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Happy Hoboes
Happy Hoboes (1933)
Tom and Jerry are hoboes, but the city is demolishing the hobo camp. They hop a ride on a freight train. The train comes to a lumber camp, where the Chinese cook has just prepared a huge platter of roast chicken; he invites the train people to eat, but hundreds of bums descend. He chases them off, into a log slide, and they end up right back in the original camp.

Happy Hoboes (1933)
The Van Beuren Tom and Jerry (as said already not the famous cat and mouse, this is a human duo that lasted for just under 30 cartoons, 29 if memory serves correct, between 1931 and 1933) series was interesting but uneven and not easy to rate as an overall whole. At the series' best, the cartoons were good, very good in a few cases. At its worst, they were really bad.

'Happy Hoboes' is another Tom and Jerry cartoon that is not really bad. It is also another cartoon of theirs that not one of the good ones either. 'Happy Hoboes' may be unappealing visually, not very funny, not bizarre enough and dull, but there are a few interest points and there is not much that made me cringe or offended me (certainly not to the same extent as 'Plane Dumb'). The best thing about it is the music score which is the high point of even the worst cartoons and is so beautifully and cleverly orchestrated and full of energy, doing so well with enhancing the action.

A few interesting moments, especially the snowing scene with the two clouds into two winged women transformation, one of the most memorable images in a Tom and Jerry cartoon, and a few of the original cooking methods that can be seen. The train is decently designed and the best character in the whole cartoon.

Conversely, once again, most of the animation didn't do it for me. Only the train is well-designed and only the aforementioned snowing/transformation scene stands out in a memorable, visually striking or original way. A vast majority of it is crude and simplistic with a fair share of static moments. Tom and Jerry look primitive and all the movements would be more at home in the 20s in silent film melodrama. Likewise with Tom and Jerry's antics.

While the Tom and Jerry cartoons are absurdist and weird in their style of humour, this didn't come through enough in too many of the gags, in a cartoon where the number of gags also aren't quite enough. The timing is limp and lacks energy, while it's all too predictable and disjointed. While the chef character is not as bland as the title characters and there are a few original cooking methods the character is a stereotype and a not particularly interesting, likable, funny or flattering one.

It's a paper thin cartoon in story once again, true of most cartoons in the series, with everything feeling like filler. Tom and Jerry are bland.

Overall, has its moments but lacklustre. 4/10 Bethany Cox