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|The Little Quacker|
|Tom and Jerry series|
Re-release title card
|Directed by||William Hanna
|Produced by||Fred Quimby|
|Story by||William Hanna
|Voices by||Red Coffey (uncredited)|
|Music by||Scott Bradley|
|Animation by||Irven Spence
|Distributed by||Metro Goldwyn Mayer|
|Preceded by||Tennis Chumps|
|Followed by||Saturday Evening Puss|
The Little Quacker is a 1950 American one-reel animated cartoon and is the 47th Tom and Jerry short directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera and produced by Fred Quimby. It is the first Tom and Jerry short to be released in the 1950s. Little Quacker marks the debut of the eponymous character, Quacker the duckling who would go on to appear in seven more shorts, making him one of the more enduring supporting characters in the Tom and Jerry cartoon series. The voice of Quacker and his parents (who make their only speaking appearance in this cartoon), along with a single WAH WAH! line by Tom, was supplied by (uncredited) Red Coffee; Coffee's rendition of Quacker's voice was mostly an impersonation of Disney's Donald Duck as performed by Clarence Nash.
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On the farm, a mama duck goes out for a swim, leaving behind an egg in her nest. But Tom craftily reaches into the nest and takes the egg for cooking. He rushes back to his kitchen and places a frying pan over the hob. However, when Tom breaks the egg open, but instead of getting the albumen and yolk, the only thing he gets is a duckling, Quacker. Not to be put off, Tom decides he will cook a roasted duck instead. But to do so, he acquires Quacker's "cooperation."
Tom feeds Quacker on plenty of bread to fatten and stuff him up, and while the duckling is not looking, the cat gets hold of a meat cleaver and attempts to chop the Quacker up, but invariably misses. The duckling escapes into Jerry's mouse hole and into his bed, shaking in terror (the shape under Jerry's sheet resembles a ringing bell). Jerry uncovers Quacker, who informs the mouse of what Tom was tried to do with him. Then the Quacker hides back under Jerry's bed and shakes in terror once again. Jerry emerges from his mouse hole cautiously, but Tom is quick and cuts him down with his meat cleaver... almost. Quacker, believing that Jerry has been beheaded, he pulls the mouse's legs, only for the camera to pull away, showing that Tom has only managed to catch Jerry by the whiskers. Jerry is set free and gets his revenge on Tom by placing the cat's tail outside of the hole, such that Tom, who doesn't know it might happen, he ends up chopping his own tail and screams in pain before retaliates by chasing the mouse and the duckling.
The chase continues outside where Tom's efforts to chop away at Jerry and Quacker only result with him being flattened by falling buildings and falling posts. Later on, Quacker and Jerry search for his mama, while Tom uses a duck call to lure the duckling, but Jerry is clued in as to what the cat is doing, and quickly substitutes his duck caller for a stick of dynamite which blows up into his face. Tom chases them into a large tree with a single barrel of hunting rifle. He thrusts the rifle in, only for the barrel to bend towards his backside which he's accidentally fires at. Jerry and Quacker flee, but they ram into a tire and hide in it. Tom grabs a sledgehammer from the ground and tries to smack them, but the sledgehammer ends up bounced by the tire, causing it to smack Tom on the face as the cat places the sledgehammer on the ground and slumps down. Jerry and Quacker escapes as Tom awakens from the trance, he grabs a lawnmower and charges after them.
Meanwhile, Quacker's mother walks around the farm, looking and calling for him. Tom chases after Jerry and Quacker with the lawnmower, but the ultimately ends up running over the duckling's mother's front feathers, revealing her undergarments. She covers them with a look of shock and embarrassment on her face, but both mother and son are reunited. Unfortunately, Tom suddenly grabs Quacker from her, but she angrily grabs her baby back from him. After Quacker tells his mother what was happened and who was the cause of this, she demands to know what Tom thinks he's doing to her baby, saying, "He did?". But Tom's only answer is scornful mimicry of his quacking. (It is presumed by some that that is his way of replying, "I did!") The enraged mother is shocked and immediately calls her husband ("HENRY!"). Suddenly, Henry shows up, an enormous duck who proves to be tattooed like a sailor and strong as an ox, much to Tom's confusion and Jerry's surprise. The mother duck tells him what Tom's attempted to do on their son and how she was minding her own business when he ran over her with the lawnmower, ending indignantly with "And he got smart, too!" Henry is now infuriated as he glares at Tom and says, "He did?" An intimidated Tom, now realizing he has been put into serious trouble, flees for his life as the infuriated duck gives a chase. Too panicked to look where he's going, Tom slams his face into a tree before Henry seizes the lawnmower and mows it continuously up and down on the cat's back as punishment for his actions against his wife and son.
In the last scene, Quacker and his mother are swimming in the pond with her towing Jerry Mouse on a little raft. Jerry uses a duck caller to sound like mother and baby (but just sounds like a muted trombone instead), and the two friends face each other and smile.
- Tom and Jerry's Greatest Chases, Vol. 4
- Tom and Jerry Spotlight Collection Vol. 2, Disc Two