Join 3,375 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


When der Fuehrer sez, ve ist der master race...
September 19, 2004 11:31 AM   Subscribe

Der Fuehrer's Face, aka Donald Duck in Naziland [80MiB MPEG-1; IMDb]
posted by Pretty_Generic (22 comments total)

 
I love the freak out part around 7 minutes in.
Downloaded it just for that.
posted by Busithoth at 11:50 AM on September 19, 2004


This, and other Disney wartime cartoons and short films, are available on a great new 2-disc DVD set, Walt Disney Treasures - On the Front Lines (1943).

But despite their sorta-un-PC sensibilities, Disney ain't got nothing on the Warner Brothers cartons of the same era. Ever see "Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips?" How about "Tokio Jokio"? Japanese stereotyping up the wazoo.

Or, flor your anti-European fix, there's "The Ducktators" (Daffy vs. Mussolini and the Nazi's) and "Herr vs. Hare" (Bugs vs. Hermann-Goering-as-Elmer-Fudd doing the ole "hunting wabbits" routine).

Max Fleischer's Popeye cartoons had some anti-Japanese doozies too; see "Under the Red, White, and Blue", for example.
posted by Asparagirl at 11:56 AM on September 19, 2004


Wow. Thanks for that. Video quality is a bit sketchy, but as busithoth said, you don't want to miss the surreal polka bomb finale! Or the ending, which seems to suggest that our jingosim is better than yours because... it's ours. Tomato in your face, Führer!
posted by muckster at 12:03 PM on September 19, 2004


Asparagirl, I was going to post about those WB ones. They blow this out of the water in crassness and pandering to our worst elements. But that's what makes them so good. I couldn't believe what I was seeing the first time I saw them. I don't expect them to be released anytime soon, either, unfortunately.
posted by Busithoth at 12:09 PM on September 19, 2004


"I'm glad to be a citizen of the United States of America"

since when did we let ducks hold citizenship? especially ones that never wear pants
posted by RobbieFal at 12:23 PM on September 19, 2004


I remember the conversations I had with my animation history professor at NYU about some of these things. It's amazing how much credit needs to be given to the animation industry in terms of WWII propoganda. Not just the jingoistic stuff, but the constant "buy war bonds" cartoons, the military training "Private SNAFU" films, and artistic stuff unattainable with live-action that would make you want to go fight Germans right now if you watched it. The short "Victory Through Air Power" is one of the reasons we developed an Air Force during the WWII era.

Some stuff is unabashedly horrible, taste-wise. ("Bugs Bunny nips the Nips-" yes, that's the actual title- is so racist it holds a place in the WB archives of one of only twelve shorts they will never air or distribute). But it's nice to remember that there was a time when the American animation industry was a force far more powerful than just selling action figures to children.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:26 PM on September 19, 2004


"I don't expect them to be released anytime soon..."

Yeah. But copies are widely available on various P2P networks, like Kazaa...

And for all their zany racism, those Warner Brothers cartoons are still very, very funny, all the moreso for being shocking to our modern sensibilties. They're worth seeing, if only to have your jaw drop.

The only present-day cartoon I can think of that comes close to the purpose and tone of those cartoons would be the South Park episode "Osama Bin Laden Has Fartypants", which was the first South Park episode broadcast post-9/11. I'm thinking of the Cartman vs. Osama scenes, specifically, which are right out of "Herr vs. Hare". only a bit bawdier. I suppose we'll know the War on Terrorism will finally have been accepted as a real war when we see the Powerpuff Girls take on the Saudi misogynists, or the Simpsons take one of their family vacations to Iran. Pop culture is a good indicator of such things.
posted by Asparagirl at 12:26 PM on September 19, 2004


The only present-day cartoon I can think of that comes close to the purpose and tone of those cartoons would be the South Park episode "Osama Bin Laden Has Fartypants", which was the first South Park episode broadcast post-9/11. I'm thinking of the Cartman vs. Osama scenes, specifically, which are right out of "Herr vs. Hare". only a bit bawdier.

