Directed by Chuck Jones; Story by Michael Maltese; Animation by Richard Thompson, Ken Harris, Ben Washam, and Keith Darling; Layouts by Maurice Noble; Backgrounds by Philip DeGuard; Film Editor: Treg Brown; Voice Characterization by Mel Blanc; Musical Direction by Milt Franklyn. A Looney Tune released on April 23, 1960.
Before I begin with that:
I have seen the face of God.
And now for today’s regularly featured proram.
Summer is that magical time of year where weather is nice, so people take advantage of the blissful warmth by traveling. Penelope may be a pussycat, but she has yearns to see the world via cruise ship. (Cats love the ocean. Every time I’ve ever thrown one in, I never saw it leave.) The guy who takes the tickets is French, so he greets people in the traditional french way: guys get it on the cheek, girls get it on the lips.
Since Penelope is a pussycat, and doesn’t have a ticket, she is not allowed on board. She is left behind with the transparent luggage. (Sure, it sounds cool now, but it gets embarrassing once you realize people can see all the condoms and tanning oil you have in there.) Still, a cruise is one of those once in a lifetime things for most, and she won’t be deterred. All she has to do is slip under the fence. Sure, it’s got a bit of wet, white paint on it, but it’s a pretty small obstacle all things considered.
Success. Using her amazing claws, she grabs a hold of a rope and goes along for the ride. But wouldn’t you know it, France is the homeland of Pepe Le Pew! He waves the ship off, but notices something dangling from a rope. It’s black, and white, and female all over. Sounds like a skunk to him. And he’s not about to let a little water and his lack of swimming get in the way. As for his object of desire, she clambers onto the deck.
Now, you and I know that Penelope is a pussycat, but with that white paint on her back, she looks an awful lot like a skunk. So much so, that every human on the boat would rather abandon ship than face it head on. (The sharks love it when this happens.) As for Penelope she has found herself in the arms of one very smitten skunk. A wet one, so the stench must be worse than usual. She bolts, but Pepe takes his time before pursuit. He’s got to dry off first. (Shame. I think his hair looks good that way.)
A trip to the salon is just the ticket. (Pepe looks kinda cute all fluffed up. Why is that not a plush toy?) Once back to his normal self, he resumes his chase. The ole “chaser is always where chasee” is hiding routine. It’s pretty basic stuff, even for this formula. Looks like Penelope has changed her mind about her cruise today, so she opts for the lifeboat. Once safely onboard, she watches the troublesome ocean liner head for over the horizon. This is the moment when Pepe reveals that they’re all in the same boat. It’s a little story I’m calling: “Life of cry.”
Favorite Part: The ad for the ship Penelope reads at the beginning. It’s the “Fun?” that makes me chuckle.
Rating: 2. It starts with some good jokes, but things get kinda boring once the two animals make it on to the ship. Perhaps the formula was finally getting stale.
I think I’ll take the next week off. No real reason, I just need to take a look at myself. Reexamine my life. Ask if I’m happy. I don’t plan on quitting yet. If I was, I’d tell whoever actually reads this. Expect me on the 18th. I’ll tell you what I thought of the latest “Space Jam.”
Directed by Charles M. Jones; Story by Michael Maltese; Animation by Ken Harris, Richard Thompson, Lloyd Vaughan; Layouts by Robert Givens; Backgrounds by Phil DeGuard; Voice Characterization by Mel Blanc; Music by Milt Franklyn. A Merrie Melody released on May 21, 1955.
The year is 1913. The place is Super Magnifique Productions. It’s a movie studio that as the name suggests, is in France. So, Pepe should be around shortly. But what reason would he have to be here? I’m getting ahead of myself. There’s a movie in production. With animals. Lots of animals! I’m not quite sure what sort of plot they have planned, but seeing as it is French, plot probably isn’t their biggest concern. (Maybe they’re just going to adapt some of Saint-Saens’ work. He’d still be alive)
Things are going smoothly enough, but the man in charge of casting the animals, (who is voiced by Arthur Q. Bryan. I almost didn’t recognize him. So talented!) has at least one problem: the movie needs a deodorized skunk. He doesn’t have that. He doesn’t even have a skunk period. What to do? Well, I’ve heard that if want a cow in your movie, your best bet is to paint spots on a horse because cows don’t resemble themselves on camera. So, logically, painting a cat should produce a similar result for those in need of skunks.
While the cat is getting prettied up, Pepe shows up looking for autographs. (I’m not entirely sure if people are hearing and understanding his speaking) As a skunk, he scares most everyone off. The director, his oui-men, the animals, and the casting director once he returns. Pepe is quite happy to take the cat off his hands, because she looks like a skunk and therefore, must be a skunk. Appearances are never deceiving. Penelope isn’t one for dating co-stars, and tries to flee. Plenty of movie sets to hide out in. Too bad Pepe finds her on each one.
She hides on the balcony, made famous in “Julio and Romette.” He calls to her in the words of the immortal bard himself. She hides in a film canister on a set of “The Two Musketeers.” (Maybe there was supposed to be three, but Pepe ruins the shot before such an amount can get on screen.) He finds here there too. He even finds her in a screening room. The characters in the silent movie that is playing, can smell him too. (So, they broke their fourth wall, but not THE fourth wall. They broke the eighth wall, then? If they did acknowledge us, the audience, would that be breaking the fourth wall squared?)
