Wednesday, July 29, 2009

It Really Is The End of a Looney Era

Blahhh. You may have seen this already, but it turns out that while the Looney Tunes Golden Collections are over, the "Spotlight Collections" -- two-disc sets consisting of selected cartoons available on the Golden Collections -- will continue. They're just going back and using cartoons from previous Golden Collections, in this case the Bugs Bunny disc from # 1, the Road Runner disc from # 2, and the "all-stars" disc from # 4.

I don't really object to this, because the Spotlight collections are for different audiences and possibly even different retailers (these cheap, thin sets are more Wal-Mart-friendly), and it makes sense to continue them. But it just felt like a tease to see a Looney Tunes DVD announcement and find out that it was all previously-released cartoons.

Honestly, if they were to use the Spotlight Collection format to release cartoons they haven't released in the Golden Collections, I'd be fine with that. (There must be a number of cartoons that have DVD-quality masters ready but weren't in the Golden Collections; we've already seen a few of those masters turn up on sets like the Academy Award Nominees box.) They have plenty of family-friendly, uncontroversial cartoons that weren't on the first six sets, and like most collectors, I don't really care about extras at this point.


J Lee said...

Warners seems to be just marking time right now with the economic downturn, and releasing no new higher-priced animation collections, as opposed to stuff light the Spotlight Collection or the recent Saturday Morning Cartoons collection.

Hopefully, that will change by sometime late next year, though if they started re-releasing the Golden Collection in Blu-Ray format first before any other new material shows up, that wouldn't be a big surprise.

Anthony Strand said...

Oh, yuck. That really is too bad. Not that I could really afford too many new cartoon sets right now anyway.

Kevin Martinez said...

They're not going to be releasing Looney Tunes on Blu-Ray. Warner is even removing "Horton Hatches the Egg" from their upcoming BR release of Horton Hears a Who.

Thing like this are having me ask: "What the **** is happening?" Either Warner using the economy to push things back and rethink its game plan, or George Feltenstein has been castrated of the oversight he once had over the WB shorts and Popeye.

Anonymous said...

It might have to do with the bit rate the stuff was scanned at. Perhaps it's not high enough for Blu-Ray. This recession is not the optimal moment for an expensive new format more prone to disk rot than DVDs.

Yowp said...

No wonder American corporations complain of financial difficulties.

What possible sense does it make trying to sell something to people they already own?


Morgan said...

As Jaime pointed out, by selling it to the people who don't own it.

Ricardo Cantoral said...

Wow, Bully For Bugs ! I don't think that has ever been released on DVD or VHS before. And Roadrunner shorts, awesome ! A long neglected series that finally gets some attention. I am so Glad they didn't release anything from Tex what's-his-name, who gives a crap about his cartoons ?

Yowp said...

Morgan, there can't be too many people who don't have these that are suddenly willing to buy them. Evidently Warner's research shows otherwise, or sales of the Golden Connections didn't meet projections and they're trying something else.


Morgan said...

Your not being the market for it doesn't mean one is nonexistent. This release isn't for people who own the Golden Collections. The Spotlight releases have never been for them. They're for more casual buyers. That's why they're cheaper and emphasize the name characters more. Nor is this a new strategy; it's the same one WB has had since 2003. Like the previous six volumes, volume seven is entirely recycled shorts from the Golden Collections.

This release is getting more attention because, unlike the previous ones, it doesn't have a corresponding Golden Collection. (Spotlight 1's shorts were from GC 1, Spotlight 2's were from GC 2, and so on.) Something that was going to happen sooner or later if only because they had passed over so many Spotlight-viable shorts from the Golden Collections. And now while the Golden Collections are on hiatus (or something maybe succeeds them), WB had the opportunity to circle back and do additional Spotlights with that material.