Tuesday, March 06, 2012

I'm Sick Of Looking At Gallery On Baum's Awful Nancy Forgery, So Let's Look At A Different Forgery From Their Collection!

Yesterday I was really on a tear about Gallery on Baum's atrocious ersatz Bushmiller drawing. Pony Pal™ Nixie Bunny, the naughty thing, sent the post to GoB as feedback through eBay, and guess what happened next? The auction suddenly ended two days early! With a buyer! Even though it wasn't a "buy it now" item! I am at a loss to interpret these events.

One commenter this morning basically said thank you, PSP, may I have another? Well, others seemed to enjoy the post, and I aim to please (every once in a while), so let's look at another embarrassing forgery from the Gallery on Baum. I'm not on as solid footing for this one (I know my Bushmiller!), and my theories here are more conjectural, but let's look at this drawing:

Click above for bigger, worse.

Shown above is what GoB purports to be an "Original Bill Hanna Flintstones drawing from The Man Called Flintstone featuring Fred. On paper stock 8 1/2" x 11". Done in marker. Nice detailing."

Personally, I think "nice detailing" is a matter of opinion, because just like the other dubious cartoon artworks in GoB's collection, this is an absolutely terrible drawing. Bill Hanna, of Hanna-Barbera fame, just like Ernie Bushmiller, simply was not capable of drawing this badly. Honestly, that's all the real evidence you need to know that this is a fake. I think Cartoon Brew put it best in their take-down of a different GoB Hanna forgery (!) when they said, "This appears to be from the days when Hanna would attend comic conventions and draw characters blindfolded to entertain his fans."

Is this, like the Bushmiller, another tracing? Yes!  What's the source image? That's easy enough, the front cover/promotional artwork for the DVD release of The Man Called Flintstone:

OK, it's flipped and the mouth in the drawing is closed. Otherwise, let's do an overlay and see how well they match up:

That looks close enough to me. The drawing is a tracing from this promotional image. It didn't take much effort for the tracer to flip the original in Photoshop or to change the mouth to closed. But here's the thing: that image is not the original artwork used for original 1966 release of The Man Called Flintstone. Here, for instance, is the original poster art:

And here is a lobby card:

Neither of those images of Fred are very good, so it would be understandable for Warner Bros. to want a better image for the DVD and promotional materials. Now here's where the theorizing begins: I believe the Fred Flintstone image used on the video cover was specially made for the DVD release. Tvshowsondvd.com tells us that this DVD was initially announced with this cover artwork in 2004. Presumably it would have been in development for a year or so, so the new artwork was probably created in 2003 or 2004, possibly 2002 at the earliest, but that's a stretch (I mean, c'mon, it's an obscure Flintstones video release, not the type of thing that requires tons of effort).

Oh, and Bill Hanna? Bill Hanna who supposedly drew that Gallery on Baum Fred Flintstone which, as we've seen, was traced from this circa 2003-2004 artwork?

He died in 2001. Oops!*

Any new offerings from Gallery on Baum on eBay? Sure, all the time! Today you can get all excited and start bidding on this drawing of Daffy Duck, apparently executed (and I mean killed DEAD) by Friz Freleng while he was jumping up and down on a trampoline. Neat!

*Frightening alternative theory: the drawing was traced by a terrifying (but generous to his fans!) reanimated zombie Bill Hanna. That would explain the shakiness!


Anonymous said...

This is amazing. I know there are lots of fake every things out there, but your analysis is truly one of a kind. You've definitely taught me something today. Thanks PSP.

PS. I'm the same anonymous that asked for more.

Peteykins said...

Thanks a bunch, but here's the thing: I'm not an expert on this kind of forensic work! I'm just an enthusiast who knows his stuff. That's how bad and how brazen these forgers, who may or may not be Tony Greco and/or his wife, are! That's what makes it particularly galling to me.

nixiebunny said...

It's fascinating to see just how different the line strokes are between the actual art and the fakes. The fake lines seem to meander around the real lines, whereas the masters use exactly one graceful curve per line segment.

A guy with some computer math skills could do a spectral analysis of the line curves and get dramatically different numbers for the wiggliness of the lines. At least, that's how I would quantify the forgerocity of these drawings.

HRH King Friday XIII, Ret. said...

Yabba-Dabba-Bullsh*t! Can Hanna-Barbera do something about this? Copyright lawyers?

The Cat's Meow said...

Um, that Daffy? That's not the way Friz made his L's.

I think we should immediately buy the domain name "GalleryOnBaumSucks.com" before Greco does (unless he already has).