No matter where she runs, Pepe is there. In appropriate costume too. (He looks good in that Tarzan getup. Almost turns me on.) Soon, Penelope has run out of ways to run. Pepe has her trapped on a cliff set. She’d rather jump than be with him, so if that is what must be done, it’s the action she’ll take. Pepe rushes to look, and finds she landed in some water. Which means… the paint washes off! Pepe sees the paint washing off! For once, he realizes that he wasn’t in pursuit of a skunk! What will he do with that knowledge?
Well, I guess he’s desperate. His answer is to paint over his stripe and continue the chase. That should solve everything. Pepe should write a book about how to score.
Favorite Part: Shaking up the formula and letting Pepe know he was mistaken. A nice swerve to throw at us. When your cartoons are the basic chase plot, it helps to keep them from growing stale.
Directed by Chuck Jones; Story by Michael Maltese; Animation by Richard Thompson, Ken Harris, and Abe Levitow; Layouts by Maurice Noble. Backgrounds by Philip DeGuard; Film Editor: Treg Brown; Voice Characterization by Mel Blanc; Musical Direction by Milt Franklyn. A Merrie Melody released on October 12, 1957.
Being the guy who paints a stripe down the middle of the road isn’t the best job to have. Then again, any job can be pleasant if you are allowed to sing. It really is a beautiful day. The sky is blue, the sun shines, and dogs chase cats. In particular, one cat we like to call Penelope is in the middle of one such chase. Being the smaller of the two creatures, she is able to slip under the painting device with only a stripe down her back. The dog crashes into the man, and he angrily kicks the dog repeatedly. Finally free of trouble, the cat goes down to the beach. (A cat heading towards a large mass of sand? I guess she almost got the sh*t scared out of her.)
So, where’s Pepe? We all know he’s coming. The French title, his name in the credits, the painted cat. Nearly all the ingredients are here. Pepe is on a boat. When the sailor sees exactly what is on the rope he is pulling, he runs off in fright, leading Pepe to land in the water. Good thing he can see out of his tail, as he is aware of the female on the beach, and rushes to her side. She doesn’t like that. In fact, she tries to escape. Pepe pretends he doesn’t want her for all of about 24 seconds before he chases her down once more.
You wouldn’t want to hang out on this beach. The sand leads straight to a cliff. (Which in turn leads to the water. A literal high dive.) Pepe was too caught up in his chase to notice the lack of land, and he falls over the side. If Penelope plays her cards right, she could potentially be rid of him early for this picture. So where does she hide? At the base of the cliff. (It’s not her brains Pepe admires.) He finds her, looking quite pale, so he rushes off to get her a glass of water. She’s gone by the time he gets back, so he just empties it on the rocks. Never touches the stuff. (Pepe is not a carbon based life form. Confirmed.)
Seems Penelope is desperate enough to hide underwater. She has the foresight to hook up an oxygen tank, but Pepe has no need for such things. As a skunk, he can hold his breath for a long time. (That raises questions. Is he aware of his odor? Is he proud of it? I suppose it is a better weapon than most, as people will flee, even if you miss.) The lack of air may not be a problem for him, but the ocean is full of predators. Including the dreaded Saber-toothed Tiger shark. A beast I always thought only lived in Ralph Phillips imagination. Is Pepe also part of Ralph’s fantasies? Could I be as well?
Ever the gentleman Pepe sticks his love in a clam. (Aww! Even if he rushes into relationships, he really is a sweet guy.)The shark chows down, but regrets his action almost immediately. Considering how powerful his sense of smell is, I’m not surprised to see the poor fish opt to take his chances on land. In the commotion, Pepe loses Penelope and he heads back toward shore looking for her. That was just what she wanted, and she heads in the opposite direction. Seems she’ll have to rapidly evolve into a saltwater catfish if she hopes to survive.
Fine. She could also head for the nearest island. (Why won’t anybody ever give my science fiction a chance?) She comes ashore, and yes, Pepe is already waiting for her. The locals call this place heart island. That doesn’t mean any romance is going to entail, the place is just shaped like the card suit. (It’s the world’s most over hyped honeymoon location.)
Favorite Part: The fact that the shark doesn’t fear Pepe at first. And why would it? Has any shark ever in the history of Earth, ever encountered a skunk? It’s a subtle touch, but it’s there.
Directed by Charles M. Jones; Story by Michael Maltese; Animation by Ken Harris, Ben Washam, and Lloyd Vaughan; Layouts by Maurice Noble; Backgrounds by Philp DeGuard; Voice Characterization by Mel Blanc; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling; Orchestrations by Milt Franklyn. A Merrie Melody released on July 11, 1953.
Before we begin, a couple notes.
1. I met the nicest woman at work the other day. She really knew her Looney Tunes. We spent a few fun minutes quoting them. There was only one thing that kept me from asking her out. (It wasn’t because she was married. We could have worked around that) No, it was because she was at least 40 years too old for me. Such a shame.
2. I ask you to raise a glass in honor of Richard Williams. Possibly the greatest animator that will ever grace this planet. His work on “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” is right up there as one of the pinnacles of human creation. He will be missed and never replaced. (And he shouldn’t)
Thank you for your time. Let’s get the 500th post underway.
