Porky's Hare Hunt is a 1938 animated short movie directed by Ben "Bugs" Hardaway and Cal Dalton, which starred Porky Pig as a hunter whose prey is an unnamed rabbit - a prototype of Bugs Bunny, Warner's biggest star and the second most popular character at that time behind Disney's Mickey Mouse. The rabbit's hyperactive personality and laughing voice provided by Mel Blanc predated the 1940 Walter Lantz/Universal Pictures release Knock Knock which starred Andy Panda and introduced cartoon audiences to Woody Woodpecker which was created for the Lantz studio by Hardaway after his departure from the Leon Schlesinger/Warner Brothers studio.
PlotEditSeveral rabbits are eating carrots and ruining crops. Another rabbit warns them to evacuate by saying "jiggers fellers!". Soon, Porky and his dog meet this rabbit and try to outwit him in the forest. Porky and the rabbit get in a long, long fight and soon the hare thinks he has won the war that is over. Porky however finds the rabbit and he doesn't have any brainstorms to protect him. The rabbit shows Porky a photo of himself and of how many children he has with his wife. However, when Porky's about to shoot him, the gun fails. After Porky attempts to shoot down and procure the rabbit, he asks Porky: "Do you have a hunting license?" As Porky reaches for his pocket to obtain the document, the hyper-hare suddenly snatches it out of Porky's grasp, rips it in two, remarks, "Well you haven't got one now...hoohoohoohoohahahahah..hoo hoo hoo ha ha ha!" and makes a getaway by twisting his ears as though they were a helicopter propeller, flying away. Ultimately the rabbit wins when Porky throws dynamite into the cave in which the rabbit is hiding and he throws the dynamite back at him. Porky is in the hospital and the rabbit comes to him with some flowers. Porky tells the rabbit that he'll be out in a few days. The rabbit then pulls on the leg holders in Porky's bed, adding to the pig's injuries and runs off into the forest laughing.
- The first appearance of the prototypical version of Bugs Bunny. He's barely recognizable compared to his more familiar later form. Bugs' first official appearance would come two years later in A Wild Hare. The "Do you have a hunting license?" gag was revived (but modified) in the 1953 short Duck! Rabbit, Duck! where Bugs Bunny asks Elmer Fudd, "Do you have a fricasseeing rabbit license?"
- The incidental music heard throughout the piece are scored arrangements of Bei Mir Bistu Shein, a popular swing tune of the time which has since become a standard, and Hooray for Hollywood, from the contemporary motion picture Hollywood Hotel and now a quintessential Hollywood theme, among others.
- The prototype is seen chewing on a carrot, the only time he is.
- This cartoon also introduces the rabbit repeating a well-known Groucho Marx line for the first time that would become part of Bugs Bunny's lexicon. The exact wording, in this first appearance, is "'Course you know that this means war!" The proto-Bugs' rendering in this cartoon is a direct impression of Groucho, including dropping the trailing "r" of "war".
- This was a remake of the 1937 Tex Avery short, Porky's Duck Hunt
none (First Bugs Bunny cartoon)
|Experimental Rabbit pictures||Succeeded by|