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Plumbing Is a 'Pipe' (1938) Online

Plumbing Is a 'Pipe' (1938) Online
Original Title :
Plumbing Is a u0027Pipeu0027
Genre :
Movie / Animation / Short / Comedy / Family
Year :
Directror :
Dave Fleischer,Willard Bowsky
Cast :
Margie Hines,Jack Mercer
Type :
Time :
Rating :

With Olive Oyl's home's plumbing seriously leaking and plumber Wimpy taking forever to arrive, Popeye tries to solve the problem.

Plumbing Is a 'Pipe' (1938) Online

Olive has a small leak in a pipe; she makes the mistake of calling Wimpy to fix it, and the even bigger mistake of asking Popeye to help her do something until Wimpy can arrive. Meanwhile, Wimpy keeps realizing he's forgotten his tools, his gloves, etc. and going back. Popeye finally eats his spinach and manages some fixes to the system.
Uncredited cast:
Margie Hines Margie Hines - Olive Oyl (voice) (uncredited)
Jack Mercer Jack Mercer - Popeye (voice) (uncredited)

This is the first time Margie Hines performs the voice of Olive Oyl.

User reviews



What's nice about watching these old Popeye cartoons on the new Popeye The Sailor DVD sets is that you can play them with English subtitles. So.....all those times Popeye is mumbling something to himself, you can discover what he's saying, and many times it is hilarious. That was certainly the case in this cartoon as Popeye tries everything to fix leaks in all of Olive's pipes. Things get out of hand and her house is nearly flooded.

Of course, it all starts with a tiny leak than Olive discovers one morning. She tries plugging it, but holding a finger on the leak- like the famous Dutch boy and the dike - isn't going to work here and things go from bad-to-worse. Finally, she calls a plumber. That's a good idea, but a bad choice when the plumber turns out to be Wimpy, who winds up no help at all.

It's Popeye to the rescue and how it's done is pretty funny, but the best parts are his mumbling and his voice. Kudos to Jack Mercer. His voice-work on Popeye, as fellow reviewer Robert Reynolds point out, was fantastic!


The character of Popeye was entertaining enough early on in the Fleischer Studios days, when William Costello was doing vocal duties. But the real spark that made Popeye special was when Jack Mercer took over. Mercer started as part of the animation team and then became the voice of Popeye. The choice of Mercer was perfect, because Mercer basically created Popeye's personality, particularly with the mutterings and under the breath asides Popeye would make that were usually funnier than the principal dialogue.

Plumbing Is a "Pipe" is an excellent example of this aspect of the Popeye shorts voiced by Mercer. Listen for Mercer's remarks throughout the final four or five minutes of this one. That, and the fact that Wimpy is a "plumber", are hilarious and make this worth tracking down. Most recommended.


Gems, and also very good cartoons, from Fleischer Studios were many and have always much preferred their output as far as Popeye cartoons go over that for Famous Studios, which wasn't as consistent. Over-cuteness did come through in some efforts and the stories were always pretty thin, but they were mostly very charming with appealing characters, outstanding music and visuals that were inventive and with innovative animation techniques.

'Plumbing is a Pipe' is not quite one of the best Popeye cartoons to me, but nearly is. It is extremely well done and never less than very funny, its best parts being hilarious. Speaking as someone who has always enjoyed many of the Popeye cartoons a good deal and liked Popeye very much, Fleischer's efforts were always well animated and scored with lots of entertainment value and great chemistry between the characters. So much is great here. Didn't mind the absence of Bluto at all and Wimpy is a more than worthy substitute and would have fitted much better in the setting anyway.

For personal tastes, do much prefer Mae Questel as the voice for Olive Oyl over Margie Hines, much more endearing and fits the character and her personality better.

The story is an interesting and beautifully paced one, never being dull, if slightly formulaic (not uncommon with the Popeye cartoons). The humour and gags make it even more entertaining, and there is plenty of them and not a misfire in the bunch. 'Plumbing is a Pipe' is non-stop fast-paced fun and becomes increasingly wild, avoiding the trap of repetition. A lot of credit is due here making something as enormously entertaining as this out of a subject that is actually very stressful and difficult. The ending may not be surprising at all but that doesn't stop it from being a riot.

All the characters are great, Olive Oyl is nice enough but Popeye and Wimpy make more of an impression. Popeye is always amusing and likeable while Wimpy nearly steals the show. The character interplay between Popeye and Wimpy (a character just as strong as Popeye with a personality strong enough for his own series perhaps), the tension and fun constant and never letting up, shines here.

Have never had an issue with the animation in the Fleischer period (it was more variable with Famous Studios), beautifully drawn and with enough visual detail to not make it cluttered or static and lively and smooth movement. The music is also outstanding, lots of merry energy and lush orchestration, adding a lot to the action and making the impact even better without being too cartoonish. Fleischer's direction is always accomplished and his style is all over it.

Jack Mercer is the main reason as to why 'Plumbing is a Pipe' works so well and is as funny as it is. He always did do a great job as Popeye and there is a reason why he was the longest serving voice actor for the character, but he and Popeye's mumblings in my opinions are at their most hilarious.

In conclusion, another great Popeye cartoon. 9/10 Bethany Cox


Plumbing Is a 'Pipe' (1938)

*** (out of 4)

Amusing short has Olive springing a leap from a bad pipe so she calls a plumber (Wimpy) who is too slow but luckily for her Popeye shows up.

I wouldn't call this a classic short but there's enough action here where fans of the series should have a good time with it. The lack of laughs is a little bit of a letdown but the action is enough to get you through the short running time. The highlight of the film is when Popeye has finally had enough and pulls out the spinach to battle the pipes. As you'd expect the animation is extremely good and especially the various scenes with the water gushing around.