Back in 1900, when the world still had world fairs, (man, it would be fun to attend one of those. It’s too bad we don’t really have much good as a species to show off, anymore) one was held in France. Even by this time, zoos were nothing new, but a chance to see exotic animals is always a sure way to draw in the crowds. (And my lord, the cages here are horrifying. The giraffe is poking out of the top. The elephant is pressed against the bars! Aushwitz isn’t being topped here, but things are close.)
Such horrible living conditions, its no surprise to me that one of the animals has made their escape. It’s a wildcat, and although that’s not the worst case scenario of animal escape, the crowds go into panic. (Probably smart. Fear, while often an overreaction, does keep us alive) Immediately, a zoo keeper and dog begin the hunt. Poor creature. She means no harm, but a lifetime of imprisonment is hers unless she can find someway to avoid detection. What ho! Could those cans of black and white paint be the answer?
One coating later, the answer is yes. Decked out in the years finest skunk model, she has the hunters fleeing. This is usually the time in Warner Bros. shows that Pepe shows up. Right on cue. He’s quite happy to find not only find a female, but a LARGE female! (Bigger is better!) He makes his move, but seeing as how this time his target is a much more dangerous animal, he gets a bit mauled. (Now, obviously, this is meant to show sadomasochism as a good thing. That’s why Pepe is so into it. Why would we be expected to just think its funny? Cartoons ALWAYS have deeper meanings to them)
The chase begins. You know the classic formula, chasee hides and chaser is already there. Like in a fortune telling booth. The feline is told she is to meet the male of her dreams. (Nightmares are technically dreams) When she flees, she finds this man. (He looks an awful lot like that swami. Could they be… brothers?) There’s a good number more places to hide inside. Wax statues, (the cat hides as Marie Antoinette’s stole, Pepe as Daniel Boone’s cap) a suit of armor, (the cat’s mauls rearrange it into something you’d see in a modern art museum) and a replica of Madame Pompadour’s carriage. (Where Pepe asks himself if this is all worth it. And answers himself that it is worth it.)
The chase continues, but it seems that the cat is starting to wear out. No longer is she fleeing as fast as she once was. Pepe is using this to his advantage, taking his sweet time to catch up. There’s clearly only one option: escape via hot air balloon. She leaps in, cuts the ropes, and says farewell to dwelling on terra firma. Sure, it will quite the adjustment. (She can no longer stalk prey, but the sky is full of birds and water particles, so she won’t want for sustenance) In fact, the only downside I can see is the lack of company. Good thing Pepe also made it aboard. She can maul him all she wants, he’s not going anywhere.
Favorite part: The fortune telling bit. Especially when Pepe calls her existence drab. How come when I tell girls they have the same problem, I get hit?
“One of the most difficult birds to train, is the pigeon.”
Directed by Abe Levitow; Story by Michael Maltese; Animation by Ben Washam, Richard Thompson, and Keith Darling; Layouts and Backgrounds by Bob Singer; Film Editor: Treg Brown; Voice Characterization by Mel Blanc; Musical Direction by Milt Franklyn. A Merrie Melody released on November 14, 1959.
As an animal lover, I can’t help but notice the parallels between us and them. It all boils down to one question: Are humans animals? Or are animals human? Our host, Dr. Beest Lee, (That’s really his first name? The X-Men weren’t around yet, so nobody in his childhood took him seriously. Well, he’s shown them all! He hosts this!) is here to guide us through several gags. It’s up to us to decide.
The most intelligent animal is a good place to start. A chimpanzee is taking part in an experiment where he has to make use of boxes to get a banana. He is more clever than the unseen researchers give him credit for. Not only does he make it to the fruit, he saws around it in order to get at the fridge that was on top. (Actually, that was probably part of the test. Who puts a fridge on a chimp cage, and doesn’t expect it to get stolen?)
Chickens tend to live in factories these days, and some bits of technology are sure to rub off on them. Namely, laying cube-shaped eggs. And they show that old gag about the man trying to prove his dog can talk, but only asking questions whose answers sound similar to a basic dog call. That’s a little weak. What other gags we got?
Chibi-Bugs is being sent into outer space as some sort of… experiment? What exactly is this supposed to accomplish? I suppose they were just trying to crossbreed lagomorphs. The bunny comes back with his Martian bride and offspring. And what of rodents? A groundhog is a natural meteorologist. (Although he now uses several pieces of high tech machinery to get info) A beaver damns a river. (Probably the best joke here.) And porcupines kiss despite the pain. (Also, that skunk looks a lot like Pepe. What is with all these cameos? Is the featured subject not strong enough to hold our attention?)
A chameleon is capable of changing color. Being from the 50’s, he is still under the illusion that he can match any background instantly. (Not plaid though, a lizard has his limits) And throughout the whole short, we’ve seen a poor dog waiting dutifully for his master to return. Luckily, we’re not given the “Jurassic Bark” treatment, as we see the reunion unfold. It’s not that cheerful. (The dog is irate to have been left alone for as long as he was. 3 years is nearly a third of his lifetime!)
Favorite Part: That beaver was pretty funny, but I like the elephant gag better. After a mouse gets some kicks terrifying one, he himself gets some comeuppance by an even smaller elephant. And you know what that means: Teeny procreated!
Directed by Chuck Jones; Story by Chuck Jones; Animation by Abe Levitow, Richard Thompson, Ken Harris, and Ben Washam; Layouts by Erni Nordli; Backgrounds by Philip DeGuard; Voice Characterization by Mel Blanc; Music by Milt Franklyn. A Merrie Melody released in 1956.
