|Merrie Melodies (Bugs Bunny) series|
|Directed by||Robert McKimson|
|Produced by||Eddie Selzer|
|Story by||Tedd Pierce|
|Voices by||Mel Blanc
|Music by||Carl Stalling|
|Animation by||Charles McKimson
|Layouts by||Robert Givens|
|Backgrounds by||Richard H. Thomas|
|Distributed by||Warner Bros. Pictures
The Vitaphone Corporation
|Release date(s)||November 15, 1952 (USA)|
|Running time||6' 54"|
Rabbit's Kin is a Merrie Melodies animated short released on November 15, 1952. It was directed by Robert McKimson and written by Tedd Pierce. The animators who worked on this cartoon included Charles McKimson, Herman Cohen, Rod Scribner and Phil DeLara. The music was scored by Carl Stalling while the backgrounds and layouts were done by Robert Givens and Richard H. Thomas, respectively. Mel Blanc performs the voice of Bugs Bunny and Shorty Rabbit, while Stan Freberg voiced Bugs' nemesis Pete Puma, doing an imitation of the character Frank Fontaine introduced on The Jack Benny Show named John L. C. Silvoney, and later performed on The Jackie Gleason Show as Crazy Guggenheim. The title is a play on "rabbit skin", but is also a literal term in that Bugs is caring for a "kin", here, another rabbit.
A cute little bunny named Shorty with a barely discernible warp-speed high pitched voice (akin to Alvin and the Chipmunks) is running from Pete Puma, until he stumbles down Bugs Bunny's rabbit hole. Shorty tells Bugs his problem ("My heart pounded, my legs trembled, I was frozen with fear"), and Bugs agrees to help him out. Bugs then proceeds to play various tricks on Pete who is now outside of Bugs' hole feeling around inside for the little rabbit. Bugs leaves a fake rabbit dynamite decoy which Pete grabs and pulls out of the hole, then BOOM! Bugs goes outside and engages in some small talk with Pete who offers him a cigar ("El Explodo"). After Bugs accepts it (and wisely puts it away before Pete can light it), he asks Pete to stay for tea. He pours tea into two cups, holds up the sugar bowl and asks Pete how many lumps he wants, to which Pete replies "Oh, three or four". Bugs repeatedly hits Pete Puma on the head with a wooden mallet, producing five lumps on his head which is "one too many". Bugs flattens the extra lump with a reflex hammer, then shoves the explosive cigar into Pete's mouth, lights it and runs off before the explosion.
Later that day, Pete tries to disguise himself as the little rabbit's mother, prompting Bugs to start the "cup of tea" shtick again. Here, Pete tries to outsmart Bugs twice but fails both times, first by suggesting they have coffee instead of tea (the "lumps" gag is predictably repeated) then by showing Bugs he has protected his head with an "Acme Stovelid" which Bugs removes with his "Acme Stovelid Lifter", revealing more lumps from Pete's cranium.
Shorty enjoys the shenanigans so much that he wants to get involved. As he hops down the road alone, Pete grabs him and runs home to his cave, intending to cook him. Bugs shows up in a costume disguised as Pete's second cousin, Paul Puma. He insists on helping his "cuz" get the fricasseeing off to a good start and asks how many lumps of coal Pete wants for the stove. When Pete decides that he better give him a lotta lumps ("A whoooooooole lotta lumps"), he gets "wise" right away, grabs the mallet from Bugs and insists: "I'll help myself". As Pete repeatedly conks himself over the head with the mallet, Bugs & Shorty leave the cave with Bugs commenting that "he's too smart for them" and imitating Pete's laugh.
Rabbit's Kin is available on the Looney Tunes Golden Collection: Volume 1.
- Lawson, Tim; Persons, Alisa (9 December 2004). The Magic Behind the Voices: A Who's Who of Cartoon Voice Actors. Univ. Press of Mississippi. p. 67. ISBN 978-1-57806-696-4.
|Bugs Bunny Cartoons