THE WOODS ARE FULL OF CUCKOOS (1937)
Articler 5381 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Frank Tashlin
Featuring the voices of Sara Berner, Mel Blanc, Peter Lind Hayes
What it is: Looney Toons Cartoon
Welcome to the Woodlands Community Swing. Be entertained by the bird celebrities.
I have a collection of Dilbert comics with the title “It’s Not Funny If I Have to Explain It”, and the title is a good description of why certain types of jokes fall flat. I found the title quite relevant as I watched this cartoon; the basic format is that of a radio program in which all of the stars are famous celebrities caricatured as birds. Now, usually I quite like these celebrity based cartoons from Warners, but I found this one a bit of a chore for one simple reason; it throws a big array of celebrity caricatures your way, and with the passage of time, most of them have become rather obscure. My guess is that unless you’re a big fan of thirties radio shows, you’re going to be scratching your head a lot more than you’ll be laughing. In other words, to today’s audience, most of the jokes would need to be explained. Even some of the ones I did recognize took me awhile to identify, and what humor there is in the cartoon requires instant identification. Even at that, I didn’t laugh much even when I could instantly recognize them; about the only thing that amused me was that they included a caricature of Andy Devine. It must have played much better in its time, but I’m afraid now this one is largely a curio. The fantastic content is, of course, the talking animals and little else.