Monday, June 29, 2015

Fractured Flickers

 As his production slate grew, Jay Ward redeployed Allan Burns and George Atkins from promoting The Bullwinkle Show to other productions, including the barely remembered show featuring overdubbed silent films, Fractured Flickers.

 Although both Burns and Atkins wrote for the series they also contributed to promoting it.  Chapter 9 in my book, The Art of Jay Ward Productions, features art that went into the making of the animated opening titles and end credits for this show. Today I feature some of the material generated to promote the series:

Decals and letterhead art by Sam Clayberger, other art by Allan Burns.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Jay Ward and the art of self-promotion, part 4

Jay Ward and his publicity machine--Howard Brandy, publicist; George Atkins, writer; Allan Burns and Sam Clayberger, artists--continued their assault on network apathy for The Bullwinkle Show with two other events, this time on the East Coast.  Roughly equivalent to the West Coast's Bullwinkle Block Party, Jay threw a Picnic at the Plaza at New York's famed Plaza Hotel. Here's some of the paraphernalia from the event:

Art by Allan Burns, lettering by Sam Clayberger

 For those having trouble reading the box lunch menu, here are the details:

Moose Burgers Flambe, Hot Moose Dogs, Bull Shrimp

Smoked Loin of Pork
Devilled Disjointed Chicken
Roast Duck

Assorted Meats:
Pate Maison

Boiled egg
Whole tomatoes
Raw celery
Elbow macaroni salad
Gruyere chees
Red radishes
One seeded buttered roll
Salt and pepper

Assorted ugli fruit
Cole slaw, Dill pickles 
on tables

Bullwinkle's crown (vanilla)
Brandied strawberries jubilee flambe'

Jay also staged the Coney Island Film Festival at where else, that mecca for cinephiles, Coney Island.  Here's a piece of letterhead for the event:

You can read more about the Picnic at the Plaza in Keith Scott's essential history of the Jay Ward studio in The Moose That Roared and you can see more cool art from the studio in The Art of Jay Ward Productions.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Moosylvania and the campaign for the 52nd state

Rather than presenting a key to the state of Moosylvania, Jay Ward presents a lock.

As a key part of their campaign, Jay Ward and his publicist, Howard Brandy, concocted a tour of the US, driving cross country to gather signatures on their petition to grant statehood to Moosylvania with the intention of presenting the scroll of thousands of signatures to President Kennedy.  Unfortunately for the duo, they arrived at the White House during the Cuban Missile Crisis and were unceremoniously turned away, receiving little or no publicity whatsoever for their efforts.

To make the tour, Jay decided that they should have their own vehicle in which to call attention to their campaign.  He gave artist Sam Clayberger a blank check to go buy a Ford Econoline van.  Sam was then asked to design the exterior and later execute that design.  Here are four of his concepts:

As you can see from the photo below, Jay chose the gaudiest, most attention-getting design, the one on the lower right.
And here are some shots of Jay Ward and Howard Brandy from the tour:

Barely visible behind the van, (I know, who's looking at the van?) is a steam-powered calliope that was carried in the rear of the van and which was deployed to announce the arrival of the campaign.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Moosylvania, the 52nd state

In 1959, Alaska and Hawaii had been just been welcomed into the United States, a mere two years before the debut of The Bullwinkle Show, and the country seemed to be on a roll for admitting new states.  Continuing the effort to gain recognition for The Bullwinkle Show, George Atkins and Allan Burns came up with a campaign to keep the ball rolling and admit the fictional state of Moosylvania as the 52nd state.  (Bonus points if anyone can name the 51st state and triple bonus points if anyone can name all 57 states that the 44th President claimed were part of the Union.)  To give weight to the campaign, an island between Minnesota and Canada was leased as Moosylvania for several years; Moosylvania was also later incorporated into a story line on The Bullwinkle Show.  You can read more about the campaign and "state" in Keith Scott's seminal history of Jay Ward, The Moose That Roared.

Atkins and Burns came up with a promotional brochure to educate US leaders and the populace as to the benefits of admitting Moosylvania, including a map of the proposed state:

Once you were convinced of the merits of statehood, you could become a member of the Moosylvania Swamp Rat Patrol:

There's a good chance that your materials could have come in either one of these envelopes:

Once you were on board, you could march in support of statehood:

Wear a badge trumpeting your support of the new state:

 Put a decal on your car or dorm room window:

Sing songs from the Moosylvania songbook:

Or listen to the music from A Salute to Moosylvania:

For those so inclined, you can hear the album here.  The site suggests that Allan Burns wrote the liner notes but because George Atkins was the writer of record for all the other promotions, it's more likely that the notes were his work with art by Burns.

All art by Allan Burns except for the two envelopes, badge and decal which were done by Sam Clayberger.  It's clear that working on the campaign for Statehood for Moosylvania must have been good for one's health as both artists are still with us today.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Rocky and Bullwinkle shill for the US Treasury

The advertising agency behind General Mills' decision to sponsor the Rocky and Bullwinkle shows, Dancer-Fitzgerald-Samples, worked out a deal with the US Treasury to use the Jay Ward characters in a campaign to promote US Savings Bonds*.  Timed to coincide with the premiere of The Bullwinkle Show in September of 1961 was the Hollywood-produced short, Rocky and Bullwinkle Savings Stamp Club, promoting US Savings Stamps to school children, who would ultimately grow to become US Savings Bond purchasers.  Sam Clayberger color keyed and painted the backgrounds for this short (inexplicably giving Sherman blonde hair!) and a few of these keys can be seen in a previous post on this blog.  Art Diamond created this membership card for the club:

Allan Burns did these gag panels to promote buying US Savings Bonds:

which became the basis for this Sam Clayberger art for Boy's Life to encourage Boy Scouts to buy US Savings Bonds:

Allan Burns also created these promo comic strips aimed at getting adults to buy those same bonds:

*Jay Ward and Bill Scott had a tempestuous relationship with the agency, for more behind-the-scenes info read The Art of Jay Ward Productions and The Moose That Roared.