Herr Meets Hare

“Watch your blood pressure, Chubby!”

Directed by I. Freleng; Story by Michael Maltese; Animation by Gerry Chiniquy; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Merrie Melody released in 1945.

Hitler’s pet, Hermann Göring, (or as the short affectionately calls him, Fatso) is taking a break from being part of the worst kind of people in the world, (or as no one calls them affectionately, the Nazis) and is off on a hunting trip in the Black Forest. Bugs is tunneling nearby, and for the first time ever, makes a wrong turn at Albuquerque. The tubby one sets his gun sights on the rabbit. While Bugs asks Hermann for directions to Las Vegas. Hermann muses out loud about Vegas, and Bugs, ever the helpful sort, gives him the directions and sends him on his way. But as much as it pains me to admit, Göring was not that dumb and soon remembers that such a city does not exist in Germany. Bugs admires the medals the man has, but proves them all to be nothing but tin. Angry, Hermann starts insulting Hitler. Bugs uses this opportunity to disguise himself as the führer to really mess with Göring. (You ask why there is a mirror in the woods? I ask, “Why does it teleport to a different tree?”) He begs for forgiveness. He even gives a kiss. (♪ Right in the führers face! ♪) This causes some of Bugs fake mustache to come off on Hermann’s lips and upon heiling himself, he wises up. Chasing again, he hears something to his right. (Although Bugs comes from his left. Whoops.) It’s Bugs dressed as Brunhilde. (A good seventeen before “What’s Opera Doc?”) Hermann dresses as Sigfried and they dance. (Bugs getting the Nazi to crash into his shield) Hermann tries to set a falcon on him, but the bird can’t understand his commands through his accent. Bugs explains he is supposed to catch a rabbit. The bird grabs Bugs…and nods to show he understands. He takes off. Bugs wonders if the bird can actually catch him. Hermann has no doubts. Bugs tickles him and dives back into his hole. Unbelievably, the bird is at the bottom and catches Bugs in a sack. Yes, Bugs was actually caught! Gleeful over his prize, Hermann rushes to show Hitler. Hitler is happy and takes a peek into the bag. He freaks out and runs away with Hermann doing the same. Turns out, Bugs was able to scare them off with his Josef Stalin cosplay.

Personal Rating: 3

Scrap Happy Daffy

“What I’d give for a can of spinach now”

Supervision by Frank Tashlin; Animation by Art Davis; Story by Don Christensen; Musical Direction by Carl W. Stalling. A Looney Tune released in 1943.

Another one considered to be one of the 100 greatest Looney Tunes. This was also the first cartoon Tashlin directed upon coming back to Warner Bros. after leaving Columbia Studios.

We open on Daffy climbing his giant scrap pile. He’s got plenty of American pride! (And cans whose insides change colors.) Would you like to make your own scrap pile? It’s easy! Their is plenty of items you can donate to help the troops, and Daffy is happy to list them all! (Although he will take a quick break to whistle at the bathing suit model painted on his fence.) This will surely get the ire of Hitler. And it does indeed. Daffy’s pile is known the world over and Hitler is furious. He wants that pile destroyed and sends one of his subs to do so. The sub has a secret weapon. The perfect way to get rid of metal in a cartoon: a goat. (I would like to point out how scientifically inaccurate this is, but I hope you already know it) The goat happily chows down, but soon comes down with a case of hiccups. A patrolling Daffy hears the noise and attempts to intimidate the intruder, before realizing he’s looking at his reflection. Finding the real source of the noise, he takes pity on the ungulate and mixes him up a hiccup cure. Not long after this, he spies the swastika on the goat’s collar and realizes what it is there for. (And calling it one of the best names I’ve ever heard: a tin termite. Brilliant.) The goat tries to strike, but Daffy takes advantage of its moral compass by wearing glasses. (Nazi goats have limits to their cruelties) All too soon though, he loses this protection and is sent flying. He wants to give up, but the apparitions of his ancestors remind him that Americans don’t give up. (Did you know Lincoln was a duck? A duck that somehow grew a beard even) Filled with some new found pride, Daffy evolves into: SUPER AMERICAN! (Two references to cartoons from the Fleischer studios based on already existing characters in one Looney Tune? It must be my birthday! No wait, that’s this Sunday) With his new abilities, Daffy has the goat running back to the sub. The Nazis fire their cannon at him, but he punches their shots away one by one. With no other alternative, they try to escape. Daffy grabs hold of the sub’s periscope before the screen dissolves to him wrestling with a faucet back at his pile. It was nothing but a dream! However, the goat and Nazis are there too, with their sub now part of Daffy’s collection. They ask to be left out of his next dream.

