The Scared Crows (1939)
Article 5982 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Dave Fleischer and Dave Tendlar
Featuring the voice of Margie Hines
What it is: Betty Boop cartoon
Betty and her dog Pudgy are planting crops on their farm only to discover that the seeds are being eaten by crows. Will their scarecrow get rid of the pests?
To my understanding, a scarecrow would keep the crows away not by necessarily being scary, but rather by making it appear there was a human being in the field, thus making it less likely that the birds would invade. Such is not the case here; the crows have no fear of either Betty Boop or Pudgy the Dog and only flee when a scary-looking scarecrow is pulled out. This explains why this cartoon qualifies for my reviews; a scarecrow as a scary manifestation makes the cartoon move a little into the realm of horror, especially near the end when Betty dons the costume to frighten the birds. On its own merits, this is one of the lame cartoons from near the end of the Betty Boop series; she is so removed from her sexy flapper image here that she spends the whole cartoon wearing farming clothes. In general, you can guess the quality of a Betty Boop by taking a look at which secondary character is emphasized, and Pudgy was only used after Betty was effectively rid of her early bawdy image. This is one of the weaker cartoons from the Fleischer era.