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The Eager Beaver

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The Eager Beaver
Eagerbeaver
Directed By: Charles M. Jones
Produced By: Eddie Selzer (uncredited)
Released: July 13, 1946
Series: Merrie Melodies
Story: Tedd Pierce
Animation: Basil Davidovich
Ben Washam
Ken Harris
Lloyd Vaughan
Layouts: Robert Gribbroek
Backgrounds: Robert Gribbroek
Film Editor: Treg Brown (uncredited)
Voiced By: Mel Blanc
Frank Graham (uncredited)
Music: Carl W. Stalling
Starring: Narrator (voiced by Frank Graham)
Preceded By: Acrobatty Bunny
Succeeded By: The Great Piggy Bank Robbery
Merrie Melodies - The Eager Beaver (1946)-006:14

Merrie Melodies - The Eager Beaver (1946)-0

The Eager Beaver is a 1946 Merrie Melodies cartoon directed by Chuck Jones.

Plot

This fairly obscure one-shot cartoon appears to be Chuck Jones' experiment with a new character, and for whatever reason it was Eager beaver's first and only cartoon. The cartoon begins with a series of beaver gags, including beavers "damning" a river! We are then introduced to a group of beavers working on a big dam, with an obnoxious foreman who can't make up his mind on how to position the logs. All the beavers are hard at work when Eager beaver arrives on the scene, and while he's ready for action, he just can't seem to find a tree that nobody else has beaten him to. There's either somebody else in the way or he's in the way of somebody else. After nearly chopping our hero by accident, a tall, burly fellow points to a huge tree at the top of a mountain and yells "Why dontcha chop THAT tree down?!". Eager immediately sets to work. He soon finds that it's not as easy a job as it looks...the tree breaks his axe and explosives do nothing but blow up some of the rock the tree is growing in. Meanwhile, a bird tells the other beavers to hurry up with the dam because a flood is approaching. They hurry it up, but when there's one log left, the foreman's obsession with precision wastes valuable time. Unaware of any trouble, Eager finally chops the tree down using a termite, and finds himself and the tree falling down into the canyon below. The flood sweeps the beaver and the tree downstream, the tree ultimately filling the gap in the crew's dam. The beavers cheer and give Eager a hero's welcome, and the cartoon ends with the foreman getting crushed by his own falling log.

Trivia

  • The third baby hawk that fell out of the nest and hatched sounded and stuttered exactly like Porky Pig.
  • The dog that appears briefly in one scene to retrieve his bone out of the tree is a prototype of Charlie Dog.
  • During the scene when the beavers damn the river, what came out of their mouths were the words "BLANKEDY BLANK BLANK". It appears that he meant to call curse words, which were also very common among the US culture-though considered taboo for films by the Hays Code in the 1940s. Similar censorship tactics on uttered profanity were previously used in Tortoise Beats Hare.
  • Further cartoons featuring The Eager Beaver character were envisaged by Chuck Jones, but for some reason these plans never came to fruition.
  • The Turner "dubbed version" seen on TV contains split-cuts, although they're mostly unnoticeable by even the most naive viewers unlike the Turner "dubbed version" of Fair and Worm-Er.

Gallery

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