The Crystal Brawl (1957)
Article 5781 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Seymour Kneitel and Izzy Sparber
Featuring the voices of Jackson Beck, Jack Mercer, and Mae Questal
What it is: Popeye in recycle mode
When his date with Olive Oyl is shanghaied by a trick from Bluto, Popeye gets revenge by disguising himself as a fortune teller and showing Olive Oyl the indignities she will suffer at Bluto’s hands.
As the fortune teller, Popeye claims his crystal ball will show Olive Oyl the future, but he’s not entirely accurate; the savvy viewer will know that he’s showing her the past, i.e. archive footage from three earlier Popeye cartoons, ABUSEMENT PARK, QUICK ON THE VIGOR and ALPINE FOR YOU. (Note: there’s a chance that only two of these are used, but that’s still a lot of recycling). At any rate, this is one of those cartoons that owes it existence more to budgetary constraints than to imagination. The fantastic content is the whole “crystal ball predicting the future” angle, but there’s always the “spinach superpower” angle here as well. At any rate, you’d probably be better off finding the original three cartoons and watching those. Consider this one a throwaway.