Thursday, September 6, 2012
"Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies" (Dell) #21, July 1943: "Elmer Rabbit"
This bit of mistaken identity fun from 1943 is not only funny, but politically incorrect as well. A hypnotist tries to convince Elmer Fudd he's a rabbit, but only causes him to sleepwalk...right into a costume shop. When he comes to (wearing a rabbit costume), he thinks he really HAS been turned into a rabbit, much to the amusement of Bugs Bunny! The politically incorrect bit involves the black rabbit hunter from Tex Avery's "All This and Rabbit Stew" (1941). The hunter character appeared on occasion in these early comics, and I have seen an image from one of them in which he is named "Sambo". Racial insensitivity aside, it's hard not to like the image of a hunter chasing both Bugs AND Elmer with a gun and an appetite for rabbit stew!