Arthurian Animation

A Study of Cartoon Camelots on Film and Television


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About the Book

This is an exploration of the potent blend of Arthurian legend, cartoon animation, and cultural and artistic trends from 1933 to the present. In more than 170 theatrical and televised short cartoons, televised series and specials, and feature-length films from The Sword in the Stone to Shrek the Third—all covered in this book—animators have repeatedly brought the Round Table to life. Although these productions differ greatly in tone and intent—spanning spectra from comic to sober, fantastic to realistic, and entertaining to edifying—they share in the proof of Camelot’s continuing relevance in the modern world.

About the Author(s)

Michael N. Salda is an associate professor of medieval literature in the Department of English at the University of Southern Mississippi. He lives in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.

Bibliographic Details

Michael N. Salda
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 220
Bibliographic Info: 36 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2013
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7468-4
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0614-9
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Preface 1

Introduction 3

 1. The Iris Opens: “Bosko’s Knight-Mare” 7

 2. The Best Arthurian Cartoon Never Made: Hugh Harman’s King Arthur’s Knights 16

 3. “To Ye Jousting Tournament”: Arthur’s Postwar Rise 36

 4. “What’s Up, Duke?” Variety in the 1950s and Early 1960s 43

 5. The Sword in the Stone, a “Full-length Flop,” and Arthurianimation’s Decline 59

 6. The Profane and the Sacred: What Hath Monty Python Wrought? 77

 7. Many Returns of the King: The 1980s 85

 8. Arthur, Arthur, Everywhere: Short Animation of 1990s 100

 9. Four Roads to Camelot: The Feature Film Bumper Crop of 1997–98 131

10. Where Lies Arthur? Arthurianimation Since 2000 151

Coda 175

Chapter Notes 177

Works Cited 189

Index 197

Book Reviews & Awards

“recommended”—Choice; “well-documented…excellently researched…engrossing reading for the animation fan, and a handy reference tool for those who want to know anything about Arthurian animated cartoons”—Animation World Network; “a pioneering work that explores the intersection of the history of animation and Arthurian Studies…clearly written and accessible…recommended…a worthy accompaniment to any bookshelf”—Medievally Speaking.