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TV & Film

Porky’s Baseball Broadcast

Ellen Adair January 26, 2022

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This week on Take Me In to the Ballgame:

Ellen Adair and Eric Gilde discuss the 1940 Warner Brothers cartoon, “Porky’s Baseball Broadcast.” They introduce the cartoon (1:23), with an overview of the script, the cast, and creators, and review the 20-80 baseball scouting grades for rating the cartoon (5:10). (Again, the lawyers advise that this is a cartoon, and nothing in this podcast can be used to relitage Posnanski v. Sepinwall.) Amount of Baseball (11:10) once again relies on this being a ratio and not counting stat for a seven-minute cartoon, some which even feels padded for time. Baseball Accuracy (15:00) digs in on the truly most confusing question in this cartoon: which, and how many, teams are even playing in this World Series, with the Red Sox, Yankees, Cubs and Giants all being candidates. The colorization doesn’t help. The two-headed pitcher has a flaw in his/their plan, plus do they use a Pat Venditte glove? Some discussion of the 1940 World Series, including Willard Hershberger, Ernie Lombardi and Jimmy Wilson, along with the Carl Hubbell reference. Storytelling (36:45) grapples with the unsatisfying nature of the baseball play as a story, and discusses the many simple jokes. The scouts debate the pros and cons of the “round dog looking for his seat” storyline. Eric reveals the recycled material from “Boulevardier from the Bronx,” and they discuss the screamingly problematic section of the cartoon. Score (50:27) addresses Carl W. Stalling’s handiwork, including the tick method and musical references. In Acting (53:19), they discuss whether or not Mel Blanc is responsible for all of the voice acting, and if that impacts the score. Delightfulness of Catcher (55:18) presents our scouts with a conundrum, given the derivation of the turtle catcher. The rabbit catcher is unquestionably adorable. Delightfulness of Announcer (1:00:49) weighs the notion that the eponymous Porky Pig is the star of the show. Are the double-entendres part of his delightfulness, or just the cartoon? Lack of Misogyny (1:04:29) had the scouts scouring the background of every single frame, and coming up disappointed. No spoilers on the following segments: Yes or No (1:07:32), Six Degrees of Baseball (1:13:18), Favorite Moment (1:13:57) Least Favorite Moment (1:14:53), Scene We Would Have Liked to See (1:18:01), Dreamiest Player (1:20:09), Favorite Performance (1:22:52) and Next Time (1:22:52).


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