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This is a list of media related to the 1988 Disney/Amblin film, Who Framed Roger Rabbit. This media includes books, animated shorts, comic books and a video game.

Contents

Books

  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit? is the novelization of the film of the same name by Martin Noble ISBN 0-352-32389-2
Who P-P-P-Plugged Roger Rabbit? book cover
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Who P-P-P-Plugged Roger Rabbit?

Who P-P-P-Plugged Roger Rabbit? is a mystery/humor novel written by Gary K. Wolf released in 1991 (ISBN 0-679-40094-X). The book is neither a sequel nor a prequel to Who Censored Roger Rabbit? or the film adaptation by Disney. It is just a spin-off story with the same characters, just different situations. This style is like Looney Tunes, where the episodes hold no continuity.

The novel contains most of the original main cast members, such as Roger Rabbit, Eddie Valiant, Jessica Rabbit, and Baby Herman. The personalities of each of these characters reflect more of their movie selves from Who Framed Roger Rabbit, such as Jessica's devotion to Roger and the rabbit's own more cartoony quirks, such as his speech impediment.

Plot summary

The story starts out with Eddie Valiant at the front door of Roger Rabbit's house. Almost immediately after he is let inside the house, Roger tells him about the upcoming Gone with the Wind toon adaptation and how he has a chance to play the lead as Rhett Butler. However, the Telltale News, a newspaper that tends to Toons, prints an article about Jessica Rabbit and her relationship with Clark Gable. Valiant primarily declines, stressing that he promised his wife, 'Doris' (who seems to be Delores from the movie), that he wouldn't take such work anymore. However, he takes the job because of the quote Roger announces.

From this simple case, the story branches out to the murders of Kirk Enigman (another candidate for the part of Rhett Butler), Baby Herman, and Dodger Rabbit (Roger Rabbit's evil cousin).

Children's picture books

  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit: The Movie Storybook by Justine Korman (1988) ISBN 0-307-65847-3
  • Roger Rabbit: Make the World Laugh by Justine Korman ISBN 0-307-11734-0
  • Roger Rabbit: A Different Toon by Justine Korman ISBN 0-307-11733-2

Comic books

Roger Rabbit

Roger Rabbit was a comic book series by Disney Comics starring characters from the 1988 film, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, as well as following continuity from the film. It spawned a spin-off series entitled Roger Rabbit's Toontown, which lasted five issues.

The series continues the adventures of Roger Rabbit, who has since returned to working for Maroon Cartoons, now under C.B. Maroon (a character introduced in the graphic novel, Roger Rabbit: The Resurrection of Doom). The comics were usually split into two stories, with one main feature focussing on Roger's adventures, and a back-up feature presented to look like an actual animated subject.

Curiously, whilst characters like Jessica Rabbit, Baby Herman and Benny the Cab all appeared in the stories, Eddie Valiant was seldom seen, replaced by a new detective character named Rick Flint. This was explained in the first issue: Roger had a new case for he and Eddie to team up on. Eddie told Roger he wouldn't be able to help him that since defeating Judge Doom twice, there was renewed interest in Eddie's services as a detective and was too busy with various caseloads. So to not leave Roger on his own, Eddie referred him to a "new kid" private dictective, Rick Flint. The actual editorial reason for omitting Eddie Valiant from the comic was not having the likeness rights to make Eddie resemble Bob Hoskins. Two other new characters introduced were Lenny, a toon plane who was Benny's cousin, and Mel, who was Roger's sentient mailbox.

The series had a one-off 3D strip as part of the Disney's Comics in 3-D series, which reprinted the back-up features of earlier comics and converted them into 3D. The comic-book line lasted 18 issues, and continued until the implosion of Disney Comics.

Roger Rabbit's Toontown

Roger Rabbit's Toontown was a comic book published by Disney Comics. It features Roger and his supporting characters from Disney and Amblin Entertainment's Who Framed Roger Rabbit. Every issue began with a Roger Rabbit story and his supporting characters such as his wife Jessica, his co star Baby and his taxi cab friend Benny round out the comic. This comic book lasted for five issues from May to August 1991.

This comic book is similar to the Roger Rabbit version of Walt Disney's Comics and Stories. Sadly it fell victim due to The Disney Comics Implosion.