A fisherman comes back from the water one day with a decent sized batch of fish. The scent of the dead animals attracts the nose of one Penelope Pussycat. She tries to help herself to one of the morsels, but finds dogs every way she looks. The constant barking eventually has her hopping onto a flap pole that has been recently painted. Unlike most of her appearances, this time the stripe is no accident. She coats her back in the paint and her skunk disguise is complete. (Isn’t it interesting? If you had no idea what a skunk was, you’d never guess it was the most feared animal on the planet.) The trick works, and the dogs are sent running. The fisherman too. So there is nothing stopping Penelope from helping herself to a nice fat fish and heading off to the park for a picnic of one. But you know, picnics by yourself kinda scream “I’m lonely.” If only she had a special someone to share her life with. Enter Pepe. And he is smitten. And since the only thing required to make a relationship work is the male wanting the female, why does she run from him? He won’t let that stop him though. He finds her in grapes, and a tree. (Pepe: “Marry me.” *she runs* Pepe: “Too subtle?”) So, he decides to try the “playing hard to get card,” himself. Running in front of her and saying that he loves her but isn’t sure about marriage yet. She runs in a different direction. (The wood in the fences and trees in the background is interesting in this short. They aren’t colored in. An artistic choice? Or was Mr. DeGuard feeling lazy on this one?) Pepe knows a shortcut and manages to catch her in his arms. Running out of directions, Penelope begins running up a mountain. Pepe is still right behind her and has a little fun making her an echo love note. But she runs again. Pepe continues following her, as she runs into a tunnel that is blocked. Pepe stops to note that while there is not much difference between the sexes, “Viva La Difference!” and follows after her. And it just ends. Weird. It was pretty entertaining, but I guess they didn’t really have a clue about how to end it. That poor ending probably makes this my least favorite Pepe short. But I’ll have to watch them all again to be sure. (And yes, I’ve seen every Pepe Le Pew cartoon. Hasn’t everybody?)
Personal Rating: 3
(Nah, It was probably an artistic choice by Philip. I never knew the guy, but I don’t think he’d be one to leave wood uncolored.)
You know what made Cartoon Network so much fun to watch, back in the day? Well, yes, having cartoons that I wanted to watch was nice, but they went out of their way to make the commercials a joy as well. It’s a network where the cartoons are in charge, so naturally, the cartoons would be working there. During a commercial break, we could see the toons working at their jobs, and interacting with each other. But my favorite thing they did was the groovies. Short music videos about the cartoons we loved and if we didn’t already love them, then these videos might encourage us to take another look. They were brilliant. Each one was different. (Even the ones that were based on the same series. “Dexter’s Laboratory”, and “The Powerpuff Girls”, each had more than one for their series. (Not that I mind. I love those shows.) Even a few shows you wouldn’t think would be popular enough to get one, got one. Like JabberJaw and Betty Boop. (I didn’t even know her shorts ever aired on that channel) Although there were some weird ones. There’s one based on “Ed, Edd and Eddy” where Sarah gives the titular boys a drink that shrinks them for her amusement. It’s a great song, but is that really related to the show? I never really watched it. Plus one based on “Courage the Cowardly Dog” that takes place somewhere not in Nowhere, Kansas, Eustace and Muriel look much younger, and they are having a party. This show, I did watch. And Eustace doesn’t seem like the type to allow that many people into his house without giving him something. But of course, the reason I’m talking about them here is because there were some based on “Looney Tunes”. And they get looked at more in-dept.
L’Amour A Un Odeur: A remix featuring Pepe Le Pew and his various shorts. It’s my least favorite just because it feels the most rushed to me. The music is that classic faux French they put in all his shorts.
Personal Rating: 3
Wascally Wemix: As you’d expect, this is Elmer’s song. A bunch of his lines remixed. Bugs and Daffy feature prominently too. The music kinda dying near the end, keeps it from being higher on my favorites.
Personal Rating: 3
Pork Jam: AW YEAH! My pal Porky gets a remix, and it’s awesome. His lines mix with the music, never fail to put a smile on my face. It was my favorite as a kid. So, what could possibly top Porky?
Personal Rating: 3
Mars Forever: My favorite out of all the groovies. A recruitment video Marvin made to build up his troops. Best music in my opinion. Contains bits from all his shorts, plus “Rocket-Bye Baby.” A masterpiece if ever there was one.
Personal Rating: 4 (I could see someone wanting to watch the others is this was viewed first)
In memory of my good friend, Abby the Dog. 2006-2017. While there are no shortage of great dogs, there was only one of you.
Executive Producer: Hal Geer; Bugs Bunny sequences Produced and Directed by Friz Freleng; Road Runner sequence Produced and Directed by Chuck Jones; Written by Friz Freleng, Chuck Jones, John Dunn, and Tony Benedict; Sequence Directors: Tony Benedict, Bill Perez, David Detiege, and Art Vitello; Voices by Mel Blanc and June Foray; Music by Doug Goodwin. Released in 1979
Happy Holidays! Here’s a Christmas special that stars all your favorites! (Except Daffy.) It starts with Bugs having some problems with his carolers. Besides Ehlmuh’s obvious speech pwobwems, we h-have P-P-P-Porky s-st-st-s-st-having problems spitting out the words, Fog-ah say, Foghorn getting off the beat. Music that is! Et Pepe chante “Alouette” à la place. The only one who wouldn’t have a problem is Sam, but for whatever reason, he declines to sing. (Why though? We clearly saw him singing a few seconds ago.) Well, whatever. We’ve got three new shorts made specifically for this program to enjoy.
