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Western Animation / Bartholomew Versus the Wheel

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"Bartholomew Versus the Wheel" is a 1964 Merrie Melodies short directed by Robert McKimson.

A young boy (voiced by Leslie Barringer) tells the story of how his dog Bartholomew developed a seething hatred towards wheels after his tail gets run over by a scooter. As he grew bigger and bigger, he took the wheels off of more and more vehicles.

When Bartholomew tries to take an airplane wheel, however, he gets sent to a desert country where there are no wheels to chase due to everyone riding on animals. Back in America, the owner and the entire town try to look for the dog, who hitches another airplane ride the same way he came to the desert country. The town celebrates his return, and Bartholomew had grown to like wheels, and begins to hate what dogs are supposed to hate - cats.

It is the second short to use the abstract WB intro and outro from Chuck Jones' "Now Hear This".


Tropes Used By This Short:

  • Art Shift / Limited Animation: Unlike other Looney Tunes shorts, this short uses a more simplistic style based on children's book illustrator James Grover Thurber.
  • As Long as It Sounds Foreign: The male desert natives' dialogue. They say about Bartholomew, "Ooh la mongrah!"
  • Cats Are Mean: The boy's cat is particularly cruel towards Bartholomew, stealing his food and performing a trick better than him. The tables turn at the end of the short, though.
  • Enmity with an Object: Getting his tail run over by a scooter makes Bartholomew develop a hatred of wheels.
  • Nobody's That Dumb: The only wheels Bartholomew doesn't chase are the dogcatcher's wheels.
  • Serial Escalation: As he grows up, Bartholomew goes after bigger and bigger wheels. Finally, he goes after an airplane's wheel, which proves to be his undoing.
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  • Something Completely Different: Looks very different from other Looney Tunes shorts, let alone McKimson’s Signature Style.

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