In the spirit of the season, Martin Goodman blows the lid off some late-breaking news stories.
April 1, 2008
SUPERGROUP FORMED IN L.A.By G. Tarr Heerow
LOS ANGELES (AP) No fan of rock music can forget those heralded occasions when famous musicians split off from their original bands and combined into what the music industry called "supergroups." From Blind Faith to Asia, these short-lived but powerful lineups sold millions of recordings and boasted an equal number of fans. Now cartoondom has its first supergroup, and it's like nothing you've ever heard before.
"It was time to come out of retirement and give it another shot," said Archie Andrews, lead guitarist of newly formed band Maya Flash. Andrews' carrot-hued locks may be a tad gray around the temples, but his enthusiasm for music has never waned. "It got started when I got a call from Jabbers (drummer Jabberjaw, formerly of The Neptunes). He told me he saw Josie at a downtown party and they began bullshitting about the Pussycats and the old days. Next thing I know the three of us are doing a little jam down at the Knitting Factory. Tell ya, they loved it. So happens that Jem was out there that night, so what the hell, we let her come up for a number. We did a Jill Sobule cover and couldn't believe how good it sounded, right off. Jabbers told her, ‘You're in!'"
"It was Josie's idea to check up on Coil Man. Damn, the guy didn't even have an agent anymore, hadn't had one since that royalties lawsuit against Boomerang. He can still bang the bass, still sings a little, but at first he wasn't too cool with the idea. Josie, though, she's got a way with those old H-B guys. What surprised me was when we put it out we were looking for a rhythm guy and Toki (Wartooth) shows up. I thought Dethklok was pretty tight, but Toki said he had it up to here with Skwisgaar. When he asked to join us, we were floored. In a good way."
It only took a few rehearsals before the sextet knew they had something special. Sony executives thought so too, signing the band to a contract before any songs had been written. Up next is a 34-city tour, three music videos from their first CD Pixel Hell, and a guest spot on Saturday Night Live in August. Can Maya Flash live up to the hype, or is the band just another media event? Andrews smiled and shook his head. "All I can say is that we're pretty damn good. We'll let the audience decide."
Maya Flash will open their tour at the Roxy Theater on May 27.
ANIMAL REMAINS IDENTIFIED: DOO FAMILY GRIEVES
By Viv. E. Section
NEW ORLEANS (AP) The cartoon world is in mourning today as the remains found near an allegedly haunted fishing trawler were positively identified as Saturday morning star Scrappy Doo. DNA tests done at Tulane University labs confirmed the findings on Saturday afternoon and they were announced at a somber press conference at 3:00 pm EST Tuesday. The late Great Dane puppy was last seen running into a boat hatch used to unload fish, just above the trawler's waterline. He was heard to cry out "Puppy Power!" shortly before a pair of glowing skeletal hands grasped Scrappy and pulled him out of sight.
Rescue was attempted by his closest friends, Fred Jones, Daphne Blake, Velma Dinkley, and Norville "Shaggy" Rogers of "Mystery, Inc." However, as they neared the trawler, the quartet was observed by harbor patrol authorities to stop for unknown reasons. "Jinkies," said Dinkley when interviewed by local reporters, "I mean, isn't it dangerous to just jump on to haunted ships? Besides, I wouldn't want to snag my knee socks." Fred Jones agreed. "Ummm… there was nothing we could have done anyway. Besides, The Mystery Machine was due for an oil change." Rogers had no comment except to tell reporters, "I smelled fish sticks across the street. I was hungry!" Blake, who quietly filed her nails nearby, was silent, giving only a smile to the media.
Scoobert "Scooby" Doo, who was also at the scene of the disappearance, seemed to take events in stride. "He rus ry rephew. Ry roved him," said the crimefighting Great Dane as he nonchalantly gobbled down a Scooby Snack. "Rumtimes you get the rhost, and rumtimes the rhost gets you."
Scrappy's funeral, which took place the same day, was attended by no one. In sections of the French Quarter, in fact, the sound of revelry could be distinctly heard. "Speaking of mysteries, this is one for the books," said Cartoon Network spokesperson S. Cary Mownster. "The last time an animated character played to an empty funeral parlor was when that Jar Jar Binks fell, or got pushed, or whatever, into that wood chipper. I can't believe that poor Scrappy had nobody show up at all." Mourners have been asked by Mystery, Inc. to leave memorial donations to the Glowing Ghost Relief Foundation in lieu of flowers.
KEY TALIBAN LEADER CAPTURED NEAR KABUL
By Millie Terry
KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (AP) Coalition forces scored a major victory yesterday when an important Taliban insurgent was taken prisoner on the outskirts of Kabul. Abdul Razaq Destro, believed to be the mastermind behind an outbreak of recent ambushes, including a marketplace explosion last month that resulted in heavy casualties, was captured by U.S. Special Forces operatives. These Special Forces, known as "The Joes," spoke to the international press today using only their code names.
"We've been looking for this guy for a long, long time. He's got strong ties to al-Quobra," said team leader "Duke." Another operative known as "Snake-Eyes" painted a grim picture of the raid that netted the Taliban leader. "If we had taken the road that the locals pointed out to us, we'd have been beheaded by now. As it was, Short Fuse and Shipwreck were lucky to get out alive. If it hadn't been for Grand Slam covering my own back, I might not be talking to you either."
