The Crystal Brawl
|The Crystal Brawl|
|Directed by||Seymour Kneitel|
|Produced by|| Seymour Kneitel|
|Written by||Carl Meyer|
|Starring|| Jack Mercer|
|Music by||Winston Sharples|
|Animation by|| Al Eugster|
William B. Pattengill
|Studio||Paramount Cartoon Studios|
|Distributed by||Paramount Pictures|
|Release date(s)||April 5, 1957|
|Followed by||Patriotic Popeye|
Popeye strolls up to the front door of Olive Oyl's house carrying a bouquet of flowers and rings her doorbell. Bluto, arriving a moment later and chagrined at spotting Popeye, makes use of a tree in front of the house to catapult the sailor out of the way and take his place on the doorstep as her date. When Olive answers, Bluto fools her by lying to her about Popeye having made other plans, leading the fickle Olive to go with Bluto instead as Popeye, still hanging by his uniform in the tree, twirls his pipe in anger. Together, the two saunter off to the fair, where Olive is "just dying to have (her) fortune told."
At the fairgrounds, Popeye arrives at the fortune teller's tent and finds a sign that reads "Out to Lunch." Seeing Bluto and Olive coming and thinking quickly, he dons a turban and a fake beard and stations himself at a table holding a crystal ball in the tent. His two marks enter, and the bogus psychic proceeds to tell Olive's future should she choose to pursue her relationship with Bluto.
The crystal ball displays several scenes (using archive footage from Alpine for You) where Bluto, working as a mountain guide, is revealed as a conniver who only wants to use Olive for his own sordid purposes while he gets Popeye out of the way. Following scenes where Popeye and Olive escape a close call with a burning rope bridge, Olive gets her nose mistaken for a worm by a gluttonous baby eagle and then Bluto transforms her into a human yo-yo to force unwelcome kisses on her while she tries to escape him, the scene fades, and a displeased Olive is left with a realization of the big man's true motives.
Bluto, unimpressed with the fortune from the crystal ball, tries to leave with Olive, but soon after, another vision follows (featuring archive footage from Quick on the Vigor) where the curious Olive comes back in to see Bluto appearing at his most provocative as a strongman at a traveling carnival sideshow, who she gets distracted by while she and Popeye check out the sideshow. But as it, too, fades after the libidinous lothario pursues her on a Ferris wheel and on a roller coaster with nefarious intent, Olive announces that she wants nothing more to do with the duplicitous Bluto and walks out of the tent.
Unable to resist, Popeye breaks into a hearty cackle with his own unmistakable voice. Bluto yanks off the false beard to reveal Popeye and lets him have it with a powerful punch that sends the diminutive trickster sailing right through the tent canopy and out across the fairgrounds into a farm tool exhibit, where he gets trapped by some of the tools. Bluto then sets out with a vengeance to reclaim Olive and impose his will on her once again as he chases her into a Tunnel of Love ride.
Meanwhile, Popeye spots a spinach display near the farm tools and uses a pitchfork to scoop up some of the vegetable and eat it to free himself. His resultant muscle morphs into another crystal ball, showing Bluto rapidly catching up to Olive inside the Tunnel of Love. Seeing his girlfriend in trouble, Popeye takes off after Bluto and makes the save in the nick of time, slugging his rival and sending him to roast suspended over a "Fires of Hades" display as Popeye and Olive have the last laugh.
- The Crystal Brawl is one of a number of Famous Studios/Paramount-produced Popeye the Sailor cartoons in the public domain in the United States.
- This cartoon contains a continuity error of sorts as, due to the use of footage from Alpine for You and Quick on the Vigor (which were both released prior to The Crystal Brawl), Popeye is actually showing Olive events from her past instead of her future.