Personal Rating: 3

The remaining Mr. Hook shorts

In my first year of doing this blog, I made a small post about one of this guy’s shorts. Since I barely said a dang thing about him, I’ll give you a quick rundown. Much like Snafu was made for the military, Hook was made for the navy. (Well, his first short was shown in theaters, but it was made by Walter Lantz studios, so we’re not talking about it.) Unfortunately, Hook wasn’t as interesting as Snafu. He was a goody-two shoes who was happy to follow the rules. And all three of his shorts were about buying war bonds. They’re still entertaining though. (Except for Hook’s annoying laugh. That’s his main character trait) All three of them were released in 1945.

The Good Egg

“Now ain’t this cute!”

Hook is asleep on his ship. His bad side (personified in the classic cartoon way: a devil version of himself) finds his war bond. (He takes it to bed with him?) He tells the sailor to not waste his time with such things, but his good side disagrees. (What’s more, he flat out beats up the devilish side.) He then explains all the benefits of purchasing a bond. He even recommends purchasing more. After the war, he’ll have a nest egg that will make it possible for him to purchase new clothes and a nice house. A stork also pops up, but the good side says that it will come later.

Personal Rating: 1

Tokyo Woes

“I got a mess of hot platters for you today!”

This short begins with a Japanese radio show. Starring some of the most racist caricatures I’ve ever seen. (Yeah, it was a different time, but they have way too many teeth! It creeps me out!) Our hostess’ (whom we first see on a toilet) main focus is telling the world that bonds are useless. This angers our perfectly behaved protagonist. He’ll show her! He launches a missile her way, but surely someone as perfect as Hook would never actually kill anybody! (What do you think he’s in? A war?) The missile just unloads a sentient war bond. Good thing he has no moral compass! He hands her many bombs and hightails it out. The bombs explode and leave nothing but their hair, glasses, and grotesquely over-sized teeth. Later, when the war is over, the same bond comes to Hook to make good of his promise. Granting him new clothes, a nice car, and a boob job. (I’m not joking.) The bond asks if there’s anything else he wants. Hook agrees that there is, but he can get it himself. We end with him being kissed by a woman. Money can’t buy love you see.

Personal Rating: 1

A couple more Private Snafu shorts: Coming Snafu/Gripes

Coming!! SNAFU

“This…is Snafu.”

Directed by Chuck Jones. Released in 1943.

It’s the first short with Snafu! The goofiest soldier in the army. He’ll walk right off a dock if he’s not paying attention. It’s really more of a trailer than anything else, but we are told of what we can expect from Snafu. (Who has freckles in this short and his voice is slightly different. Still Mel though) You can find him in the infantry, tying his pack the wrong way or in the air corp towing a plane to its location. But he thinks about a stripper the whole time and doesn’t notice all the trouble the plane is being dragged into. Don’t worry though, his imaginary girlfriend’s breasts are censored, as is her naval. (Was my brother a part of this?) Naturally, his actions land him in jail. We are told of some of his coming attractions before we end, like “Spies”, “The Goldbrick”, and also…

Personal Rating: 2. (It really is just a trailer, but it at least makes garners interest)

Gripes

“If I ran this army, boy, I’m telling you. I’d make a few changes. That’s just what I’d do.”

