Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Cartoon a Day: A Pest in the House

A Pest in the House

Directed by Chuck Jones (as Charles M Jones)
Available on: Looney Tunes Golden Collection Vol. 5

There have been many versions of Daffy Duck over the years. In the early films he put the "Looney" in Looney Tunes. Later he became a bit of a selfish ego maniac. In "A Pest in the House" we have another version of Daffy, here he's just plain clueless. As the bellhop in Elmer Fudd's hotel, he is given the task of taking a tired businessman up to his room. The businessman wants nothing more than to sleep, which Daffy, though at times he's trying to help, makes pretty much impossible. Daffy isn't trying to keep the man from sleeping, but, God bless him, he just can't help himself.

Mel Blanc's performance as the voice of Daffy is great, it's an interesting contrast with his foil, the businessman who only speaks at the beginning of the picture, other than that he's all reactions.

Some interesting things happen with Daffy's poses as well. The design of the character seems a bit different than we're used to seeing. He seems a bit more slender and his beak seems a bit longer.

This short is a good example of how cartoons were not always seen as kid fare. One of the best gags in the film was not written with the kiddies in mind. It involves the businessman hearing a loud drunk singing in a nearby room. Daffy heads over to silence the drunk, but soon we hear his inebriated voice joining in on the song. We never see the drunk, or see Daffy getting drunk, but we all know what happens.

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