Trey Parker and Matt Stone have said in interviews this scene was a direct homage to the WWII Bugs Bunny cartoons. Which, given their venemous racism, isn't exactly the most admirable thing. When I first saw that episode I immediately recoginzed the reference, but still found it kinda tacky.

I suppose we'll know the War on Terrorism will finally have been accepted as a real war when we see the Powerpuff Girls take on the Saudi misogynists, or the Simpsons take one of their family vacations to Iran.

My animation production professor, Dean Lennert, animated on the Robert Smigel cartoon, including the post-9/11 "X-Presidents" short where they tried to make a modern-day propoganda cartoon. It included the Powerpuff girls. Ford killed one of them, I believe.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 12:39 PM on September 19, 2004


The Straight Dope has some background on the Warner Brothers' wartime cartoons and the list that XQUZYPHYR mentioned, and this page has (Windows only, apparently) clips from Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips and others.
posted by kirkaracha at 12:42 PM on September 19, 2004


heil, pretty_generic! as long as i lived, i never thought i'd get to see that. (but spike jones sounds funnier with all the raspberries left in [mp3].)
posted by steef at 1:15 PM on September 19, 2004


Previous coverage of this subject here. (Not a call-out: just additional info.)
posted by Prospero at 1:22 PM on September 19, 2004


kirkaracha - You can download the clips from that page on non-Windows platforms by linking right to the files:

Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips:
Clip 1
Clip 2
Clip 3

etc. (Just replace the .html at the end of the URL with .asf for the other clips.)
posted by Turd Furguson at 1:33 PM on September 19, 2004


The good part about the "banned 12" (and other banned WB cartoons) is that, by not releasing them on tape or DVD all these years, many of them are now in the public domain...

Anyway, this page has three of the WB cartoons available for online RealVideo streaming, but highly compressed and low resolution: "Any Bonds Today?" (music by Irving Berlin! but un-PC because Bugs is briefly shown in blackface a la Al Jolson), "Scrap Happy Daffy" (Daffy vs. Hitler), and the infamous "Tokio Jokio" (very very anti-Japanese).
posted by Asparagirl at 1:34 PM on September 19, 2004


"Those Japs Can't Fly"
Dower's argument is interesting not only for its descriptions of the racial ugliness that afflicted both sides, but what it meant for the conduct of the war. For example, both English and American military personnel suffered from a deficiency of imagination prior to Pearl Harbor, a deficiency resulting from their view of the Japanese as inferior. On the day before the Japanese sunk two British warships, a deck officer laughed off reports of the Japanese Navy nearby by proclaiming, "Oh, but they are Japanese. There's nothing to worry about." Another declared, "Those Japs can't fly. They can't see at night and they're not well trained." (101) Similarly, after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, General Douglas MacArthur "was caught by surprise and refused to believe that the pilots could have been Japanese. He insisted they must have been white mercenaries." (105) "The factual trappings of such smug overconfidence are noteworthy," concludes Dower. "Prejudice masqueraded as fact." Once the war started, of course, the dehumanization of the enemy in the Pacific led to many notable atrocities on both sides of the conflict, from the infamous Bataan death march to the collection of noses, ears, teeth, and skulls by Allied soldiers, from the execution of three Doolittle Raid flyers to the slaughtering of surrendering Japanese at Bougainville. As Dower notes, these wartime atrocities spawned a vicious circle that, once publicized, led to more and more atrocities. Without the idea of a "good Japanese" to complement the "good German," Allied forces came to increasingly believe that "the only good Jap is a dead Jap." (78-79)



