Porky’s Super Service

“At the sound of the gong, it will be, exactly, ten gallons.”

Supervision by Ub Iwerks*; Animation by Charles Jones and Robert Clampett; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on July 3, 1937.

*Yes. THAT Ub Iwerks. The very same man who animated Mickey Mouse’s first cartoon, all by himself. As it turns out, the studio had planned to outsource some cartoons to Ub’s studio, but he only directed two before a newly promoted to director, Bob Clampett, took over the second half. (Of course, according to Chuck Jones, the two supposed Iwerk’s shorts were directed by Chuck and Bob, themselves.) Either way, this was the second of the two.

As the title suggest, we find Porky at the owner of his own service station. I’d say he is well worthy of the “super” part of the title, as sells gas for only three cents! (Sure, that comes attached with a tax ranging from state to unemployment to carpet, but a pig’s gotta make a living.) Porky is also quite the friendly type. He’s not afraid to ask where a gas tank is located, or let someone know of a flat tire.

It ain’t all sunshine and pleasantries, though. One customer has a bump in car that he’d like removed. Porky and his trusty hammer can remove the bump, but the cost is having it reappear elsewhere on the car. Standard procedures say to just keep hammering away at it until it is removed. This comes back to bite Porky when the bump decides to appear on the windshield. Actually, no. That’s good news. Not only does smashing it get the bump gone, but now Porky can charge the guy for a new windshield. And when Porky wins, everyone wins.

The meat of the picture begins with the arrival of a very ugly woman. She wants Porky to fix up her car, but this also means he can’t disrupt the child sleeping in the backseat. Kid’s a butt, but really, I too would be rather sore if my mother just abandoned me in a vehicle. (It’s always sad when parents don’t love their children enough to hold them.) Porky tries to do his job, but Junior isn’t making it easy on him. He plays with the various car functions when Porky is in prime “pain locations.” Turning on the ignition to give him a shock, or honking the horn in Porky’s ears. Porky can’t even proof that the little snot is responsible, as he feigns sleeping whenever the pig checks.

Until Porky checks on him from the opposite window that is! Caught, the kid rolls the window up, and gets Porky’s nose caught. Now at the baby’s mercy, Porky has an air hose placed in his pants, which lifts him up into the air, and gives the kid a target to shoot at with a grease gun. After a few shots, the gun appears stopped, and the kid takes a peek up the barrel. Karma decides to give him a dose, and he is as greased as the pig. Porky has no sympathy, but unfortunately, the mother comes back at this time, finding the two of them covered in muck, the kid in tears. It doesn’t look good for my pal.

Yep The mother not only drives off without paying, (b*tch) but she threatens to tell the authorities. Making matters worse, her kid ties a hose to her car’s tire, and when she drives away, she ends up dismantling Porky’s whole operation. (Actually, this also works in his favor. Now he can have her charged with stealing his business. See you in court, sucker!)

Favorite Part: Apparently, even the awful woman can’t stand her evil offspring. As when she is telling Porky off, and her kid won’t shut his yap, she slaps him. (I’d watch a ten hour loop of that.)

Well, a week from now is another anniversary for here. Number 9. I’ll be continuing the tradition of adding something new to all future posts. Hope anybody is interested.

Riff Raffy Daffy

“What a sthet-up.”

Directed by Arthur Davis; Animation by Don Williams, Emery Hawkins, Basil Davidovich, and J.C. Melendez; Story by William Scott and Lloyd Turner; Layouts by Don Smith; Backgrounds by Philip DeGuard; Voice Characterization by Mel Blanc; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on November 7, 1948. (In Cinecolor)

That’s right, Cinecolor! The precursor to the much more celebrated Technicolor. They’re might look similar, but the former can have a bit of problems having certain colors appear in their full glory. (Green and purple, for example) So, why the switch? A Technicolor strike led to some of the cartoons at this time having no choice but to go the other option. It didn’t last too long, and things would return to normal. (As normal as cartoons get, that is.)

Officer Porky is quite the responsible cop. It may be the middle of the night, but he happily patrols whistling as he does. He has to act tough though, as he finds a sleeping Daffy on a bench. The law says that he is not supposed to be sleeping in any of the locations within the park, and he is thrown out onto the streets. Cue the snow! There’s just gotta be a place where Daffy can rest, and his answer comes to him in the nearby Lacy’s department store. He makes himself comfortable in a display window, and it looks like his problems are over.

