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krazykatclassics

More TCM censorship towards classic cartoons

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Watch Cartoon Alley today and the epsiode featured one of Tex Avery's lesser known screen characters, George & Junior.I see that the first short in the program was the George & Junior cartoon, "Henpecked Hoboes" which contained an edit in this cartoon.

 

The scene in which George uses a nest with dynamite and George shows and tells Junior what to do and Junior pulls down the lever and causes the nest with Junior sitting down, in which explodes with Junior winding up in blackface gag.

 

This scene was very badly edited and it has cartoon fans sick and tired with these edits as TCM is against any kind of censorship and has some people getting sceond thoughts about this channel when it comes to the mistreatment on the classic cartoons.I do know that TCM gets these prints from Time Warner and when the shorts are viewed before airing, the people that are viewing the cartoons don't know of any edits in these shorts and something should be done to correct this problem.

 

Maybe TCM should bring someone in(or just read the fans feedback) that knows about classic cartoons and can catch these edits, before the cartoon is set to air on Cartoon Alley.So now you know what the edit is TCM and go back to TW and get the correct verison and re-air the cartoon in it's original format when this episode is re-broadcast in the future.

 

I do see that TCM has the MGM cartoon "Garden Gopher" to be shown later this month and TCM, please check this cartoon, cause you probably have the edited verison that TW gave your channel.The scene in which Spike plants dynamite next to the Gopher hole, the Gopher puts oil all over the floor and when Spike tries to get away he keeps running(but manages to not distance himself from the dynamite)and after the explosion, Spike winds up in blackface and starts to shuffle away from the hole.This was scene was never shown on Cartoon Network and Boomerang and you have a chance TCM to get the correct print from TW before the cartoon airs later in November.

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krazykatclassics -

 

I just checked the print of Henpecked Hoboes included in the special features section of the TILL THE CLOUDS ROLL BY DVD and it's the same edited print!

 

The original may never be seen again!

 

Yancey

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Krazykat:

 

Did you not see and hear the apologetic intro Ben M. gave for the second cartoon? TCM has to leave the edits in because otherwise, they would be innundated with complaints from people calling them racist. Racism is in the process of being overcome, we don't need to slide back 50 years because of a 5 minute cartoon.

 

Think about the language your children (if you have any) are subjected to in the entertainment field. An adult movie is one thing to harp on for editting, but a 50 year old cartoon, please. You sound like a cartoon expert, or purist, whichever you are, but some cartoons from that era are basically embarrassing to watch, not only from a racist standpoint but also the fun they often make of physical deformities, and the mentally challenged. That sort of thing is no longer considered funny by the majority.

 

Message was edited by:

mrsl

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I'm a film expert and a purist...

 

I find the performances of Chico Marx an insulting Italian stereotype.

 

I would love to see Chico Marx cut from every future Marx Brothers showing on TCM.

 

It's about time his awful stereotypical performances were cut once and for all from these intentionally insulting films.

 

Yancey

(TPFIC)

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It's odd Yancey, but I agree with you, not only for Chico, but all of the Marx Bros and their woman bashing attitudes. I never realized why I dislike them so much, and you've given me my answer. Thanks.

 

Anne

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Sorry, Anne but I was joking! I'm wondering if you were too!

 

(TPFIC) = Tongue Planted Firmly In Cheek!

 

I was trying to make a point that racism, stereotypes, women's rights even animal treatment issues can be found in all films up to the present. Everyone has their threshold of tolerance.

 

To some Chico Marx may be just as offensive as blackface. And try to convince them they aren't more right then the next person.

 

Stereotypes are ignorant on any level but I hardly think someone is going to confuse racist stereotypes from 60 years ago as to what people are really like.

 

Wouldn't you agree the "stereotypers" come off worse than the person being offended?

 

People don't like to hear it was a different time, that's how they saw things then but if a cartoon from the 1940's is going to inspire racism in this day and age then our society will never be able to move ahead.

 

Yancey

 

Yancey

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As someone who is both an amateur film historian and in a long-term interracial relationship, I feel qualified to comment on this. First of all, these cartoons (and features and books and etc.) from, shall we say, less enlightened times, are what they are. They function not only as entertainment, but also as a looking glass view into what people thought/how the world was viewed in days gone by. Do they contain stereotypes? Yes, of course. Viewed through our modern sensibilities, are some of these images/performances insulting? Yes. Does that mean we change what they are? Do we feel free to alter their form in order to protect our (very different) modern selves?

 

In other words, do we (attempt to) change history?

 

I find the true and accurate presentation of these HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS to be much LESS offensive than the idea of editing/censoring them. What is to be gained by such actions? Who benefits? And, importantly, how do we know how far we as a society have come without being able to see older, "offensive" materials?

