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YMMV / Felix the Cat

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YMMV for the Silent/Golden Age and Van Beuren Felix cartoons goes here.

YMMV for the Joe Oriolo Felix cartoons (sans the game tie-in) goes here. YMMV for Felix The Cat: The Movie and Felix the Cat Saves Christmas goes here and here.

YMMV for Felix the Cat Live goes here.

YMMV for The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat goes here.

YMMV for Baby Felix and Friends goes here.

YMMV Tropes for the Whole Franchise

  • Adaptation Displacement: Modern audiences are far more familiar with the Oriolo incarnation of Felix the Cat than the silent-era Otto Messmer cartoons.
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  • Archive Panic: The series has been around for 100 years, so there's a lot of ground to cover if you want to experience the whole series. For animation, you have the original silent theatrical cartoons and the three Van Beuren era shorts (while many of the silent shorts are lost, quite a few survive and it can take a while to sit through the surviving ones), the 260 made-for-TV cartoons by Joe Oriolo (which run six to seven minutes each), a theatrical movie, the mid 90's revival cartoon series The Twisted Tales of Felix the Cat (which ran for 21 episodes, with three shorts in each one), the toddler aimed spinoff Baby Felix & Friends (which ran for 65 five minute episodes), and a 2004 direct to video Christmas special Felix the Cat Saves Christmas. The comics are where one will really start running into trouble—the Felix comics started in 1923, with the newspaper comics and comic books running a solid 40 year run up to the 1960's. And then you have the 80's newspaper comic crossover with Betty Boop to look out for (which has never been reprinted), and a short lived early 90's comic book revival. After that, you have a history book and some comic compilations, three video game tie-ins, the very obscure live action TV series Felix the Cat Live, and a monstrous amount of toys and merchandise to wrap it all up. Good luck!
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  • Big Name Fan: Surprisingly, Charlie Chaplin himself, who Felix was patterned after, loved the original Felix the Cat cartoons and envied the amount of control of timing animation allowed over live action. Fitting, since Otto Messmer had previously worked on a series of silent Charlie Chaplin cartoons in the past (which Chaplin also liked) and had studied Chaplin's films for reference, which proved as a ground zero of sorts for his Felix cartoons.
    Otto Messmer: "I patterned him after Charlie Chaplin. The audience loved him. And so did Chaplin. The cartoon format let Felix do things that Chaplin couldn't do on film..."
  • Broken Base: The reception of the post-silent era Felix cartoons are contested among the fanbase, particularly in regards to the TV-era Felix cartoons and the movie adaptation based on it. Some fans champion the Silent cartoons as untouchable masterpieces and consider the Trans-Lux Felix (and, to a lesser degree, the very short lived Van Beuren Felix) to be where the series entered a Dork Age, while some nostalgic fans unapologetically love the Van Beuren and TV Felix cartoons and consider the silent shorts to be mostly dated and boring. Twisted Tales of Felix, for better or worse, tends to land somewhere in the middle in reception.
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  • Dork Age: The franchise is considered to have gone into this post-Twisted Tales by fans, due to Felix lingering through generally mediocre spinoffs and tie-ins.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: While Felix is still modestly popular in the US, he is very popular in Japan to this day since the '50s TV series aired there in the early '60s, to the point that an entire spinoff, Baby Felix and Friends, was made for that country. Also Felix served inspiration for Suihō Tagawa to create a black dog named Norakuro.
  • Mainstream Obscurity: Felix is far from a forgotten character today, but not that many people have seen his cartoons or read his comics outside of baby boomers and animation buffs, not helping that he hasn't starred in any major new works in decades. He remains known simply by the power of inertia, since the series is so firmly rooted in the public consciousness and animation culture.
  • My Real Daddy: While the bulk of the franchise up to the TV shorts attributes Felix as a creation of cartoonist Pat Sullivan, almost everybody today recognizes Otto Messmer as the real person behind Felix's creation and success, especially once information came to light that Sullivan had virtually nothing to do with creating Felix, or making the Felix cartoons (according to Hal Walker, one of the original artists on the silent cartoons, he was barely ever present at his own studio). The credits for The Twisted Tales of Felix go as far as to credit both Otto Messmer and Joe Oriolo as the creators of Felix, but completely leaves out mentioning Pat Sullivan.
  • Signature Scene: Felix's "Thinking Walk", which is frequently used throughout his cartoons, is the most iconic piece of animation ever and has appeared in virtually all of the incarnations of the series. It's often cited as the very first time an animated character was shown to think rather than just do funny things.