“Bugs Bunny’s Christmas Carol” Not as good as “Bah, Humduck!” in my opinion, but enjoyable nonetheless. Scrooge is played by Sam with Porky as Bob Cratchit. Bugs is playing Fred. Kind of. He comes in to the establishment and annoys Sam with mistletoe. He also gives Porky some much needed coal to warm himself with. But Sam’s cat, Sylvester sees the pig warming himself, (Although it looks like Porky is smacking his butt at the cat.) and alerts his master. Sam angrily takes it back. Bugs next comes in with Elmer, Foghorn, and Pepe to sing but Sam has reached his breaking point. He throws them all out and fires Porky. (Don’t make me leave Red Hot Ryder’s head in your bed, Sam.) Grateful for Bug’s efforts regardless, Porky invites him to dinner. Porky naturally has a family of his own. (A stud like him? It was easy!) His wife is Petunia of course. (You know, according to Walt, Mickey and Minnie are married. I’m going to say that Porky and Petunia are too. It’s canon now.) They have three children. (‘Atta boy, Porky!) One I’m going to guess is played by his nephew, Cicero, from the comics, the girl is most likely Priscilla, from “Bah, Humduck”, and the last is Tiny Tim. Played by Tweety. Apparently, he’s so small because he is fed birdseed. (Porky!) But Sam’s evil deeds are not over, as he forecloses the mortgage on Porky’s house. Since I’m not born yet to let Porky’s family move in with me, it’s up to Bugs to save the day. He tries the kind way first with more carols, but Sam chases them away. Well, that was the diplomatic approach, guess there’s no other choice but the hard way. Now that he’s awake, Sam tries to relax with a hot bath. Not wanting him to burn himself, Bugs thoughtfully fills the bath up with snow. Later, Bugs dresses as a ghost to scare Sam. (Seeing as how he probably never had a partner, he doesn’t pretend to be anyone Sam knew.) While searching for the source of the noise, Sam trips over Sylvester and they both end up outside. Returning back to his warm bed, Sam agrees to let Sylvester stay with him. That’s sweet. But Sylvester and his color-changing nose, beat it when Bugs appears before them. He tells Sam that he is taking him to see the man in the red suit. (Although it’s not Santa, that guess was only one letter off) Fearing for his soul, (although I do wonder what would have happened if Sam called Bug’s bluff,) he dresses as Santa and gives money to everyone he sees. He even makes Porky his partner! A Christmas feast is enjoyed by all! (Sam still doesn’t like kisses though)
After the commercial break, Bugs compliments Sam on his acting. Sam admits that his acting was just that, and starts demanding his stuff back. Meanwhile, the feast is being watched by two sets of hungry eyes. Them belonging to Wile E. and the Roadrunner. Seeing as they’re not invited, Wile E. chases the bird into our next short.
“Freeze Frame” Wile E. is reading a fascinating book: “Everything you’ve wanted to know about roadrunners but were afraid to ask” (That’s on my Christmas list.) Turns out, being a desert animal, the Roadrunner (Semper Food-Ellus) can’t function in cold climates. So Wile E. (Grotesques Appetitus) orders a machine that can make snow. It only lands on the coyote, so he just switches some signs around. Even though the short “Beep, Beep” said that roadrunners can’t read, the bird follows the sign pointing to the desert and ends up on top of a mountain. He really is out of his element, and ends up stranded on some ice. Wile E. skates over, but ends up sawing a hole around the bird. Seeing as this a cartoon, everything surrounding the cut part sinks, and the bird surfs back to shore. He next orders some sled dogs to help him chase down his prey. The poor things are kept in a crate with no air holes! So naturally, they’re a little cranky. (That, and it appears that they love Coyote meat.) Riding a rocking horse with a lasso only gets himself tied up and landing on some train tracks, and trying to crush the bird with a snowball had him get caught in it and soaring off a cliff. He wishes us a Merry Christmas before the short ends.
Back with Bugs he has his carolers hold a note. It’s then that his nephew, Clyde, reminds him of his promise to tell him a story. (Clyde really was a character in a couple of shorts. But there he was voiced by Blanc, and here I think he is voiced by Ms. Foray, seeing as he sounds a lot like Rocket J. Squirrel.) Seeing that his carolers are gasping for breath, Bugs dismisses them and decides now is a great time to go tell said story.