 

The example of Chico is spot on. He is - in some eyes - a hateful, stereotyped character, one we should be ashamed of - and perhaps one that should be purged from our historical record. And couldn't it be said that Harpo makes "all" handicapped people seem like manic, blonde-chasing lunatics? And on and on...

 

I'd also like to ask if the folks in favor of cutting out offensive blackface (and black sterotyping) bits would also be in favor of editing out "poisonous" and "cliche" black character actors such as Mantan Moreland, Willie Best and Hattie McDaniel?

 

And what about all the films in which white folks play Asians? And Italians play Indians? And again, on and on...

 

Remember folks: Cutting "offensive" scenes from films is like eating potato chips - you can't stop at just one. So if we start, where DOES it stop?

 

Max

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It seems to me, that several people who did reply to my post, seems that we should destroy these films as they should never be seen, doesn't know about their history and at a time that they were made.I'm against censorship of any kind and remember, these cartoons that were shown, was not made for kids, but aimed at adults when these shorts were released over 65 years ago.If you clearly don't like certain scenes or the entire movie, then just change the channel...That's all you have to do, it's that simple..

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I re-read my original post and I did word it badly. Everytime a film is shown that has any kind of sterotype in it , this message board gets some kind of post about it. I should have said edits had to be left out, not in. As someone said, if they started editting all things that upset people, there wouldn't be any movie left to show.

 

Regarding the Marx Bros however, I was serious about thanking Yancey, because he did make me realize why I never liked them. I never put my finger on it before.

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First, let me say, that I do not condone censorship in any form. However, that said, I don't think we should lay the blame on TCM. After all, they are a relatively small part of the Time-Warner conglomerate. No doubt, the TCM executives have to follow orders from the bosses up in "corporate". Remember, TCM is the channel that recently showed one of the most racist films ever made "The Birth of a Nation". I imagine there was a lot of discussion at various levels of T-W over that one and thankfully it was shown.

 

I'm sure there are executives in upper management who would prefer TCM to only show edited films because it's the "safer" way to go. TCM has never shown a pattern of censorship and, as we all know ,most every film shown is shown uncut. To me, it's a matter of perhaps losing a battle, but still winning the war.

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Censor a cartoon? Can the "SS" be far away? They censored "'Tarzan" in my library because Tarzan and Jane were not legally married. Yet they let a child molester free without bail and on a three month probation. What the hell is going on?

 

Aftermath

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I find the true and accurate presentation of these HISTORICAL DOCUMENTS to be much LESS offensive than the idea of editing/censoring them.

 

Absolutely true, MaxMania.

 

They censored "'Tarzan" in my library because Tarzan and Jane were not legally married.

 

aftermath, I hope you're joking.

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> They censored "'Tarzan" in my library because

> Tarzan and Jane were not legally married.

>

> aftermath, I hope you're joking.

 

I wish I was stoneyburke! The sad part of it was, only 11 people showed up to voice our protest of the banning of Tarzan from our library ( Me included) on a beautifu Spring Day. ( The weather had no factor for the low turnout) What do you think of that?

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aftermath, as a former children's librarian, I am more than incensed that Tarzan was censored at your library.

 

I won't ask where you live, but if that happened in my area of New York, you would see me on the news. It would not be pretty.

 

If there is ONE thing I cannot accept, it is censorship of books. They're the last bastion of the intelligent. While Big Business has its way with the despicable dumbing down of television and newspapers and movies, and Organized Religion has its way with influencing people in their own subversive ways, it has always been a comfort that anyone with half a brain can seek out books to read and form their own opinions thereafter.

 

It is very sad that only 11 people showed up to protest.....it would do well for those who didn't to read The Rise and Fall of the Roman Empire. Then again, there may be something in there they don't like and they would censor that book.

 

Terrible, just terrible. And it's all due to money, since those that have it want to rule the world.

 

aftermath, how is it possible that the librarians in your library went along with this? What is next? Henry Miller? Jphn Updike? Truman Capote? D.H.Lawrence?

 

This boggles my mind.

 

dolores

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Everyone on the programming staff agrees with the sentiments of this thread. We aren't even allowed to access unedited versions of many of the cartoons in the WB library (we tried very hard to play some of them during the Race and Hollywood event we had last March).

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tcmprogrammr -



We aren't even allowed to access unedited versions of many of the cartoons in the WB library (we tried very hard to play some of them during the Race and Hollywood event we had last March).

WOW!



That's scary!



I've heard of the banned 11 WB Cartoons and wondered if they'd ever show up on TCM now I know they probably won't.



Fascinating times we live in.

