"Blitz Wolf" is a 1942 MGM cartoon, and the first one to be directed by Tex Avery in his long tenure there. It has the distinction of being the very first direct anti-German Wartime Cartoon made during the 1940s, and it pulls no punches when it comes to satirizing deh fuehrer. The plot of the short is a parody of Walt Disney's "The Three Little Pigs" short, altered into a World War II context.
The short was nominated for an Academy Award.
Surprisingly, this short is also one of the few Tex Avery MGM Cartoons to have seen a DVD release, making it onto the Warner Bros. Academy Awards Animation Collection. It was also released as an extra, along with other Avery MGM shorts, as part of the Looney Tunes Platinum Collection Volume Two Blu-ray. It is also on volume three of the Tex Avery Screwball Classics Blu-ray collection.
"Blitz Wolf" provides examples of:
- As Long as It Sounds Foreign: When Adolf Wolf first confronts the pigs, he threatens them in German — or rather, in gibberish that merely sounds like German (albeit with subtitles that translate what he's saying).
- Bad Humor Truck: Makes a decidedly abrupt appearance in what was presented as an otherwise serious tank scene.
- BFG: The cannon the pigs unleash at the climax of the short is so absurdly huge that it takes a very long time to pan from end to end (and it it gets lampshaded, too).
- Bomb Whistle: Taken quite literally. The Wolf fires a whistling bomb at the pigs, but the main pig stops it by holding a magazine pin-up poster. The bomb stops in midair and does a Wolf Whistle, then flies back and returns with more bombs to look at the pin-up, whistle at it and faint.
- When this short aired on Cartoon Network during a special about World War II era cartoons, two scenes were edited: 1) The scene of the two pigs running into the brick house had a weird, yellow blur on it. Why? Because the sign originally said, "No Japs Allowed" (actually, it said "No Dogs Allowed," but "Dogs" was crossed out and replaced with "Japs") and the yellow blur was to cover the word "Japs", and 2) The Overly-Long Gag with the large gun originally ended with the gun blasting a shell to Tokyo and Tokyo exploding and sinking into the ocean. The Cartoon Network edited version cut that whole part and made it look like the pigs were aiming the gun at the Hitler Wolf's trench. This is also the version found on the French Tex Avery DVD release.
- When TNT aired this cartoon in the late 1980s, the anti-Japanese jokes were left in, but the allusions to Hitler were not. The Hitler Wolf's voice was redubbed and all scenes featuring subtitles to what he's saying were cropped out. The end card that reads, "If you buy a stamp or bond, we'll skin that skunk across the pond," was replaced with a generic MGM production card (not unlike the ones used in the Tom and Jerry cartoons or the other one-shot MGM cartoons).
- Breaking the Fourth Wall: Adolf Wolf when he pulls out a sign, reading, "Go on and hiss, who cares?" And he promptly gets a tomato thrown at him in response.
- Card-Carrying Villain: Adolf.
- Cool Ship: The B-19 1/2.
- Distracted by the Sexy: One of the pigs uses a pin-up magazine to send away a bombardment of horny shells.
- Every Device Is a Swiss-Army Knife: Big time. For example, the anti-tank missile turns into a can opener.
- Fire and Brimstone Hell: Where Adolf Wolf winds up in the ending.Adolf Wolf: Have I been blown to...
A bunch of devils: Eh, it's a possibility.
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: The third pig says that Adolf can "take his treaty and..." before he's cut off by distant gunfire. The shoving gesture he does as he says it makes his intent clear. It looks like the Hays Office gave this one a pass because they're referring to a spoof of Hitler.
- Interchangeable Asian Cultures: The city of Tokyo depicted in the cartoon looks nothing like its real-life counterpart, not only 1940s’ which is Westernised to some extent, but even its ancient era (more specifically, from the Asuka era to the Heian era) ‘s when Chinese influence was stronger. Buildings with bright red roofs and white walls are rather popular in China, not Japan (even if you consider Okinawa, which has a different culture from mainland Japan and these kinds of colours are used for buildings, it still doesn’t look like Japanese one). Plus, Junk boats can be seen, despite the fact that they originated from China and are not used in Japan. Scott Bradley’s “Oriental” sounding music-cue sounds nothing like Japanese music as well. In fact, only the sun (clearly derived from the Japanese naval flag) and the Japanese flags that can be seen on the island are the elements that can be said to be genuinely Japanese.
- Invisible Holes: In a variation, they are revealed by light shining from behind.
- Is There a Doctor in the House?: "Call for Dr. Kildare!", spoken in phony German.
- Lampshade Hanging:
- The scene where the Straw Pig's house is blown away, revealing a sign that reads, Gone with the Wind—and quickly whipping over to a sign nearby that reads, "Corny gag, ain't it?" During this time, "I Wish I Was In Dixie" plays in the background.
- The long panning shot of the big cannon briefly stops on a sign saying "Long darn thing, isn't it?"
- I Lied: Not unlike the real Hitler, the wolf flagrantly violates his peace treaty with the first two pigs.
- Leitmotif: "Over There" is used as one for the pigs.
- Logo Joke: The opening MGM lion is looped to roar to the tune of "Hold That Tiger". This immediately establishes the tone of the short, and the rest of Avery's work to come.
- More Dakka: The artists sure had a thing for gun barrels.
- Justified: It's a World War II cartoon, and a lot of them had characters fighting with heavy artillery.
- Overly-Long Gag: The cannon scene, enough to get a lampshade from Avery in the short.
- Parody Assistance: Avery managed to get Pinto Colvig, the voice of Practical Pig in Disney's "The Three Little Pigs", to voice the wise pig here.
- Pathetic Drooping Weapon: The anti-aircraft gun of the pigs deflated after some usage, but it had risen back up after a pig gave it B1 vitamins to enable it to be useful again.
- Produce Pelting: Adolf Wolf gets a tomato thrown at him after holding a sign that reads, "Go Ahead and Hiss — Who Cares?".
- The "Scream Bomb", which doesn't explode, but literally screams at Adolf Wolf.
- On Adolf Wolf's tank, it is embedded with Der Fewer (Der Better).
- The "Whistling Bomb" that whistles at a pin-up.
- Screams Like a Little Girl: The Scream Bomb delivers one to Adolf Wolf.
- When Adolf Wolf invades Pigmania, a flamethrower tank has a sign saying "I Don't Wanna Set The World On Fire", referring to a famous Ink Spots song of the time.
- The pig's home has a sign reading "Sergeant Pork", a play on Sergeant York.
- Adolf calls on the phone and says "Oh, is that you, Myrt? How's every little thing?", a bit from Fibber McGee and Molly.
- Stunned Silence: Enforced by Adolf, no less.war: BOOM! CRASH! BANG!
war: [shuts up for a moment]
- Symbol Swearing: Used in the opening title card.
- Tank Goodness: Lots of it here. See More Dakka.
- This Is a Work of Fiction: Parodically inverted: "The Wolf in this photoplay is NOT fictitious. Any similarity between this Wolf and that (*!!*%) jerk Hitler is purely intentional!"
- Those Wacky Nazis
- Too Dumb to Live: The first two pigs.
- Two Decades Behind: The pigs' uniforms and the emphasis on trench warfare make it clear that the creators were more familiar with the previous war.
- Visual Pun:
- "The End of Adolf" card is represented by a bull's-eye symbol.
- The Fakenkreuz is made from sausages.
- Wartime Cartoon: The Trope Maker, arguably.