Monday, December 18, 2006

Joe Barbera Has Passed Away

Associated Press have confirmed that Joe Barbera, half of the Hanna-Barbera founding team, has died aged 95. Bill Hanna, his former partner in creating the Tom and Jerry, Yogi Bear, Flintstones and Scooby-Doo series, died in 2001.

After MGM theatrical animation ceased in the 50s, Hanna and Barbera went into business together and subsequently created the majority of their recognisable characters for the medium of television. Sadly, this work was deeply inferior to the big screen glories of their early years, and for many viewers, the Hanna Barbera oeuvre contains the most easily identifiable milestones in the decline of American animation from the 60s to the 80s.

All the same, the 7-times Oscar winning Tom and Jerry shorts are sterling examples of what Hanna and Barbera could do with bigger-budgets, and I am sure these classic cartoons will not be forgotten for decades, if not longer - however dated and potentially offensive (yawn) they may come to seem to many.

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