Hanna Barbera Treasury Book -- This Time They Got it RIGHT!

Hanna Barbera Treasury
I just came across this new art book about Hanna Barbera's golden years called, "Hanna Barbera Treasury." There is so much wonderfulness to this giant-sized love-letter that I had to share it with all of you.

The Hanna Barbera Treasury is written by Jerry Beck, with photography by Tim Mantoani published by Insight Editions. It measures a big 11 1/2" tall by 11 inches wide, and it's about 3/4 inch thick with 157 memorabilia-stuffed pages. If you're impatient like me, it costs $45 in bookstores, but Amazon has it for $29.70 (as of Nov 29th).

Now, 157 pages may not sound that substantial, but what you can't tell from that number is that every oversized page is PACKED with photos of REAL production artwork (not those awful fakey-fake publicity "cels.") -- most of which was apparently photographed from original archival artwork! There are pictures of storyboards, layouts, animation drawings, model sheets, development sketches, character designs, etc...stuff that has never seen the light of day until now. I've been waiting for someone to put together this kind of book for ages.
Hanna Barbera Treasury Magilla Gorilla page

There are also tons of beautiful photos of vintage H-B collectible and toys, like plastic dolls and View-Master reels. If you remember the groundbreaking art direction in Chip Kidd's Batman Animated art book from the nineties, you can imagine what this looks like.

The other feature that really expands the page-count is that there are tons of little envelopes and pockets and pamphlets bound into this book that contain beautiful facsimiles of trading cards, full-color 12-page mini-comic book reprints, Model sheets, storyboard sequences and vintage activity-book pages.

Hanna Barbera Treasury Yogi Bear pages

There are separate chapters for all of the early Hanna-Barbera stars (in chronological order), including a chapter EACH devoted to:
  • Tom and Jerry
  • Ruff and Reddy
  • Huckleberry Hound
  • Pixie and Dixie
  • Yogi Bear
  • Quick-Draw McGraw
  • Augie Doggie
  • Snagglepuss
  • The Flintstones
  • Top Cat
  • The Jetsons
  • Magilla Gorilla
  • Peter Potamus
  • Sqiddly Diddly
  • Touche Turtle
  • Lippy The Lion
  • Jonny Quest
  • Space Ghost
  • Atom Ant
  • Secret Squirrel and Morocco Mole
  • Frankenstein, Jr and the Impossibles
  • Birdman
  • Wacky Races
  • Space Ghost
  • Scooby-Doo
...and THEY STOP RIGHT THERE! Oh, happy day!

There's no need to pretend that the entire history of Hanna Barbera is totally golden...most of their output after the late sixties was totally forgettable. But they wisely chose to focus on the best of the best!

If you felt horribly cheated by that awful Hanna Barbera Cartoons coffee-table book from 1999, this new book should make you forget all about that publishing nightmare. This new book a winner through and through! Caveat: I haven't READ the text yet, so I'm looking at this purely from a visual standpoint. I'm guessing that based on the love and devotion that obviously went into the art direction of this book, they probably didn't skimp on the textual accuracy either.

The text is written by animation historian and Cartoon Brew-meister Jerry Beck, so I'm looking forward to reading it and posting another review later to complete the picture.

Now go out and buy it! We want to encourage this kind of thing! ^_^

PS...if you're in LA on Dec.1st, say Hi to Jerry and get your book signed! More info at the Animation Archive


Chris Battle said...

Just got a lok at this book the other day; Pretty nice!

...and I agree with ya about that '99 book. Crap-tastic.

Beetle said...

I too have been waiting for something like this to get the horrible taste of that "Hanna Barbera - 50 Years of Creativity" book out of my mouth. (Even the title stank!) How could they have done an Art of H-B book with no mention of Ed Benedict whatsoever?

tina kugler said...

ooh purty!

Sherm said...

Hey, Tina! How you doing? Long time, huh? Say "Hi" to Carson for me, OK? --Sherm

Droidster said...

I just purchased a signed Bill Hanna ( Flintstones ) Picture... What a great addition to any collection or collector of memorabilia... Anthonolgy with the extras! Absolutley Awesome

Anonymous said...

This book looks good. It'll especially be good if there's mention of the 1975 T&J!