Saturday, April 30, 2011
Read this strip at gocomics.com.
To think the idle joke about a failed gimmick in movie-making from fifty years ago would be absolutely as relevant today as when it was first read.
This is another of those strips where the emerging, vague un-dog-like nature of Snoopy's personality is the source of the humor. When I read these strips I'm reminded of a Warner Bros. cartoon directed by Chuck Jones, "A Pest in the House," one of the few with a joke that explicitly recognizes how weird is that arbitrary line between its animal characters as animals (things that Elmer Fudd hunts, that sleep in holes, that hope around the woods and float in ponds) and as human-like creatures (that pester hunters, who dress up in women's clothing, that play poker and golf, who hold jobs).
The cartoon in question begins with an announcer speaking: "Once upon a time there was a labor shortage. It became so bad that employers would hire anybody." A pause, then, when Daffy Duck zooms on-stage: "Or anything...."
There's another cartoon like that, made later,I think it's People Are Bunny, where Bugs Bunny and Daffy are competing in a radio program's stunt game for a mystery price, where they're racing each other to the studio. At one point Daffy is flung into the air and left to helplessly fall to painful cartoon injury, and Bugs, looking up from the ground, casually remarks, "I wonder if Daffy will remember that he can fly?" There is a crashing sound, then he adds, "I guess not." Later in the same cartoon a similar remark happens regarding swimming.