Early to Bet

“So remember folks, the gambling bug will get you if you don’t watch out!”

This is one of those shorts that was a one shot. That did not make it any less hilarious, though. It opens with an nature documentary sort of thing. We are introduced to the Gambling Bug. (Hemipterus addictus.) An insect whose bite inflicts anyone with a need to gamble. Today, however, the bug thinks he needs a vacation, so he goes for a walk in the country. He witnesses a dog ask a cat to play cards with him, but the cat refuses. Perhaps it’s because every time the cat loses he must face a penalty?

The bug decides that this is a job for him, and gives the cat a bite. As to be expected, he loses and we see his penalties range from sneezing while being forced to chew bubble gum, to being forced to roll out a barrel of gunpowder. Finally the dog decides that the cat is too unlucky and if they play more, he’ll die. (Ruining the dogs fun). Feeling bad the bug plays the cat… only to promptly lose and have to face a penalty: being swatted.

Personal Rating: 3

Daffy Duck Hunt

“B-B-Benedict Arnold!”

Porky and his dog, the Barnyard Dawg are out hunting. Cue duck. Daffy empties all the shells and taunts Porky and his dog with some french dancing. Porky tells the dog to get him and the dog decides that a trick will help him win. He begins to cry and Daffy asks what’s wrong. The dog explains (lies) that if he does not catch a duck, Porky will torture him. In a rare moment of selflessness, Daffy says they will pretend he was caught. After the dog brings Daffy back to his master, Porky decides that one duck is enough for dinner. They go home and put Daffy in a freezer.

Porky goes to sleep whilst the dog hears thumps in the freezer. His two consciousnesses appear and try to make him choose to let Daffy freeze or at least warm up for helping him. Choosing the right choice, he puts Daffy in the oven to get some heat. Daffy tries to leave but is explained that he is not going to leave. Daffy makes a lot of racket and Porky storms in to see what is going on. Daffy jumps in the dog’s mouth and the poor mutt gets beaten.

More of this zaniness follows. Finally, Porky says that if the duck is not in the freezer then the dog dies. Opening it up he allows Daffy to jump out, dressed like Santa and has them sing “Jingle Bells.” Porky then notices the calendar says April, and gets an axe to finish Daffy. However, he is stopped by the patch on Daffy that says, “Do not open until Christmas”. Daffy figures that by then, he will have figured a way out of the mess he got himself into.

Personal Rating: 3 (but it teeters dangerously towards the “4” category)

The Foghorn Leghorn

“Still trying to prove you’re a chicken?”

Don’t I pick the most creatively titled cartoons to review?

It starts with Henery Hawk begging his dad to let him go chicken hunting with him. His dad says no because chickens are vicious monsters. This does not deter Henery in the slightest and secretly follows his pop. At the chicken farm Henery’s father gets beaten up by Foghorn. Having witnessed this Henery asks if that was a chicken. Not wanting to admit he was beaten by his prey, Dad identifies the rooster as “a loud mouthed schnook”

The dad goes away for the rest of the film and Henery tries to catch a chicken on his own. Finding a chickens “cave” (doghouse) he ventures in and easily nabs a “chicken.” Seeing this, Foghorn claims that he himself is a chicken while accidentally beating the farmyard Dawg. Henery does not believe and of course the dog calls a rooster a schnook as well. Eventually, after many failed attempts and many beatings of the dog. (Who thinks Foghorn is the one bothering him) he finally calls the chicken a chicken. Henery hears this and carries the rooster off. Now Foghorn identifies himself as a loud mouthed schnook.

Personal Rating: 3

The Return of Mr. Hook

“Now I’ll show you the back.”

Since I am talking about war time cartoons, I figure I better talk about this as well.

We see our hero, Hook, telling his shipmates about his post war plans. They laugh and ask about them. He goes to say he plans to woo and marry a girl. (In my opinion she is ugly. And her name is Choo-choo? Does she have a brother named Chugga?) Coming to the end of his plans, he sees all of them buying bonds. “Any bonds today” plays as it ends.

Personal Rating: 1

Boobs in the Woods

“That’s my lake.”

Porky and Daffy worked great together, but to me they were at their best when Daffy was a screwball. Don’t get me wrong though, I still love it when Daffy was more serious, but for me this is comedy genius.

So we got Porky just out trying to paint a picture when Daffy gets in his way. What follows is our favorite duck getting the best of our porcine friend. As we all know, Daffy usually wins, but in this one (which I think is Daffy’s last crazy cartoon) Porky wins.

Personal Rating: 4

Big Top Bunny

“Am I not magnificent?”

Don’t worry. I know I am. However, this quote is said by Bruno, an acrobatic circus bear at colonel Kornys’ circus, who is angered to find that he will be sharing the spotlight with a rabbit. can you guess who?

Did you say Bugs? Good for you! If it weren’t for Bruno then I would say that this would just be a generic cartoon. Bruno has a great accent and he makes a great antagonist. “Innocent as a newborn baby. Baby rat that is!” says Bugs.

Personal Rating: 3

Rabbit’s Kin

“How many lumps do you want”?

This is a real pity. This is the only cartoon to feature Pete Puma. It begins with a little rabbit (who is 50% cute, 50% annoying) running from him and running into Bugs, who decides to help him. Pete is a great character; half smart and half dumb. He tries tricks that would fool anyone except Bugs, who just goes along with it. Stan Freberg did a good job voicing Pete and it would have been great if he ever came back.

Personal Rating: 4

What’s up, Doc?

“Oh we’re the boys of the chorus, we hope you like our show, we know you’re rooting for us, but now we have to gooooooooo!”

This is one of the shorts where Bugs tells us of his past. I however find the other one (“A hare grows in Manhattan”) to be the superior one. That aside, this is still worth a watch. This cartoon is great for many reasons, but my favorite is when Bugs (who is out of work) is asked by Elmer to be part of his slapstick comedy after Fudd passes by Al Jolson, Jack Benny, Eddie Cantor, and Bing Crosby. “They’ll never amount to anything”, Fudd says. As always, I hope you are enjoying this place.

Personal Rating: 3