?

[Via] Amazing Cartoons

Remembering The Mouse on the Mayflower

I am a creature of habit.

Every year when November 1st rolls around, I open the Holiday Special Cabinet in my entertainment center. (Yes, I have a Holiday Special Cabinet. Don’t you)? I put away my Halloween specials and bring my Thanksgiving specials to the forefront. The Mouse on the Mayflower

My favorite is 1968’s The Mouse on the Mayflower. The Mouse on the Mayflower was a staple of my Thanksgiving viewing during my elementary school days. I can hardly remember a Thanksgiving where we didn’t watch that particular Rankin-Bass special during class. It’s stuck with me all these years. Rankin-Bass owns a good portion of the holiday special landscape in my head, but The Mouse on the Mayflower is special to me. I am most taken by the narration and songs performed by Tennessee Ernie Ford.

There’s something comforting to me about the special. It hearkens back to a time when things were simpler. Thanksgiving meant good food, cartoon specials, a few days off from school, and playing with my cousins after the feast.

Unfortunately, I think The Mouse on the Mayflower has gone by the wayside in recent memory.  I’ve not seen it on the air since the 90s and it has never seen a DVD release. According to Wikipedia, the last VHS release of the film was by Sony Wonder and Golden Books Family Entertainment in 1998. I have a copy of the VHS, which I found by pure accident in a free bin outside one of my favorite used book/movie stores. Fortunately for us, we have YouTube.

[Via] Kevin Burns

Do you remember The Mouse on the Mayflower? What is your favorite part? Do you have another Thanksgiving special that’s been forgotten? However you celebrate, I hope your Thanksgiving is full of nostalgia and good food.

(I have to chime in here and admit that the very first time I watched this special was at school as well. On actual film in fact! -Vic)

Tomfoolery (1970)

Did you know that Rankin-Bass Production tried creating a Saturday Morning animated series in the vein of Rowan & Martin’s Laugh-In back in 1970?

Yeah, neither did I!

Thankfully Ron Kurer’s Toon Tracker blog set me straight. The show failed to find it’s audience though with it’s nonsensical verse and whimsical characters of authors such as Edward Lear, Ogden Nash, Frank Gelett Burgess, and Lewis Carroll.

The Toon Tracker Blog though has been kind enough to post a condensed episode for our enjoyment however.

Atari 2600: Lord of the Rings – Journey to Rivendell (1983)

In 1983 I had sadly not read J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic Lord of the Rings yet, though I knew of the might of the Dwarrows and the gentle nature of Hobbits thanks to the Rankin-Bass animated adaptations of the Hobbit and Return of the King. I had also seen the Ralph Bakshi version at this point thanks to the Movie Channel but I preferred the former more. Those Rankin-Bass films pretty much made sure I would become a fan of Dwarves above all other fantasy races for the rest of my life.

I did not realize however in 1983 that Parker Brothers had crafted an Atari 2600 title that allowed you to take on the role of Frodo as you left the Shire on your journey to Rivendell, trying to avoid the Black Riders while doing so.

Here are a few screenshots of from the completed but never published title.

Hope is not lost though! The good folks over at AtariAge have secured the prototype for the the cartridge and you may down load the ROM freely from the link above. A huge thanks to AtariAge of course for archiving this important title and for the pictures posted up top. Thanks as well to Glenn Returns for that stirring soundtrack segment from the Hobbit!

Rankin-Bass’ The Ballad of Paul Bunyan (1973)

Rankin-Bass did a lot of specials that have been forgotten by a lot of people. I was a big fan of Paul Bunyan as a kid and I remember catching a re-run of “The Ballad of Paul Bunyan” sometime in the 1980s and loving it. I just rewatched it at lunch today for the first time in a decade and you better believe it holds up pretty well. So enjoy some late afternoon cartoonery and watch Rankin-Bass’ The Ballad of Paul Bunyan online.

The Ballad of Paul Bunyan – Part 1 of 2

The Ballad of Paul Bunyan – Part 2 of 2