Posts Tagged ‘June Bugs


June Bugs

In years past, Cartoon Network–and later, Boomerang–gave over the first weekend in June to the annual “June Bugs” marathon. This cartoon block featured almost every Bugs Bunny cartoon ever created.

I don’t know if “June Bugs” is still an annual event–I suspect not–but I do know that, during at least one “June Bugs” airing, not all cartoons featuring Bugs made it to the airwaves. That year, there were twelve cartoons which Cartoon Network did not show. The following comes from the DVD Talk web site and features a list of the twelve cartoons not shown, as well as their respective directors, release dates and synopses of each: The reference I am citing here has been up for awhile and refers to a future air date for a program which may have aired previously. It is apparently possible to view and/or download at least some of the following online.

1 – Hiawatha’s Rabbit Hunt (Friz Freleng; 1941): An Academy Award nominated cartoon in which Bugs is hunted by a dopey Indian named Hiawatha (who looks and acts a little bit like our old friend, Elmer J. Fudd). At one time this cartoon was a regular feature (and I do mean regular) on the Turner Network’s cartoon programs.

2- All This and Rabbit Stew (Tex Avery; 1941): Tex Avery’s final Bugs Bunny cartoon. It features a black stereotype hunter going after Bugs. It has been pulled from television distribution since the 1960’s.

3- Any Bonds Today? (Bob Clampett; 1942): A special short wartime propaganda film (also known as “Leon Schlesinger Presents Bugs Bunny” or “The Bugs Bunny Bond Rally”). It basically features Bugs singing the title song. In the middle, Bugs appears briefly blackface and does an impersonation of Al Jolson.

4- What’s Cookin’ Doc? (Bob Clampett; 1944): One of Bob Clampett’s most famous Bugs Bunny cartoons. A parody of the Academy Awards in which Bugs is convinced he’s a shoo-in to get the award. The reason this is now banned? Bugs shows the audience a short clip from his Oscar nominated “Hiawatha’s Rabbit Hunt”. Does anyone remember that waaaay back in 1998, Warner Bros. had this cartoon as part of their touring “Bugs Bunny Film Festival”.

5- Bugs Bunny Nips the Nips (Friz Freleng; 1944): Another WWII era cartoon. Castaway Bugs washes ashore on and island where he soon encounters a bunch of stereotypical Japanese soldiers. In the end, Bugs defeats them all.

6- Herr Meets Hare (Friz Freleng; 1945): Bugs meets up with WWII enemies again. This time it is Hermann Goering and, in the end, Hitler himself. This short is still scheduled to be included in the upcoming Toonheads: The Wartime Cartoons special on Cartoon Network.

7- A Feather In His Hare (Chuck Jones; 1948): Another not-very-bright Indian hunts for Bugs. Bugs tricks him by, among other things, making snowballs in the middle of July. In the end, Bugs and “the last of the Mohicans” are shocked to realize they are now fathers (“Eh, what’s up, pop?”). This Chuck Jones cartoon was also regularly seen on the Turner Networks up until 1998.

8- Which is Witch? (Friz Freleng; 1949): In Africa, Bugs finds himself hunted by the tiny witch doctor, I.C. Spots, who needs a rabbit to finish his latest potion.

9- Frigid Hare (Chuck Jones; 1949): On his way to a two week vacation in Miami, Bugs takes a wrong turn and ends up at the South Pole. There he rescues a cute little penguin from an Eskimo. This cartoon is a fan favorite which was also seen regularly on television until very recently.

10 – Mississippi Hare (Chuck Jones; 1949): Bugs, asleep in a cotton field, has his cotton tail mistaken for cotton. Bugs soon finds himself on a riverboat where he meets short-tempered gambler Colonel Shuffle. Gags include an exploding cigar causing the Colonel to appear in blackface and Bugs duping the Colonel into walking overboard when the Rabbit sells him a ticket to “Uncle Tom’s Cabinet”. While never shown on Cartoon Network, this cartoon aired as part of Kids’ WB Bugs N Daffy Show (1995-8).

11- Bushy Hare (Robert McKimson; 1950): Many cartoon fans fondly remember this cartoon. A bunch of runaway balloons carry Bugs into the clouds where he bumps into a stork heading to Australia to deliver a baby kangaroo. Bugs is delivered to Mama Kangaroo and, to make her happy, Bugs pretends to be her “son”. The Rabbit then encounters an aborigine, who he nicknames “Nature Boy”. “Nature Boy” is basically a human version of a popular character who McKimson would introduce four years later: the Tasmanian Devil. This cartoon was seen regularly on Nickelodeon from 1988-99.

12- Horse Hare (Friz Freleng; 1960): A western parody set in 1885 at Fort Lariat. Bugs is left in charg8e of the Fort, when a tribe of Indians led by Yosemite Sam attacks. In the end, the day is saved when the Calvary shows up. Unfortunately for Sam, who gets caught in the middle of the oncoming Calvary and Indians (“Whoooooa, Calvary!!! Whoooooa, Indians!!! Whoooa!!!”).


May 2019
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