You Never Know What’ll Show Up

Mike Barrier has a fascinating, fascinatingly-illustrated piece on recently-discovered story sketches by Webb Smith for the landmark flypaper sequence in Playful Pluto. Or maybe they’re visual notes by that sequence’s animator, Norm Ferguson. Or possibly they’re by someone else.

Like Mike, I hope the collective wisdom of smart animation scholars can come to a definitive conclusion about who did these sketches–but even if it can’t, they’re a major find.

HareTV

Visit AOL Video–which is, of course, owned by the company that also owns Bugs Bunny and cohorts–and you’ll find an odd mishmosh of cartoons that seem to skew towards the less memorable Warner Bros. efforts, and which, confusingly, includes links to Warner cartoons on other sites, such as YouTube, that have already been deleted. Perhaps because they violated Time Warner copyrights. Which leaves one wondering why an AOL service linked to them in the first place.

But you can’t gripe too much about a service that lets you watch this, legally and for free, albeit in somewhat blocky form…

Back From the Dead!

By almost any measure, this has been the most eventful month of my life.

I started it by quitting one of the best jobs in the world, a move that attracted far more interest than I ever dreamed it might. And then I returned to that job–something I never, ever expected to do–after an utterly improbable sequence of events.

More important, I also marked the start of the month by becoming an uncle, as a happy side effect of the fact that my sister became a mother.

So it’s kind of been a time for new beginnings. What better month to relaunch Harry-Go-Round?

First, a word or two about why I’ve let the site fester for so long. For one thing, I’ve been busy. But even when I made time to work on the site, I faced a crippling onslaught of spam, both on my blog and message board. And I wasn’t crazy about the blog platform I was using, in part because it was so spam-ridden, and in part because it just wasn’t much fun to use.

So I’ve dumped most of the technical underpinnings of the old Harry-Go-Round. I’m now blogging via the wonderful, wonderfully customizable piece of software known as WordPress, which I believe will let me evade the spammers who trashed my old blog (curse you, “Sten,” whoever you are). I’d like to revive my MessageCenter, too–but haven’t found a modern forum platform I really like. If I do, I’ll bring the MessageCenter back, although I frankly don’t think its loss is a huge tragedy.

If you know this site, you can see that I’ve taken the opportunity to give it a visual facelift, too. It’s apparent mostly on this bloggy home page at the moment, but I plan to redo most or all of the other content over time. For now, most of that’s still in my old template. (Oh, and I’m going to officially retire the Comics a Go Go feature, which I haven’t updated in a long, long time–let me know if you have a problem with that.)

I may blog a bit more about things outside of the world of cartoons and comics here on out–other aspects of pop culture, maybe some tech, possibly even a little more personal stuff. We’ll see. Mostly, I’ll just try really hard to keep the site out of limbo from here on out.

A few other housekeeping notes:

A) One thing that never disappeared was my weekly Sunday chats. We’ll be gathering tomorrow night, in fact.

B) If you subscribed to my old blog via an RSS reader, please resubscribe with one of the links to the left.

C) If you encounter any technical problems with the new site, let me know via the Contact Harry link above. Thanks!