Monkey of the Week May 11, 2007: Ape Lad

Pictured above: Tiny Pirate, Monkey of The Seven Seas, drawn by Ape Lad

Ape Lad (aka Adam Koford) is easily the most prolific cartoonist in the previously mentioned 700 projects… he is also by far one of the best. He actually drew versions of all 700 of the 700 hobos single-handedly… and then drew 100 more!

When he isn’t participating in the 700 projects, what does he do? He draws, apparently! Check out his wonderful Hobotopia blog here. He is currently drawing comissioned monkey postcards, and they are all quite wonderful… and cheap! Only 20 bones, you provide a name and he draws it, full color. I’m ordering mine tonight. Bingo Bango and his Magic Fez, if you were wondering.

Also notable: Ape Lad has invented an interesting cartoonist parlour game… the one hour alphabet. His one hour alphabets are much, much better than the vast majority of a-z children’s books that I’ve read (and believe me, I’ve read a LOT of them in the last year)… and he did them in an hour! I gotta try that game some time.

To see much, much more of Ape Lad’s work, here is a link to his huge, amazing flickr pool.

Monkey of the Week, April 20, 2007: Arabic Gorilla on the Loose

I don’t know anything about this Arabic movie, but I randomly watched some of it and found a gorilla 25.5 minutes in, and he clearly needed to be nominated the Monkey of the Week.

Yes, I know, you say, a gorilla is not technically a monkey. I am not interested in your semantic technicalities. You want to think gorillas aren’t monkeys, well, you better go start your own damn blog. This is my blog, and here gorillas are monkeys, goddammit. Hell, I may even elect a lemur someday. Week. Whatever.

There’s a nice musical number 45 minutes in as well. The gorilla comes back for the action packed conclusion as well.

THE CARTOON CRYPT: Monkey of the Week, March 30, 2007: Simon the Monk in Monkeydoodle


Whoops, I thought I had published this on March 30th, but I just saved it… here it is now. Our monkey of the week for two weeks ago!

I knew nothing about this cartoon previous to finding it on youtube, but finding it is like finding lost pirate treasure. It is awfully bizarre and interesting, and it stars a monkey in a fez, so it is right up my alley. It’s pretty amazingly raunchy for the time period, too… monkey boobies are prominently featured. It’s made by Les Elton and is from 1931.

I’ve never heard of Mr. Elton previous to this cartoon. Googling for Mr. Elton brought me some interesting information about him at the Stripper’s Guide blog, and, even better, more lost pirate treasure… a series of pretty amazing comic strips he did called “Jack Daw’s Adventures.” Comics historian Allan Holtz, who is the guy who does the wonderful Stripper’s Guide blog, believes this strip is the very first syndicated adventure strip featuring a continuing character… and he has reprinted about 50 of them on his site. A panel sample can be seen below.

THE CARTOON CRYPT: Monkey of the Week, April 6, 2007: The Peanut Vendor


Meet the Peanut Vendor. It is credited to “Len Lye” on youtube (although in the comments, someone claims it is actually by Dave Fleischer). Judging from the other Len Lye films on youtube, it seems unlikely it is by him, as none of the others feature any character animation that I saw… and the character animation in this gem is quite good, and would appear to be by someone with experience. Anyone know the answer to this?


Update: It is directed by Dave Fleischer all right. No wonder it’s so great.

Update 2: Or not… Tyler in the comments points us to, which credits it to Len Lye here. Tyler says:

Hi – I can assure you that this film is by Len Lye – see my comment on YouTube. The monkey happens to be owned by the New Zealand Film Archive, actually. Lye made one other stop-motion animated film – The Birth of the Robot. Anyway, glad you liked the film.

Thanks Tyler! says:

Experimental Animation (also “Peanut Vendor”) (1934)
3 min, 35mm, b&w, sound
Music: “Peanut Vendor” by Red Nichols and his Five Pennies
The protagonist of this film is a marionette monkey built by the film-maker himself. Lye presented this film as a prototype in the hope of finding partners for a series of puppet films, but without success.

So, presumably, the Internet Movie Database is wrong, which credits the film to Dave Fleischer (item 301) and makes no mention of it under Len Lye’s filmography. Or it’s right and the Len Lye site is wrong, but I’m leaning towards Len Lye at this point, since I have seen no credible attributon to Fleischer. I have no idea who did it, but it’s a great cartoon! Now I want to see The Birth of the Robot…