By Joshie Jaxon
Greetings, geek fans! Today I’ll be sharing one of my all time favorite Silly Symphonies. I adore cartoons like this one. Any time we get to see objects anthropomorphized, and doing comedic things, I’m in. Oddly, I’m not all that enthralled with the Toy Story franchise. That’s neither here nor there. The Cookie Carnival is from 1934, making it 82 years old, and it still holds up nicely. There are a few questionable choices, but given how the country was at the time, I’ll forgive them, but it won’t stop me from pointing them all out. Classic cartoons like this are what I live for, and we’re gonna break this one down like no other. Let the geeks begin!
We open with a marching band of cookie men. It’s time for Cookie Town’s beauties on parade. To save explaining later, the entire world is made of cookies and treats. We good? Alright. There’s a chorus singing, here they come, freshly baked, covered with spice and candy flake, marching along in this parade, at the cookie carnival. I know it’s supposed to be just a cute song, but if these contestants were freshly baked, either they’re “special” cookies, or they just popped out of the oven. Either way, weird. Who’s making them? Animal crackers pull the first float into view, and we see Miss Peppermint. She’s serving up candy cane couture, and looks great. Isn’t a cookie though. Maybe the next one. Cookie penguins pull in Miss Cocoanut, serving up Eskimo realness, in coconut shavings. She could be a cookie under there. Next entry, in her banana peel car, Miss Banana Cake. Category is – is that hair gel, eleganza. She looks more like a bu-cake-ee, if you ask me. Groan all you want, there’s more perversion to come. Pun intended. Next up is Miss Strawberry Blonde, in her strawberry shortcake layered hoop skirt, and strawberry headpiece on her blonde hair. Get it? Moving on. The float behind her is Miss Peach, but it cuts away before we can see her. Sorry ’bout it. The next entry was the affirmative action entry for the parade. It’s Miss Licorice, pulled by her three black stereotypes. She’s serving up short skirt, head wrapped, not racist for it’s day, realness. Normally, I like to only have one picture a paragraph, so it’s my writing, not the visuals that take center stage, however, you have to see these pageant queens, so I’m going to include them all. You’re welcome.
Now, during all of that Sugar Ball extravaganza, the song also let us know that they are going to be crowning a cookie queen. The Eskimo is the only one that might, MIGHT, be an actual cookie. Anyhow, we see a hobo cookie walking down the candy cane train tracks, whistling. He hears a homely looking cookie girl crying, and spiffs up to go introduce himself. You’re a hobo, and she’s a Cinderella style hot mess. Why are you trying to look impressive? He asks her why she’s so sad. She says she wants to be in the parade, but doesn’t have any pretty clothes to wear. She could enter as Miss Test Cookie. You know, the one that probably isn’t good, but lets you perfect things so the rest turn out alright. I’m assuming, that is. We always ate the cookie dough growing up, and it rarely made it to cookie form.
Hobo Higgins decides he’s going to turn Cookie Doolittle into the cookie queen. First he grabs some nearby taffy, plops it on her head, and styles it up real nice. Next, he grabs a cupcake, turns it upside down, and uses the wrapper as the foundation for the dress. A nearby marshmallow is used as a powderpuff. What happens next is the most awesome piece of vintage cartoon innocence that Joshie totally takes out of context and makes into something dirty ever. Hobo Higgins grabs an eclair, and proceeds to squirt the creme filling all over Cookie Doolittle to make her dress. Yes, I’m serious. Yes, I’m giggling. Yes, I’m going to show it. In a second. Next he does the same with some jelly-filled, to give the dress a little color. He adds a purple bow in the back, and sprinkles candy hearts along the dress. Finally, he rubs his thumb on a candy heart, and uses it as blush on her cheeks, before having her kiss it to get the perfect heart-shaped lips. With her makeover complete, he eats the heart, and uses a lollipop to show her how pretty she is. It’s so good that Hobo Higgins came along. Lord knows that in 1934 a woman couldn’t do anything on her own, let alone give herself a makeover with nearby materials. Nope, without him, Cookie Doolittle would have just sat there crying as her eggs dried up. Assuming there were eggs in her recipe.