Not to worry: The Joes have a storied history. Despite countless battles against well-equipped al-Quobra forces, there has never been a single KIA or casualty. Purple Hearts, in fact, are rarer among the Joes than whiskey bottles are among the Taliban. When asked how the raid was pulled off so successfully, an operative known as "Tripwire" smiled widely. "Well, that's what happens when you build a secret headquarters ten stories high in the shape of a snake's head. The Joes are going to find it, you can bet on that."
Tripwire took a more serious tone, however, when asked about the future of nation-building in Afghanistan. "There won't be any peace here until we catch the number one guy, Quobra Kham Mander. He's not making it easy for us. Only Bin Laden himself has been more elusive. But just give us time. Give us time." With that the team began to assemble for its next mission, pausing only to pose briefly for the cameras and shout their battle cry, "Yo, Joe!" As for Abdul Razaq Destro, he remains in U.S. custody at an undisclosed location.
NOTED HOLLYWOOD ATTORNEY DISBARRED
By Ander Oathe
DALLAS, TX (AP) Famous Hollywood barrister Harvey Birdman was formally disbarred by the California Bar Association yesterday following revelations that Birdman, 53, had been having regular sex with one of his clients, 23-year-old Luanna Kleinschmidt. Birdman and Kleinschmidt first met in 2005 when the blonde college student approached the lawyer about syndication contracts for her popular local television show, Manger Babies. The affair began shortly after that and continued despite the fact that Birdman's client had married in 2007.
Luanna's uncle, Hank Hill of Arlen, Texas, spoke to reporters after both Kleinschmidt and Birdman refused to issue comments. "I think it just might have gone on if Lucky (Elroy Kleinschmidt, Luanna's husband) hadn't shown up at Mr. Birdman's office out of chance. He was wanting to file a lawsuit against Mega Lo Mart for getting splinters while he was looking for stumping supplies and he just walked in on them." Kleinschmidt's aunt, Peggy Hill, was at a local Boggle tournament and was unavailable for comment.
Mr. Kleinschmidt brought a formal complaint against Birdman after a local legal expert, Mr. Dale Gribble, explained his options to him fifty-seven times. "At first ah was jus' goin' to break that Birdbrain's neck" said Kleinschmidt, "but I figgered ah could get more settlement monies out of the deal this way. By the way, kin you explain to me agin why Dale says I have to press a suit? I ain't even got one. Kin ah get paid to talk to you?"
The California Bar Association voted unanimously for disbarment following the Kleinschmidt report. Birdman, who has successfully defended such high-powered clients as Peter Potamus, alleged Mafia don Fred Flintstone, and daredevil driver Ernie Devlin, has had similar problems in the past; a paternity lawsuit filed in 1993 by celebrity sports figure Penelope Pitstop was dismissed after prosecutors failed to match Birdman's DNA to that of Pitstop's child.
GAME HUNTER INDICTED AFTER GRISLY DISCOVERY
By Haigh Calibur
CHATTANOOGA, TN (AP) Agents of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, acting on an anonymous tip, arrested a hunter who will be charged with dozens of counts of illegal trapping, shooting, and tanning of both protected and endangered species. Elmer Fudd, 60, of Walla Walla, Washington was brought to justice after a raid on his Tennessee lodge early Wednesday morning. Once inside, agents found over 50 animals in the process of being butchered, stuffed, or skinned.
"It's not fair!" cried Fudd at his arraignment. "I had a wicense!"
"It was like a damn slaughterhouse," said USFWS agent Sam Yosemite. "This rug? Used to be an animal called Cool Cat. Those heads on the wall? That's Tennessee Tuxedo and next to him is Chumley. You ever hear of licenses to shoot penguins and walruses? This guy was a big-time dealer in illegal trophies and animal parts. I hate to think about what happened here and how long it must have gone on." U. S. sheriff Hoot Kloot, a look of utter disgust on his face, pointed to a stuffed seal mounted on an ornate oval of wood. "Sneezly, that's who that was. Real clever, this Fudd guy is. Only hunted 'em down after their shows was cancelled. Figured nobody'd miss 'em. Look at this. Coat made out of Hardy Har Har. Turns my stomach."
"I didn't mean it! Oh, what have I done, what have I done!" wailed Fudd. "I killed the poor widdle animals! I'm a murderer! Officers, I'm vewy, vewy sowwy!"
Few of the agents had any sympathy for Fudd. One of them, Agent Bugs Bunny, during questioning, threw him into an oven, stating, "If I thought ya was guilty, would I throw ya in this oven and slam the door, like this? Would I turn the gas on, like this? Would I throw a lighted match in there, like this?" Fortunately, Fudd survived the explosion and was taken away to be held without bond until a trial date is set. Although it is not known who turned Fudd in to authorities, agent Bunny was seen to wink at reporters, stating, "Ain't I a stinker?"
Happy April Fools Day, Week, Month, whatever, from Dr. Toon!
Martin "Dr. Toon" Goodman is a longtime student and fan of animation. He lives in Anderson, Indiana.