Sunday, March 14, 2010

Pink Panic (The Pink Panther, 1967)

When I was a kid, Saturday morning was a 6-hour nonstop binge of cartoons and toy commercials (and some of those cartoons, come to think of it, weren't much more than toy commercials themselves). Sunday, then, was the sober, morning-after hangover. On Sunday, the television was dominated with serious religious programming and dry, magazine-style light news shows aimed at the grown-ups who'd gotten up early to read their Sunday paper.

Oh sure, there were a few token scraps tossed to the kids still coming down from the previous morning's cartoon high... Schoolhouse Rock, the various incarnations of Superfriends, kid-centered variety show Kids Are People Too, the Hal Linden hosted nature show Animals, Animals, Animals, and my own personal hair-of-the-dog, The Pink Panther Show.

As a kid, I never did quite understand the connection between the Pink Panther shorts and the Peter Sellers Inspector Clouseau films (which I was also a fan of), but I always enjoyed the cartoons' quirky tone and unique, dialogue free gags. And of course, the classic theme song by Henry Mancini.

Here's a few screen caps from one of my favorites shorts, in which Pink wanders into a spooky old ghost town. Originally a theatrical short, its Pink Panic (1967).

Pink's first clue the hotel may be haunted... a stray ink blot from the registry pen starts scurrying across the page like a spider.

An old draped chair turns out to be a ghost and stalks Pink to his room.

Pink accidentally uses him as a bath towel.

Turning to blow out a candle, Pink doesn't realized he's laying next to a skeleton.

Later, the ghost emerges from a wine barrel looking a bit soused.

Tiring of the ghost's antics, Pink inflates and busts him like a balloon, but each little piece become a tiny ghost!

Fed up with the noise caused by all the ruckus, the sheriff marches Pink, the ghost and the skeleton to jail at gunpoint.

But when the sun rises, the spooky trio disappears, as well as the entire town of Dead Dog. Was it all a mirage?

1 comment:

prof. grewbeard said...

fun, never saw this one before, though i have seen the use-the-ghost-as-a-towel joke, most recently in Ren & Stimpy!