Harvey Comics Database Wiki

Talkartoons is the name of a series of 42 animated cartoons produced by the Fleischer Studios and distributed by Paramount Pictures between 1929 and 1932.


For the Fleischer brothers, the transition to sound was relatively easy. With the new contract with Paramount Pictures, and without the burden of Red Seal Pictures and Alfred Weiss, Max Fleischer was free to experiment with new, bold ideas. First he changed the name of the Ko-Ko Song Cartunes series to Screen Songs. Although the Screen Songs were successful, Fleischer felt that it wasn't enough; Walt Disney also seemed to gain a great amount of fame through his sound cartoons as well. He decided to work with his brother, Dave on a new series of cartoons where the characters did more than just simply dance to the music of the "bouncing ball". The name for the new series was to be Talkartoons. When the idea was pitched to Paramount, they leaped at the opportunity.

The Talkartoons started out as one-shot cartoons. The first entry in the series was Noah's Lark, released on October 25, 1929. Although a Fleischer cartoon, it appeared to be patterned after the Aesop's Film Fables of Paul Terry. In it, a Farmer Al Falfa-esque Noah allows the animals of his ark to visit Luna Park. When he brings them back into the ship, the weight is so heavy that it sinks. In the end, Noah chases topless mermaids throughout the ocean waters. Lark has very few gray tones, very much like the Screen Songs produced during the same time and the earlier Fleischer silent works. It also included copyright-free songs, mostly utilized from old 78-rpm's.

The series began to take a new direction, however, with the arrival of Max and Dave's brother, Lou Fleischer, whose skills in music and mathematics made a great impact the studio. Fitz evolved into a character named Bimbo, named so for his foolishness. The first cartoon that featured Bimbo was Hot Dog (1930), the first entry in the series and the first Fleischer cartoon to use a full-range of greys. New animators such as Grim Natwick, Shamus Culhane, and Rudy Zamora began entering the Fleischer Studio, with new ideas that pushed the Talkartoons into a league of their own. Natwick especially had an off-beat style of animating that helped give the shorts more of a surreal quality. Perhaps his greatest contribution to the Talkartoons series and the Fleischer Studio was the creation of Betty Boop with Dizzy Dishes in 1930.

By late-1931, Betty Boop dominated the series. Koko the Clown was brought out of retirement from the silent days as a third character to Betty and Bimbo. By 1932, the series was at an inevitable end and instead, Betty Boop would be given her own series, with Bimbo and Koko as secondary characters.



Film Characters Original release date
Noah's Lark One-shot 19291025October 25, 1929
Marriage Wows One-shot 19300108January 8, 1930
Radio Riot One-shot 19300213February 13, 1930
Hot Dog Bimbo 19300329March 29, 1930
Fire Bugs Bimbo 19300509May 9, 1930
Wise Flies One-shot 19300718July 18, 1930
Dizzy Dishes Bimbo and Betty Boop 19300809August 9, 1930
Barnacle Bill Bimbo and Betty Boop 19300831August 31, 1930
Swing You Sinners! Bimbo 19300924September 24, 1930
Grand Uproar Bimbo 19301003October 3, 1930
Sky Scraping Bimbo 19301101November 1, 1930
Up to Mars Bimbo 19301120November 20, 1930
Accordion Joe Bimbo and Betty Boop 19301212December 12, 1930
Mysterious Mose Bimbo and Betty Boop 19301226December 26, 1930


Film Characters Original release date
Ace of Spades Bimbo January 16, 1931
Tree Saps Bimbo February 3
Teacher's Pests Bimbo and Betty Boop February 7
The Cow's Husband Bimbo March 13
The Bum Bandit Bimbo and Betty Boop April 3
The Male Man Bimbo April 24
Twenty Legs Under the Sea Bimbo May 5
Silly Scandals Bimbo and Betty Boop May 23
The Herring Murder Case Bimbo and Koko the Clown June 26
Bimbo's Initiation Bimbo and Betty Boop July 24
Bimbo's Express Bimbo and Betty Boop August 22
Minding the Baby Bimbo and Betty Boop September 26
In the Shade of the Old Apple Sauce Bimbo October 16
Mask-A-Raid Bimbo and Betty Boop November 7
Jack and the Beanstalk Bimbo and Betty Boop November 21
Dizzy Red Riding Hood Bimbo and Betty Boop December 12

Betty Boop and Bimbo in Minnie the Moocher (1932).


Film Characters Original release date
Any Rags? Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko January 2, 1932
Boop-Oop-a-Doop Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko January 16
The Robot Bimbo February 5
Minnie the Moocher Betty Boop and Bimbo February 26
Swim or Sink (S.O.S.) Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko March 11
Crazy Town Betty Boop and Bimbo March 25
The Dancing Fool Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko April 8
Chess-Nuts Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko April 13
A Hunting We Will Go Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko April 29
Hide and Seek Bimbo May 26
Admission Free Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko June 10
The Betty Boop Limited Betty Boop, Bimbo and Koko July 1


  • Leslie Cabarga, The Fleischer Story (Da Capo Press, 1988)
  • Richard Fleischer, Out of the Inkwell: Max Fleischer and the Animation Revloution (University Press of Kentucky, 2005)
  • Leonard Maltin, Of Mice and Magic: A History of American Animated Cartoons (Penguin Books, 1987)

See also

External links

Smallwikipedialogo.png This page uses content from Wikipedia. The original article was at Talkartoons.
The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with Harvey Comics Database Wiki, the text of Wikipedia is available under the GNU Free Documentation License.