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    Happy Harmony***The Old Pioneer (1934) MGM

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    andythebeagle

    by andythebeagle

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    In this first entry in MGM's Happy Harmonies series, an old man tells a newsboy about his adventures with Native Americans in the Old West. An old geezer- with perhaps a bit of Baron Munchausen in him- tells of his heroic exploits to a newsboy hawking papers at a cigar store, with a huge statue of a wooden Indian outside. The pioneer tells of how he defended his people while crossing the desert through Indian territory. One lone Indian scout and his horse spot the wagons at a campsite and run back to get help. All the warriors put on their warpaint (rouge, lipstick, etc.) before they attack. The pioneer helps save a juvenile Indian explorer from certain death from a fall off a cliff. He then saves his wagon train from an Indian attack because of his friendship with the Indian boy. The grateful Chief says, "Paleface my friend," and offers the pioneer a peace pipe; the latter says, "Thankee, Chief, have a smoke yourself!!" This leads to the pioneer concluding to the newsboy, "And that, my boy, is how that Injun got them purty cigars!"

    Happy Harmonies is the name of a series of thirty-six animated cartoons distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and produced by Hugh Harman and Rudolf Ising between 1934 and 1938.

    Produced in Technicolor, these cartoons were very similar to Walt Disney's Silly Symphonies. They would occasionally feature Bosko, a character who starred in the first Looney Tunes shorts that the duo produced for Leon Schlesinger. After the first few releases, the design of Bosko changed from an ink blot to a realistic African American boy.

    The two final titles in the series was originally produced by Harman and Ising as Silly Symphonies cartoons. But when Disney only bought one of their three shorts, Merbabies, the others were sold to MGM who released them as Happy Harmonies.

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