Stone Cold Classic: Popeye “Sinbad The Sailor”

All of the original Ub Iwerks “Popeye” cartoons lapsed into Public Domain before the film industry stooges bribed Congress to extend copyright indefinitely. These cartoons were vastly superior to the later Popeye retreads, which are still under copyright. Paul Di Filippo reminded me that a lot of these are available on Youtube these days.

And “Sinbad The Sailor” holds a special place in my heart, because it was a family favorite when my son Sean was very young. And it has everything: Ub’s ‘turntable’ innovation, combining filmed 3D backgrounds with cell animation, plenty of Popeye’s surreal muttered asides, the “Twister Punch,” and Blimpie’s legendary appetite. And it’s a mini-operetta — the Sinbad song sung by Bluto became a car ride favorite. It’s a mark of it’s excellence that it was later quoted in abridged form in a 1952 Paramount Popeye cartoon, with different music. Curiously the “Twister Punch” becomes “The Onesie-Twosie.”

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