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Pecking Holes in Poles (1972)

Woody has pecked dozens of telephone poles full of holes, so much so that telephone company employee Floyd Farkle is threatened with being fired if he doesn't catch him this time. Farkle ... See full summary »


Paul J. Smith


Cal Howard (story)


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Cast overview:
Daws Butler ... Floyd Farkle / Boss (voice)
Grace Stafford ... Woody Woodpecker (voice)


Woody has pecked dozens of telephone poles full of holes, so much so that telephone company employee Floyd Farkle is threatened with being fired if he doesn't catch him this time. Farkle tries to catch Woody by pulling him down from atop a pole, but Woody moves out of the way. Being generous, Woody decides to help Farkle out by fixing his hard hat- by lighting a stick of dynamite and telling Farkle to hold the hat down. Amazingly, Woody's trick works, despite Farkle's head blowing up. Farkle then tries to shoot Woody with a shotgun, first flying a hot-air balloon up to the top of the pole and then by lighting a rocket under him to try and fly. Woody suggests that Farkle join the circus, which only serves to anger the man. Woody then looks on in disbelief as Farkle tries dressing up as a woodpecker to try and catch him. Although Woody sees right through it, he decides to play along as Farkle plays dumb. He allows Farkle to peck with him, only to have him fall down when he attempts to ... Written by CP

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Release Date:

1 March 1972 (USA) See more »

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Color (Technicolor)
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User Reviews

Pole trouble with Woody...again
26 October 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Was very fond of Woody Woodpecker and his cartoons as a child. Still get much enjoyment out of them now as a young adult, even if there are more interesting in personality cartoon characters and better overall cartoons.

That is in no way knocking Woody, because many of his cartoons are a lot of fun to watch (almost all of them being in his prime era of the 1940s through to the mid-50s) and more and also still like him a lot as a character. For a late-period Woody Woodpecker cartoon, especially from the late 60s onward and directed by Paul J. Smith, 'Pecking Holes in Poles' turned out to be better than expected. It isn't great by any stretch of the imagination, but it's a long way from being one of the worst Woody Woodpecker cartoons, most of which at this point were average at best and the worst of them very weak.

It's not a perfect cartoon by all means. The animation is not great at all, or even 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 like many of Woody's cartoons from this period continuing through to the 60s.

Gags-wise, mostly they are funnier and better timed than most of the cartoons from this period but there is a lack of variety and a few are not as well-timed. The story is very thin and at times repetitive, anybody who has seen the Woody and Smedley cartoon 'Room and Bored' will find the concept and some of the story similar to that, except that this one has the stronger gags.

However, Woody is portrayed with a lot of energy and charisma and he is not as toned down as he tended to be from the late 50s onward. With this being said, he has had much more manic energy, especially in his glory days when there was far more risk-taking, and his material is still a bit too safe.

Farkle is a nice foil and one of the better, funnier and more memorable Woody Woodpecker foils of the late 60s onward period, many of them too derivative and forgettable.

'Pecking Holes in Poles' mostly is amusing, never hilarious but that the cartoon raised a laugh at least of any kind is an achievement for this late stage, and has more energy than many late period Woody Woodpecker cartoons directed by Smith (and Sid Marcus' efforts for that matter). The pace is surprisingly lively and has more of the frenetic energy one expects from Woody Woodpecker that was generally missing in this particular period.

Further standouts are the music and the voice acting. The music is bouncy, energetic and very lushly orchestrated, not only synchronising and fitting with the action very well but enhancing it. The voice acting is typically solid.

In summary, above average but not great. 6/10 Bethany Cox

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