Cue Porky! This is even more illegal then the park loitering and the two have a shouting match. Half of which is kept muted, (as we are hearing things as they are) The other is comprised of indistinct shouting. Looks like Porky is going to have to remove the duck himself. Seeing as he is a policeman, he gets in, no problem, thanks to his skeleton key. Daffy invites him to sit down, offers him a smoke, and even a drink. (Which he uses as an excuse to spray soda all over his face.)

Seeing as they are in a department store, and those tend to sell sporting goods, Porky grabs a bow and arrow. Daffy glues his hand to it, so when Porky fires, he sends himself into a grandfather clock. (The cuckoo inside sends him back out) Daffy isn’t above letting his greed out either, (why do his eyes get rings? It’s scary! Save me, Porky!) as he is willing to sell Porky a gun that would be perfect for shooting ducks. (“The thingsth, sthome ducksth will do for money.”) He manages to avoid the bullets, but it looks like Porky found the cannon the cashiers stored behind the counter, (only available by personal request, and you’d better have the I.D. to back it up.) and it looks like Daffy can’t escape anymore.

He admits defeat, but points out that the only reason he did any of this, was to provide for Aphonse and Rodrigo, his…children? AWWWWW! Daffy is the father of the cutest wind-up ducklings! Porky, too, instantly regrets his actions. He allows Daffy and the kids to stay as long as they want, and Daffy finally gets the relaxation he wanted. You might think he’s being too soft on the duck, but Porky knows too well how hard it is being a father. He has three wind-up piglets of his own. (That’s my pal! He’s a champion advocate for single fathers everywhere!)

Favorite part: The ending for sure. But since I already mentioned it, I’ll pretend it’s the part where Porky finds a sobbing gopher sitting amongst his furniture. He immediately knows who evicted the rodent.

Rover’s Rival

“You old antique!”

Supervision by Robert Clampett; Animation by Charles Jones; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on October 9, 1937.

This short is very important to the history of Warner Bros, and yet, unless you’re a full fledged “Looney-tic” (like me.) you wouldn’t know that. I’ll get to why, but the summary comes first.

Porky is excited over his latest read. A book full of great tricks one can teach to their dog. Not only are they sure to build some great social bonding exercises with your hound of choice, but it surely is fun. Porky rushes to share some great times with his dog, Rover. Unfortunately, Rover is quite old and shaky. He’s at that age where one should really just let him sleep all day, or put him down. Still, Rover is as loyal as you’d expect a dog to be, and despite his lack of hearing, bad back, and possible rheumatism, he does his best to share in Porky’s joy.

Enter our titular rival. He’s chubby, he’s a puppy, his catchphrase is “Yeah, man!” so we’ll call him “Chuppy.” He’s also quite the prick. Witness event A, where Rover tries his darnedest to roll over, but Chuppy blows him back once he’s halfway. He’s also here to steal any glory he can, as he jumps through the hoop Porky is holding. He pulls it away before Rover can attempt the jump, and the old dog leaps into a washtub. (Tragic AND hilarious.)

Chuppy flat out tells Rover that he’s finished. He’s through. (Yes, both dogs can talk.) Mel even shows off his vocal prowess again, by having the little stinker imitate Rover and Porky. Porky still loves his dog, and wants to prove to everyone that he’s no has been. Why, surely he can fetch a stick. A classic! So sure of him self, Chuppy gives the old dog quite the head start before he runs off to get it himself. (Maybe he’s such a douche because his stub-tail keeps disappearing?) Porky tells the young dog to let Rover give it a try, and he half succeeds. His dentures get left behind with the stick. Chuppy retrieves both.

Porky throws again, and this time restrains the pup from stealing Rover’s thunder. Seems he threw the wrong way, as it lands next to a box of dynamite. Rover still brings it back, and Porky panics. He throws it away, and Chuppy runs after it. Rover, however, rushes to a dictionary to see what exactly this “dynamite” is. (He may be old, but the brains are there.) Chuppy, meanwhile, found the rest of the explosive stockade and brings it all back to Porky. Poor guy tries to throw it away, but the dog sends it right back. And I can’t say he just doesn’t know any better, because the little b*stard lights it all. (He’s a literal, figurative S.O.B.)

