Porky at the Crocadero

Today… you are a ham!

 Supervision by Frank Tashlin; Story by Lew Landsman; Animation by Volney White; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released in 1938
Supervision by Frank Tashlin; Story by Lew Landsman; Animation by Volney White; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released in 1938

No relation to the also awesome “Quasi at the Quackadero.” (Wish that was a Looney Tune, so I could blog about it) The Crocadero in question is based on the “Trocadero Ballroom” Porky is outside and excited to see that many conductors are scheduled to be playing that night. It’s Porky’s dream to be a conductor! (Isn’t a conductor what you do when you can’t play an instrument? Like how a coach can’t play a sport and someone who can’t draw blogs about animation?) His heroes include Leopold Stokowski (Whose name I’m actually bothering to spell right for once) Rudy Vallee, and Benny Goodman. He idolizes them so much, he imitates them all. But there is one thing to dampen his glee. It’s $25.00 for a plate at this place. (Fifty cents more gets you food on the plate) Porky can’t afford that, so he slumps off. But God is on his side, as he finds that the club is hiring and he rushes in. He gets the job because why wouldn’t he? And he begins washing the dishes. His boss (some sort of aquatic mammal. I’d like to say walrus, but he has too much neck and no tusks, so maybe he’s a sea otter.) He tells Porky to get his work done, and he just might be able to watch the music. But there’s a fly in the ointment. Actually, in the kitchen. Porky tries to get it which results in him breaking many dishes. He is fired. (And I begin sharpening my aquatic mammals carving knife) But God is still on Porky’s side as there are no conductors for the eager crowd and the boss has received a telegram saying that they won’t make it. The boss has a good idea! Get Porky back! His fly swatting did look an awful lot like conducting. He heads out to get him back “Schnell!” (Which, a randomly appearing narrator tells us, means “fast.”) He catches up to the pig and brings him back. (Of course, since the crowd is expecting other people, Porky will have to be in several disguises.) Good thing he takes to impersonating his heroes so much! He acts as Paul Whiteman (with some added gut) and gets some jazz going. A penguin waiter (there is no other kind in cartoons) has his drink stolen by a trombone player, and some lesbian kangaroos dance. (They must be lesbian! They both have pouches!) As Guy Lumbago (Guy Lambardo) Porky has his “Boiled Kanadians” sing “Summer Nights” rather shakily. (The audience dances to the beat) And as Cob Howlaway (Cab Calloway) Porky puts on some blackface. Which… actually doesn’t look too racist here. Maybe it’s just because I’m a Porky worshiping fanboy, but he looks pretty tame. The lips aren’t too exaggerated and it’s always fun to see Cab referenced. Good work Porky! He sings Chinatown (even dressing up as a Chinese Stereotype at one point. Less charming) while the band plays along. A turtle makes his body a banjo, a rabbit plays two pianos at once, (with his paws and ears) and a goat plays his beard when his violin breaks. The penguin waiter meanwhile, (who has been having his drinks stolen throughout the whole time) finally one ups the thief by drinking the drink himself.   

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