THE “COMPLETE” HARVEYTOONS

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Okay, I admit it. I love Famous Studios cartoons. Perhaps at some point I’ll go on at length about why I like them so much (partially it’s nostalgia, partially it’s because they aren’t as bad as many people think, and partially because I love to champion the underdog), but as I’m under a tight deadline on a book project I’ll hold off discussing this particular guilty pleasure for now.Sony Wonder has just released a boxed set called Harveytoons: The Complete Collection. “Harveytoons” was the generic name affixed to the 1950s Paramount/Famous Studio cartoons (featuring Casper, Baby Huey, Herman and Katnip, Little Audrey, Buzzy, etc.) when they were originally syndicated to television back in the 1960s, after Harvey Comics acquired the TV and non-theatrical rights to the library. Classic Media owns the collection today and authorized this new set. I haven’t had time to review the whole set, but what we have here are 52 episodes of THE HARVEYTOONS SHOW, a program I formatted for Harvey Entertainment and Fox Kids back in 1998. Unfortunately, this set does NOT constitute “the complete collection” under any condition. For a variety of reasons we did not incorporate the entire Harveytoon library into the original series. Certain cartoons (particularly the Screen Songs) are edited. The fact that their were 78 episodes should tip you off right there. Here’s the list of the original Fox Kids series. Sadly the contents of the DVD set doesn’t even match up to this list (for example, episode 52 on the DVD is actually #53 of the series).Oh, how I wish someone from Classic Media had consulted with me. For one, I would have made sure to include certain cartoons (like the politically incorrect Chew Chew Baby) and it would have been fun to create some bonus materials. The good news is that the cartoons look nice and clean, the cult classic La Petite Parade is included (episode #40 on the DVD) and they’ve restored the original Jackson Beck vocal tracks to Buzzy The Crow.And hey, they sent me two sets to give away on Cartoon Brew! Tomorrow (Friday) morning at 9am Pacific (that’s 12 noon in the East coast) I’ll post a trivia question and the first two correct answers will win one of these babies. (I will only accept entries from the U.S. and Canada) “Dat sounds logical!”