Rover finally learns the meaning of the word, and rushes to save the day. (Meanwhile, the little dog is actually laughing as Porky says his prayers. So unfair! Why’s he gotta be so adorable! Keeps me from kicking him.) Rover to the rescue! He gets the dynamite, says a silent farewell to his best friend, and gets it away from the two. Porky and Chuppy rush to his side, but it looks like they are too late. Chuppy sobs and admits that this is all his fault, and that not only CAN you teach old dogs new tricks, but he concedes that Rover is the best stick retriever there is. That’s all Rover wanted to hear, and he reveals that he’s fine. Maybe they can all be a family now.

Oh, and as for that important tidbit? This is the first time Porky did his take on “That’s all folks!” Cementing his place in Pop culture for all eternity. *salutes*

Favorite part: There was plenty of great Clampett action and comedy here, but my favorite part was when it looks like Rover died. They drew him to look like he’s been torn into pieces! There’s no blood, but it looks like there should be! Clearly neither dog has been fixed, because this picture has BALLS!

Brother Brat

“The situation is supernatural!”

Direction by Frank Tashlin; Story by Melvin Millar; Animation by Art Davis; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on July 15, 1944.

By this point in history, the U.S. has been part of World War II for a while now. All the men are off fighting, so it’s up to the women to make the weapons we need. Being just as capable (if not more so) then males, the women of the country have a solution for nearly every problem. The big one at the moment that still needs some answering: who will watch my child while I work?

Such a conundrum is a problem of some large woman. She answers it pretty quickly: the one guy who children adore and as such, didn’t go to the war: Porky! (Of course, she kinda guilts him into it. Saying this is the only way the planes are going to keep being produced.) Still, being the swell guy he is, Porky isn’t all that upset and prepares to be the best sitter he can be. Should be a cinch since she lent him a child psychology book. First step is easy: ask the kid his name. (Why not? Babies are people too.)

I take it back. This probably isn’t going to go too well, since the first time we see the kid he is playing solitaire. Well, he’s got to have a name at any rate. Fittingly, it’s Butch. (He also mocks Porky’s manner of speech. Keep it up, ugly, and I’ll murder you in your sleep. Don’t tempt me, how do you think George Carlin died?) Butch also hands Porky an anvil, and the pig ends up in the basement. So far so bad, what’s the book’s next suggestion?

Give the kid a cat? Oddly specific, but unless you’re me, it might be able to melt his heart’s rough exterior. (And immature it may be, I can’t help snickering when Porky tells the kid to play with a pussy.) I guess Porky already had a pet? I hope he didn’t go buy one just for this kid. (He’s so generous! It gets me right here.) Hey, maybe Butch isn’t so bad a kid after all, he’s playing jump rope with the cat! (Ah, the fun I had when I did that as a child. It’s probably why I had to see a psychiatrist.)

Butch also reads Esquire Jr. (Plenty of (literal) babes in there) He also does not want to be told that he is too young for this. When Porky makes this mistake, the kid bites a finger and holds on tight. The book is being no help, so Porky has to shake the little terror off. Seems that was the tipping point, as he declares war and chases my amigo with a cleaver. (You know how parents tend to defend their kid’s actions? I wonder how she’d talk her way out of this one) We won’t get any answers to that, but she at least does come to the rescue and ask why he didn’t use the book. Obviously, he did, but she shows that he was using it wrong. She meant it to be used for spanking. (No pity for Butch. He’s earned this)

Favorite part: Butch wolf whistling at his magazine. (Because a baby being horny is funny.)

Porky’s Hired Hand

“Yuh can depend on me!”

Supervision by I. Freleng; Story by Dave Monahan; Animation by Richard Bickenbach; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on November 30, 1940.

Porky’s farm has seen better days. Lately, a fox has been stealing a good number of hens, and Porky has had enough of the robbery. Good thing that the Cornstalk Employment Agency has sent him some assistance. Gregory Grunt. He looks like Goofy got hit by a severe case of swine flu. And if I’m allowed to judge by appearances, (which I totally am) he doesn’t really look like the best man for any job. I’m guessing the agency was just sick of him and wanted to make the guy somebody else’s problem. Porky’s a better man than I’ll ever be, and gives the lunkhead a chance.

