Ralph Bakshi is back with a political short that remixes his own past films with newly recorded voice and music tracks and some additional art. The short is called “Trickle Dickle Down“. The main chunk of footage is from an incidental scene in Ralph’s 1975 film, Coonskin, and the final background art of crumbling city infrastructure is from his 1982 film, Hey Good Lookin’. This is the first film in a planned series of new Bakshi shorts that will have original animation, which he is calling Bakshi Blues.
Coonskin used racial and ethnic stereotypes amplified sometimes to extreme degrees, challenging the viewer to face the ugliness of racism personified in the caricatures. The use of these stereotypes was satirical, but regardless of intent, this approach earned criticism and protest (along with praise for the film) upon the film’s 1975 release, and the film remains confrontational today. Compared to the rest of Coonskin, this clip is tame.
Thrust forward thirty seven years into the context of the 2012 presidential race however, this footage takes on different meanings. Do you see the Bones character as racially charged still or as a satirical, comic everyman representing the life that all of us who aren’t millionaires will be facing under a Romney presidency? Or is Bones what Romney imagines the half of the country that are not supporting him look like, crude cartoons digging through the trash (presumably in between getting government handouts)? It’s impossible for me to separate this footage in my head from the original film, but for those seeing it for the first time, I’m curious as to how it stands on its own as an original short. See the short here. As expected, the comments on the video page and elsewhere are a shitstorm.
In this weird presidential race however, one of the candidates is doing all the work himself for Ralph. Here’s Romney being secretly taped saying out loud what everyone knew he thought, but never expected to hear come out of his own mouth.