Bluto or Brutus?

Discussion in 'Saturday Morning Forever!' started by Radical-X, Apr 30, 2009.

  1. Radical-X

    Radical-X New Member

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    From wikipedia:

    After the theatrical Popeye cartoon series went out of production in 1957, Bluto's name was changed to Brutus because it was (wrongly) believed that Paramount Pictures, distributors of the Fleischer Studios (later Famous Studios) cartoons, owned the rights to the name "Bluto." (King Features owned the name all along as Bluto had been originally created for the comic strip. However, due to poor research, they failed to realize this, and renamed him Brutus to avoid copyright issues.)[1]. "Brutus" appears in the 1960-1962 Popeye television cartoons (with his physical appearance changed, making him obese rather than muscular), but he is again "Bluto" (and back to his original muscular physique) in the 1978 Hanna-Barbera Popeye series and the 1980 Popeye movie, as well as Hanna-Barbera's 1987 Popeye and Son series. Brutus was also the name Nintendo used for their arcade game based on the property.[citation needed]
    Another subtle difference between the characters of Brutus and Bluto is that while Bluto was often portrayed as a fellow sailor who also sought to win the heart of Olive Oyl, Brutus was portrayed as a generic villain, or bank robber, who showed no romantic interest in Olive. Instead, he usually took her hostage, leaving Popeye to rescue her.
    Prior to the name change to Brutus, the bearded strongman was known as "The Big Guy Who Hates Popeye," "Junior," "Mean Man," and "Sonny Boy" in the comic strip and comic books. The name "Brutus" was first used on Popeye-related products in 1960 and in print in 1962. It is generally accepted that Bluto and Brutus are one and the same. However, Ocean Comics published a one-shot "Popeye" comic book where Bluto and Brutus were twin brothers. Bobby London, who drew the "Popeye" daily strip for six years, wrote and illustrated the "Return of Bluto" story where the 1932 version of Bluto returns and discovers a number of fat, bearded bullies have taken his place, calling themselves "Brutus" (each one being a different version of Popeye's rival).[citation needed] On December 28, 2008 and April 5, 2009, the Popeye comic strip called Bluto the twin brother of Brutus.[2][3]
    In Latin America, the character was always called "Brutus".


    If King Features owned the rights to Bluto, and let Paramount Pictures use Popeye to begin with, why couldn't they just use Bluto?
     
  2. Hey Steve

    Hey Steve New Member

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    The answer is simple. Pure ignorance on behalf of King Features. This was probably due to the fact that in the 1930's, Bluto only appeared in one story of the Popeye comicstrip and it was right around the time when the Fleischers were getting ready to introduce Popeye to the big screen. Since Popeye needed a foe, the Fleischers chose Bluto and he became Popeye's regular opponent in the theatrical cartoons. In the Popeye comicstrip, Popeye's biggest nemesis was the Sea Hag. So, once the 1960's came around, the people at King Features were completely clueless and thought that Paramound held the rights to the name Bluto, when in fact King Features did.
     
  3. Antiyonder

    Antiyonder Amalgam Universe Overlord

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  4. Radical-X

    Radical-X New Member

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    Yes, a reference to the '60s TV cartoons.

    From wikipedia:

    In 1960, King Features Syndicate commissioned a new series of Popeye cartoons, but this time for television syndication. Al Brodax served as executive producer of the cartoons for King Features. Jack Mercer, Mae Questel, and Jackson Beck returned for this series, which was produced by a number of companies, including Jack Kinney Productions, Rembrandt Films, Larry Harmon Productions, Halas and Batchelor, and Paramount Cartoon Studios (formerly Famous Studios). The artwork was streamlined and simplified for the television budgets, and 220 cartoons were produced in only two years, with the first set of them premiering in the autumn of 1960, and the last of them debuting during the 1961-1962 television season. Since King Features had exclusive rights to these Popeye cartoons, about half of them were released on DVD as a 75th anniversary Popeye boxed set in 2004.
    For these cartoons, Bluto's name was changed to "Brutus," as King Features believed at the time that Paramount owned the rights to the name "Bluto." Many of the cartoons made by Paramount used plots and storylines taken directly from the comic strip sequences-as well as characters like King Blozo and the Sea Hag.[18] The 1960s cartoons have been issued on both VHS and DVD.


    I remember when they showed these '60s Popeye cartoons on TV in the '80s.
     
  5. Jayd

    Jayd New Member

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    I think the early sixties Popeye series is the only Popeye series that has Alice the Goon and the Sea Hag. These are the Popeyes I remember the most.
     
  6. Radical-X

    Radical-X New Member

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    The Fleischer cartoons had Alice the Goon first, and the Jeep was in them too.

    I remember the Sea Hag from the Popeye video game.
     
  7. hobbyfan

    hobbyfan Active Member

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    I first became acquainted with Popeye via the King Features toons of the 60's. It wasn't until cable came along that I saw the old Fleischer classics and "met" Bluto. Funny how a change of letters in a character's name can cause of much unnecessary confusion.
     
  8. Geezil

    Geezil Out Here

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    Actually, one Fleischer cartoon alone (Goonland) featured a whole island society of Goons, none specifically named Alice (or anything else, unless you count Popeye calling one Goon "Stupid" in one of Jack Mercer's trademark mumbled ad libs). ;)

    So, poor Alice did in fact have to wait until 1960 to make her genuine animated bow.
     

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