Monday, 5 August 2013

The Best Drunken Fish in Cartoons

There’s something wrong if you don’t like cartoon fish who accidentally get drunk, then row themselves across a marshy lake singing “Moonlight Bay.” That’s just one of the highlights in one of the best cartoons Tex Avery ever made for Warner Bros., “Porky’s Duck Hunt” (1937).

Avery and Treg Brown use stock audio of a girl tittering as the fish climb into the boat, one of them being so intoxicated he gets kind help from his buddy. The chorus of the song is interrupted by hiccoughs. Mel Blanc was well-known in radio at the time for having a novelty hiccoughing voice.

Virgil Ross and Bobe Cannon receive animation credits. I suspect Sid Sutherland worked on this cartoon and Bob Clampett proudly discussed his animation on this short in numerous interviews.


  1. As if the drunken fish weren't funny enough, after their singing is over, Porky comments to the audience, "Th-there's something f-f-fishy about th-th-that...".

  2. Billy Bletcher also has a key part in this one as the baritone fish (as well as the guy upstairs at the start and finish of the cartoon). Had to be quite a change of pace from him voice jobs over at Disney.

  3. Of course, Mel Blanc got one of his earliest starts in this cartoon (though I believe "Porky's Romance" was the first.) JL, Bletcher as you know was the cranky, bitchy upstairs guy in that slight running gag.:) In the 1970s and 1980s our local L.A.station would censor that drunk scene so when I read Joe Adamson's 1970s book "Tex Avery: The King of Cartoons" and read the reference to the gag, I was completely confounded at the mention till I saw it on a 1980s Warner, Daffy Duck, the Nuttiness continues, where I saw the complete film.-Steve C.P_S And of course it was Daffy's first.