CineSavant Column

Tuesday March 14, 2023


Hello! — I confess I didn’t pay attention at all to the Oscars this year … I DVR’d it — did anything happen that I ought to play back and enjoy?  Was the obituary montage worthwhile?

Meanwhile, here are the Winners in the Online Film Critics Society awards, my peer group that runs a well organized, tight ship. I’ve been a happy voting member since 2001.



This happy announcement at the Cartoon Brew web page amplifies the news that Warner Bros. Home Video will be releasing a new Blu-ray of all the Paramount Superman Theatrical Cartoons on May 16.

The seventeen Technicolor short subjects were released between 1941 and 1943 — does that make Superman the very first animated superhero?  The cartoons have reportedly been restored from their three separation negatives, digitally recombined.

Most of the cartoons aren’t that rare now, but they were never available when we were growing up in the 1950s — in fact, the first one I saw had to be in 1975, in an ‘experimental animation’ compilation. Then Greg Jein loaned me his 16mm collection, which was quite a revelation. This was of course before Star Wars and the real explosion of comic book culture.

Cartoon Brew publisher Amid Amidi lists the extras to be in included on the Blu-ray disc, and includes his fun short video, Superman’s Secret Cartoon History. We’ve contacted WB in hopes of receiving a review screener for CineSavant animation enthusiast Charlie Largent.



Joe Dante circulated a nice music novelty item over the weekend — it’s The Tingler  featuring Thurl Ravenscroft, a singer with the deepest voice imaginable. The fab vocal group credited are “The Tinglers,” which surely means that the novelty platter is a producer’s concoction. It looks as if the credited producer being one George Duning, Columbia’s longtime music director and composer.

As Joe remarked it’s no competition for Burt Bacharach and Hal Davis smash obscurity The Blob, but it’ll do. Yes, we agree that the earworm ditty for The Blob isn’t a tie-in, but was heard on the film itself.

Back in 2019 CineSavant spent a few hours compiling Movie Tie-In Novelty Records sent in by helpful correspondents, and the chances are that some of the links we posted still function. And what do you know, Joe’s new addition was there, albeit forgotten by me.

Thanks for reading! — Glenn Erickson