Sniffles Takes A Trip


The tale of a comfortable self-possessed urbanite seeking leisure in the country only to be horrified by what he finds there is nothing new as confirmed by a recent viewing of SNIFFLES TAKES A TRIP (1940). Sniffles begins his journey full of hope and excitement. This is heartily expressed through a gleefully optimistic tune sung by the mouse that imagines a journey complete with babbling brooks for swimming and playful squirrels. Sniffle’s naive innocence is exposed as soon as he discovers a sign pointing the way to his destination “Country Meadows.” Upon the sign an ominous black raven harks a warning, but Sniffles, in his giddy state, misidentifies the harbinger of doom as a Robin and squeals in delight. Most of Sniffle’s misunderstandings of the new world around him are harmless enough, a purple mustachioed, RIP TAYLOR-like predator is in actuality a common fly for example. Two frightening eyes that appear out of a lagoon expose Sniffles’ lifelong fear of alligators, but in reality, they are simply the peepers of a passive hop frog. These false scares are traditional in horror and it is only when darkness falls that the dire reality of the situation the little mouse has gotten himself into becomes clear. In the light of a campfire, Sniffles mind begins to completely unravel. Left alone with his own ideas, the peaceful country landscape he once coveted transforms into a vision of hell that would make Dante take a dump in his dungarees. Hideous beings reveal themselves hiding all around him (or are they only in his mind?). At first Sniffles attempts to douse his raging fear by telling himself that the black velvet death that waits to engulf him is “peaceful,” this as slithering, twisted eel-like shapes twist around mocking, gnarled demon-possessed trees and a winged demon explodes out of the sky heaving sulfur smelling breath and the silent song of damnation. If there is any question of whether to stay or to flee, it is answered by the eyes…the horrible demonic, death-promising eyes that seem to be popping out of every conceivable crevice, whispering prophecies of a violently brutal gang rape. Evaluating the scene, Sniffles does indeed flee so quickly in fact that his signature hat spins off his head with such gusto that it makes an uncanny whine not unlike that of a U.F.O. stuffed to the gills with Theremins nose diving into the Washington Monument. DELIVERANCE, I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE, WRONG TURN and now SNIFFLES TAKES A TRIP. If you go in to the woods today you’re in for a big surprise, the surprise is you are either going to die like a hog in a slaughterhouse or completely loose your mind…

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