Directed by I. Freleng. Released in 1943

Poor Snafu. He joined the army for fun and what does he end up doing? K.P. Specifically, scrubbing pans, peeling potatoes, and sweeping the floor. All at the same time. And there’s so many vaccinations. Even his tattoo is poked in the butt. He’s unhappy and wishes he could be in charge of things. Enter Technical Fairy First Class making his debut here. He uses his magic to promote Snafu to the highest position and Snafu couldn’t be happier. He spoils the men there and lets them have anything they want and lets them hang out with their girlfriends whenever they want. It’s a pretty nice life for awhile. But there is a war going on and the Germans are being a bit more serious. They are coming our way with bombs! Snafu tries to rally his troops, but they don’t listen to him anymore and he is left to fend for himself. Since he can’t win, he digs a hole and hides himself, but the bombs are equipped with shovels and end up finding their target. Luckily for Snafu, it was all a dream. And luckily for America, he’s happy to go back to his work.

Personal Rating: 3

3 Private Snafu Shorts: The Goldbrick/The Home Front/Censored

And they’re all directed by Frank Tashlin! Hope you’re not sick of the guy yet. Don’t worry, we’ll be taking a break after this post.

“The Goldbrick” Released in 1943

“I do believe I’m putting on weight”

Snafu is sleeping when he is woken up. (What else would he be doing if he was woken up?) He is naturally unhappy about this, and wishes to not have to get up for drills. A sprite shows up named Goldie and he lets Snafu in on some secrets of avoiding work. Fake illness and you can spend a day in bed with a hot nurse by your side. (Who must suck at her job if she can’t tell he’s faking) When digging a trench, Goldie advises him to dig just enough for his head, and he’s earned a well deserved nap. Instead of pushing a load up a hill, have someone help while you sit on the load and push. Soon Snafu is lazy and out of shape. This comes back to bite him when he’s actually on the field. Deciding to goldbrick, he limps towards a convenient hospital. It’s a trap of course, and he ends up smashed by a hammer. He’s okay though and gets out. More trouble is out there, as an enemy tank chases him down. He digs a trench, but as he only knows to dig enough for his head, his rear sticks out and the tank crushes him. He’s dead. (Snafu dies quite a few times in his shorts) Goldie then reveals that he was really Japanese the whole time. (Remember: we were enemies. Japanese people do not look or sound like that.) But Snafu will be remembered, thanks to his 22 karat goldbrick grave.

Personal Rating: 3

“The Home Front” Released in 1943

“I didn’t know you cared.”

This short begins with Snafu in a very cold location. He complains because that’s what he does. He figures that all his loved ones are enjoying themselves back home. His dad is playing pool, his mom plays bridge and gossips and moonlights as a hen, (okay, maybe that’s just a joke) and his grandpa is being a pervert at a burlesque show. Worst of all, his sweet Sally Lou is no doubt dating someone else. (Isn’t that how women are? If you leave them, they replace you? I’m kidding) Out pops good ole’ Technical Fairy First Class. He has a tv and lets Snafu see how much fun his family is having. Turns out, that Snafu is the black sheep of the family, as the rest are working real hard. His dad’s building tanks, his mom’s planting a victory garden, and gramps is reinforcing battleships. And dear sweet Sally Lou? She joined the W.A.C.s. (I hope you feel like a dope Snafu) He tries to give her a kiss, but since she’s not really there, he kisses the fairy instead. (Hey, he lived. That’s rare.)

Personal Rating: 3

“Censored” Released in 1944

“Mail this for me!”

Snafu is trying to send the lovely Sally Lou a letter. (A wimpy, short, dumb, lazy, man gets a hot chick? It’s plausible. My cousin married someone very similar, just tall. And I can say that here, because they are never going to see it.) Only one things is preventing him from getting to the postbox. The censor. He/She/It catches Snafu and shreds his letter to nothing but “Greetings” and “Farewell.” On a train, Snafu tries again and this time folds it into a paper airplane. Tossing it at someone outside does not work, as the censor has a net. The note is returned to Snafu as paper dolls. On the ship to his next destination, he tries again with the help of a dove he has in his pants. (Not. One. Word.) The assisstant censor, (a hawk) catches the bird who points out it was not his plan. The letter is beaked this time. Snafu is getting desperate to talk to M.L. and luckliy for him his pal Technical Fairy First Class agrees to send it after Snafu tells him it’s safe. He and his girl use a code when speaking. The note delivers and Mary gets itttttt… I never thought i’d see this much skin in a Warner Bros. short. (Yes, I know these shorts were for the armed forces, but she’s not even wearing a bra.) Even though he’s asked her to keep quiet, she goes on to tell her mother who goes on to tell more people. Eventually the Japanese here of it too and prepare an ambush at Bingo Bango island, where the U.S. is heading to. Unaware of the dangers, Snafu and the others land only to get blown up. Turns out it was all a dream. (Three shorts today. 1 death, 1 live, and 1 both) Turns out T.F.F.C never sent the letter. Having learned his lesson, Snafu censors it himself.

