Awful CG Tom & Jerry

Why do producers insist on remaking Tom & Jerry in CG? There is supposedly a feature in development at Warner Bros. – but as these foreign TV spots will attest it isn’t so easy to accomplish (the Israeli milk spot below – which we posted about in 2006 – is about as good as it gets):


  • Confusion

    I wouldn’t have described the first and third videos as ‘awful’. They were mediocre, yes, but I could watch both without thinking either of them were abominations.

    The second one, though, was pretty bad.

    • cbat628

      Agreed. I mean, at least you can tell what they were doing in the other first and third ads. The second ad was the worst possible type of chaos.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        I don’t even know what the point was going on in that, but I’ll say it’s nice a Vietnamese company was willing to use those characters anyway despite the incomprehensible plot in that ad. The other two were more tolerable and I kinda like where the Italian Happy Meal ad goes a bit.

  • amid

    I think Gene Deitch is officially off the hook for his versions of Tom and Jerry. Nothing he did with the duo could ever match the awfulness of how people treat these characters in CG nowadays.

    • tonma

      what about filmation?

      • http://thadkomorowski.com Thad

        He was always off the hook with me. Gene Deitch’s were the best after the 40s originals.

      • http://ryuuseipro.blogspot.com/ John Paul Cassidy

        My sentiments reflect Thad’s. Although I love the Cinemascope stuff from the 50s, too. And I’m a fan of the Gene Deitch T&J cartoons, too.

        The first and third cartoons are all right (the latter is the best of the three), but my first thought was, after seeing the second one (which was Vietnamese, BTW), I swear that nobody will ever bash Gene Deitch’s T&J cartoons again. EVER.

      • DNAndy

        Yeah, I think the Gene Deitch Tom and Jerrys were pretty neat.

      • Snagglepuss

        Man. Those were intolerable for me as a child. The new ones were at least animated enough and quick moving enough that they gave me whatever buzz those kinds of shorts are good at giving. I love the entire Deitch family artistically though. So from his shorts and Chuck Jones’ I learned this: Tom and Jerry are harder to write than they seem.

        Not sure what’s wrong with the McDonald’s ad and the third one though.

    • Funkybat

      The Gene Deitch “Tom & Jerrys” always frightened and dismayed me as a child. I have more appreciation for them now, especially after learning the history behind their creation, but they were freaky and weird to my friends and I as kids.

      I have to say that the second ad, the one for the Vietnamese fridge, was the first time since then that I felt comparable levels of horror and apprehension at Tom & Jerry. Truly creepy and awkward.

  • http://www.hobsonanimation.com Kevin

    Wow. That has got to be the worst CGI of Tom and Jerry I have ever seen. The McDonald’s one is sort of alright, but the other two…. TERRIBLE!!!

  • uncle wayne

    oh, dear God!

  • Justin

    The 2nd one is just bad.

    The other two are okay, I kind of like the look of tom and jerry in CG. Idk

  • Jane

    Ah! My eyes! Even my 5yr old was unimpressed..But I agree, I think the milk ad got the closest to capturing some sense of character.

  • butt

    these are amazing, too many haturzz, straight up silly bidness

  • The Gee

    The McDonald’s one: the noises they characters make is pointless. Maybe there is some sort of rule with which I’m unfamiliar but that was gratuitous noise for the antics. I guess it might be a cultural thing though.

    The second one is the one that makes me laugh.

    It is horrible, yes. Hell yes. But, it is catching me off guard. I have no idea what leads to Jerry changing prior to them reversing the action. It seems like they edited between the two scenes as he just appears in front of a soda machine (?) after dipping into a diaper cleaner (?). I don’t know what that was all about, at all.

    The skating and the floatiness of the animation is wrong, just wrong.
    Why were they frozen initially? It makes no sense. Nothing was set up at all; there’s no anticipation.

    So, in my insignificant opinion: that was close to brilliant. Friggin brilliant. And, believe me, I feel bad expressing that. But, dang it, it makes me laugh.

    So, two thumbs up for the Muddle in the Middle!

    • E. L. Kelly

      I Agree wholeheartedly. The bookends were relatively mediocre compared to the majestic, amateurish incomprehensibilty of the second one.

    • Funkybat

      The incoherent grunting and mumbling in the Happy Meal ad seems to be a trait of a lot of “foreign” animation intended for an international audience. I’ve seen U.S. cartoons that are meant to be global do the same thing, but not as much. I remember hearing noises like that fairly often when going to see animated films in festivals or on cable TV. It reads to me as an attempt to keep the characters from being mute, but also not fixed on any one language and therefore not “native” to any land.

