16 Comments

  1. My first thought was that Fantasia is actually from 1940. Although, except for having dinosaurs, which are not exactly novel in B.C., I guess there isn’t that much resemblance.

  2. I’m used to the fact that B.C. is actually set in 2019 USA, but ‘1950s Disney’ was a bit much for me.

  3. My thought was Disney’s nature films, but a) I don’t know if their heyday was the ’50s, and b) didn’t they generally not show predators making kills?

  4. I imagine it’s reference to something specific (especially with the lightning) but I haven’t the slightest idea what. (Cinderealla? Sleeping Beauty?) It reminds me more of the intro to Rocky and Bullwinkle than anything else..

  5. Having trouble parsing this one.

    In the 50s Disney was most strongly associated with the new Disneyland park, a successful jump into television (Mickey Mouse Club, Zorro, and the weekly hour), and a growing number of live action films. All these ventures were famously “family friendly”, later mocked by boomer teens for their lack of grittiness.

    Yes, there was a giant squid in “20,000 Leagues Under the Sea” and dinos in “Fantasia” (the last a prewar film that probably got a 50s re-release).”Sleeping Beauty” had a dragon battling a prince to the edge of a cliff before virtue prevailed. And while the True Life Adventures were going strong, predators took down prey less scarily. On the unlikely chance they meant any one of these examples, why didn’t they refer to the specific film?

    Perhaps blaming nightmares on a specific era when a specific studio was producing aggressively benign content was the joke. Like blaming heartburn on water.

  6. I think it’s referring to what TV Tropes calls “Disney Villain Death.” Basically, in children’s cartoons the villain has to die, but the heroes can’t be shown killing her. It usually ends with a chase, where the villain is running with the heroes in pursuit, and the the villain falls off a cliff.

    I don’t know why specifically 1950’s though. It was used in many Disney films from Snow White (1937) to the 2016 version of The Jungle Book.

    https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/DisneyVillainDeath

  7. It might be a True Life Adventures reference, but that’s pretty obscure for mainstream audiences these days.

    Or maybe it’s a Primeval World reference? But that wasn’t created until the 1964 World’s Fair.

  8. I went right to Sleeping Beauty and the fight with Maleficent. That was the only one that fit the timeline.

  9. I thought first about the narrated nature movies, since I watched a lot of them on TV in the 60s. Even so, whether real-life nature or cartoon horror, I can barely make them fit this strip. (The nature films must have included scenes of natural horror; made a little more personal by the story laid on (or applied to, whatever the correct term is) the animals by the narrator.)

  10. I think Pete has it but 50s was a monkey wrench. The most famous is Snow White which is far too early for the 50s and maybe the Lion King and Beauty and the Beast[1]. It actually seems the 50s is at the ebb for this kind of stuff.

    [1](Beauty and the Beast was always weird to me because while Gaston was a jerk he wasn’t really an evil super villain and whereas falling off a cliff was okay for monsters or witches for a plain old human it was … violent.)

  11. I had kind of a weird take on it – grown ups usually have grown-up nighmares: IRS audits, husband/wife leaving you, house burning down, getting fired. This guy has nightmares today’s geezers should have had as a child.

    Not sure how that fits in, exactly.

  12. Possibly the notorious Disney movie about lemmings? The one where they herded the lemmings off the cliff because supposedly migrating lemmings follow each other off cliffs?

    But the cliff looks a lot like Pride Rock in the Lion King so why didn’t the dinosaur just grab him and hold him up?

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