Personal Rating: 3

Plane Daffy

“You think I’m a Benedict whoozits, or somethin’?”

Directed by Frank Tashlin.  Released in 1944

You know what is one of the most heroic birds? Carrier pigeons. It’s amazing that we used them to deliver messages during WWII. But alas, they are not quite at the top of the food chain, and did fall prey to falcons. I mention this, because the short is based on these birds. In a parody of “Dawn Patrol” we see a bunch of pigeons worriedly puffing cigarettes dry in one puff. Seems Homer Pigeon is A.W.O.L. and indeed he is. He is the company of Matta Hari! (I think she’s a falcon) Much like in the Private Snafu short “Censored”, he is slowly led to leaking info to the axis. As dumb as he sounds though, he’s no stool pigeon and refuses to tell. Matta (not voiced by Foray as some might think, but by Sara Berner. Who you might know as Beaky Buzzard’s mom) in turn, makes him a drink and once it’s drunk he can’t stop blabbing. Hitler of course hears it all and Homer, sadly shoots himself in shame. (Outside of course. Don’t want to make a mess) What can be done? All the other pigeons can’t do it, because they will just as likely fall prey to her seducing. The answer lies not in a pigeon, but in a duck! Daffy vows to deliver a secret document, and he won’t be sidetracked because he hates women. (Easy now ladies, I’m sure he didn’t mean it) He takes off and neither wind, hail, rain or sleet can stop him. He even flies past Matta’s place without a second glance. Until she shows some gam. Then he’s reeled in. (See girls? He may hate your personality, but no straight man can resist your meat.) Daffy isn’t all lost though. Inside, he does his best to not play her games. She kisses him and he is electrified! He melts away into a crack, but quicky un-melts as soon as she tries to see his paper. He gives her a kiss of his own and she sparks too. Daffy runs but can’t seem to escape her. (Why doesn’t he just leave? It’s scary outside) Eventually she has him pinned to the wall with a gun. Daffy shows her! He eats the paper so she can’t ever get it. (Although he regrets having only one secret he can swallow for his country) Not to be deterred, Matta straps him into an x-ray and alerts the fuhrer to see it. (Wb was ahead of their times. The first skype!) Hitler, Hermann Göring and Joseph Goebbels eagerly look to see. What’s the message? “Hitler is a stinker!” (HAH!) Hitler is understandably mad, as that is no secret. His cronies agree as everyone knows that. (One of the best lines ever) Embarrassed at their blunder, they shoot themselves. I think we have this war in the bag!

Personal Rating: 4

Private Snafu Double Feature: Rumors/Snafuperman

Sorry for lack of post yesterday. Will be going on a brief hiatus for about two weeks. Now without ado…….

RUMORS

“Sounds harmless enough. Innocent stuff.”

This short starts up in the latrine. Snafu is there and one of his friends mentions that the day is “nice for a bombing.” Snafu thinks about this. Here we see the birth of a rumor. All it needs is to be released into another ear. Snafu tells another soldier that he’s heard there in for a bombing. (Okay? He heard the guy say it was a nice day for a bombing, not that it was.) The rumor gets bigger and bigger and begins to multiply. Soon it becomes sentient. (I just want to point out that these rumors are the stuff of nightmares. And it’s awesome) They soon catch up to Snafu, and they escalate more and more. From all the allies giving up, to us losing the war. But if you know the history books, then you know we won. However, Snafu and the rest of the camp are quarantined with “Rumoritis” leaving him stuck in there with those monstrosities.

Personal Rating: 4

SNAFUPERMAN

“Enemies of democracy, Beware!”

