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Western Animation / Daffy Duck's Quackbusters

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Daffy Ducks Quackbusters is a 1988 Compilation Movie starring Daffy Duck and other classic Looney Tunes characters. This film combines newly-animated footage linked with classic Warner Bros. cartoons. It is the last film in the Looney Tunes compilation movie anthology, as well as the only one to have an overarching story, and the last Looney Tunes theatrical feature until Space Jam eight years later. It was also Mel Blanc's second-to-last performance in a Looney Tunes project, with his absolute final one being the linking material in the TV special Bugs Bunny's Wild World of Sports a year later.

Here, Daffy Duck is a salesman who accepts a job to fulfill millionaire J.B. Cubish's wish to make him laugh one more time before he passes on. Daffy succeeds and when Cubish kicks the bucket, Daffy earns all his money from his will as long as he uses it for goodwill. But Daffy, well... being Daffy, plots to spend the money for himself, as so he's haunted by Cubish's ghost, who says that his money will gradually disappear if Daffy appears to use it dishonestly. As a result, Daffy decides to open a ghost exterminating business to get rid of ghosts like Cubish and hires Bugs Bunny and Porky Pig to help him.


Cartoons: "Night of the Living Duck," "Daffy Dilly," "The Prize Pest," "Water, Water, Every Hare," "Hyde and Go Tweet," "Claws for Alarm," "The Duxorcist," "Transylvania 6-5000," "The Abominable Snow Rabbit," "Punch Trunk," and "Jumpin' Jupiter."

"Night of the Living Duck" and "The Duxorcist" (the film's two new full cartoon segments) were later re-used in the 1992 TV special Bugs Bunny's Creature Features, while "The Duxorcist" would later join the Saturday morning rotation on ABC's Bugs Bunny & Tweety Show.


This film contains examples of:

  • 13 Is Unlucky: The number on Daffy's office is 1313. You can guess how things will happen for Daffy afterwards.
  • 555: Daffy uses such a number in his TV advertisements.
    Daffy: Just call 555-5925. Remember, that’s the same as dialling 555-KWAK.
  • Advertised Extra: The poster, video cover, and credits make it seem like Tweety is an equal star to Daffy, Bugs, Porky, and Sylvester, but he's only featured in Hyde and Go Tweet and a little bit of original animation following the sequence.
  • And Starring: Done for a gag. Bugs gets his name in massive letters, credited as "Special Guest Appearance by BUGS BUNNY as himself", complete with triumphant fanfare...followed by "And starring daffy duck", written tiny. His name didn't even warrant capital letters.
  • Art Shift: The animators actually changed the characters' designs accordingly to fit the classic cartoon that featured those very designs. For example, Daffy transition to his Robert McKimson designs in the scenes leading up to "The Prize Pest."
  • Book-Ends: Daffy starts the movie off as a street corner salesman, trying to make a living (or rather, a fortune), he returns as a struggling salesman in the epilogue after everything Daffy owned was repossessed.
  • Bowdlerise: Some television showings (specifically, Cartoon Network, back when their animated movie block was called "Cartoon Network's Cartoon Theater," not "Flicks") cut out the scene near the beginning where Daffy offers a six-pack of Billy Beer with the cars he's selling, as well as the noose scenes from "Claws for Alarm."
    • When "The Duxorcist" became its own short and aired on ABC, the part where Daffy calls the possessed female duck a schizophrenic, refers to her as "Sybil," and asks if there's "any more like [her] in the family" before adding "Could you send back that older sister of yours?" was replaced with a previous cut part (that came after he kisses her) where he says, "I don't know my own strength," as ABC felt the offending part was making fun of the mentally ill.
  • Butt-Monkey: Daffy.
  • Compilation Movie: This movie combines classic Warner Bros. cartoons to create an original story. It is kind of jarring to hear the by then aged voice of Mel Blanc suddenly transition to his more expressive performances in the classics.
    • Two of the shorts, "The Duxorcist" and "Night of the Living Duck," were made within a year of the film (and the latter was made for the film).
  • Composite Character: The result of film meshing a selection of cartoons from different eras and directors into a coherent package has this effect on Daffy, establishing him as a greedy and desperate Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist as later shorts did, but maintaining his mischievous opportunistic side from early on.
  • Die Laughing: Cubish apparently dies this way.
  • Downer Ending: Though through Rule of Funny and not that Daffy didn't have it coming. See Humilation Conga.
    • Additionally, Porky Pig and Sylvester get lost in the desert, though Porky doesn't seem to mind. Porky still doesn't believe that Sylvester sees scary things. However, Porky is also unemployed now, though he might not yet be aware of it (Bugs, on the other hand, doesn't seem to mind that Daffy's business went under).
  • Eat the Camera: Daffy while he's still on the wrecking ball. It's the exact same scream and exact same visual effect used in "To Beep or Not to Beep".
  • Everyone Has Standards: As sadistic as Cubish gets throughout the movie, he will not tolerate Daffy mistreating Porky or Sylvester.
  • The Friends Who Never Hang: Well, co-workers who never hang out. Daffy's business consists of himself, Bugs Bunny, and Porky Pig, but outside of them all appearing together in the commercials, Bugs and Porky never appear together.
  • Happy Ending Override: Though he had to put up with humiliation, "Daffy Dilly" still ended with Daffy supposedly getting rewarded for entertaining Cupish, making for a rare successful gain for him. The film extends on the plot and reveals that Cupish, now a disgruntled and sadistic ghost, not only curses Daffy out of his inheritance, but seemingly any other money he earns from that point onward, dooming Daffy to a life of poverty, and changing the Bittersweet Ending of the short into one of the darkest outcomes Daffy has ever suffered.
  • Hope Spot: After the last of Daffy's money has been taken away, he gets a knock at the door, expecting a client. Unfortunately, it's just Egghead delivering the news that his bills are unpaid and he's being reposessed.
  • Humiliation Conga: After Daffy gets humiliated on the air about the tiny elephant story, he plans to blame Porky for everything. This proves to be the final straw for Cubish, who takes Daffy's remaining money (and leaves behind a sign ribbing it in). He then gets his possessions repossessed and the entire apartment building is demolished (with him still in it!). And apparently, Cubish's curse is still on him, as a dollar he earns instantly vanishes once he gets it.
    • To make matters worse, Daffy earned the money legitimately, fulfilling Cubish's Last Request to have a good laugh before he died (at the expense of Daffy's dignity). The conditions that come with it weren't revealed until after Daffy had spent who knows how long working for him without complaint, and now he has to live the rest of his life under the heel of a sadistic ghost. Cubish is a grade-A Jerkass.
  • Karma Houdini: J.B. Cubish. Despite being dead, he's able to take away the money he left to Daffy (though to be fair, it was whenever Daffy did or considered doing something that goes against the terms of the will). And after taking the last of the money, it's implied that he's responsible for Daffy being reposessed and the building torn down with him in it, and afterwards, he takes away a dollar Daffy earned as a street corner salesman, which has nothing to do with the terms of the will.
  • Kick the Dog: At one point, Daffy struggles to take care of his tax exams and breaks down crying. As he does, though, Cubish's ghost is heard laughing sadistically, KNOWINGLY that Daffy is struggling and suffering.
    • At the end of movie, Daffy earns a dollar for selling a toy legally and legitimately before the dollar vanishes in Daffy's hand, implying that despite Daffy trying to sell legally, he is screwing Daffy for life! Cue Skyward Scream.
  • Larynx Dissonance: Played for Laughs in "Night of the Living Duck." Daffy takes some Eau De Torme mouth spray and proceeds to sing with the docile tones of crooner Mel Torme.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: "Spooks spooked, goblins gobbled, UFOs K.O.ed, aliens alienated, vampires evaporated, and monsters remonstrated."
  • Noodle Incident: Referenced after the female duck starts acting strangely.
    Daffy: Oh, brother, not another schizophrenic dame.
  • Off-Model: Despite their best efforts, switches between the classic cartoons and the new bridging segments are really noticeable.
  • Oh, Crap!: Every time Daffy realizes he's pissed off Cubish and his money starts disappearing.
  • Phone Word: Daffy, Bugs and Porky run a Ghostbusters-esque agency, and their phone number is 555-5925, or 555-KWAK.
  • The Real Spoofbusters: Spoof is in the title and in the premise.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: Unlike the other compilation films, which used new music for the bridging sequences (usually by Dean Elliott or Robert J. Walsh), the score to this film is compiled from numerous Looney Tunes shorts of the past. If you're well-versed in the original shorts, it can be fun to hear the music in different contexts.
  • Setting Update: The scene from "Daffy Dilly" where Daffy hears of Cubish from the radio is replaced with new footage showing the report on a television screen (with the original audio playing over it).
  • Short Film: "The Night of the Living Duck" plays before Quackbusters proper, and has nothing to do with the plot of the film itself.
  • Skyward Scream: "CUBIIIIIISH!!!"
  • Southern Belle: The female duck talks like this after the ghosts are exorcised.
  • Spiteful Will: Cupish grants Daffy his fortune as inheritance as promised, but under the stipulation he can't spend a dime on himself, only charitable causes. Oh, and apparently, he can take it with him if he refuses.
  • Tropical Epilogue: Bugs finally gets that Palm Springs vacation he wanted all through the film.
  • Verbal Backspace: Happens whenever Daffy does something to anger Cubish and tries to keep his money from disappearing (though in the case of what Daffy said about Bugs, Cubish only stopped when Daffy said he'll make [Cubish] vice-president).
  • Villain Protagonist/Nominal Hero: Daffy is up to his unscrupulous ways again and plans to follow a Scrooge-like career until the supernatural trouble leads him to become a ghostbuster-for-hire instead.
  • Vocal Evolution: Being one of his final performances before his death (aged 81 no less), Mel Blanc's performances as the Looney Tunes regulars in the new footage sounds very noticeably more worn and gravelly than that in the reused shorts. Especially noticeable for Daffy and Porky, whose new dialogue isn't pitch shifted like it normally is. According to director Greg Ford, Mel was very worn out when recording, and his work required a lot of editing to get up to par (the aforementioned lack of pitch shifting was to try and maintain the nuance Mel could still accomplish).
  • "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue: Bugs is relaxing in Palm Springs, Porky and Sylvester are lost in the Superstition Mountains, Cubish is still dead, and Daffy is back to selling merchandise on the streets (with a dollar he made legitimately suddenly vanishing).
  • Whole Plot Reference: The main plot parodies Ghostbusters.


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