Yancey

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Is this all because the UK found Tom of Tom & Jerry offensive because he smoked a cigarette. Please, in this day and age we realize the dangers. Next we'll be burning books like Fran?ois Truffaut's "Fahrenheit 451". It should be our choice what we watch not some Egg-Head making decisions for us...What a crock!

 

vallo

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Fascinating times we live in.

 

I'll say. As long as there are people like Bill Cosby assuming that we're all racists, this isn't after all the Land of the Free Mind, is it?

 

But hey, we're getting what we deserve.

 

dolores

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Stoney:

 

I agree the censorship of Tarzan is ridiculous and less than intelligent but what really got me was aftermaths' next statement:

 

"Yet they let a child molester free without bail and on a three month probation. What the hell is going on?"

 

I mentioned that little item about 2 months ago when some moronic judge in Vermont pulled that 'sentence', and then another one down somewhere in the south. I agree, aftemath, What the H**l is going on?

 

Anne

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I too had heard of the banned 11 WB Cartoons . I was lucky enough to have someone post the on the internet so that I could see them. I also was able to download Song of the South. I wanted to see these for myself so I could form my own opinions. I am African American and have an interest in seeing stuff like this even though it can be painful at times.

 

But it is reality. And people need to face it. A well versed disclaimer before the cartoons is all that is needed for the unedited versions of these cartoons/films to air as they were originally shown. It really gets silly, one the one hand you can see Blackface in many 1930's musicals and Negros playing stereotypical black people (I can barely watch the film "High Sierra" because of Stephin Fetchit -- his portrayal is truly insulting to every black american on the face of this earth), but the cartoons get sanitized? I could understand this for the CN because they have alot children in their audience but TCM's is overwhelmingly adult. Apparently, it is out of their control.

 

As a black person, I feel it is important for that we never forget our history and that it not be sanitized or treated like it never happened. What is that saying, "those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"?

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A well versed disclaimer before the cartoons is all that is needed for the unedited versions of these cartoons/films to air as they were originally shown.>>

 

Ah, if that was all that was truly needed. The Fox Movie Channel a few years ago tried to run the Charlie Chan series and was hit with threats of boycotting by various groups who felt that the Charlie Chan character was a sterotype whose day had passed. These groups not only threatened boycotts of the FMChannel but all the other Fox networks and products (such as all dvds from 20th Century Fox).

 

FMC pulled the series. They very quietly released the box set earlier this year with very little fanfare.

 

All the other studios are very aware of this problem. Some, like Disney, choose to just not release the films they know to be hot-issue buttons (Song of the South).

 

Others, like Time Warner, have "sanitized" versions of the more "offensive" cartoons that they will only allow to be shown.

 

I agree with those who believe that these films are part of who we are and part of our heritage and should not be placed in the back of the vault never to be seen.

 

Perhaps somewhere down the road, TCM can put together a program for these cartoons and films similar to their Race and the Movies program last May. Perhaps by showing them with a historian to speak about their place in history and who we were as a society might allow these films to again be seen without being sanitized.

 

I know that over the years, Leonard Maltin has done a series for Looney Tunes where he talks about just this issue.

 

TCM would probably have an upsurge in viewers for a program like this (and they likely know it). It's likely getting the okay from legal and the higher ups whose job it is to protect the bottom line and the share holders that need to be convinced.

 

Maybe one of these days.

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sjack,

 

 

 

Thank you for writing your view point. I am Caucasion and was wondering how far off base I could be about this. If there were members of the African American community who felt as I did, that, as you say...

 

 

 

it is important for that we never forget our history and that it not be sanitized or treated like it never happened. What is that saying, "those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"?

 

 

 

I believe children learn racism from their family and friends NOT from cartoons.

 

 

 

I must, unfortunately, correct you on one minor historical point...

 

The man in "High Sierra" that you detest is not Stephin Fetchit but an actor by the name of Willie Best. Sad to say early in his career Mr. Best did go by the name of Sleep N' Eat.

 

 

Yancey

 

 

 

 

 

Message was edited by:

yanceycravat

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Sjack wrote:

 

As a black person, I feel it is important for that we never forget our history and that it not be sanitized or treated like it never happened. What is that saying, "those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"?

 

Sjack: Thank you for your interesting post. In a similar vein, I was disappointed to read TCMProgrammer's post (below) stating that TCM wasn't allowed to access uncensored cartoons for TCM's larger, "Race and Hollywood" discussion of harmful racial stereotypes.

 

Whether or not those cartoons would be appropriate for TCM's business-as-usual programming, simply pretending they don't exist would not seem to serve the purpose of promoting racial awareness and sensitivity.

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