“Fright before Christmas” Up at the North Pole, Santa is waiting for his suit to finish drying. (Since it is air-drying, I think he’s not going to be too happy to wear it.) Meanwhile some pilots are flying their cargo over the North Pole. Contents: One Tasmanian Devil. (Aside from the plot, for what reason are they flying this animal over the Pole? Where is he being delivered to?) He breaks free and jumps out of the plane. (Don’t worry, he grabbed a parachute) he lands in his Santa’s suit and launched into his sleigh. Scared, the deer try to run off taking Taz along for the ride. Meanwhile in an actual house, (I guess it belongs to Clyde’s parents. Or Bugs just prefers a roof over his head in Winter) Bugs is reading Clyde “The night before Christmas” Everything seems to be just like in the poem. Except there is a mouse stirring: Speedy with his cocoa. When they hear “Santa” up on the roof, Bugs sends his nephew to bed. Taz comes down the chimney, and Bugs offers him plenty of food. By sheer coincidence, he has deviled ham, deviled eggs, and devils food cake. Not really. He just has milk and cookies. Taz takes them anyway, and begins to eat just about everything else in the house, while Bugs reads him Clyde’s outrageous Christmas list. (Which among other things, contains a solid gold football, and a little brother. You’d think as a rabbit, he’d already have both. Aren’t rabbits well known to be associated with their young and karats?) Seeing as “Santa” is still hungry, Bugs offers to make him some popcorn. Impatient as he is, Taz eats it before its popped. (Probably shouldn’t have done so in front of a roaring fireplace) He then makes to open a gift that is clearly not for him. Bugs sets up a holiday gift exchange and offers him to trade for a much bigger gift. He unwraps it outside at Bug’s suggestion and finds just what he wanted: more food. (Well, it’s really a self inflating raft, but Taz has a strong imagination) He floats away and Clyde, (who I guess was secretly witnessing the whole thing) bemoans the fact that “Santa” left without giving him anything. (I hate when kids act that way. From now on, he only gets birdseed to eat.) Bugs and him then decide to return his sleigh. Not only is it the right thing to do, Santa just might let Clyde get first pick at the presents.
We end with Bugs and his carolers (Foghorn’s head is white for some reason) getting a sleigh ride from Taz. (It’s kinda weird seeing him being used by Friz, but poor Bob had been dead by two years at this point, so he couldn’t really help out) It’s a nice gesture but it still ends with Taz eating the sleigh. (My favorite part is how they didn’t notice it happening.)
Personal Rating: 3
Merry Christmas from your own, Dr. Foolio! I’ll be checking in one more time before the year ends! Enjoy those holidays!
Directed byKarl Torege, Charles Visser, James T. Walker, Kyung Won Lim
“Humph! Mr. Popular.”
In case you haven’t noticed, all of the shorts I’ve talked about recently had cats in them. Looney tunes are chock full of them. And so is this direct to video movie. It’s not spectacular, but I still find it enjoyable. So let’s get started.
It’s October 2nd, (I dunno, 2000 I guess) and Granny is living in London for some reason. She has two pets, namely Sylvester and Tweety. She is also a member of the Looney Club, which is located right next door to a children’s park that is going to close soon. Inside the club we see…COLONEL RIMFIRE? Wow! One of the last characters created for Looney Tunes. He doesn’t get roles anymore. Score one point for this film. He is busy ranting about the fact that he never caught his nemesis: Cool Cat. (Not that abomination created by Derek Savage. This character actually has earned his title) He takes a little solace in the fact that he was bested by a creature that was smarter than him. Not just Cool Cat, but all cats. He believes cats are the smartest creatures on the planet. (I disagree) Lucky for me, Granny is on my side, and when Rimfire says he’d bet his savings on his claim, she takes him up on it, hoping to use the winnings to restore the park. She claims that her canary can not only go around the globe in 80 days, (which would be until December 21, (I’m still going with 2000,) but also collect 80 different paw prints. It’s a big challenge, but Tweety’ll do anything for Granny. (Is it just me, or does that calendar have a picture of one of the hunters from “Horton hatches the egg” on it?) So he is given a passport to get stamped to prove he visited the locations. This gathers the attention of a shifty looking character in the crowd. It’s the Shropshire Slasher from the short “Deduce you say”. He eyes Tweety’s passport with great interest. The things might be rare soon. One’s been stolen apparently. Sylvester meanwhile plans on following the canary to make sure he and only he can have him for lunch. Outfitted with a tracking device, Tweety heads for his first stop in France. Not too long after, a wind blows him off course into the alps. Lodged into the side of a mountain, he asks a nearby climber for help. Said climber is actually Daffy, who is sore about the fact this is not his movie and refuses to help. An avalanche happens but the two are saved by snowboarder Bugs Bunny. It is now October 12, and Sylvester has been waiting in France this whole time. The script says that Tweety should have come here, could it be wrong? Nope. Here he comes now, being chased by Penelope Pussycat. She crashes into Sylvester’s table and gets a white stripe down her back. (hint hint) but that does not deter her from her purrrr-suit (weak I know.) of the bird. Not if Sylvester has anything to say about it. While they chase, Tweety get’s his passport stamped by Pepe. He then points out something he thinks he’ll like. Two skunks fighting over him. (It’s not really explained how Sylvester got a stripe as well) With those two occupied, Tweety collects Penelope’s print and flies off for Italy. Would you like to bet on whether or not Tweety will make it? Because his progress is being charted by Foghorn, Prissy, Henry, and Egghead Jr. And they’re accepting