Monday, December 05, 2005

Best Gag Credits Ever

I don't know when "Tiny Toon Adventures" will be re-released; the show that started the WB animation boom of the '90s (thereby furnishing the staff for "Batman," "Animaniacs," and other shows that are on their way to being classics), it wasn't quite as good as some of the shows that came after it -- being the first, it was very inconsistent -- but the good episodes were as good as anybody's.

Anyway, the thing that I was reminded of when looking over the episode guide is that "Tiny Toons" had the best gag credits of any show ever, bar none, end of story. Every episode's closing credit had a jokey message in it. Many of these were just funny shout-outs to staff members, like "Guy who says 'Narf': Eddie Fitzgerald" (Fitzgerald's appearance and "Narf" catchphrase would inspire Pinky of Pinky and the Brain fame) or "Mermaid Model: Sherri Stoner" (writer-producer Stoner was the live-action model for Ariel in The Little Mermaid), or "Caricaturist: Bruce Timm." But sometimes, and increasingly so as time went on, the producers would use the gag credit to vent their feelings on the production process, and even to put down their weaker episodes. Here are a few of the more memorable ones:

Secret of Quality Animation - Lotsa Shadows


(After an episode that used an animation studio whose work wasn't up to snuff)
Number of Retakes: Don't Ask


(After an episode with a "Cartoon Physics" theme, including an unfunny cartoon called "Cub For Grub")
Top 5 "Toon Physics" Facts:
5. "Cub For Grub" Becomes Funny When You Watch It Backwards.
4. Sneezer Is Actually A 45 Year Old Man.
3. Barky Marky Was In This Episode.
2. The Boy In The Orange Hat Is Actually Danny Bonaduce.
1. We Wanted Carl Sagan To Do The Wraparounds, But He Snubbed Us. Go Figure.


TV Guide Said That Writer Deanna Oliver Was "Deliciously Clever" - But That Was Another Episode.


(After an episode where the characters go to Washington D.C.)
Guess What We Are?
A. Republicans
B. Democrats
C. As Of This Broadcast Being Investigated By The F.B.I.


Top 4 Reasons A Caricature Of David Letterman Is In This Video:
4. We Admire His Comedy Stylings.
3. We Wanted To Use Merv Griffin, But He Threatened To Sue.
2. We Needed Some Filler.
1. We're Brown-Nosing Weasels Who Want Him To Mention Us On His Show.


They really went crazy with the gag credits in the direct-to-video movie "How I Spent My Vacation." This (terrific) movie was considered for theatrical release, and given a theatrical test screening, but WB decided to release it direct-to-video. So this was acknowledged in the credits:

Reason This Movie Went Straight To Home Video: Cuz It's So Darned Good!

First Theatrical Screening: June 8, 1991, Old Orchard Theatre,
Skokie, Illinois

Last Theatrical Screening: (Same As Above)

There was also a musical episode where the characters sang the song "The Name Game," and the network censors nixed a gag about the application of the name game to the character of Plucky ("banana fana fo f...."). So the closing credits read: "Inadvertently omitted in 'The Name Game': Plucky."

But my favorite "Tiny Toons" gag credit of all is still:

ABBA Spelled Backwards

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