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STUDIO: Warner Brothers
RATED: Not Rated
RUNNING TIME: 25 minutes
Warner Brothers recycled a lot of crap in the 1970s.
Mel Blanc, June Foray and others
Bugs Bunny Howl-Oween Special was a 1978 television special that was designed to keep memories of the Looney Tunes theatrical shorts in the consciousness of America’s children. Taking an endless series of classic shorts, they edited and removed context to provide for a much larger Halloween affair. Needless to say, this proved successful and started a trend of Warner Brothers dumping the same efforts into cinemas around the world. Those cinematic offerings are how I discovered Looney Tunes and I really can’t besmirch them. It’s just that I didn’t start appreciating the series until Cartoon Network first launched and began focused breakdowns of the animators and individual characters. Does anyone else remember The Bob Clampett Show?
Bugs Buny, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig and Sylvester run afoul of Witch Hazel on Halloween. The Witch decides to make them relive past adventures via recycled footage. Familiar scenarios are seen and you’re left wondering what life must’ve been like in the time before Home Video. Having to put yourself into the mindset of a young 1978 TV viewer, you have to realize that a lot of this was new to kids. Warner Brothers had stopped producing new Looney Tunes shorts in the 1960s and it had been a decade without constant Bugs bombardment. Friz Freleng and Chuck Jones were working for themselves and producing new animation that pushed out of the Warner Brothers constraints. So, what did this mean for the average kid?
They got to experience Looney Tunes without any proper appreciation. Their parents remembered it as the crap that used to play before Warner Brothers movies and the kids just saw it as another older cartoon with corny jokes. Most of the enjoyment from Looney Tunes is from seeing the entire library and learning what worked and didn’t work for you. Picking and choosing favorites and then being to appreciate them as a whole. When you don’t have that, these shorts join a litany of other cartoons and becomes background noise to other activities. That being said, it’s just a Holiday Special that barely warrants an individual release. Shame on Warner Brothers for trying to squeeze extra money out of people.
The DVD comes with an interactive puzzle and a bonus Looney Tunes short. The short is presented in a cleaned-up matter, befitting inclusion in The Golden Collection. However, the interactive puzzle is a weird duck. I can’t tell why WB thought that a DVD remote control operated game would be considered special in the present era. The A/V Quality is strong enough for a vintage animated special, but it lacks any real punch-up in terms of audio or visuals. In the end, I’d recommend a rental.
Rating: Out of a Possible 5 Stars
Out of a Possible 5 Stars