Mess O' Blues (partially found "Johnny Bravo" prototype animated short; 1993)
Mess O' Blues is an original short film about a "over the hill aging rock star who thinks he's Elvis" created by Van Partible in 1993 for his senior thesis project that would serve as a basis for the Cartoon Network original show Johnny Bravo.
While working at Loyola Marymount University, Partible decided to pursue a career in animation, and so he started working on a senior thesis project intitled Mess O' Blues.
Partible started with the concept of three Elvis Presley impersonators (or "Elvi" as Van Partible puts it) who fought crime. However, due to his time constraints and the fact that he was doing all of the work himself, the idea was cut down to just one Elvis impersonator.
Becoming Johnny Bravo
Dan McLaughin (Partible's animation professor) showed the short to a friend working at Hanna-Barbera Productions.
The studio saw the short and loved it so much they asked Partible if he could do a pitch for a seven-minute short cartoon, with Mess O' Blues as the inspiration. This became the original Johnny Bravo short.
The character was changed so that, as Partible put it, " he would be more of this '50's iconic James Dean-looking character that talked like Elvis."
Other changes include his hair colour, name, physical appearance, and personality.
This new pilot was later aired on World Premiere Toons (also known as What a Cartoon!).
Despite its success, Mess O' Blues has never been released or even seen publicly, unlike the widely available and similarly made What a Cartoon predecessor The Whoopass Girls - which would later become The Powerpuff Girls.
The only footage that has ever been made available are a few short, mute clips from a short mini-documentary that was included as a bonus feature on the Johnny Bravo: Season 1 (Cartoon Network Hall of Fame) DVD entitled Bringing Up Johnny Bravo.
In January 2017, Lost Media Wiki user YoshiKiller2S got ahold of the Johnny Bravo Season 1 DVD and preceded to ripped and uploaded Bringing Up Johnny Bravo to YouTube and then later to Archive.org and with it, was a total of 15 mute seconds of Mess O' Blues footage. YoshiKiller2S also discovered four Mess O' Blues animation cels from a YouTube video, which was uploaded by the official Loyola Marymount University channel.
Animation Cels & Photos
- The Bringing Up Johnny Bravo mini-documentary Retrieved 16 Oct '19