Despite the very clear instructions of “do not fall asleep”, Gregory does just that. Enter the fox. He’s got some clothing, so it’s not like he’s just a wild animal trying to find an easier solution, he’s just some random a-hole who would rather steal than work. (And he dies if he crosses my path. Nobody messes with my pal) With the guard asleep, the fox helps himself to the choicest morsels. He’s even willing to take babies! (Dipsh*t! If you don’t leave anything to repopulate your theft, you won’t be able to return next year. And then where will you be?) He’s all ready to leave, but someone bars his path: Gregory?

Well, it appears I have to eat my words! (Good thing I write so tastefully) Looks like Greg was just pretending to sleep in case the fox was stupid enough to come back. (Thieves should really never hit the same joint twice.) Of course, the other possibility is that the fox just woke him up. (So that means I can upchuck my eaten words) Told to put the birds back, the fox laments that the two of them can’t be partners. I mean, clearly Gregory is a master businessman who could help make a chicken monopoly. Yeah, Gregory is all for it, but what about Porky?

And there’s a random fade out to what seems like half a second later, but the fox knows Gregory’s name by now, so I have no clue what we missed. Either way, he convinces Greg that Porky would WANT him to succeed and stealing from him is a good start. (That’s what I did while working at my local zoo. Strangely, no one wanted to come see penguins in my backyard, and now I’m out of goldfish) Give the fox some credit, he’s even willing to let Gregory’s name go first in their company’s name. (That explains why I haven’t given the fox a name. According to himself, his name IS Fox. I guess his last name is Mc Loud. I mean, he DID wake Mr. Grunt)

Telling his new partner to grab some feed, Fox makes an exit. It was a scam all along! (You know, going into business might still be a good idea. Just some chicken for thought) In his rush to escape, Fox didn’t look where he was going. It wasn’t the exit he left through, but the incubator! He fears for his life as he is no doubt going to roast! (The birds he has don’t seem to mind. They’re not even moving…oops. That’s going to set Porky back a bit) Being a nice enough, dumb guy, Gregory tries to help his partner get out. Unfortunately, his head isn’t hard enough to break the door down.

Still, his banging does alert Porky to all this, and he brings his gun down to investigate. Maybe Gregory IS a little smart, because he refrains from explaining his “business partner” is trapped, and refers to him as a fox once more. Giving him the gun, Porky instructs him to shoot as soon as the door is open. He does, but they didn’t get the fox. Seems he was aiming a bit too high. Being in the incubator so long, Fox has shrunk. (His tail didn’t though. And I’m sure it would fetch a decent price. Heh heh heh!)

Favorite part: Fox is describing the things that Gregory will obtain from this partnership. Including a secretary to sit on his lap.

The Village Smithy

“Get out of the scene now!”

Supervision by Fred Avery; Animation by Cecil Surry and Sid Sutherland; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on December 5, 1936.

Still relatively early in Avery’s career, and yet this short is comic gold! This guy really knew what he was doing! (If only all directors did the same.)

What can be said about a village smithy? Well, as the poem dictates, he is a mighty man. A strong man. And kind of a dope. I like him. He is kinda like that doofy uncle we all have. The short wastes no time in getting the jokes started. From everything falling into the scene, to awesome fourth wall jokes that don’t let up through the picture.

The smith has an apprentice/assistant, my all around favorite guy, Porky. He’s a bit clumsy, but eager to be of assistance. All we need to get the story underway is a horse. (A camel from one of their foreign legion pictures shows up. Is that a reference to “Little Beau Porky”? Very Clever, Tex!) Time to get to work! Smith measures the horse’s hooves and instructs Porky of the size. Porky gets the right size, but wrong material and begins hammering a rubber horseshoe. (It’s always good to have some around a blacksmith.) He ends up hitting his head when the hammer bounces off the shoe. (In accordance with the law of the Tooniverse, he stops once he has a helmet on.)