  • The Gee

    And, for goodness’ sakes, on the second one, some blame should the company for feeling the need to showcase its diverse product line. TVs, HVAC, fridges…that just makes the choice of making the commercial seem even more bizarre.
    I seriously doubt that a diversified product manufacturer like GE would showcase that many things so light-heartedly and sloppily. I doubt that would fly if it were made for American consumption. It is doubtful that it would be made at all if it was for American TV.

    But, thank God it was. Thanks for sharing!

  • Ghost of Warner Bros. Past

    ouch!

  • Tim Hodge

    Is Warner’s doing a fully animated feature? Or is it a hybrid like the Smurfs, Chipmunks, & Yogi Bear?
    Either way, I hope they do a better job than that tragedy that came out in the mid 90′s…where they talked!!

    • http://exclusive-cheese.deviantart.com/ Taco Wiz

      It’s supposed to be a hybrid, but we haven’t heard anything about it in quite sometime.

  • http://dtoons.com/conroy Failed Art Student

    The first one was the best of the three. In fact, the Looney Tunes appeared in a similar McDonald’s spot and it was posted here too.

  • Anka
  • http://bakertoons.blogspot.com/ Charles Brubaker

    You know, it takes ALOT to make the Filmation series look like masterpieces, but these did it.

  • tonma

    Say what you will, I want the McDonalds toys.

    the second one is just unfathomable, the fist one, mmmh.. I’d kinda like it if it had better timing.
    But watching all that I drifted into this really nice animated clip of Tom that ran on some asian branch of CN. nice!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rr97RpW1oxw&NR=1

    • M. V.

      /\ Now THATS Tom! Almost damn near perfect emulation of the old style!

    • Deaniac

      Oh man. I SWORE that I was watching a clip from the original ’40s shorts. That’s fantastic.

  • tonma

    …..aand.. is that Jerry with white feet?? the didn’t even watch the cartoons >:P

  • http://youtube.com/user/drexelboi1991 tedzey

    As long as they’re not focusing on making Tom and Jerry have realistic features and proportions, then I think we’re good! “Tom and Jerry: The Movie’s” still the bottom of the barrel if you ask me!

  • obj_solid

    One of these is not like the other….

  • NC

    I’m sorry but I just never got the obsession with Tom and Jerry to begin with. Can someone explain what I’m missing here?

    • tonma

      Tom and Jerry was a craft, an a very subtle one. While Tex Avery was taking slapstick to the maximum possible, H&B were distillating it to it’s purest. You really got to see past the “always the same storyline”prejudice
      (kids do this very well,example:Phineas and Ferb)
      to start enjoying it to a full extent.

  • Justin Delbert

    What the hell was that? Especially the second one! The first one didn’t make sense either. Hey! Jerry, will these be on the Golden Collection coming out in a little over a month from know?;)

  • Clint H

    The first and third one weren’t TOO bad. The second one was an insult.

  • Deaniac

    The 1st and 3rd videos weren’t that bad at all. Can’t same the same about the 2nd one…not by a long shot.

  • The Gee

    Aaaahh! I get it now.

    Don’t look at it as a variety of bad commercials with “Tom and Jerry” in it .

    It is just several versions of a CG cartoon cat and mouse, badly animated three separate times.

    The link “Tonma” provided: yeah, that is Tom the Cat riffing on Bob Dylan in “Don’t Look Back”. Bonus, it is pretty entertaining and done well.

    But, the CG commercials…

    cartoons are good when making fun of the sacrosanct; cartoons shouldn’t become sacrosanct. If they do then they should probably be ridiculed appropriately.

    Don’t take the history or the franchise of “Tom and Jerry” so seriously, unless you are working on it yourself and want or can make it as good as possible. The good stuff is always there for the audiences to find, and there’ll always be official not-so-great shorts and maybe features, too. But, don’t take the bad stuff so seriously that you end up looking for a corporate owned franchise to be consistently great over decades instead of just seeing cartoons with character animation, badly done or done well. Just step back before you look.

    (hope that makes sense…)

  • http://likelylooneymostlymerrie.blogspot.com/ Steven Hartley

    Looks like it’s all GC this and GC that?

    I always hated those straight-to-video T&J film releases in recent years like “Tom and Jerry Blast Off to Mars”, oh what a horrible production.

  • http://www.lavallelee.com Lavalle Lee

    MY question is why is anything remade in CG?? Do they really think it will look better? lol

  • Mike Russo

    Wow. That garbage actually makes me appreciate what Brandt and Cervone are trying to do with those DVD movies a whole lot more. It could always be worse, guys.

  • Steven M.

    First and third one were bad, but not super terrible, the second one, however, was pure crap.

