Friday, May 26, 2017

Looney Wartime Tales

It was still cloudy and cool when I got going this morning. Celebrated the beginning of Memorial Day Weekend with three shorts that had Superman fighting Axis powers during World War II. Despite some Japanese stereotypes, "The Eleventh Hour" is also a surprisingly mature tale of Superman committing sabotage in Tokyo while he and Lois are being held hostage. "Jungle Drums" has him rescuing Lois from natives who are being controlled by Nazis. He aids a "Secret Agent" who is trying to get papers with vital information to Washington.

It was past 11 when I headed out for my first errand of the day. I didn't have that much laundry to do, but I figured I might as well get it done before the weekend kicks in. Everyone else in Camden County must have had the same idea. They were busy with several families when I arrived. I worked on my story notes and explained them to a curious little girl.

Went home and put everything away, then headed back out. First stop on the agenda was Rite Aid. I was hoping they'd have that copy of Vanity Fair with the four Star Wars: The Last Jedi covers. No luck, but I did pick up a USB stick on a major clearance. I'll use it to clear the photos off my cell phone and make room for apps I can use while traveling.

Had lunch at Friendly's in the Westmont Plaza across the street. It was just after 1 PM, and they were still pretty busy. A large family in the back consisted mainly of older children and seemed to be having a lot of fun. The family next to me wasn't nearly so amusing. The children were far younger, the oldest not much more than a toddler. He sat in a high chair and kept reaching for everything, including my burger and fries. Thankfully, his arms were too short to get anywhere near them. I ate my All-American Burger, fries, and Viennese Mocha Chunk ice cream with marshmallow sauce and a mountain of whipped cream and ignored them.

The Haddon Township Library wasn't anywhere near that busy. In fact, there really wasn't much going on there. There weren't even many DVDs or new releases to shelve. I did put away some audio books and CDs. Didn't take out any movies, but I did find some books. I'm intrigued by the new DC Superhero Girls line of dolls...but as nifty as they are, they cost the same twenty bucks as the Ever After High dolls. I'm not starting yet another collection I may lose interest in a year or so later. I'll give the first novels for Wonder Woman, Supergirl, and Batgirl a try before I buy anything.

Made short stops at CVS and the Acme to try to find that Star Wars magazine. No luck. The weather wasn't looking pretty, either. The sun had been in and out all day, but by quarter of 3, clouds were starting to build up again. Not to mention, the kids were on their way out of school. I saw a couple as I rolled across Newton Lake Park. They're so green right now, probably thanks to all the rain we've gotten. The leaves are almost at their full sizes now.

Spent the rest of the afternoon working on my story. Determined to break the Crimson Hawk and use his pain to lure his ward, Vader tortures Henry's burned arm, using his electrical sword to burn it further, then slowly dripping ice down it. He formally arrests Henry, then brings Langdon and Bob "Boba" Fettson to take him to Jenkins Huttman, the most notorious gangster on the Tatoonie Islands, who will decide his fate. Before they drag him away, Leia breaks from the soldier who holds her and into Henry's arms. She loves him, she says. I know, he tells her before they drag him away.

Broke around quarter after 6 PM for dinner. I kept things simple with a raspberry jam and cheese omelet and green beans. Made my favorite Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies recipe for dessert.

Ran Warner Brothers wartime shorts as I ate and baked. Termite Terrace leaped into the war years, making tons of propaganda shorts along with the "Snafu" series for the Army. Did some of the regular wartime shorts tonight. They mainly fell into three categories - basic character comedies that happened to have a wartime bent ("Herr Meets Hare," "Daffy the Commando," "The Draft Horse"), sketch comedy revues on life in the barracks and on the home front ("Wacky Blackout," "Rookie Revue," "The Weakly Reader"), and allegories on how we got into the war...and how we planned to get out ("The Duckinators," "Fifth Column Mouse"). We also got an earlier Warners take on war, the black-and-white World War I musical tale "Bosko the Doughboy."

My favorite World War II shorts from Warners are three classics from Bob Clampett and Chuck Jones featuring Bugs and Daffy. Bugs spoofs the Golden Age of Superheroes when an enhanced carrot turns him into "Super Rabbit." A rabbit-hating cowboy and his horse try to take Bugs on. Meanwhile, Daffy's having his own problems with that pesky Little Man from the Draft Board in "Draftee Daffy." Bugs has a rare encounter with an antagonist who gives as good as he gets when he tangles with a gremlin sabotaging planes in "Falling Hare."

(Oh, and the clouds broke up shortly after I got home. It ended up being a pretty nice evening, actually.)

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