"Ali Baba Bound" (1940) Breakdown Thread

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Jon Cooke
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"Ali Baba Bound" (1940) Breakdown Thread

Postby Jon Cooke » Fri Mar 04, 2011 12:08 pm

Image

Supervision: Robert Clampett
Animation: Vive Risto
Story By: Melvin Millar
Musical Direction: Carl W. Stalling

Release Date: February 10, 1940

Series: Looney Tunes

Synopsis: The cartoon opens in the Sahara Desert where it is so hot, as a title card informs us, that "even the fan dancers use electric fans". At a desert Oasis, we see Porky Pig exiting The Brown Turban singing "The Girlfriend of the Whirling Dervish". Porky is called over by a "nasty spy" named "Tattle-Tale" Gray who hands the pig a secret message about Ali-Baba and his Dirty Sleeves' plan to attack the Desert Fort. Porky rents a camel, named Baby Dumpling, and is off to the Fort to warn of the attack. When he gets there, the Fort is empty as the troops have gone to the Legion Convention in Boston. Porky and the camel are left to defend the Fort by themselves when Ali-Baba and the thieves attack. Ali-Baba corners Porky and Baby Dumpling at knifepoint and Dumpling calls his mother for help. Mama Camel arrives just in time and headbutts Ali-Baba clear out of the Fort. A little Arab with a bomb strapped to his head, who has been sitting on the sidelines the entire attack (as the lone member of the "Suicide Squad"), sees his big chance. He charges the Fort ("Beep! Beep! Outta the way, outta the way! Beep! Beep!"), Porky and the camels open the front and back doors for him and he charges right through...and straight into Ali-Baba and the thieves. After a giant explosion, the remains fall back to Earth to form "Ali Baba's Auto Camp".

Video Availability:
Various public domain compilations

Trivia/Notes:
  • The title of this cartoon is a pun on the song title "Alabamy Bound".
  • "Tattle-Tale" Gray is a caricature of tough guy actor, George Raft.
  • "Tattletale grey" was a phrase used in advertisements for Fels-Naptha Soap (also referenced in Clampett's "Jeepers Creepers" (1939) and "Goofy Groceries" (1941).
  • "You naaaasty spy!" was a spoof of one of Joe Penner's catchphrases, "You naaasty man!".
  • The Brown Turban is a spoof of Hollywood's famous hat-shaped restaurant, the Brown Derby.
  • Camels Blondie and Baby Dumpling refer to characters of the same name from the "Blondie" comic strip/movies.
  • Colorized twice, once in 1968 and computer colorized in 1992.
  • After 9/11, Cartoon Network removed the brief shot of the sign reading "This Bench Reserved for Suicide Squad" when we first see the little thief with the bomb strapped to his head. (Though the sign was never readable when the network logo was in the corner of the screen, anyway.)
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Jon Cooke
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Postby Jon Cooke » Fri Mar 04, 2011 12:13 pm

more screen shots
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Jon Cooke
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Postby Jon Cooke » Fri Mar 04, 2011 12:15 pm

additional screen shots (5):
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Postby Jon Cooke » Fri Mar 04, 2011 12:16 pm

additional screen shots:
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Postby Jon Cooke » Fri Mar 04, 2011 12:18 pm

final screen shots, plus an advertisement for Fels-Naptha Soap with reference to Tattletale grey.
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Postby Fibber Fox » Sat Mar 05, 2011 3:41 am

[attach]4112[/attach] [attach]4113[/attach] [attach]4114[/attach]
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mickeyfender
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Music

Postby mickeyfender » Mon Apr 18, 2011 3:57 pm

Tunes that make an appearance in Ali-Baba Bound include:

"A Vision of Salome"
Music by J. Bodewalt Lampe
Played during the opening establishing shots

"The Girl Friend of the Whirling Dervish"
Music by Harry Warren
Lyrics by Al Dubin and Johnny Mercer
Sung by Porky Pig, played during the attack on the fort and also played when Blondie races to save Baby Dumpling

"In My Merry Oldsmobile"
Music by Gus Edwards
Played at the U-Drive Rent a Camel when Porky looks Blondie and Baby Dumpling over

"The Hootchy Kootchy Dance" (also called "The Streets of Cairo")
Traditional
Played when Porky rides Baby Dumpling

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David Gerstein
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Postby David Gerstein » Thu Apr 21, 2011 2:30 pm

Jon Cooke wrote:• The title of this cartoon is a pun on the song title "Alabamy Bound".

Minutiae: I'd argue that it's not "Alabamy," but "Alabama," as there's also a song famously covered in 1939 with the latter spelling—and "Ali Baba" makes a better pun with "Alabama" than "Alabamy."

Other point: various online... pundits have held up this cartoon as evidence that Middle Eastern suicide bombers were common before World War II. Not true, though—the phenomenon seems to have begun decades later, with "Suicide Squad" in 1940 being more a reference to organized kamikaze troops of the time.
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Postby wiley207 » Thu Apr 21, 2011 11:31 pm

I actually liked this short. Sure some of it may be offensive in today's modern world, I find it pretty interesting. I remember initially seeing it as the crappy redrawn-colorized version (with a fake early 1950s Looney Tunes opening sequence and mid-1940s "Porky in a Drum" closing added), and I thought some of those glitches were a bit funny and unusual. But then I saw the computer colorized version and it was like a breath of fresh air! I seem to honestly prefer the computer colorized version, even over the original black and white version! It just has some pretty cool color schemes to it, even if the camels are black instead of brown!

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Postby zavkram » Fri Apr 22, 2011 11:04 am

The "Nasty Spy" reference is also a parody of the book and Warner Bros. feature film, 'Confessions of a Nazi Spy'. These were also lampooned in the cartoon, 'Confusions of Nutzy Spy'.
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