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Herr Meets Hare

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Herr Meets Hare is a 1945 Merrie Melodies cartoon directed by Friz Freleng. This short, coming a few months before the collapse of the Third Reich, was one of the last major wartime cartoons from Warner Bros. Pictures. It was released 4 months and 27 days before the death of Adolf HitlerHerr Meets Hare also set up for two important facets of Bugs Bunny: It was the first time that Bugs would realize he "should have made a left toin at Albukoykee",[1] and the extended dance sequence in the middle of the film would later be retooled by Chuck Jones into his Bugs Bunny cartoon What's Opera, Doc?.

SynopsisEdit

The cartoon opens with a faux Walter Winchell voice discussing the end of Germany, saying that "Germany has been battered into a fare-thee-well", and musing about where the high leadership, and "Fatso" Göring in particular has gone. The scene soon cuts to the Black Forest, where Hermann Göring, in bemedalled lederhosen, is "soothing his jangled nerves" marching while on a hunt. Nearby, a familiar furrow in the ground appears, with a hole at the end.

Bugs pops out of the hole, and sees no sign of the Black Forest on his map. (Variants on this comment would be used in later cartoons as the lead-in to the joke that Bugs while tunneling did indeed turn wrong somewhere in New Mexico, usually by not taking a left turn at Albuquerque, this cartoon being the first time Bugs uses the line, "I KNEW I 'shoulda' made that left 'toin' in 'Albakoikie'"). Bugs asks Göring about the directions to Las Vegas, oblivious to his location. Göring is almost tricked into going to Las Vegas but then quickly realizes that he's being tricked and replies "Las Veegas? Why, there is no Las Veegas in Chermany!" For once genuinely alarmed by his mistaken destination, Bugs hightails it, saying "'Joimany'? Yipe!", with Göring chasing after him shooting at him with his musket.

A few chase gags go by in which Bugs insults the integrity of Göring's medals by bending one with his teeth. Göring, suckered into bending one himself, declares them ersatz and mumbles all sorts of anti-Hitler sentiments ("Oh, how I hate that Hitler swine, that phonyführer, that..."). Bugs masquerades as Adolf Hitler using a bit of mud, and faces the surprised Göring. Göring disappears offscreen in a flash to change into his Nazi uniform adorned with all sorts of medals. After the usual Nazi salute, Bugs berates him in faux German as he strips Göring of his medals (Klooten-flooten-blooten-pooten-meirooten-tooten!) and even his belt, causing Göring to "kiss" in reverence, saying in order: "Look! I kiss mein Führer's hand. I kiss right in der Führer's face!", the joke being the wildly popular song of the time of the same name composed by Oliver Wallace and played by Spike Jones's band, and the subject of a rival short animated subject from the Walt Disney Studios. Afterwards, Göring exclaims, "Oh, I'm a bad flooten-boy-glooten!", a variant on Warner cartoons' frequently-cited Lou Costello catchphrase, "I'm a baaad boy!". Later, when the gig is up, Bugs rides in on a white horse, dressed asBrünhilde, from Wagnerian opera, to the tune of the "Pilgrims' Chorus" from Tannhäuser. Göring, entranced, responds by dressing up as Siegfried. The two dance, before Bugs once again makes a fool of Göring and escapes (a scene later re-used in the Bugs and Elmercartoon What's Opera, Doc?).

Eventually, Göring captures Bugs, using a hawk. "Do you think he'll catch me, doc?" "Will he catch you? He'll have you back here faster thank you can say Schicklgruber." (Schicklgruber was the original surname of Hitler's father, Alois.) The hawk imitates Jimmy Durante. Göring brings Bugs back to Hitler (who is playing solitaire), where he identifies him as "Bugsenheimer Bunny" (as opposed to "Weisenheimer" or "wise guy") to der Führer.[2] As Herr Hitler talks of the great rewards he is going to pile upon Göring for this act of heroism, he opens the bag to reveal Bugs dressed as Joseph Stalin—complete with an enormous pipe—staring back at him. Göring and Hitler flee. As the cartoon ends, Bugs glances back at the camera and asks, in a Russian accent, "Does your tobacco taste different lately?" citing an ad slogan of that era for the "Sir Walter Raleigh" pipe tobacco manufactured by the Brown & Williamson Tobacco Company.

Characters Edit

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