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Lighthouse-keeping Blues (1964)

Chilly Willy goes face to face with lighthouse keeper Smedley for constantly disrupting his sleep.


Sid Marcus


Homer Brightman (story)


Daws Butler


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Cast overview:
Daws Butler ... Smedley / Narrator / Headmaster (voice)


Chilly Willy prepares to bed down for the night, but his sleep is continually interrupted by a nearby lighthouse and its bright beacon. Frustrated and exhausted, he goes face to face with the lighthouse keeper, Smedley, smashing every light bulb in sight and trying to fend off Smedley, who is in danger of losing his job. Who will win? Written by Nathan Redmond

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independent film | See All (1) »


Animation | Short







Release Date:

August 1964 (USA) See more »

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Sound Mix:



Color (Technicolor)
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User Reviews

Light-house keeping and battles with sleep
5 August 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Chilly Willy's best cartoons were perfect examples of how a potentially one-joke character and concept could end up actually being a perfect mix of the cute and the funny with a lot of colour and good comic timing to go with it.

Of Sid Marcus's first four Chilly Willy cartoons (starting with the average 'Salmon Loafer'), 'Light-house Blues' is the lowest rated. That is a shame, because, while not quite as good as 'Deep Freeze Squeeze', of the four it's to me the second best, the weakest being 'Pesky Pelican'. Chilly and Smedley are always worth watching, being good characters in their own right, and work so well together. In fact, when Smedley isn't present he is very much missed, unless it is a character who is just as good an opponent as Wally Walrus.

'Light-house Blues' is not perfect. The story is as predictable as can be, formula-wise for Chilly Willy and Smedley and in terms of premise, and some of the action is repetitive. For a Sid Marcus-directed Chilly Willy cartoon the animation is not bad at all actually but some of it looks a little hasty looking, especially with Smedley.

However, most of the animation is bright and colourful. Walter Greene is once again composer after Clarence Wheeler returned for 'Deep Freeze Squeeze' and his music is lively and rousingly, cleverly and beautifully orchestrated and fits very well if not quite enhancing the action.

All the gags are rarely less than amusing and beautifully timed. The chemistry between Chilly and Smedley sparkles, and it is always remarkable at what Chilly has up his sleeve and how he does it. Underneath all that irresistible cuteness he is one clever, funny and at times fairly brutal penguin. With that being said, one usually feels sorry for Smedley, here Chilly is the one you feel sorry for and can relate to his troubles sleeping and his efforts to get some.

Chilly is adorable and is also a lot of fun, with his actions speaking far louder than words. He may be a nuisance to his opponents but he wins the viewer over with his cuteness and timing. Smedley shows perfectly why he and Chilly Willy work so well together and is remarkably calm considering the dire situation. He is the slightly funnier and more interesting of the two usually (Chilly has the slight edge here though), there are some very humorous bits of dialogue and Daws Butler (in his characteristic and distinctive Huckleberry Hound southern drawl) does a marvellous job as ever. Narration is nicely done.

Altogether, good though not great cartoon. 7/10 Bethany Cox

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