A very interesting short made during The Golden Age of Animation
, this groundbreaking Looney Tunes
short from 1940, directed by Friz Freleng
, is one of the earliest well-executed attempts at the Roger Rabbit Effect
(the effect to make it look as if cartoon characters are interacting with live-action actors). While there were many attempts at this before and during The Silent Age of Animation
, the technology was far too crude for it to be truly convincing. This short, however, takes it to levels that would only be surpassed by Who Framed Roger Rabbit
The plot of the short is centered around Porky Pig
and Daffy Duck
, who are Animated Actors
that reside at the cartoon studio "Termite Terrace". During lunch time, Daffy, wanting to become the star of the studio and usurp Porky's fame, tricks Porky into tearing up his contract with Leon Schlesinger and leave to try and make it big on his own in another studio. Hilarity
, naturally, ensues
- Attention Whore: The reason Daffy wants to get rid of Porky.
- Beware the Nice Ones: This short includes one of the rare moments where Porky Pig gets angry, and gives Daffy a No Holds Barred Beat Down.
- Conspicuously Light Patch: The live-action Stage 7 door becomes a hand-drawn cartoon door when Porky opens it during his escape from the guard. The flurry of papers Porky pulls out of the wastebin at the end also count, including his contract itself (which is a live-action contract otherwise).
- "I Want" Song: Daffy gets one in which he begs Schlesinger to give him a larger role.
- Morally Ambiguous Ducktorate: Daffy arguably crosses his very first Moral Event Horizon. Up until this cartoon, he'd merely been Porky's crazy costar, but here he's revealed to have an insatiable greed for the spotlight which leads him to lie and scheme to get a bigger role. This tendency would later become a major aspect of his character.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: At one point, Porky pretends to be Oliver Hardy.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Porky gives an offscreen one to Daffy near the end. He's covered in bandages the next time we see him.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Friz allegedly based the events of the short off of a real life event where he briefly left the Warner Bros. cartoon studio to get a job at MGM. He did not like it there at all, however. As soon as his contract expired, he went right back to Leon's studio, using this real life event as the basis for this cartoon.
- Roger Rabbit Effect: Obviously.
- Titled After the Song: From the 1930s song "You Oughta Be in Pictures", which is even used as the shorts opening theme.