Let’s get this thing on the horse. Or the smith, that works too. It certainly puts a spring in his step! (I’m not sorry. The short didn’t make that joke, so it was up to me.) He rips it off, but has a hard time getting rid of it. Every throw just brings it back to his head. His solution is simple: shoot the freaking thing. It works, but Porky is banned from getting more. Instead, he is told to heat a new one up at the forge. Prepare yourself, the last bit of the cartoon is one wild and funny gag!

Porky trips with the searing horseshoe, and drops it on the poor creature. As it runs in pain, it hits the smith and drags him along. Their destination: all over the countryside! They destroy a great many of the surrounding landmarks. Demolishing a general store, a bank, and nearly running over a digger in the road. Horses have a goodly amount of stamina, so unless something can stop it, it’s probably going to keep on going. Luckily for the smith, a fence acts like a rubber band and sends them back, all the way home. (Reversing the footage they already had. Brilliant, Avery! One can only imagine what your future projects will contain!) Back at the beginning, the smith is shaken, but apart from some color changing eyebrows, he’s fine. He would like to know how this all happened, though. As Porky explains, he accidentally repeats his screw-up, and the whole thing starts over again!

Favorite part: Well, obviously, the ending gag is the best part, but it is the little touches that really brings it together. As they run, the smith pauses the action to comment on the situation. (A common Avery gag.) Even better, when they reverse everything, he speaks backwards. That clever Avery! Death should have given him a pass.

Bugs Bunny’s Howl-oween Special

“Beware! Beware!”

Producer: Hal Geer; Directed by David Detiege, Abe Levitow and Maurice Noble; Story by Cliff Roberts; Music by Harper McKay. A TV special aired on CBS on October 26, 1978.

Halloween is such a fun time of year. You can be as macabre as you want and nobody bats an eye. Having any excuse to eat nothing but chocolate is also a bonus. And unlike other holidays, this one doesn’t have any deeper meaning anymore, and is used solely as a fun excuse. And naturally, there are plenty of cartoon treats on the side.

This special consist of clips from other “spooky” themed Looney Tunes and edited together with some new footage. (Sort of like Frankenstein’s monster.) Even if you aren’t the expert on these shorts, like I am, it’s not hard to tell where edits were made. Voices sounding different and animation not syncing up properly.

We start with a bit of “A-haunting we will go.” Right after Daffy’s nephew warns of the real witch, and his uncle drags him out to prove him wrong, we cut to a snippet of “Broom Stick Bunny.” Hazel still invites Bugs in, but doesn’t explain why she is giving him a tea designed to un-uglify someone. Even more confusing, after Bugs reveals himself to be a rabbit, she still wants him to drink, as she sees “that witch” as a threat. (You’ve lost me. Can a rabbit be a witch? And if the two are combined, will that spell the end of all witches?)

Bugs refuses to drink her tea, saying that he only will drink the kind his doctor makes. So, now we jump to a “Hyde and Hare” clip. While Bugs is chased by Hyde, his screams wake up a sleeping Sylvester, and we next jump to an abridged “Hyde and go Tweet.” After that, Bugs has somehow managed to escape Hyde and samples his formula. Now properly scary, he leaves to try and frighten Hazel. She is immune, turns him back to normal, and that makes him fall asleep. Next up: “A witch’s tangled hare.”

After all that, we finally catch up to Daffy arriving at her place, with most of that short being played. It cuts right after Daffy leaves. (Here’s an omission I never noticed before: when Speedy tries to make Daffy drink, the table is gone. But there is still a chunk of Speedy’s clothes missing that is table shaped.)

After all this, Bugs is still not impressed with Hazel’s attempts at being scary. She decides to show him, by frightening the cat that is accompanying Porky who is coming to stay at her house, since she put up a vacancy sign. (She now lives amongst some other buildings? Magic works fast!) So now, we get a mishmash of “Claws for alarm” and “Scaredy Cat” playing. And despite Hazel saying SHE is going to be the one scaring the cat, he runs off when Porky orders him to get out. (Not to mention, was she doing anything? Were all those mice under her control?)

I guess Bugs is convinced, as he offers to team up with her to frighten people, and proposes a toast. Upon drinking she turns into Count Bloodcount and “Transylvania 6-5000” plays. To be fair, they put in some new dialogue here, with Bugs wondering where the witch went, and Hazel speaking instead of the vampire. (But they don’t explain why Bugs is dressed as an umpire suddenly. Unless you’ve seen the original, you’re going to be confused.)

