Friday, February 22, 2008

Tiny Toons...Origin Story

Just about every 1990's "classic cartoon revival show" had an "origin story" episode. Tiny Toon Adventures was no exception. Those of you who hate Tiny Toons may want to skip this post. But the rest of us, who liked the show and long for a DVD release of Tiny Toons, might want to check this out. This episode, entitled "The Looney Beginning", details the origin of the characters in "Tiny Toon adventures", and also features prominent participation from Bugs Bunny (voiced by Jeff Bergman, as Mel Blanc died before this series began.) Here's the origin of Buster, Babs, Plucky, Hamton, Montana Max, and others. Haters feel free to hate, fans feel free to enjoy.



14 comments:

Harley Green said...

As I was a little girl the Tiny Toons adventures were a must-see show for everyone in television, so I automaticaly watched them and appreciated their stories.
But I must admit one thing: by watching the TT cartoons I immediately get closer to the original Looney Tunes cartoons, because I wondered the origin of them and their kind of comedy!
Today I'm a great Looney Tunes fanatic, and guess how many people begin to love this timeless cartoons by watchin the adventures at the High School of Buster and company!

Just one curiosity, since we are talking abot the Tiny Toons cartoons: I'm looking for a particular episode of this serie titled "A piece of Mind", in which appears Wile E. Coyote as teacher of university!
Who knows this episode? and, if possible, where I can watch it? on youtube I can't find it! Thanks!

ramapith said...

Buster: "I've made up a list of everything needed for a hit show."
Babs: "Let's do Tiny Toons instead."
Buster (remaining completely casual): "Right. We need appealing stars..."

God, I remember when WB TV Animation had... moxie, to use Bugs' own words. Tiny Toons was a very mixed bag; in retrospect, I don't dislike it, but its luster has dimmed. Nevertheless, it reflects an awareness of classic WB cartoons that mass culture still shared at that point; and that thanks (ironically?) to Spielberg's involvement and endorsement, WB's creative heads were able to champion over the heads of Consumer Products.

Tiny Toons began as "Tiny Tunes," circa 1987. As far as I understand it, the concept at that time was similar to Baby Looney Tunes. Nobody but marketers wanted that series. And thanks largely to Spielberg's clout, WBTVA was able to express its reaction right here in THE LOONEY BEGINNING, when a character disturbingly similar to BLT's future Baby Bugs is derided as the source of "cavities" and thrown unceremoniously in the rubbish bin.

It's true: one can't underestimate the Teflon veil Spielberg's presence gave to TINY TOONS and ANIMANIACS. When WB Classic produced BLOOPER BUNNY, a short making fun of WB in no way TTA hadn't already done, an executive took offense ("I don't have an original bone in my body?") and the short actually spent more than five years on the shelf. Today, few people remember that though it's always dated 1991, it wasn't shown anywhere until 1997. Thus was the fate of satire not sanctioned by a powerful outside party whom marketing people feared.

Oh, WBTVA's problems were evident even from TTA's early days. I'll confess to not finding their "silly suburban white people" supporting characters are as funny as WBTVA thought they were; that road led to the shelved ELMYRA'S FAMILY, Katie Kaboom, much of HYSTERIA, and a glut of forgettable PINKY AND THE BRAIN (and more recently, Tom and Jerry DTV) supporting characters.

Anonymous said...

Hey Amblin and Warner, get you act together and release the first season of TTA on DVD's, pronto! That way the fans will be happy and satisfied on your approval and the accomplishments.

J.E.Daniels said...

Warner Bros Television Animation seemed to have a great run between the years 1990 - 1997 for "cartoony" shows. That was a "silver age" alright.
Tiny Toon Adventures really got me pumped into researching the classic Warner Bros cartoons.
At the time I was only catching the highly edited versions on Saturday mornings but VHS releases were getting me back on track.
TBS the Superstation aired Tom & Jerry's Funhouse back in the day that would feature Looney Tunes, Popeye, Tex Avery, Tom & Jerry and various MGM cartoons.
I hope WHV gives Tiny Toons a proper DVD treatment. Commentaries and behind-the-scenes footage would be nice.
"Piece of Mind" was the first Calamity Coyote/ Little Beeper cartoon that featured Wile E. Coyote narrating Calamity's life story as he falls off the Rump Tower. Joe Alasky voices Wile.
As far as I can tell, it's not avaiable on YouTube or Dailymotion?

