A History of Animation: Presented by Jeff Twiller and Randy J. Johnson

Posted by on Nov 9, 2011 in Viewseum | 2 Comments

Warning: NSFW. Contains swearing, references to drugs, and the famous Tommy Lee/Pamela Anderson home movie.

Written and Animated by Morgan Miller and Josh Kleefeld.

Made especially for the Ottawa Animation festival, Morgan Miller’s A History of Animation offers a 10-minute rundown of the roots of animated film, as well as independent and international (particularly Canadian) animation. In its own way, it also introduces several primary figures of animation to an unsuspecting audience.

The short features a regular troupe of characters by Morgan Miller, primarily Jeff Twiller (voiced by Miller) and  Randy J. Johnson (voiced by Josh Kleefeld). Miller and Kleefeld’s animation style contrasts nicely and sharply to the clips shown. It doesn’t seem like these two come from such a beautiful town (a place called Slushing Brooks), and yet there’s plenty of beauty in the clips they are showing us.

In a nutshell, Jeff and Randy are two of the most literate film critics I have ever heard. Their debates are honest in the most blunt sense. It is true that certain forms of animation are not for everyone, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t something in there that “rocks.” I admire Jeff’s passion for these international films. And Randy is right about critics…well not all critics, but most critics.

Clips featured:

  • Boogie Doodle by Norman McClaren
  • Gertie the Dinosaur by Winsor McCay
  • How A Mosquito Operates by Winsor McCay
  • The Tantalizing Fly by Max Fleischer
  • Hedgehog in the Fog by Yuri Norstein
  • His Wife Is a Hen by Igor Kovalyov
  • Rugrats, in reference to Kovalyov
  • The Man Who Planted Trees by Frédéric Back
  • Windows commercial by Bill Plympton
  • The Tommy Lee and Pamela Anderson tape

To see more of Morgan’s work, check out his site at www.slushingbrooks.com.

And on a personal note: Please don’t do drugs.


  1. Charles Kenny
    November 9, 2011

    That was really interesting, even if there was plenty of slagging going on 🙂

    • Emmett
      November 9, 2011

      Eh, we all slag sometimes.