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Roof-Top Razzle Dazzle (1964)

Charlie has a present for his family... a brand new TV set. However, once he turns it on, he gets nothing but "zig-zag lines". He complains over the phone and is told he needs to install an... See full summary »


Paul J. Smith


Cal Howard


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Credited cast:
Paul Frees ... Charlie Beary / Junior Beary (voice)
Grace Stafford ... Bessie Beary / Suzy Beary / Woody Woodpecker (voice)


Charlie has a present for his family... a brand new TV set. However, once he turns it on, he gets nothing but "zig-zag lines". He complains over the phone and is told he needs to install an aerial. He refuses to pay someone else to do it and is convinced he can do it himself. Bad decision! First he must get up to the roof after his ladder falls apart. Once making it to the roof, he has difficulty staying up there. Eventually, the TV winds up at the bottom of their swimming pool but Charlie isn't licked yet. Wearing scuba gear, the family watches TV from the pool's bottom! Written by Matt Yorston <george.y@ns.sympatico.ca>

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Animation | Short







Release Date:

29 September 1964 (USA) See more »

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Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)
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User Reviews

Doesn't dazzle, but doesn't fizzle either
2 November 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Have been increasingly unsure what to make of "The Beary Family" cartoons as an overall series, whether to stand by my initial statement of for Walter Lantz Studios' final series it not being as bad as anticipated or judging from the awfulness of the worst cartoons to take it back. Sorry if this sounds confusing.

Due to that there are some decent or watchable "Beary Family" cartoons, especially 'Fowled-Up Birthday' and 'Mother's Little Helper' (both directed by Jack Hannah, who generally is a much stronger animation director than Paul J. Smith and his cartoons much better). However, there are also a fair share of horrible ones, beforehand especially seen with 'Charlie's Mother-in-Law'. 'Roof-Top Razzle-Dazzle', while hardly dazzling, is one of the more watchable cartoons in the series.

As indicated, 'Roof-Top Razzle-Dazzle' is a long way from great. Like many 60s Lantz-studio cartoons, the animation is not good. Time and budget constraints shows in a lot of the animation, which is very rushed looking in the drawing and detail wise it's on the simplistic and careless side with colours that lack vibrancy and a fair share of goofs. The story is pretty slight and contains few surprises and could have benefited from feeling a little less noisy and at times tighter timing.

Bessie and Suzy, while far more toned down than in the previous cartoon 'Rah Rah Ruckus', are annoying. Suzy's a brat and Bessie's treatment of Charlie, while not as bad as in some of their other cartoons, makes her a difficult character to get behind.

However, the music puts one in a good mood and is rousing and lush. Am liking the main "Beary Family" theme more with each cartoon of theirs. Found myself liking Junior here and that him playing with a yoyo while driving was one of the cartoon's funniest moments.

For a Smith-directed "Beary Family" cartoon, while never hilarious or innovative the gags are actually amusing and have much crisper timing to usual, regardless of whether the outcomes are foreseeable. Charlie's dialogue amuses and the ending is one of the very few nice surprises the cartoon has, including a nice if random cameo involving Woody Woodpecker.

Despite Junior making one of his cooler and more likable appearances, the best, most interesting and funniest character is Charlie. It is very easy to relate to and like him, and Paul Frees' deft voice work helps a lot. The voice work generally is good, though Suzy is a character that does nothing for Grace Stafford's considerable talent.

Overall, one of the better "Beary Family" cartoons although it doesn't dazzle. 6/10 Bethany Cox

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