Summertime is one of the weaker Ub Iwerks ComiColor cartoons, in my opinion, but it features the return of Old Man Winter, who was in the cartoon Jack Frost that I posted the other day. It was definitely influenced by the Disney series of season-based Silly Symphonies… because Iwerks directed Springtime (1929) Summer (1930), and Autumn (1930) for them. It also features a very racy scene for the time of silhouettes of trees turning into silhouettes of rotoscoped dancing ladies. In spite of some very good moments, this cartoon is greatly weakened by having only one design for a centaur, and reusing the animation of him relentlessly.
This cartoon, along with almost all of Ub Iwerks cartoons made for his own studio, are available on the excellent DVDs The Cartoons that time ForgotVolume One and Volume Two. This cartoon is on Volume 1.
Another great Ub Iwerks ComiColor cartoon, featuring the Big Bad Wolf… this comes three years after the immensely popular Disney Silly Symphony version of the Three Little Pigs, which had also spawned a number of sequels, including one also titled The Big Bad Wolf. This Wolf would seem to be pretty influenced by the Disney one. I would guess that is likely to be why the original title of this appears to have been Little Boy Blue, even though Little Boy Blue is a fairly minor character in this cartoon. This cartoon really stars the Big Bad Wolf and the Scarecrow featured in the cartoon Jack Frost which I posted the other day.
A great ComiColor cartoon from Ub Iwerks… my daughter Esther’s newest favorite. It has a fun soundtrack too… note the scarecrow Cab Calloway tribute, presumably influenced by the Fleischer Betty Boop cartoons Snow White (1933) and Minnie the Moocher (1932)… the scarecrow even appears to be rotoscoped a bit, I suspect. The soundtrack is by the one and only Carl Stalling… he really got around in the 30’s. I’ve extracted the soundtrack as an mp3 which you can download here. Right time of year for this one too, as the leaves begin to turn…
UPDATE: I forgot to mention that this cartoon appears to feature the same bear family that is ruthlessly abused a year later in the previously mentioned cartoon The Three Bears.