Once back to her self, she chases Bugs as she has had enough of him. (I do love the face he makes as he runs away from her.) This leads to our last clip from “Bewitched Bunny.” This time, once Hazel is transformed, Bugs doesn’t make a sexist remark, and just notes that no one wants to be alone on Halloween. The two then go to share Hazel’s brew.

This special is kind of a mess. The cartoons don’t always flow together neatly, and will probably confuse anyone over the age of five. I’m sure little kids will love it through and through, but that doesn’t include me. Here’s wishing any of you REAL people who read this, a happy Halloween. (Seriously though people. Stop leaving your spam on my website. You’re just wasting your time.)

Confusions of a Nutzy Spy

“That guy sure d-d-does act suspicious.”

Supervision by Norman McCabe; Story by Don Christensen; Animation by I. Ellis; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on January 23, 1943.

You may have noticed that lately, I’ve been talking about many wartime shorts. Well, in honor of mothers everywhere, (including my own; who I don’t think has ever visited this place) this will be the last one for awhile. And there’s no better way to end things off, than with my brother from another porcine mother: Porky!

Said b.f.a.p.m. is working as a constable. And he has decorated his place quite nicely. He has a bunch of hand prints on the wall labeled as a “Fingerprint Dept.” (Fittingly enough, all the prints have three fingers and a thumb), a letter A labeled as “Exhibit A”, a rather sizable limb that is “The Long Arm of the Law”, and several wanted posters. (In the case of the woman, she’s just simply wanted.)

And where would a constable be without a trusty bloodhound by his side? Old Eggbert might be a bit lazy, but his sense of smell is second to none. Good thing too, as there’s a German spy on the loose! A feline fellow by the alias of: The Missing Lynx! (Or maybe that is his real name. Poor guy probably had no choice but to be a spy) Befitting his title, this spy is a master of disguise. I mean, you’d have to be to fool Porky. But it only lasts so long before the pig realizes that the strange person who can make himself look exactly like someone he’s never seen and is wanted by the law, might, just might, be the spy of which he seeks.

And what is this guy even doing here in the states? He’s going to blow up a bridge! Well, that’s what he intends to do. Despite the fact he is capable of keeping Porky away by donning a Porky mask and ordering him away, (Said mask is now in my hands. No shame) Eggbert was able to grab the bomb bag and return it to the Nazi. He hands the explosive to Porky and ducks into a nearby cave. Once he realizes why the bag is ticking, Porky joins him. Eggbert comes too. (Dogs are pack animals.) Eggbert has been sneezing throughout the whole short, and he lets one loose here as well. Porky and the lynx are flung through the air. Porky is saved by grabbing onto a pole, but the lynx ends up embedded in a cliff wall with the bomb at his feet. But wouldn’t you know it? The bomb was a dud. Angered, he bangs it on the ground in frustration. That was all that was needed, and they spy is no more. He may be dead, but he’s just happy his bomb worked after all.

Meet John Doughboy

“Our Open Door Policy is responsible for the Draft”

Supervision by Robert Clampett; Story by Warren Foster; Animation by Vive Risto; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released on July 5, 1941.

Want to learn some military secrets? Secrets that are over seventy years old? Porky has got what you want to know! (Sadly, he disappears from the short after his introduction.) Well, what have we got? We see our factories that pour molten metal into tank shapes. (Without those pesky molds. Here in America, we just pour it out, and it takes the shape.) Planes are an essential part of are army. And they can do some pretty spectacular things. A spitfire plane can actually spit fire A couple of guys aren’t worried about being drafted. The bigger one tells the smaller one, that he especially doesn’t have to worry. He’s too short. Unfortunately for him, stilts WERE around by the forties. There are some pretty quick gags too. A machine gun nest is actually a nest for the gun, and we see some of The Draft Horses that actually were picked. (Seeing as they all came from South America, the general is probably just racist.) Considering their ethnicity, It’s no surprise they start a conga line. An anti-tank gun is being tested, but the idiots who are in charge are too busy having a cigarette measuring contest to fire the weapon. So, it’s a good thing that we have other tools to fight with. A land destroyer so fast, that all one can see is a blur. (Slow it down, and you’ll see it’s just Jack Benny and Rochester in their car. Whatever works.) Okay, so maybe we aren’t as prepared as we could be in the event of a war. At least, if all we want to do is fight back. We’ve got a lovely defense system. Should enemy planes ever fly by, Miss Liberty will give them a dose of pesticide. Takes care of those annoying pests.

