Thursday, September 5, 2013

Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox D23 Vinylmations

When I was a kid in the 1970's my favorite show was, not surprisingly, The Wonderful World of Disney. I have distinct memories of seeing certain cartoons, such as "In the Bag", featuring Humphrey the Bear, "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" from "The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad", "Casey at the Bat", from "Make Mine Music", and "Paul Bunyan" an animated short released in 1958.
I have a few Humphrey the Bear items in my collection, but had nothing from the other 3 cartoons listed above, until just recently.
I won this 2013 D23 Expo Paul Bunyan Vinylmation set on Ebay.

It's a limited edition of 1000. It originally sold for $29.99, so I was pretty happy to get it for $33, including shipping!

Paul Bunyan is discovered washed ashore a small Maine town after a storm. Paul is adopted and raised by the town. It takes a village to raise the boy because he is a giant. Paul grows, and discovers his true calling as a lumberjack. As he grows, the town grows with him, and he decides to move west to wide open spaces. Wide open spaces that he himself clears with his prodigious strength and ax.

 The only complaint I have about this figure is that Paul should have a double-blade axe, 
which is a prominent plot point.

On his travels he encounters and saves the life of a Big Blue Ox, and Paul names him Babe.

As they cross the country, they create many of the topographical features we enjoy today, such as the Grand Teton Mountain Range and Pikes Peak.
Things are going wonderfully, with Paul the king of lumberjacks, until he comes upon a slick salesman and his steam saw and steam locomotive.
I won't give away the ending, but Paul and Babe stick together through thick and thin, eventually winding up in Alaska.

It is a terrific cartoon, with a wonderful song that narrates and drives the story, and very stylized animation. Paul is voiced by Thurl Ravencroft, who is most well known as the voice of Tony the Tiger. Thurl did many voices for Disney throughout his long carrier, for both animated productions and theme park attractions.
 Paul Bunyan can be found on Disney's American Legends DVD set, the Walt Disney Treasures, Disney Rarities DVD set, and on YouTube.

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