Monday, July 11, 2005

Details, Details

Dry day, but word is we might feel the residue of hurricane Dennis tonight, in the form of rain. That would be nice.

Ann likes Popeye, and readers with obsessive recall might remember that we bought a set of four Popeye DVDs some time ago (see November 16, 2004). By now, we’ve watched all the disks a good many times, and the other day I noticed an oddity.

The marvelous Popeye the Sailor Meets Sindbad the Sailor is one of the Fleischer brothers Technicolor two-reelers, made in 1936. Early in the story, Sindbad sees Popeye’s ship and instructs his roc: “Wreck that ship! But bring me the woman.” (Wink, wink, nudge, nudge.) The giant bird does Sindbad’s bidding, and soon Olive is his captive.

In 1952, King Features saved itself some money by recycling a lot of the Fleischer cartoon in a short called Big Bad Sindbad. The framing device is Popeye telling his nephews about the time he “knocked the tar out of Sindbad the Sailor.” The flashback is, of course, the truncated older cartoon.

Besides being shortened, the older cartoon was changed in one other way, at least that I noticed. When Sindbad dispatches his roc to attack Popeye’s ship, he says: “Wreck that ship! But bring me the girl.” Everything else in that scene was precisely the same, and yet someone went to the trouble to change “woman” to “girl.” Just another thing that makes you go, hm.



Post a Comment

<< Home