Happy Father’s Day! Director Chuck Jones said that this gem of a cartoon was inspired by his young daughter Linda’s well-intended but disastrous efforts to fix him a nice breakfast on Father’s Day. The cartoon’s uncredited but priceless voicework is provided by Billy Bletcher (Papa Bear), Bea Benaderet (Mama Bear), and Stan Freberg (Junyer Bear).
When my children were young and more easily intimidated, I used to make them watch this cartoon with me every Father’s Day. If the ending doesn’t make you bust a gut laughing, see your doctor.
A Bear For Punishment (1951) with original titles recreation from Mihai Chetreanu on Vimeo.
The great Stan Freberg died today at age 88. If you don’t know who Stan Freberg is, you would do well to find out. His career spanned the media of radio, record albums, television ads, and cartoon voice-overs, and his comedic influence on the Baby Boomer generation cannot be overstated.
I loved his work, and there’s no one piece of his comedy that is representative of his genius. But if I have to post one here, it would be his epic 1970 “Great American Soup” commercial for Campbell’s Soup, featuring Ann Miller as though she was tap-dancing through a Broadway musical. I must admit that it took me several years to realize the satiric genius of this ad. When I first saw it (at the tender age of nine), the sight of Ann Miller’s legs was…well, probably my first step towards becoming a man.