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Serving the Toon Community since August of 1998
Title Card "The Organ Grinder"
Merrie Melodies (cartoon-specific titles)
Released: April 8, 1933
Length: 7:23


Supervision by - Rudolf Ising
Drawn by - Rollin Hamilton, Thomas McKimson
Musical Score by - Frank Marsales


An organ grinder's talented monkey shows us his stuff.


An Italian organ-grinder is walking down the street, cranking out music while his monkey runs ahead of him. The monkey collects money from a child in an apartment window, using a street lamp to reach her. The grinder sings the title tune as the monkey eats a banana from a fruit stand, unzipping its peel. We see a woman washing clothes in an apartment up above ("Wotta man!" she shouts as she pulls out a huge article of clothing), and she continues the title song with the help of another housewife in the building across from her. She even tosses in some fanny-slapping and a "Hi-dee-hi! Ho-dee-ho!". She pulls out a coin and signals the organ grinder, who instructs his monkey: "Hey Tony, go getta da money!". The monkey slides up a barber pole and uses pull-down window shades to propel himself upwards towards the woman with the money. He then hops into a pair of panties on the clothesline, pulls himself over to the other woman, and collects her money too. The monkey climbs out of the panties but falls off the clothesline, hitting several awnings before landing in a pair of long underwear. He returns to his owner and gives him the money. Several children soon gather around, so the organ grinder tells the monkey to dance. He then asks the monkey to shake his can, which he does by waving his rear end in the air. "Whatsamattayou!" shouts the grinder, who then gives the monkey the tin can he was actually referring to. "Come on now Tony, get hot!" shouts the grinder, so the monkey dances down the street a bit, then cranks a cat's tail like an organ. The cat hisses at him, so the monkey runs off and hides in the drawer of a dresser outside a second-hand shop. The monkey soon crawls out and spots a curly blonde wig and a top hat nearby. He puts them on and begins to strum a nearby harp, a la Harpo Marx. Next, the monkey uses a harp string to fling himself over to a movie theater, where he spots a poster of Laurel & Hardy and proceeds to contort his face into likenesses of them both. Then the monkey starts playing two pianos at the same time, while the children continue with the title song. Suddenly the monkey is playing "42nd Street" on several instruments at once. The monkey finds the cat again and starts plucking it's tail to the tune, but the cat hisses at him once more. The monkey hides in a parked car, but it suddenly starts rolling out-of-control down the street. A mouse appears and honks the horn, but it's too late to alert a man with an apple cart. The car crashes right through it, but the pieces of the cart fall back to earth in place. The man falls into the pile of apples and shouts angrily. The runaway car narrowly avoids a Chinese man carrying laundry, though a bra and panties do end up on the front of the car. The organ grinder leaps out of the way as the car crashes into a music store and demolishes it. Suddenly the car emerges, transformed into an orchestra-mobile, out of which the monkey and the organ grinder appear to the cheers of the children.


Memorable Scenes:

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Video Availability:

Laserdisc: Golden Age of Looney Tunes, Vol. 4


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