all bets. They believe he can do it. (Birds are encouraging like that) In Venice, Tweety stops at Pasquelles. The same restaurant Charlie Dog tried to make home in “A hound for trouble” He’s still there, playing waiter. Tweety orders a plate of birdseed with marinara sauce. As all Americans know, Italian food is good eating, so it’s no wonder that Tweety leaves the place plump as a turkey. He can’t even fly anymore, so he hitches a ride on a gondola. But flightless, plump, juicy, succulent birds are vulnerable. Surprise! The owner of it is a cat, and there are more up ahead on a bridge. Tweety uses his new physique to bowl over them. He gets their prints, and a stamp for Venice. (Turns out his fat was just gas. If only I had that problem) Tweety’s trip has garnered more attention, and he is even mentioned by Lola on the news. (She’s part of the cast now. So you might as well quit complaining about her.) Tweety makes it to Egypt and gets his passport stamped by a camel. (Who I think is Humpty Bumpty in a fez, but I can’t be sure.) Worn out, Tweety goes to sleep. But Sylvester must have gotten away form Pepe, (Please tell me he convinced him of his gender before it was too late.) And is back for more. After a scuffle, Tweety hides in the Sphinx. Granny wasn’t kidding about his smarts. He knows how to read Hieroglyphics. Turns out, the place has a terrible fate for anyone who tries to head down a certain hall. Since Sylvester isn’t aware, he gets attacked by mummified cats. (People really did that you know) They punch him hard enough to make a hole in the place for Tweety to escape from. He collects their prints and is on his way once more. Landing in Africa (in the jungle of crayon drawn trees) he encounters the Mynah Bird. Since that guy doesn’t talk, Tweety follows him hoping he’ll lead him to his next stamp. But he doesn’t look where he’s going and wanders into a lion’s mouth. (At least he found the stamp in there) He leaves the mouth of the beast, (which looks more like a dog dressed as a lion to me) but almost immediately runs into Pete Puma. (Why’s he here?) The two corner Tweety in a tree. (No relation to the short “Tree cornered Tweety”) Luckily for him, the Mynah comes back and saves him by flinging the predators away. With that done, Tweety heads to Tibet. He gets to a souvenir shop where Gossamar gives him another stamp. (Why not?) Tweety also catches sight of some monk cats lead by Claude. (He may look different, but the voice is a dead giveaway.) They are about to sacrifice a canary (who has hair) to their god. Tweety comes to the rescue in a snowball (picking up Hugo the abominable snowman along the way) and bowls over them. He looks just like their god and he demands that they release the bird, and knock off the canary sacrifices. Even though they agree, Tweety is a jerk and still sics Hugo on them. (But he does get their prints as well) He is joined by the other bird named Aooga. (No really.) After getting a stamp at China, the two are blown off course all the way to Mexico. At least that gives them a stamp for there. (Courtesy of Speedy) Since they are down there, they stop by Rio as well. Rocky and Muggsy are hiding out there, but they still give them a stamp. And in Argentina they get another one form (Spike? Marc Antony? Just a bulldog?) With the south taken care of, they fly back to Japan. (Seems the Slasher is still on the loose) Afterwards they decide to take a boat to their next destination. Sylvester has remembered he’s in this movie and prepares to dig in. But he’s caught by a ship hand and thrown in the galley to catch mice. The mice in question are Hubie and Bertie who are living a good life with all the cheese they can eat. Sylvester gives chase, but they use a bucket of soapy water to send him sliding off the ship. Even though he clasps on to the side, Tweety sadistically pries him off, sending him into the shark infested (badly animated water below) But he does throw him a life saver. (The things he does for Warner Bros.) The three drift to Australia. There, the passport is stamped by Hippety Hopper. (Why does he have a pouch?) And of course Sylvester thinks he’s a giant mouse. But this is also the home of the Tasmanian Devil who shows up and plans to eat some cat. Sylvester saves his hide, by encouraging him to team up so they can both get canary. They chase after the birds on a bike, (Taz really seems to be enjoying himself) but the birds make their getaway with a convenient hang glider. Sylvester leaps onto it, leaving Taz alone in the air. (He holds out Wile E. holding out a “mother” sign) The birds fly off leaving the cat stuck on the glider, but he bumps into a wind surfer. (Is that the flying fish from “The sour puss” on his sail?) The birds land atop it and ride to their next stop, San Francisco. With the putty tat still on their tails, the birds ride a skateboard through no color ville to escape. Sylvester hops aboard a trolley driven by Sam and shoves him out of the way. But he doesn’t really know how to work it, and ends up breaking the brake. (Which is sorta like winding the wind, or tearing a tear) With the vehicle out of control the two end up on Alcatraz much to Sam’s anger. The birds head off to Vegas, with Sylvester following on a train. (With an angry Sam chasing him the whole trip. He has great endurance.) Once there, Sylvester manages to get Sam taken away on another train, but loses the birds in Chalk Vegas. They are hiding in a casino which just so happens to be full of cats. They are all betting against Tweety. If they were to be spotted, they would probably chased down. Sylvester exposes their hiding spot and they are chased down. One cat catches Aoogah and I think Tweety shoves a pole up his butt. (What else could he have done?) Sylvester meanwhile has caused another cat to hit the jackpot. (Pussyfoot is with her, are they related? Also the kitten makes itself comfortable on Sylvester’s head. Adorable) The two head off again. (The Slasher also is outside. Is that other guy naked?) The two birds head off across the country collecting prints along the way. They eventually