  • http://elblogderg.blogspot.com Roberto

    I agree with everyone else. I actually like the first one the most. The third one is ok. The second is awful. I’d rather take something like the first or last one instead of a ‘realistic’ CGI thing like I guess they’re doing for the feature. They should totally go for traditional animation and have Spike Brandt and Tony Cervone in the production, if you ask me, but I guess that will not happen.

    I think I also find the first one more pleasing than Gene Deitch’s attempts.

    Anyway I don’t mind them at all. They’re just commercials. This is not their new feature movie or their new tv series. I’m more concerned about what Warner do with Looney Tunes. Still undecided whether Looney Tunes Show is a step forward compared to Loonatics and Baby Looney Tunes or a step backwards after Duck Dodgers (it’s obviously both things at the same time but I’m talking about the future) , but the sad part is that they could easily fix most of its flaws.

  • http://downindeep13.blogspot.com JerRocks2day

    These are crap– pure crap!

    The 1st and 3rd weren’t 100% pure crap, but they were still pretty close to the point of being declared pure crap. The 2nd one was just an abomination to Tom and Jerry fans everywhere.

    If the guys behind this really thought they were honoring Tom and Jerry, here’s what Tom would say:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9U_C_q6WcU

  • http://elblogderg.blogspot.com Roberto

    I’d add the first and third one are not actually worse than the Looney Tunes teach phonics cartoons that you seemed to like. I know the LT were 2D and this is CGI, but some kinds of 2D can look less cartoony than a good CGI.

  • Justin

    The animation in the milk and McDonald’s commercials was good, but the animation in the second one was AWFUL! It looked extremely low-budget and sloppy.

  • anonymous

    I just can’t understand why some people are saying some these weren’t that terrible, what the hell does that even mean. These clearly lacked a good use of the principles. There’s no excuse for accepting this type of low standard. They had decades of referance. Either you can or you can’t. They clearly couldn’t, some might think that sounds unfair but no one’s going to learn to push themsleves if poeple keep saying these weren’t so bad.

    • The Gee

      “…what the hell does that even mean [?]”

      Ed Wood low budget badness.

      If they were more than commercials, I think praise or scorn might be more warranted. But, even then, it isn’t like they were probably made with a Clio in mind.

      That said, I don’t think anything anyone has expressed will encourage anyone associated with those commercials or who might do animation tomorrow that the level of quality is acceptable.

      Even if someone stated they would order more at the same level, that wouldn’t drown out the fact that all 3 are badly animated, and that even the McDonald’s one cut corners.

      Maybe whoever worked on them should not have worked on them. Obviously, others could have and produced better results but I think you know why they were made just like I and others do. You can come up with the answer in one word. Nothing anyone expresses is gonna change that aspect of anything being green lighted, even if it is crappy work.

      (and as for This Year’s Sixty-Five or Older’s comment below mine: not exactly TV quality, or the target for commercials. But, it may just be the market accepts that level of quality, sometimes. CG produced for anything should be more polished than those 3. Still, the second one is so bad it’s funny…to me…as if I matter)

  • 2011 Senior Citizen

    Eh I dunno if they’re awful. They’re television-quality animation, which is exactly what they’re produced for.

    • Funkybat

      I say, unless you’re willing to at least come up to the quality level of the animation in “Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness” you shouldn’t even bother making a 3D show for TV. Most of the 3D stuff made for TV or direct to video is just painful to watch. I’d rather see Flash tweens of 2D illustrations than the floaty, under-rendered stuff that passes for 3D animation in a lot of those low-budget shows.

      • Chris Sobieniak

        Usually animation in advertising should excel expectations as I see it.

  • http://www.mikescottanimation.com Mike Scott

    HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA that Starlight one is…its just…it hurt my brain a bit! Ha ha ha ha! Wow wow wow wow wow.

  • http://www.onanimation.com Daniel Caylor

    Those characters are sacred imho. Nothing will ever match the beauty of the MGM theatricals, but it’s certainly possible to do a very good CG job with them right now. We’re not waiting for technology to catch up anymore. It may have taken ten years to create, but after Tangled, that all went out the window.

  • James Ciambor

    Its not just Tom and Jerry can’t it be agreed upon that most properties don’t work well in CGI unless their created for that purpose. CGI has a tendency to basterdize many traditional animated brands. I think we all know what films they are.

  • bigg3469

    (1)Italy McDonalds-funny and cute,
    (2) Vietnam Starlight TVC…WTF?! That was AWFUL! And what was Jerry wearing on his feet?
    (3) Israeli milk ad for a Israeli Dairy… Really funny and good! Way better animation than the Vietnamese one!