Anonymous said...

Yay! TTA! I got into it since it first premiered on Prime Time CBS in 1990! I can't wait for this series to come out on DVD!

Harley Green said...

Thank you very much for the information J.E !! So far I didn't find it on youtube or dailymotion...is a great problem, because it is my favorite episode! I reminded to watch it on TV years ago and I liked it! Now I'd like to hear the voice that Alasky gave to Wile E.; I know it wouldn't be like the fantastic work he did Mel Blanc years ago, but I'd like to know if he makes a good interpretation too!
If someone knows where I can find it, let me know more! Thank you!

Adam Winters said...

Hah, I've never noticed that "created by buster and babs" line in the end credits at 10:21 on the second part. That's really funny, but totally in the spirit of the show. This was really a who's who of voice talent and animation production.

Mufassa said...

adam i am sure if you are a fan of TTA that in every episode thatere was a gag credit around that time and that that a charachter said something at the very end.
and Matthew thanks for posting this. I miss TTA and I didn't realize how much until I saw this. I hope for a TTA release soon

John Pannozzi said...

Ramapith, I liked what you said. You hit the nail right on the hammer.


Here's something important to point out regarding this particular Tiny Toon episode:
When it originally aired on CBS in prime-time (alongside a Ninja Turtles special, no less), it had some extra scenes (including Buster be re-drawn several times ala "Duck Amuck" and a scene where Furrball and Sweetie audition) that weren't in any other version. I urge everyone to email Warner Home Video to ask that these scenes be restored on DVD.

Also, the later episode "Return of Batduck" originally aired as the primere episode of the Plucky Duck (which aside from the primere episode I'm describing in this paragraph, was nothing but repeats of existing Plucky-centric cartoons), and when it was reran as a regulrar Tiny Toon episode, pits and pieces fo the episode were cut so the regular Tiny Toons opening could be squeezed in. Please tell Warner Home Video that when "return of Batduck" is released on DVD, it should be the version WITHOUT the regular Tiny Toons opening.

Thank you very much.

Ralink Todesco said...

i've just read the comment of Harley: I remember the episode Piece of Mind! It must be one of the first apparition of Wile E. Coyote in the series...Why you don't find a way put on the blog the first episodes, P.O.M included, so we can watch and enjoy them?

Adam Winters said...

Yeah, I have faint recollection of that Sweety and Furball scene. Never understood how there could be different versions of the same eps floating around. It happened with lots of shows like Batman: TAS and Talespin.

I didn't always pay attention to the details of the credits, but I do remember those gags. This one is really funny because Buster and Babs asked for creator credit in the same ep!

Anonymous said...

I just went to tvshowsondvd.com, and Warner Home Video has announced that Tiny Toon Adventures Season 1 on DVD is coming on July 29th. If you get the DVD set, I hope that you will upload some screengrabs from the show and post your reviews on this blog.

Karma said...

This show is just so obviously godawfully horrid. I'll never understand how people could watch this tripe and actually appreciate it.

It's one of the mysteries of the universe that i'll never understand. Why anyone remembers this show with fondness rather than the brand of outright disgust that Loonatics was also greeted with.

Tiny Toon adventures is as it's always been. It's stilted, painfully unfunny, the animation is beyond terrible, a cheap cash-in of the far superior Warner Bros characters regurgitated with no sense of style or quality, a mish-mash of failed concepts ultimately lost with piss-poor and rather aimless direction, irritating voice work, ugly, insipid pre-school colors and sensibilities, writers who pretend to be animators, hawking out an inspid blasphemy of classic characters, re-issued for the 5 and younger set who pretty much, will watch anything colorful that moves and makes noise.

Television test patterns are more entertaining and worthwhile.

Anonymous said...

^ Okay... no one really cares "Karma".

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