make it to New York. (It’s full of Looney Tune advertisments.) They stop for a hot dog at a cart that is by a strange looking man in a trench coat. Tweety asks a weird question to Aoogah. What kind of hot dog would she be? (what.) Sylvester is the vendor and plans to eat. During the scuffle, mustard is squirted all over the strange man, exposing him as Marvin. This gives the birds a chance to get to the airport. Tweety is sad that the fun is almost over, and decides for one more challenge, he’ll fly back to London on his own. He leaves his ticket with the stewardess and they head out. Sylvester meanwhile makes a pretty poor excuse for a poster that is framing Tweety as stealing the Passport. Good thing he showed it to a poor excuse for a cop who believes it. While this does not get him anywhere, he does get Tweety’s ticket. Guess he’ll meet them in London. The birds meanwhile have flown into a hurricane. Not only does it remove Tweety’s tracker, making the world believe he’s gone, (Now all they have left to enjoy is a man in a barrel. I’m not joking) but it separates the duo. And Aooga had the passport! Tweety feels sorry for himself, since it seems like he’s not going to win like he always does. He hears Aooga’s call and lands on an island in the eye of the storm. (Home of the worst CGI trees I’ve ever seen) Turns out the passport floats and after getting swarmed by some random cats. (Strange, but hey more prints) They fly off to London once more. Arriving in a pub, they are grabbed by the Slasher. Turns out he was behind the passport theft all along. (surprise surprise) He collects the things. He stuffs it in his pocket, and Tweety probably would have been lost if he was alone. But Aoogah snatches it back. The pollice arrive and the Slahser is forced to take off. Sylvester is with them, still clutching his poster. (I’m not surprised these guys believed it. They probably think all American posters are shoddily made.) Tweety has the passport and is presumed guilty. Sylvester takes it as Tweety is arrested and happily jumps in glee. But what’s this? There are two passports? And Tweety’s checks out. Leaving Sylvester holding the stolen one. Turns out the slasher stuck them in the same pocket he keeps his fish and chips in, and they got stuck together. (Gross. What was on those?) Sylvester won’t be a bother to them now, but Tweety is sad. According to the subtitle, it’s the 22nd. He’s late. But Aoogah points out that they crossed a time zone and actually it is the 21st! The subtitle was wrong! (ummm. The sun rises in the east. So if it’s really the 21st in London, wouldn’t it be the 20th in America?) They rush to the club. Rimfire points out that there’s only 79 prints. Tweety never managed to get Sylvester’s. Taking it back, he rushes to the police wagon and gets the last print! Rimfire reluctantly admits defeat. (And it turns out one of the other members was Cool Cat all along. And he knew Tweety would succeed. Only someone who is truly cool will admit he’s not the smartest.) For finding the missing passport, Tweety is knighted. (Not too absurd. There are King penguins) Sylvester however is off to prison.
Personal Rating: Looney-tics should have fun seeing how many characters are crammed in here. For them, 3. For the rest…3. (Only because I don’t have a 3.5 rating)
Holy Flucking Sheet! This is the second time today I’ve had to type this up! For no apparent reason, it didn’t save. This new squarespace sucks whale balls! I hope you appreciate this post readers. I do it all for you.
A nice shot of France is shown. (Hey look. It’s Madeline. Clever) Our group is in the Lourve and they come to the painting. Not understanding what they are supposed to do, Kate sarcastically comments that they’ll have to steal it. (Which Bugs and Daffy are more than willing to do) Playing with the card they realize the back part comes off. It’s a window and when they hold it up to the painting, it becomes an x-ray. It shows her underwear (laugh) but also a map to Africa. That must be where the diamond is. They take a picture (Daffy hopping up and down because he wants to take one) When Elmer appears. Despite the fact Bugs and him made 35 pictures together. (really) He’s “secwetwee eviww” Bugs and Daffy distract him with card tricks while Kate and D.J. make their escape. Kate mentions that they’ll be alright becuase Elmer never gets Bugs. D.J. mentions that if this was a movie, then Kate would probably be kidnapped. Unaware of the fact that Bob has taken her. The toons meanwhile are chasing each other through the paintings. In “The Persistance of Memory” they are melting. (Hey, if the watches can melt, it’s hot enough) It’s so hot that Elmer’s words become pictures. They run into “The Scream” and get yelled in the face. When Bug’s steps on Elmer’s foot, he makes the same face. (Creepy) D.J. meanwhile is chasing after Bob. He alerts French policeman, Pepe Le Pew about the man carrying the woman away in a bag. Pepe mentions that it IS spring, before his scent chases D.J. away. (Ha ha. Men are perverts) In the Lourve the trio chases each other into “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte.” After a brief chase they exit. Elmer is still pointalized and Bugs dispatches of him with a fan. At the Eiffel Tower Bob takes Kate to the top. D.J. pulls out the controls for his spy pants and gets ready to fly up there. His pants fly away without him. Immediately, he is heckled by the three bears on vacation. Henrey wasn’t really being a jerk, but D.J. steals his pants anyway. Bob waves down a helicopter piloted by Beaky Buzzard. (So he’s also on Acme’s side? Too bad we don’t get more out of him. At least he has a line here. Unlike Space Jam) Bob takes Kate’s phone and begins to fly away. Kate jumps on him and soon falls. D.J. uses the spy phone’s grappling hook to grab her and swing themselves, chocolates, and flowers to a cafe where Bugs and Daffy are waiting. Kate hugs D.J. while Bugs and Daffy play cupid. Even though they lost the picture Bug’s still has the card. They begin making plans for Africa! (Next week is the final part! Don’t miss it!)