A Connecticut Rabbit in King Arthur’s Court (A.K.A. Bugs Bunny in King Arthur’s Court)

Never again do I take directions from Ray Bradbury.

Produced, Directed, and “Plagerized” by Chuck Jones; Music by Dean Elliot. A TV special released in 1978.

Bugs is on his way to Georgia for a peanut festival. But somehow, he has burrowed his way into medieval England. (Which he mistakes for Pittsburgh, due to all the smoke.) Said smoke is coming from a dragon which is being chased by Elmer as a knight. Finding the tracks leading to Bugs, he concludes that the dragon is a shapeshifter. He takes Bugs as a prisoner. They ride: to Camelot! But there aren’t any jovial singing knights here. Just the king and his knights. The king in fact looks a lot like Daffy. And Merlin looks an awful lot like Yosemite Sam. (Also, I think he stole Yen Sid’s hat and dyed it black.) Elmer offers up his catch to the king. Merlin suggests they kill the “dragon.” Not really caring about any of this, the king permits it. Bugs is set to be roasted, when he realizes that this all seems like some kind of Mark Twain story. He asks the varlet, (played by my pal Porky, who for some reason is having an even more difficult time speaking than usual) what day it is and finds that its the day that a solar eclipse happened. He demands to be set free, or he’ll blot out the sun. And boy is it ever an eclipse. One can even see the stars. The king is horrified and offers half his kingdom to the rabbit to undo his work. Bugs complies. Once gone, the king thanks Bugs and offers him something even better than half of his kingdom. A whole 32nd of it! Bugs declines and only asks that he be given a dragon. The king complies, Merlin is angry, and Fudd is convinced this was all a trick. So what did Bugs want with a dragon? He decided to open up his own armory, and uses the dragon’s flame to create steam, which in turn he uses to make electricity. Turns out Bugs was way ahead of all those types who needed to know how to train their dragons. They act just like any other animal. Feed them, and they’ll spend most of their time sleeping. (Yes, he alludes them to cats, but that sounds like pretty much every animal ever to me.) Being a rabbit, he specializes in armor for animals. Foxes, (why not?) Deer, (which he says can be outfitted for moose and elk as well. I should hope so. Since those ARE deer. Also antelope.) Tweety birds, (pratical) Mice, (it even has a little “S” on the chest. Wonder what that stands for) Cats, (to not play favorites, and besides it offers protection from dogs) Flies, (which Porky does point out is going to hamper the animal’s flying skills. Which will leave it as nothing more than a walk.) Roosters, (to prevent people from chopping off their heads. Everyone loves eating rooster meat) Rattlesnakes, (which don’t need armor, but hate being left out) and Porcupines. (Because it’s not like they have quills or anything. Also, he struggles to say it, while Porky has absolutely no problems) But his practice is put on hold, as Elmer finds his dragon and attacks. When Bugs goes to confront him, Elmer assumes Bugs is just in his rabbit form again and challenges him to a duel. Bugs and Porky versus Elmer and Merlin. And the king is loving every minute of it. They start off jousting. Bug’s lance is so long that he pole vaults over Elmer and chases Merlin into a moat. Charging again, he uses a magnet to remove Fudd’s armor, and he ends up chasing Merlin into the moat. Elmer fires an arrow, but Bug redirects it and it chases Elmer and Merlin into the moat. Then the two use a catapult, but Bugs launches the rock back with a spring and the two end up in the moat once more. (And Bugs calls Merlin out on using a cannon, seeing as gunpowder is yet to be invented.) As he leaves for a coffee break, he finds what he believes to be a carrot peeler. It’s really Excalibur and Bugs is recognized as the true king. Porky bows. Elmer and Merlin also bow to the true cartoon king. And the current king even willingly hands over his crown. (A duck as king really is ridiculous.) And so Bugs just adapts to living in a different century. All hail King Art-Hare! (The pun IS mightier than the sword!)