Graphic novels and trade paperbacks

  • Who Framed Roger Rabbit (based on the movie)
  • Roger Rabbit: Tummy Trouble (based on the animated short)
  • Roger Rabbit: Who Framed Rick Flint (trade paperback featuring a story line from the Roger Rabbit comic series) ISBN 0-307-21803-1

Roger Rabbit: The Resurrection of Doom

Roger Rabbit: The Resurrection of Doom (ISBN 0-871-35593-0) is a graphic novel sequel that takes place between the film Who Framed Roger Rabbit and the Roger Rabbit short film Tummy Trouble. It also helped to set the scene for the Roger Rabbit comic-book series by Disney Comics.

Plot summary

The comic opens with a documentary about the origin of Judge Doom. The documentary mentions the original character cel used to create Doom. Eddie Valiant is given credit for ending Doom's reign of terror by dissolving him in a puddle of Dip, stated as 'A victim of his own evil creation', and putting a stop to his plans to erase Toontown and build a freeway where it would have once stood.

A weasel is shown watching the documentary which is Slimy. He goes with two other weasels one of them is Flasher and the other we call Ragtag to find the original cel of Doom. They manipulate some animators to bring Doom back to life. With time, Doom remembers everything that happened to him, and now wants revenge against both Eddie Valiant and Roger Rabbit for ruining his plans.

Meanwhile, Eddie Valiant is called by C.B. Maroon, the new executive of Maroon Cartoons, who announces they are reopening the studio, and pays Valiant $500 to run a search on the background of Roger Rabbit. Valiant finds Roger's records clean as a whistle.

Meanwhile, Roger and Jessica Rabbit are enjoying life at home as much as possible, despite Roger's unemployment following the close of Maroon Cartoon Studios. Roger gets a call from Maroon Cartoons, saying they are reopening the studio, and that they want Roger to come work for them. Roger accepts the offer, and the next day, Roger meets C.B. Maroon, who starts Roger off with a very low-budget film (depicted in a Hanna-Barbera-esque style). Roger angrily objects to his part in the film, and is fired ("Get me that other rabbit with the tiger for a buddy!").

The next day, Roger finds dozens of scandalous, untrue headlines centered on himself. He turns to Valiant to find out why this is happening. Valiant first meets with C.B. Maroon, and questions him about firing Roger. Maroon reveals himself as Doom, tells his plan to ruin Roger's reputation and then kill him. He and the weasels knock Valiant out and lock him up in a storage locker, where Valiant meets the real C.B. Maroon. Doom, as C.B. Maroon, puts Maroon Studios up for auction, and the studio will be officially sold at noon.

Meanwhile, Roger and Jessica are about to leave for Simi Valley, but first go to Valiant's office to say goodbye, only to find the office ransacked. Jessica finds indentations of the address Valiant wrote on the last piece of paper he used. Rushing to the address, they find and rescue Eddie Valiant and C.B. Maroon. They leave to save Maroon Studios. Valiant sprays him and his weasels with the Dip-filled gag squirt gun, and before dissolving, "Maroon" reveals himself to be Doom.

The real C.B. Maroon announces he is reopening Maroon Cartoon Studios, and will be providing all the toon employees with work, including Roger Rabbit and Baby Herman with a line-up of new animated short films, starting with Tummy Trouble.

Animated shorts

Poster for Tummy Trouble

Roger Rabbit was featured in a series of cartoon shorts following the popularity of the movie. These shorts were presented in front of various Touchstone/Disney features in an attempt to revive short subject animation as a part of the movie-going experience. These shorts include Tummy Trouble released in front of the blockbuster Honey, I Shrunk The Kids (this was also included on the original video release of the film), Roller Coaster Rabbit shown in front of the hit Dick Tracy and Trail Mix-Up shown in front of the soon forgotten A Far Off Place (starring a then unknown Reese Witherspoon).

Disney released Tummy Trouble in an effort to build up the Roger Rabbit character so he could be a draw in Disney theme parks and for merchandising. Paired with the feature Honey, I Shrunk the Kids, it took in $14 million (US) on opening weekend.[1] It was the first cartoon short Disney had produced in 25 years to run with a feature film, since Goofy's Freeway Trouble in 1965. The short took 70 animators nine months to produce.[2]

Tummy Trouble was produced at the main Walt Disney Feature Animation studio in Burbank, California, while Roller Coaster Rabbit and Trail Mix-Up were produced at the satellite studio located at Disney-MGM Studios in Orlando, Florida.

