Tuesday, 12 January 2021

Another Helpful Sign By Tex Avery

There’s a snake gag in the middle of a bunch of war rationing gags in Tex Avery’s What’s Buzzin’ Buzzard (1943). The Leo Gorcey buzzard (or is it a vulture?) skids to a stop, turns green and faints when he sees a rattle snake. The snake is just the Jimmy Durante buzzard in a poor disguise.

“Lookit ‘im!” says the Durante buzzard to the camera (he gestures just like Durante). “He’s even a-scared of a snake!” He turns and then walks right toward a real snake, whom we are assured is a real snake thanks to one of Avery’s helpful signs.

Now the Durante buzzard turns green and faints. There’s a momentary pause, the buzzard lifts his head up and says in a normal voice “And so am I.”

Kent Rogers is the Gorcey buzzard. The Durante buzzard sounds to me like the Durante cat in The Cat That Hated People a few years later (listen to the way the two say “Ya see what I mean?”.


  1. Every cartoon viewer worth his salt knows a Jimmy Durante caricature, but I never knew who the other buzzard was supposed to be- other than a generic buzzard. For the longest time, I thought that was Don Messick doing his voice in a very early appearance. He sounds nothing like Kent Rogers, better known for doing another considerably dumber buzzard.

    1. Messick was still in the military. I'm not quite sure when he arrived in California.