ROCKET TO MARS (1946)
Article 3584 by Dave Sindelar
Viewing Date: 5-19-2011
Posting Date: 6-7-2011
Directed by Bill Tytla
Featuring the voices of Jack Mercer, Harry Welch, and Jackson Beck
What it is: Popeye cartoon
Popeye is accidentally rocketed to Mars, where he discovers an impending invasion of the Earth.
This is only the second Popeye cartoon I’ve covered; the other one was POPEYE THE SAILOR MEETS SINBAD THE SAILOR from a decade earlier. I didn’t expect this one to live up to that one; after all, the earlier one was designed as a special project, and this one was probably just another entry in the Popeye series. By this time, the characteristic mumbling and the three-dimensional backgrounds had gone by the wayside, and I really miss them; they both served to make the earlier cartoons a bit more special. This was made fairly soon after the war ended, and there are a few references; in outer space, one of the planets is an Eight Ball with a Japanese character behind it, and after he takes his spinach, the imagery in Popeye’s muscles are of A-bombs. The head of the Martian army serves as the Bluto character here. It has some amusing moments, but it’s just not as much fun as the earlier cartoons.