YMMV for the NES/Game Boy Game Based on This Series:

  • Anticlimax Boss: Professor's Spaceship is a ridiculously easy final boss if you know what you're doing. While he can be somewhat irritating if you fight him without power-ups, the room he's in gives you three opportunities to power-up off the bat, meaning you can get the tank and mop the floor with him in a hurry. On top of that, he has a very simplistic A.I. that moves in a figure 8 pattern that is very easy for Felix to exploit, and he only has a slow firing attack that, while not telegraphed, is fairly easy to dodge due to it flying in an arc. In the Game Boy version, he's even easier due to how slow both he and his attacks move.
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment: At the end of World 5, Felix randomly fights an Evil Doppelgänger of himself. No explanation is given for who the impostor is, where he came from or if he's even affiliated with Professor. Not even the manual mentions who or what he is.
  • Canon Defilement: The infamous Game Over screen of the Sega Genesis bootleg tainted the character for Vinesauce and SiIvaGunner fans. Just look for the comments that say "нет" on any Felix YouTube video.
  • Disappointing Last Level: World 9 (World 6 in the Game Boy version) is a rather generic, short space themed level that doesn't offer any new gimmicks. The third act lazily reuses the pyramid aesthetic from World 2-2 and 2-3, even though it's set on the moon and clashes with the previous two acts and final boss. The Game Boy version also cuts out the second act, making it even shorter.
  • Memetic Mutation: нет. Vinesauce Joel was playing a Russian bootlegged version of the game and selected нет, meaning no, on the continue screen, leading to a rather gory game over screen featuring Felix tearing his face off, revealing his skull, and standing in a pool of blood. This was later expanded upon by SiIvaGunner, who played a sick and cruel joke based on the game over screen as a rip of the song "Rhythm Code" from Kirby: Planet Robobot that shows a harlequin baby when "нет" is selected. The bootleg and the Kirby song is often linked with Felix himself to those in the Vinesauce and SiIvaGunner community.
  • Minimalist Run: Beating the game without power-ups or grabbing as few Felix icons as possible. In all but one of the worlds, it's possible, but there are two major obstacles to overcome—first, there's one spring in 2-2 that you need to use with an icon above it that is almost impossible to dodge without tool assisting, and there's another one near the end of 5-3 that requires a very tricky jump to bypass. However, In world 8, you absolutely need to grab the Felix icons due to the power meter for your spaceship draining for the entire level and killing you if you run out. A minimalist run in the Game Boy version is flat out impossible in spite of the fact that the spaceship level no longer requires collecting Felix icons—the stages now have numerous Felix icons that absolutely cannot be avoided, even with tool assisting, due to a combo of bonkers hit detection and very cramped level design.
  • Nightmare Fuel: The Game Over screen in the Sega Genesis bootleg version is a particularly brutal example of Surprise Creepy. When you lose all of your lives, you are taken to a continue screen featuring Felix in a Fluffy Cloud Heaven, exactly the sort of thing you would expect from a game like this. Except, when you click "no" (or rather its Russian equivalent), you are treated to a shot of Felix having torn his face off and standing in a pool of his own blood. The reaction that Joel from Vinesauce had to it sums it up.
  • No Problem with Licensed Games: The Hudson Soft video game adaptation is a surprisingly enjoyable Mario clone, with fun gameplay and appealing graphics and music, with it's only real flaw being its very easy difficulty (unless you're attempting a Minimalist Run and Pacifist Run, which makes the game significantly harder), an underwhelming final world and very easy final boss. The same cannot be said for the Sega Genesis bootleg of it, which is a Porting Disaster with bad controls, and inexplicably features a frightening game over screen where Felix rips his face off.
  • Porting Disaster:
    • The Game Boy version of the game axes out more than half of the levels, has very cramped and simplified level design, lots of slowdown, bizarre hit detection, and it makes the game even easier than the NES version.
    • The Sega Genesis bootleg port looks identical to the original game, but the gameplay is mangled by badly ported controls.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: It's entirely possible to get through the NES game without killing a single enemy (excluding boss fights), but not in the Game Boy version, where you have to kill at least one tree enemy in the first world to bypass it.
  • That One Boss:
    • Master Cylinder (the boss of 3-3) is a joke that you can quickly bullrush through with power-ups, but he can become a nasty Wake-Up Call Boss if you fight him without them. While he has a very simplistic and predictable attack pattern (float up and down and occasionally shoot a laser), he has no telegraphing for his laser attack, and since you'll only have your boxing glove without power-ups, that means you have to put yourself right in his line of fire in order to hit him. Combined with the floaty umbrella controls that make it very easy to collide into Master Cylinder, along with the fact that Master Cylinder can always move up and down at a consistent speed while Felix descends much slower, and this fight can be tricky.
    • The rematch against him in 6-3 manages to be even more of a slog to fight if fought without power ups. He gets a new bubble attack that fires much more frequently than his lasers and moves at a much slower speed, only leaving you small windows to attack him at close range and little to no time to dodge the bubbles if they pop up in your path. To make matters worse, the pattern he likes to shoot his bubbles in along with the direction the bubbles move is very inconsistent, and the fact that he can still move faster than Felix can descend in water only adds to the frustration.
    • Poindexter, in stark contrast to how ridiculously easy he is to fight in 1-3, is much harder in the rematch with him in 7-2 without power-ups. His giant snowballs are very hard to dodge, and he constantly throws them and keeps a couple on screen at once, so unless you have their pattern down and have extremely quick reflexes, you will get overwhelmed in a hurry. While you can jump on them, it's very easy to fall off them or unwittingly collide into Poindexter if you stick around on them, and you can accidentally buffet Felix into the snowballs if you don't precisely land on top of them. He's not quite as hard as the Master Cylinder encounters, but the fight with him can still be a serious pain in the ass.


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