Saturday, January 4, 2014

"Jack Frost" - A UB Iwerks Cartoon (1934)

It’s the dead of winter and everyone is hibernating except for the baby bear. When he runs away from home he finds that Old Man Winter has some wicked things in store for him. But, by chance; or maybe something more; Jack Frost comes to his rescue, saving the little bear from the ravages of the cold.

Cartoons like these were a mainstay when I was a kid. You actually learned something from them. In this one the lesson is clear; don’t bite off more than you can chew. But if you do, it’s okay; there is someone who cares enough to help you.

Is that unrealistic? I don’t know; perhaps in some ways it is. But the greater good is in the hope that these cartoons engendered in the hearts and minds of those who watched them, heeding their siren like call. And these lessons, once learned, never leave the mind, holding one in good stead during the darkest of times.

How do I know this for a certainty? Easy; when I was a kid my Mom was very ill; frequently in the hospital for months at time. There was never a year in which this did not occur. That was my “Old Man Winter." Cartoons, books, movies and music; these things all became my own personal “Jack Frosts’.” That’s why these cartoons were so special to me then, and continue to be so now.

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