|Merrie Melodies (Wile E. Coyote and The Road Runner) series|
|Directed by||Chuck Jones
|Produced by||David H. DePatie|
|Story by||John W. Dunn
|Voices by||Paul Julian (uncredited)|
|Music by||Milt Franklyn|
|Animation by||Bob Bransford
|Backgrounds by||Phillip Deguard|
|Studio||Warner Bros. Cartoons|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros. Pictures
The Vitaphone Corporation
|Release date(s)||November 11, 1961 (USA)|
|Running time||6 minutes|
As in all other cartoons featuring the pair, Wile E. Coyote tries to catch the Road Runner. It begins with the Coyote (hungrii flea-baggius) assuming the "on your mark" stance used in track and field events. As soon as he goes into "get set" mode, he hears the familiar beeping sound and gets shocked into a backward move, suspended in mid-air atop a ravine. The Road Runner (tid-bitius velocitus) issues the gunshot that causes the Coyote to drop (one of three overhead shots shown in the short).
The coyote's tools include a bow and arrow and a manhole cover suspended by rope and pulleys. Another tool is a rocket-powered Batman-type outfit that explodes on him and causes him to drop while his body is charred. Another trap involves iron pellets, a magnet, roller skates and, unfortunately for Wile E., a locomotive. After that failure, the coyote sets up a spring-loaded block of pavement. At sunset, he erects a pair of machine guns connected by taut rope, and ends up getting reduced in size when the guns blast him in the midsection. That night, the coyote buys a rocket sled and 30 miles of railroad tracks. Soon, the night sky has a new Sagittarius-like constellation.
- The beginning of the cartoon when shown on CBS and ABC cuts the part where Wile E. Coyote falls after the Roadrunner fires off the starter pistol because that's when the opening credits appear (original opening credits of the Looney Tunes cartoons were cut for time reasons on ABC and CBS and replaced with a simple card with the title of the cartoon being shown before the cartoon).
- ABC's version also cuts the gag where Wile E. sets up a machine gun trap and the Roadrunner breaks through the rope that trips the guns (which doesn't cause the guns to go off) and Wile E. pulls on the broken ropes and ends up getting shot in the midsection and cut down to size and an early gag where Wile E. Coyote is strapped into an elaborate rocket disguise that only succeeds in blowing him up and making him fall off the cliff.
Beep Prepared received an Academy Award nomination as Best Animated Short for 1961. It was the only Oscar-nominated Road Runner / Coyote cartoon.