In 1995, a VHS tape of the three shorts was released under the title It's Roger Rabbit, bundled with the Who Framed Roger Rabbit movie. A nearly identical video was released by itself in 1996 under the title The Best of Roger Rabbit. The three shorts are also included in the 2003 special edition DVD of Who Framed Roger Rabbit released under Walt Disney Studios Entertainment's Vista Series title.

Tummy Trouble

This is the first of three animated Roger Rabbit shorts, produced after the 1988 film, Who Framed Roger Rabbit. It was made by Walt Disney Pictures and Amblin Entertainment. It was attached to the feature Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.[3]

Baby Herman swallows a rattle and is rushed to the hospital for surgery. Roger is shocked and sad about this. The rattle comes falling down into Roger's mouth after the baby burps it out after his milk break, and Roger swallows it. When the surgeon comes in to get Baby Herman ready for surgery, he thinks Roger is the patient that swallowed the rattle and much zany madness breaks loose. Roger and the baby both fall in the elevator, and Baby Herman uses a diaper as a parachute. And, Roger fainted. The End.

Roller Coaster Rabbit

This short was attached to the US theatrical release of Touchstone's Dick Tracy in 1990 and the UK theatrical release of Disney·Pixar's Toy Story in 1996.

The second of the Roger Rabbit shorts features our hero at the fair with Baby Herman and Mrs. Herman (Baby Herman's mother). Baby Herman loses his red balloon and Roger goes to get him a new one. Before he returns, however, Baby Herman sees another red balloon at a dart game and goes to try to get it. When Roger comes back to give Baby his balloon, he finds that he is gone, and the chase begins. Firstly Baby Herman finds himself following the balloon into a field homed to a grazing bull. Roger soon follows the youngster. Baby Herman walks through directly underneath the bull, he notices a round balloon-like object and grasps it unknown to him that it was in fact the bull's scrotum. The grazing creature snaps, Roger picks up Baby Herman but just happens to be looking the bull in the eyes. The animal hurls Roger and baby into the air sending him flying out of the field and the two land crashing into a roller coaster carriage which is traveling slowly up. The next stage of this short the carriage continues to climb a tall hill in the track. The two reach the top of the drop which is exaggerated to reach beyond the clouds and into space. Roger looks down and sees the world. Moments later the carriage drops down thousands of meters. The speed of the drop is maintained throughout the remainder of the chase. After a few twist and turns (in the track) a shot of Jessica Rabbit appears where she is tied down to the tracks, unable to move. She calls out to be saved before Roger and Baby Herman's carriage crushes her. As the cart draws near, it topples over and fortunately bounces over Jessica avoiding her completely. The camera 'moves' along and beside her appears Droopy for a quick one-liner. The story then continues. Roger grasping onto Baby Herman, tumbling and losing their carriage leaving Roger sliding along the tracks with his feet, gradually gaining friction causing his feet to catch fire. The tracks run into a dark tunnel and then stumbles across a 'wrong way sign'. Finally Herman and Roger crash through the sign and into a real-life filming studio. A direct reference to the reality/cartoon cross-over in the feature film.

Trail Mix-Up

Trail Mix-Up, the third and last of the Roger Rabbit shorts, was attached to the theatrical release of Disney/Amblin's A Far Off Place in 1993. The short features Roger Rabbit, Baby Herman and Mrs. Herman at the park setting up camp. Mrs. Herman plans to go hunting and leaves Roger in charge of watching Baby Herman. Trouble begins when Baby wanders off in the dangers of the forest and Roger has to go and save him.

Video game

A video game with the same title, Who Framed Roger Rabbit, was released in 1989 for the Nintendo Entertainment System by LJN. The NES version has received almost universally poor reviews. Another version was published by Capcom for the Game Boy, and was a completely different game. Yet another different game with the same title was released for personal computers such as Amiga, Apple IIGS, Commodore 64, and DOS in 1988.

External links

References

  1. ^ Aljean Harmetz, "Marketing Magic, With Rabbit, for Disney Films," New York Times, Jul 19, 1989. pg. C15
  2. ^ Maria Eftimiades, "It's Heigh Ho, as Disney Calls the Toons to Work; After a long absence, animated shorts are on their way back, thanks to the popularity of Roger Rabbit.," New York Times, 1990-04-29, pg. H26
  3. ^ Spelling, Ian, "Rabbit in Shadows," Comics Scene, #9, October 1989, Starlog Communications International, Inc., p. 54.

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