Bring out the banned records

August 12, 2013 16:16
Bring out the banned records

With their zany pursuits and farcical frying-pan violence, Tom and Jerry have been making the world guffaw for the past seven decades. But fans protested after two episodes were pulled from the latest volume of a Blu-ray collector's disc as both Tom and Jerry were "blacked up" .

The controversy surrounds the second installment of Warner Brothers' Golden Collection, which fans believed would be a full chronological and uncut series. One line of protest has been to bombard online sellers, particularly Amazon, with messages on its pre-sale order pages. "Culture is always reflected in cartoons, and while this may not have been right, it existed. It is a shame to omit pieces of history in a collection simply due to PR getting shaky boots over the past," said one. Another added: "These releases are almost exclusively for the adult collector, so why treat us like infants?" Meanwhile, a Facebook campaign called "Unleash the banned Tom and Jerry cartoons" rages on.


"In Casanova Cat, Tom tries to impress a rich she-cat by blacking up Jerry's face with cigar smoke and then making him do a minstrel dance. It is Tom who is blacked up in Mouse Cleaning. With his face covered in coal dust, he fools Mammy Two Shoes - the character whose legs are the only parts of her that are seen -into thinking she is chatting to a black man by talking in an African-American dialect," the Independent wrote.

Writer David Lambert, who has reported on the issue on the website , said: "Fans will realize they are a product of their time.... In the internet age, they cannot possibly be hidden away in any case, so the studio may as well give the fans what they want."

When a Looney Tunes Golden Collection was distributed in 2005, Whoopi Goldberg was hired to give an explanatory message. She said: "Removing these inexcusable images and jokes from this collection would be the same as saying [these prejudices ] never existed. So they are presented here to accurately reflect a part of our history that cannot and should not be ignored."

A Warner Brothers spokesman said: "The company felt that certain content would be inappropriate for the intended audience and therefore excluded several shorts."

News Source - The Independent

(AW: Suchorita Dutta)

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