214. King-Size Canary – Tex Avery

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SUMMARY: The age old chase between household pets plays out as usual, only bigger than you’ve ever seen it before!

WHY IT’S HERE: Tex Avery’s ‘King-Size Canary’ is considered one of the greatest cartoons ever made and one of Avery’s crowning glories. The plot is simple: a chase between a cat, mouse, canary and dog plays out but with each of them drinking from a bottle of Jumbo-Gro plant formula and ballooning in size. What starts as a household battle spreads across the city, then the country and finally the whole globe. The final image is both hilarious and inevitable. ‘King-Size Canary’ is the perfect example of Avery’s knack for taking a gag to its logical extreme, and here he does that across the course of an entire cartoon, while obviously slotting in many other gags along the way. ‘King-Sized Canary’ has even been seen as an allegory for the escalating Cold War, although it is enough to appreciate it as one of the most finely crafted cartoon masterpieces of the 40s.

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