_______________

Japanese Skulls as Ornaments on American Military Vehicles

Abundant contemporary imagery of rats, insects, monkeys or vipers was publicly invoked as justification for exterminationist rhetoric advocating wholesale slaughter of the Japanese. “Rodent Exterminator” was stenciled on helmets of many Marines during the 1944 invasion of Iwo Jima. The collection of body parts as trophies from dead (and living) Japanese was so commonplace that personnel returning from the Pacific theater were routinely screened for trophy possession prior to embarkation. In 1943 the magazine Leatherneck published a photograph of Japanese corpses with an uppercase headline reading “Good Japs,” while the following year Life published a full-page photograph of an attractive blonde posing with a Japanese skull. Another photograph showed Japanese skulls as ornaments on American military vehicles. Contemporary Japanese reaction was to view such material as indicative of the American character. For their part, officially sanctioned American perspectives endorsed notions that the Japanese were mad or crazy with a perverse wish to die, and deserved the death brought to them by Americans.


one wonders if the Japanese retaliated by ripping Donald Duck's beak off or something.
what a barrel of laughs.
posted by matteo at 2:31 PM on September 19, 2004


The good part about the "banned 12" (and other banned WB cartoons) is that, by not releasing them on tape or DVD all these years, many of them are now in the public domain

If they're in the public domain, it's because their copyright has expired, not because they weren't released for some period of time.
posted by kindall at 2:32 PM on September 19, 2004


But can't you renew copyright one time or something? Maybe by not releasing them WB chose not to renew?
posted by jonson at 4:21 PM on September 19, 2004


Copyright after has been perpetual since Mickey Mouse. So no, none of these things are in the public domain.
posted by betaray at 5:41 PM on September 19, 2004


Donald Duck in "The Spirit of '43" (58MiB)
and, um, Donald Duck in "Something I Haven't Downloaded Yet" (103MiB)
posted by Pretty_Generic at 6:19 PM on September 19, 2004


Ah, that second link is the classic "Education for Death", conspicuously bereft of Donald Duck.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 6:42 PM on September 19, 2004


Copyright after has been perpetual since Mickey Mouse. So no, none of these things are in the public domain.

No, a large number of the WB cartoons are indeed in the public domain. Check out this list (which also lists non-public domain cartoons that are often pirated on "public domain" tapes). The aforementioned "Any Bonds Today" is one of 'em.

Or, from this non-authoritative but official-looking online FAQ:
Q2.1. Who controls the rights to what Looney Tunes?
A2.1. Turner currently holds the rights to all color cartoons copyrighted prior to Sept. 1, 1948 plus all black-and-white Harman/Ising Merrie Melodies except 1931's "Lady Play Your Mandolin". Warner owns all the rest, and both companies claim to own 1948's "Odor of the Day".

Note also, that many of the cartoons controlled by Turner are now in the public domain (presumably due to forgetfulness or laziness on the part of Associated Artists Productions in renewing the copyright). These are the cartoons that you will find on the bargain-basement compilations. Beware of poor tape quality on such compilations.
And wikipedia confirms: "Despite the efforts of UA, Turner, and AOL Time Warner, many of the Censored Eleven are available on bootleg or public domain video."

And here's one more of those online public domain wartime WB cartoons: Daffy - The Commando (1943). Daffy vs. the Nazi's, directed by Fritz Freleng, and in color, whee!
posted by Asparagirl at 9:55 PM on September 19, 2004


Asparagirl, though you're right that some are in the Public Domain, your reason:

The good part about the "banned 12" (and other banned WB cartoons) is that, by not releasing them on tape or DVD all these years, many of them are now in the public domain...

is not correct. If the copyright holder updates the copyright, it's irrelevant whether they've been released in any form. This was a lapse in copyright due to neglect/forgetfulness/laziness and nothing else.
posted by dobbs at 10:21 PM on September 19, 2004


So we overran his server, but the file's still there, you just have to look for it.
(For anyone checking in on the thread after the link broke)
posted by Busithoth at 10:23 AM on September 21, 2004


« Older A home computer in the year 2004 As envisioned in...  |  Blue Note: Over 1000 great jaz... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments