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Western Animation / Daffy Duck and Porky Pig Meet the Groovie Goolies

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Daffy Duck and Porky Pig Meet the Groovie Goolies is a 1972 Made-for-TV Movie that aired as part of ABC's Saturday Superstar Movie. It was produced by Filmation, and combined one of their original franchises, The Groovie Goolies, with the Looney Tunes characters, with the notable exception of Bugs Bunny (instead, Daffy Duck played a major role, and Porky Pig also got top billing despite playing a fairly minor role). Because Warner Bros. Animation shut down in 1969 (only to reopen in 1980), Warner Bros. loaned out their characters to Filmation for this TV movie.

The plot, as is, involved the Looney Tunes working on Daffy Duck's new film King Arthur and His Knights of the Round Table. But the mysterious Phantom of the Flickers is scaring everyone on the set, vows to destroy every frame of film Daffy Duck made, and plans to steal Daffy's new movie. So Frankie, who is a big fan of Daffy Duck, takes the Goolies along with him to Hollywood California to help Daffy and stop the Phantom. Hilarity Ensues.

This TV movie provides examples of...

  • Adaptational Personality Change: Daffy is much closer to Bugs than his normal self; being far more laid-back and in control, if still showing signs of egomania. At times he's also somewhat similar to his late 1940s-early 1950s self, seen by some as a welcome change after being a very bitter and greedy villain throughout much of The '60s (largely when paired up with Speedy Gonzales).
  • Advertised Extra: Even though Porky Pig's name is in the title, he plays a fairly minor role compared to Daffy Duck.
  • Award Show: The movie finishes with a night at the Ozzie Awards, where Daffy Duck's "King Arthur" movie is awarded as Best Picture, and Claude Chaney is awarded for his big comeback.
  • Bannister Slide: The Goolies do this at one point as part of their "stuntman work" for Daffy's movie.
  • Bigger on the Inside: The Phantom hides out at one point in a small shed with a cutout facade placed in front to make it look like a huge mansion. Yet after the facade falls over to reveal the shed's true exterior and the Goolies go inside, the interior is just as large and luxurious as an actual mansion!
  • The Cameo: Minor Looney Tunes character Charlie Dog has a small speaking role earlier on in Daffy's film.
  • Cast as a Mask: When the Phantom wears rubber masks of the other Groovie Goolies, along with when he disguises as Hauntleroy, he perfectly imitates their voices by using this trope (although Larry Storch, who voiced Drac and Hagatha in this special, also did the Phantom's actual voice). Averted with his other disguises (ones not impersonating existing characters), where Larry Storch shows off his range of voice work.
  • Dirty Coward: Daffy Duck, of course. Sylvester also shows shades of this, as per usual.
  • Dull Surprise: Several of the Looney Tunes characters speak rather flatly or without much emotion. This is presumably due to Mel Blanc not being very thrilled about the project, and it shows in much of his voice work here (not counting Daffy and Tweety, who were sped up way much higher than usual.) Worth of note is Elmer Fudd's single line of dialogue, spoken in a gravelly, off-sounding version of Fudd's voice (though this could also be attributed to how Blanc couldn't really get Elmer's voice right until later on in The '70s, after Elmer's original voice actor Arthur Q. Bryan died in 1959.)
  • Excalibur in the Stone: A carnival attraction in the King Arthur movie involves Daffy as Arthur pulling a sword out of a stone in a test-of-strength game, as whoever pulls out the sword will be crowned King of England. The sword isn't referred to as the Excalibur, though.
  • Fan of the Underdog: Frank is apparently a big fan of Daffy, Looney Tunes' in-universe Unpopular Popular Character.
  • Gender-Blender Name: A scene in Daffy's movie in which Daffy's character hatches from an egg Tweety saves from Sylvester has Tweety decide to name him "Arthur," and when Daffy asks why choose that name, Tweety says as he sheds a tear, "Because my mommy's name was Arthur."
  • Heel–Face Turn: After the Goolies confront Claude Chaney, a.k.a. the Phantom of the Flickers, they praise his disguise work and decide to return Daffy's film, figuring Daffy could hire him to be in his movie. It works, and Claude Chaney gets awarded for his comeback in Daffy's "King Arthur" film at the Ozzie Awards.
  • Hurricane of Puns: There are quite a lot of puns in this, especially coming from the Goolies.
  • Instant Costume Change: One of the Phantom's disguise methods, often going into a tornado-like spin to do so.
  • Large Ham: The Phantom of the Flickers (a.k.a. Claude Chaney) has quite a few hammy moments.
  • Latex Perfection: Another method of disguise the Phantom of the Flickers employs. He'll also often wear numerous layers of rubber masks over each other, especially when demonstrating his disguise abilities to others.
  • Laugh Track: This TV movie has one (sounding fairly loud and echoey), which is normal for Filmation, but not normal for the Looney Tunes.
  • Limited Animation: Well, it is a Filmation production. Even the Looney Tunes characters are animated in a quite limited manner, which is unusual for their franchise.
  • Loony Fan: Frankie is a huge fan of Daffy Duck, and wants to help him save his movie and career. Initially, he and the rest of the Groovie Goolies keep getting in the way, and Daffy and the others are terrified of them, but later on they become more useful to the Looney Tunes.
  • Master of Disguise: The Phantom of the Flickers. He is able to flawlessly impersonate others and completely change his form by various disguise methods, often by a Full-Body Disguise (sometimes done by a tornado-spin Instant Costume Change, or sometimes done with conventional rubber masks). He even goes as far as to wear masks of all the other Groovie Goolies and Daffy Duck.
  • Medium Blending: The "Mad Mirror Land" sequence, where three of the Groovie Goolies (Drac, Frankie and Wolfie) chase the Phantom (disguised as Hauntleroy) through the mirror into a live-action world, and they all become live-action as well. This was actually a modified version of a Deleted Scene from The Groovie Goolies Show where the Goolies chase the real Hauntleroy into Mad Mirror Land after Hauntleroy steals Wolfie's guitar (in the movie, the Phantom came up with the guitar to hide Daffy's film in it).
  • Monster Mash
  • Named After Somebody Famous: Claude Chaney a.k.a. the Phantom of the Flickers has his name based off two famous horror movie actors, Claude Rains and Lon Chaney.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: In addition to the main Groovie Goolies characters (i.e., Frankie's voice being based off Boris Karloff and Mummy's voice being an imitation of Ed Wynn), Larry Storch gives Claude Chaney (a.k.a. the Phantom of the Flickers) a voice based off Claude Rains, and does a pretty convincing job with it.
  • Not a Mask: After a Multi Layer Facade demonstration of rubber masks by the Phantom, Daffy jumps up onto Frankie and starts pulling at his face, thinking he's just an actor dressed up in an elaborate costume. Then when he tries to unravel "Mummy"'s costume, only to see him collapse in a pile of wrappings, Daffy begins to realize they're real.
  • Oh, Crap!: Daffy, after causing Mummy to unravel and collapse in a heap of wrappings, thinking it was just an actor in a costume.
  • Recycled Animation / Stock Footage: Again, this common Filmation trope appears quite a bit, reusing several poses and walk/run cycles.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: Most of the music is recycled soundtrack cues by Ray Ellis for Sabrina and The Groovie Goolies.
  • "Scooby-Doo" Hoax: Claude Chaney was going around as the Phantom of the Flickers and carrying out his evil plan due to color films like Daffy's ruining his career, as he starred in black-and-white silent horror movies, and as a result, he's in living black-and-white!
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: A few of the Looney Tunes characters are like this when Yosemite Sam and Daffy Duck are asking for recruits for their posse to catch the Groovie Goolies and the Phantom of the Flickers. Only Porky Pig and Wile E. Coyote agree to tag along with Sam.
  • Show Within a Show: Daffy Duck's movie, King Arthur and His Knights of the Round Table, to which Daffy also plays the title role.
  • Stock Sound Effects: This TV movie has virtually none of the classic Treg Brown-designed Warner Bros. sound effects. As per standard for Filmation, it generally uses low-quality samples of the Hanna-Barbera sound effects, along with a few classic Disney sounds. As a result, it sounds pretty similar to the late 1960s Warner Bros.- Seven Arts cartoons that used H-B's sound effects, but the selection here is not as limited as in those shorts.
  • Talking with Signs: Wile E. Coyote does this, of course, even though the Road Runner isn't in this movie.
  • Troubled Production: In-universe with Daffy's King Arthur movie, due to the shenanigans of the Phantom of the Flickers and the rest of the Groovie Goolies.
  • Weird Crossover
  • Wheel o' Feet: Done quite a bit with the Looney Tunes running really fast; even the horses in Daffy's King Arthur movie do so during a jousting sequence!
  • Wild Take: A somewhat pitiful example is seen during Daffy's King Arthur movie; among seeing sight of Lady Guinevere (played by Petunia Pig) he jumps up as his torso briefly morphs into a beating cartoon heart, he wobbles back down, and then turns red with love as fireworks burst out of his ice cream cone.
  • You Don't Look Like You: Some of the Looney Tunes characters look startlingly different when animated by Filmation. Wile E. Coyote and Pepé Le Pew in particular are drawn scruffier than usual, and at times Pepé resembles a typical 1960s/1970s Hanna-Barbera rodent character (not unlike Secret Squirrel).
  • You Look Familiar: In-universe; Drac and Hagatha can't help noticing how familiar the Phantom of the Flickers looks. At the end, it hits Drac: the Phantom is his uncle Claude Chaney!