Thursday, 16 March 2017

Baby Bugs vs Baby Elmer

It might be unfair to call them “stock expressions,” but while watching The Old Grey Hare the other day, I noticed a couple of facial looks that are unmistakeable from the Bob Clampett unit at Warner Bros.

Here’s the difference between full and TV animation. Baby Bugs Bunny slides to a stop. A couple of seconds is taken up with Bugs’ feet sliding around before he zips behind a tree. TV animation wouldn’t bother with all those drawings. There’d be a zip of brush strokes and Bugs would immediately zoom behind the tree.

Baby Elmer Fudd crawls—except when he’s sneaking. Sneaks go on tippy-toes, so Baby Elmer does, too. Bent logic.

Ah, the oversized eye whites! You’ll see it in Kitty Kornered and other Clampetoons.

Um, Bugs is looking a little too lovingly at that rear end.

The half close-eyed dopey look. Again, seen in Kitty Kornered and elsewhere.

Manny Gould doesn’t get credit in this cartoon. Neither do Virgil Ross or Rod Scribner. Bob McKimson does. I suspect they all animated on this one. I like the purple in the background. Leon Schlesinger would have approved. Purple’s a funny colour, he said.


  1. Clampett's color Merrie Melodies always had that interesting "funny colour" touch (see Tin Pan Alley Cats and A Corny Concerto, the latter possibly the greatest example). It works really well in all three for creating a more dream-like landscape.

  2. The champion for use of purple in a cartoon is the "Pastoral Symphony" segment of Fantasia, which I would imagine was an inspiration for the BG here.

  3. Virgil Ross didn't work on this cartoon at all. He left Bob Clampett's unit in 1943 and was replaced with Manny Gould. Jack Bradbury and Basil Davidovich also provided uncredited animation for this cartoon as well.