Cartoon Carnival of the Weird!

I finally made it to one of the recurring "Bizarro Saturday Morning" programs at the Plaza Theatre in Atlanta. The shows are compiled by Cartoon Network animator and voice artist C. Martin Croker, who may be best known as the villainous throats of Moltar and Zorak on "Space Ghost Coast to Coast."

As you might imagine, cartoons were the core attraction, but live-action kiddie TV commercials of the '70s and footage pretending to be animated were also featured, along with my first-ever episode of "Ultraman." Good heavens, that's bad stuff. Any self-respecting guy in a rubber Godzilla suit would not be caught dead in this series. Nope, much too sophisticated for the ruin.

The picture party was billed as "Weirdest of the Weird!! ... An Oddball mash-up of Nostalgia and bits of Weird-o Coolness" in meh, medium-tech 16mm.

I've located several of the high points to share with you, although the nap I enjoyed during the Ludwig Von Drake material I am keeping all to myself.

The first video is "Coffee Shop," one episode in the abysmal 1960 made-for-TV Popeye package dumped on cute little kids like me. At eight, I recognized these shorts were lifeless and would have had to aspire to reach up to awful. Nevertheless, this particular film has gained some sarcastic attraction on my end after a half century.

Olive Oyl and Brutus morph into newly disheveled beatniks much to establishment Popeye's bewilderment. They are so unintentionally uncool that they have become cool. Cool.

Popeye the Sailor in "Coffee House" (1960, Jack Kinney) via YouTube

Next, "How to Catch a Cold" is A-level animation, full-tilt from Walt Disney Productions, but it is a thinly veiled commercial for Kleenex Tissues, hidden within a lecture on germ warfare, juiced with plenty of cartoon slobber and snot. Cool. Cool.

"How to Catch a Cold" (1951) via Google Video

Ahead, the Warner Bros. Looney Tunes production team won an Oscar for "Best Documentary Short Subject" in this government propaganda slurping the Public Health Service. The resulting puddle of hyperbole could use some Kleenex.

"So Much for So Little" (1949, Chuck Jones) via YouTube

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