Bugs Bunny is 81 today! He made his official debut in the cartoon “A Wild Hare” on July 27, 1940. It was one of many appearances with Elmer Fudd.
Elmer was one of many who faced off against Bugs over the years. Other’s included Yosemite Sam, Daffy Duck, Pete Puma, Wile E. Coyote, and many more. Off the top of my head I jotted down my favorite Bugs Bunny Cartoons. I had to look up the titles, but I remember them all so well. I am sure I am forgetting many of them.
I won’t go into many details on all of these, but if someone were to ask me which Bugs Bunny Cartoons were a “must see” this is my list. Here there are (mostly) in chronological order:
Baseball Bugs – 1946
Who can forget the 96-95 win that Bugs chocked up against the Gashouse Gorillas??
Racketeer Rabbit – 1946
This was remade in 1954 as Bugs and Thugs with a VERY different Rocky. What is great about this short is that Rocky is a direct copy of Edward G. Robinson. Hugo is a dead ringer for Peter Lorre.
This is probably one of my favorites. The guy doing Robinson’s voice is great!
When Bugs comes in as “Mugsy” flipping a coin like George Raft, it kills me. So many great gags in this one, including “Curtains” and “Gimme the dough.”
Bowery Bugs – 1949
Remember how Bugs drove Steve Brody crazy enough to jump off the Brooklyn Bridge??
Long Haired Hair – 1949
Giovanni Jones is practicing at home for his concert. As he is singing, he begins to sing along with Bugs who is playing a banjo, a harp, a tuba, etc… Needless to say, he is angry. He destroys all the instruments, but Bugs get’s even at the end.
I wonder how they looped that note for so long!!
Rabbit Hood – 1949
My buddy John posted a picture from this on my Facebook page today. I told him that this was definitely on my list of favorites. Bugs squares off against the Sheriff of Nottingham in this one. Who can forget when the Sheriff is Knighted?
When the Sheriff of Nottingham starts singing London Bridge is Falling Down … I lose it every time!
Love the Errol Flynn cameo at the end, too!
Hillbilly Hare – 1950
I have blogged about this one before. How can you not love Bugs taking over for the Square Dance Caller and having these two hillbillies beat the snot out of each other??
It’s a classic!
Rabbit of Seville – 1950
There is a meme that floats around the internet that says “All I know about classical music, I learned from Bugs Bunny!” This is one of a few cartoons that feature classical music. This one The Marriage of Figaro and The Barber of Seville. It again features Elmer Fudd. Just looking at the pictures – you can hear the music, can’t you??!!
Bunny Hugged – 1951
Bugs Bunny out wits a wrestler known as The Crusher!
I’m sure many of bugs tricks went against all of the rules of wrestling!
Much like the scene with the Sheriff of Nottingham singing London Bridge, the scene where the Crusher is “Just passing by…” makes me laugh out loud!
Ballot Box Bunny – 1951
Yosemite Sam is running for Mayor. So Is Bugs. The campaign is on.
Sam wants Bugs to play a song on the piano. He has rigged it to explode when Bugs hits a specific key. Of course, Bugs keeps playing it wrong.
Frustrated at his playing it wrong, Sam jumps in and plays it right … (BOOM!)
Rabbit’s Kin – 1952
A rabbit named Shorty is running from Pete Puma. Our pal, Bugs, helps him out.
Pete Puma is voiced by the great Stan Freberg!
The great gag in the short is “How many lumps do you want?” referring to sugar. Pete answers “Oh, three or four” and gets whopped on the head with a hammer or something
Bully For Bugs – 1953
Another great adversary of Bugs – The Bull from this cartoon..
Favorite scene: The Mexican Hat Dance
Baby Buggy Bunny – 1954
Bugs finds a baby outside the rabbit hole.
The baby, however, is none other than Baby Face Finster, a known criminal!
It doesn’t take long for Bugs to figure it out. One of my favorite scenes is when Bugs is spanking him and there are all kinds of weapons falling out of his diaper and bed clothes.
Ali Baba Bunny – 1957
The greed of Daffy Duck is so well exhibited in this one. Upon popping out of the hole they are digging, Bugs and Daffy are in a cave filled with riches! Bugs doesn’t see it, but Daffy does and he pushes Bugs back into the hole claiming “It’s Mine! All Mine!”
This cartoon brought about the catch phrase “Hassan Chop!”
What’s Opera, Doc? – 1957
Here is another example of classical music in cartoons – What more can I say other than “Kill Da Wabbit!”
Show Biz Bugs – 1957
Another great example of the Daffy Duck/Bugs Bunny feud.
Daffy’s dangerous stunt wows them all in the end ….
The Unmentionables – 1963
Cashing in on the classic show The Untouchables, this one features Bugs, Rocky and Mugsy.
Unlike the Edward G. Robinson character, this Rocky is much different. I always love when he says, “Shuddap!”
The Hunting Trilogy – Rabbit Fire (1951), Rabbit Seasoning (1952), and Duck! Rabbit! Duck! (1953)
All so very similar, but all equally great!!
Shoot Him Now! Shoot Him Now! Great bit from Rabbit Seasoning.
Bugs has brought many laughs to me both as a child and as an adult! I am sure I missed some of your favorites, so please feel free to comment with them.
Happy 81st Birthday, Bugs!