Back at the parade we see Miss Pineapple Upside Down Cake pass by, as the judges shake their heads, and cross off her name on their boards. Lil Pound Cake must have been shown while we were witnessing the makeover. Another entry we can’t see passes by and they cross her off too. At least make them lip sync for her lives! We see the tail end of Miss Orange Crush’s float, followed by a muffin with a sign saying The End. Hobo Higgins shoves him out of the way, making Cookie Doolittle the final entry. Though, given the fact the judges have clipboards with the contestants on them, tells me she shouldn’t be eligible. They see her, and are all gagging on her eleganza; her cookie is on fire! They declare her the queen, and their judges booth breaks. All three run up to her, shoving Hobo Higgins aside. He’s then trampled by the Cookie Town crowd. The chorus starts singing about hailing the cookie queen. They march her to the layer cake at what I’ll assume is the center of town. They unroll a jelly roll from bottom to top to act as the red carpet. After seating her on the throne, and crowning her, they immediately declare that the queen must have a King. Cause again, 1934 and a woman can’t do Jack unless she’s got a man to help her along, in case there’s some thinking to do. I don’t know if cookie queen is their ruler, or if it’s strictly a pageant thing like at homecoming, but given what comes next, I’m gonna assume that it’s a ruling position, not just a fun title.
The judges say that the candy-dates, yay, puns!, are waiting, and they have no time to lose. They raise the curtain, and tell her to pick any one she chooses. I don’t know why she needs to have a man right this minute. Perhaps if they see an unescorted woman in power too long, it might give the others ideas, and we can’t have that. On with the men! Each candy-date gets a song to plead their case. Don’t worry, I’ll be showing all of them too. First up, the Dandy Candy Kids. They have cookie faces, and candy cane limbs. They sing about how she’s won their heart, and if she’s smart, she’ll pick one of them. Next up, the Old Fashioned Cookies, like mother used to bake. She’s the only girl they love, and suggest she give one of them a break. Um, she was just crowned, and you know nothing of her. How can you love her already? Whatever. Next up, the Angel Food Cake, they want it understood that she should marry one of them, because they are so good. I swear these two are supposed to be gay. They have soft voices, and skirt style outfits. Maybe I’m reading too much into it. Then again, they did curtsy at the end. Next, in direct contrast to the prior act, Devil’s Food Cake. They’re naughty, but they’re nice. They’re nice, and naughty. Yeah, man! We get it, Bro, you’re straight. Next up, the Upside Down Cakes. Although they’re topsy-turvy, they’re head over heels in love. Again, how can they love her? During their act, Hobo Higgins is chased by the guards, and hides under the stage. The final act is the Jolly Rum Cookies. The have the hiccups, and with each one, they end up swapping noses. Cookie Doolittle giggles, and shakes her head no. The judges say they’ve tried their best to find her a King, and wonder what to do. Each one suggests they be the one to marry her. Then one says maybe she should marry all three. It’s like old school Mormonism, but with cookies, and multiple husbands instead of sister wives. It’s cookie lust, I swear. They know what her dress is made of, know she’s into bu-cake-ee, and want to party. Pervs!
As the judges are busy trying to convince Cookie Doolittle to marry them, Hobo Higgins has been sneaking up under the jelly roll to escape the guards. Which, if they hadn’t been so desperate for a queen, would know that he’s the one who was pulling her in the parade. The guards smack him on the head, as he emerges, turning his hat into a crown. The jelly roll breaks, looking like a royal cloak. You see where this is going. Cookie Doolittle speaks up and tells them not to crown the King that way. They all immediately start cheering for their King, cause they’re raging hypocrites. The citizens of Cookie Town start partying in the streets. There’s a candle shining though colored lollipops. Donuts dunking themselves in coffee. They’re kinky like that. Miss Jello is shaking like it’s nobodies business. Or it’s the palsy. Hobo Higgins and Cookie Doolittle share a smooch. Realize they can be seen, and put up a clear lollipop to shield them. Their next kiss melts it. Dirty cookies.
You’re welcome to watch it for yourselves, so you know I’m not making any of it up. The one question left unanswered, is that if Hobo Higgins has such great makeover skills, why does he wander around like a bum? Be a pageant consultant. The year he lost, was to some Lady Fingers the judges liked. You can’t beat that. Yes, I went there. Until next time, stay geeky, and keep gabbing!