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VINE VOICEon June 25, 2010
Jerry Beck surveyed animation fans and historians to come up with a list of the 'creme de la creme' of Looney Tunes -- the best 100 cartoons (out of over a thousand) released by Warner Brothers between 1930 and the mid-1960's. The results are printed in this beatifully produced (and eminently reasonably priced) book that any animation fan will want to own.

I'm sure the comments area of this site will now have multiple discussion threads devoted to arguments over which cartoons should have been included but weren't (and I have some ideas of my own), but all of the 'tunes that made the cut are certainly worthy of a place in this book. The list even includes "Coal Black" .. a short that we will probably never get to see. Shorts are listed in alphabetical order, there was no attempt to rank the cartoons from 1 to 100.

Following a couple of brief introductions, each cartoon gets its own two page spread. One page is devoted to stills from the cartoon (usually sharp and crisp; a few are rather fuzzy -- these seem to be from cartoons that have not been released on DVD and so haven't yet been restored), and the other to text. And that is the slightly disappointing part. A heading in large type, a brief quote from the short in almost-as-large type, a boxed sidebar with production information (director, voices, etc.), a summary of the plot, and then, from an animation expert or historian, a VERY brief discussion of some aspect of the film. I was really hoping for more in-depth discussions of the shorts; couldn't some of the abundant white space on the page been used for this? (Though, realistically, I guess it's hard to get TOO profound when talking about Looney Tunes -- they were never meant to be deep or meaningful ... just funny and entertaining.)

Despite this disappointment, still a must-buy.
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on July 30, 2010
The book is surprisingly quite small and there is little substance. I was hoping for more insight into each of the cartoons they picked. Each of the 100 "greatest" (I would have used great, as greatest is as they acknowledge very up for debate) cartoons has well printed photos from it, which is what I enjoy the most. I really like the layout and the background print as well.

As for information about the cartoons, there is not that much. Most of the short amount of text devoted to the cartoon is a summary or sometimes even a step by step description of what goes on in the cartoon. It should be assumed that the reader has the cartoon to watch or remembers it. As just reading the plot synopsis does not do it justice and is unnecessary for someone who can just watch it. What I was looking for was more explanation of why this cartoon is one of the top 100. There is little about that.

I would say this book serves better as a collectors item, a book with colorful pictures, rather than an informational book about the Looney Tunes.
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on September 29, 2011
The whole run of classic Looney Tunes from the 1930s through the 1960s totals somewhere around 1000 films. This book does a decent job of cutting that jungle down to size, sifting out the best, the funniest, the most acclaimed, the most influential. For somebody not already steeped in Looney Tunes knowledge, this is an outstanding introduction.

So what's missing? Pepe Le Pew is represented only by a single brief appearance. Taz, Witch Hazel and Pete Puma are nowhere to be seen. The list is understandably biased toward the 1940s and 1950s while revealing little of the B&W learning curve of the 1930s (Foxy and Bosco didn't make the cut either) or the awkward, budget-starved efforts of the 1960s. In his introduction Jerry Beck freely admits, "One hundred slots weren't nearly enough to cover all the greats!" This book doesn't try to be an exhaustive guide or history book, and I think that's OK.

Each cartoon is given a two-page spread with photos, a plot summary, commentary from various cartoon scholars and professionals, statistics and credits, and often a brief additional comment from Mr. Beck. They're presented in alphabetical order, which I think was a good call. At the beginning is a thumbnail index which makes it easy to find any cartoon in seconds. In the back is both a director index and a character index, also mighty convenient.

This is a small book, which some have complained about. To me it seems like a convenient size, and big enough to show what needs to be shown. By its nature it's a summary. Instead of showing lots of big, beautiful pictures, it assumes you'll proceed to watch the actual cartoons!
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on May 19, 2014
The Looney Tunes book arrived quickly & was in excellent condition for a so-called "used" book (no way!) - especially since it cost just a fraction of the price. This book gives you the complete history of how Looney Tunes came to be. I didn't realize how little I knew. It was fun reading about my favorite episodes even though there were so many I'd never seen before. Anyone that likes watching the older cartoons will enjoy reading this book.
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on December 27, 2011
This book is like a quick bio. of Bugs and friends. This was a Christmas gift for our autistic son who is completely in love with this cartoon series. He actually picked this book out on Amazon and likes to read it before going to sleep. There are not many pictures but each page has clips or drawings from the animated cartoon that is titled in the chapter. If you love the cartoon you should enjoy this hard cover book.
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on October 30, 2014
If you grew up watching television in the late 1950s-early 60s then, like me, you probably saw a good number of these cartoons at least a zillion times. Now I can imagine how tough it must have been picking and limiting the selection to a tidy top 100. I can't quibble about which cartoon made the list in expense of a personal favorite of mine that didn't, or that not enough data on each cartoon was provided, or even why any particular cartoon was chosen for whatever reason.
What we have here is a wonderful overview of Looney Tunes represented by 100 exceptionally memorable cartoons. I liked the format of a brief plot summary and commentary by one of several guest cartoon experts. Enough is given to whet one's appetite for looking up and viewing each and every cartoon represented.
What truly amazed me was that so many of these cartoons I haven't seen for at least 50 or so years, yet how fresh the memories of them where by merely glimpsing at a brief two page presentation. Scenes from each cartoon popped out from the plot summaries, almost like actually watching the cartoon again. It just goes to show what an impact Looney Tunes had on young children watching cartoons on television....For me, reading this book was akin to some psychiatric analysis delving deep into my past unveiling forgotten childhood memories.
This book is highly recommended.
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on February 7, 2016
The 100 Greatest Looney Tunes Cartoons is an essential reference for anyone interested in animation, especially the golden age of animation from Warner Bros.

Each featured animation is given a thoughtful profile with samples and synopsis plus other neat bits of info and insight.
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on March 1, 2011
While there are so many Looney Tunes to choose from, the author did a great job of narrowing it down to the top 100. There are some great ones in there including Barber of Seville and Whats Opera Doc, as well as some that you may not be familiar with! Included is a summary of the cartoon, who was the director as well as its importance in the Looney Tunes collection. Check it out to see if your favorite made the cut!
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on January 15, 2011
I've really enjoyed this listing of 100 great Warner Brothers cartoons.

As a 39 year old, I grew up with these cartoons, and still there are some I don't recognize.

If you are a fan of the era, I recommend this highly.

Could it have been longer, sure, but you could say that about most non-Robert Jordan books.
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on October 24, 2010
I gave this book a 5-star rating, not only because my all-time favorite Looney Tunes cartoon (Satan's Waitin') made the greatest 100, but because this book brings back so many fond memories of my childhood watching these great cartoons. As I thumbed through the book for the first time, I quoted to myself some famous lines from a couple of the cartoons, then found as I read the text about them that these quotes were included!

That first evening when I got this book, it was getting close to my bedtime and the need for sleep before the next work day, but I just couldn't put it down! Thankfully, I have most of these cartoons on the Golden Collection DVD series as well and can watch them whenever I have time. That makes reading this book that much more enjoyable.

A message to those who'd like a more in-depth analysis of the cartoons: Just watch them and enjoy! That's all the writers intended to be done with them anyway.
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