While the rest of the camp is keeping busy, Snafu is busy screwing around. He tells them that studying is a waste and that action is all that’s needed. In comes a sprite known as Technical Fairy First Class. (what a mouthful) He decides to put Snafu’s money where his mouth is, and turns him into a superhero. Snafu takes a bomb adressed to Adolf and leaves for Berlin. Since he did not take a map, he almost drops it on the capitol. (He couldn’t tell he never left the continent?) T.F.F.C. brings it back. Later Snafu sees a tank and rips it open. Only to find it’s an American tank. (While he should have known that, what was the tank doing?) Then a mess of messerschmits come and drop their bombs. Snafu grabs them all and sets them down safely. Turns out they were delayed reaction bombs, and they blow up sending him to the infirmary. There, he yells for T.F.F.C. to bring him a field manuel. (Aww, he learned his lesson.)

Personal Rating: 3

So next time, I’ll be talking about something I’ve wanted to talk about since I started the blog. See you after the break.

Falling Hare

“Hey, I bet that was… say, do you think that… hey, could thata been a… gremlin?”

Directed by Robert Clampett

Originally, this short was to be called “Bugs Bunny and the gremlin” but Disney told them to stop, as they were making a film called “Gremlins” based on a book by the amazing Roald Dahl. That never happened. At least the gremlins would appear in Epic Mickey. What am i doing? As i was saying…

At a U.S. army air field, Bugs is reading atop a bomb. He laughs at the thought of gremlins and their “die-a-bull-icall sab-o-tay-gee.” The bomb he is on starts shaking and Bugs looks at the source. It’s a tiny creature trying to set off the bomb Bugs is on. Bugs suggests he give it a try and only stops at the last moment. Bugs realizes that was a gremlin and gives chase. The gremlin hits him over the head with a mallet and leads him onto one of the planes. While Bugs is searching for him, he starts the plane up. He taunts Bug’s from behind a door (with an unbelievably funny laugh) and Bugs charges time and time again to get at him. The gremlin opens the door eventually and Bugs runs out of the plance. (Briefly becoming a jack@$$) He hurries back to the plane and slips out the other door thanks to the banana peels the gremlin left for him. Bug’s manages to stay in the plane, but the gremlin is now trying to crash into some skyscrapers. Bugs narrowly avoids a collision but the plane is now in a nosedive. Bugs completly loses it while the gremlin couldn’t care less. (I guess he doesn’t mind dying, or he’s invincible) The plane gets up to “incredible ain’t it?” miles per hour and the wings burn off. Then, a few feet off the ground the plane stops in midair. The two characters apologize for running out of gas. Dang A cards.

A final note: this is another one of those Super Smash Bros. Brawl shorts too. Mario plays his usaul role of Bugs, with Ollimar as the gremlin.

Personal Rating: 4

Draftee Daffy

“♪Oh the little man from the dra-aft board is coming to see me!♪”

Directed by Robert Clampett

Daffy is reading the paper and is happy to learn that the U.S. is doing great. (WWII) He dances around and sings patriotic songs. His number is interupted by a call from the president. He’s being drafted. Daffy loses all of his vigor and cries. He tries to keep look out for the little man who will deliver his letter, but he’s already there. (The little guy is strangley cute. I want a plush toy of him.) Daffy barricades the door and peeks out the upstairs window. He’s there. Daffy puts on a disguise and peeks again. He’s there wearing the same disguise. Daffy packs up, calls for a flight to the North Pole, and runs to other door of his. The little man is there. Daffy hides in the closet. He’s in there. (Daffy reacts twice to this) Daffy bolts, leaving the little man with a bomb. The man returns it. After the explosion, Daffy takes drastic measures. He locks the man in a safe, builds a house’s wall around him, and hops on a rocket that is to be used in case of induction. His ride is cut short and he dies and goes to hell. (For avoiding the draft i guess) Daffy is happy though as he is rid of the little man. But remember: that’s hell. It’s designed to be your worst nightmare. And Daffy’s is having the man around. He chases Daffy (still holding the letter) into the distance.

Personal Rating: 4

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. (I think 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