Foghorn Leghorn is a recurring character of the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies short subjects, created by Robert McKimson. Despite only starring in 28 short cartoons between 1946 and 1963, he is still considered a major star.
The shorts are centered on the eponymous Rhode Island rooster with a Central Virginia accent, no filter between his mouth and his mind, and very expressive body language. His voice is patterned after a 1930s radio character known as "The Sheriff", with his phrases cribbed from Senator Claghorn, a regular character of the Fred Allen radio show.
Foghorn considers himself the life of the party. He demonstrates this by tricking baby chickenhawks out of capturing him, playing slapstick pranks on the Barnyard Dawg by beating him with a wooden board and painting his tongue green, or babysitting a genius chick named Eggbert in order to cozy up to his widow hen mother.
Foghorn made several appearances in Tiny Toon Adventures, made a cameo in the ending of Who Framed Roger Rabbit, and appeared in two of the 1990s Chuck Jones shorts. He also appeared in Space Jam as a member of the team, and made a brief appearance in Looney Tunes: Back in Action.
Currently, ol' Foggy's appearances are infrequent, aside from commercial work for KFC note , Oscar Meyer, and GEICO. His most recent appearances were in The Looney Tunes Show, Wabbit: A Looney Tunes Production, Looney Tunes Cartoons, and Space Jam: A New Legacy.
All shorts up to Banty Raids are directed by Robert McKimson.
- Walky Talky Hawky (1946)
- Crowing Pains (1947)
- The Foghorn Leghorn (1948)
- Henhouse Henery (1949)
- The Leghorn Blows at Midnight (1950)
- A Fractured Leghorn (1950)
- Leghorn Swoggled (1951)
- Lovelorn Leghorn (1951)
- Sock-A-Doodle-Do (1952)
- The Egg-Cited Rooster (1952)
- Plop Goes the Weasel (1953)
- Of Rice and Hen (1953)
- Little Boy Boo (1954)
- Feather Dusted (1955)
- All Fowled Up (1955)
- Weasel Stop (1956)
- The High and the Flighty (1956)
- Raw! Raw! Rooster! (1956)
- Fox Terror (1957)
- Feather Bluster (1958)
- Weasel While You Work (1958)
- A Broken Leghorn (1959)
- Crocket-Doodle-Do (1960)
- The Dixie Fryer (1960)
- Strangled Eggs (1961)
- The Slick Chick (1962)
- Mother Was a Rooster (1962)
- Banty Raids (1963)
- False Hare (1964): A Bugs Bunny cartoon, but Foggy makes a cameo.
- The Yolk's On You (1980): Cameo, part of Daffy Duck's Easter Egg-Citement
- Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988): Cameos in the ending.
- Tiny Toon Adventures (1990): Recurring Character
- Superior Duck (1996): Cameo appearance.
- Space Jam (1996)
- Pullet Surprise (1997)
- Tweety's High-Flying Adventuure (2000)
- Cock-A-Doodle Duel (2004)
- GEICO-Foghorn Leghorn (2011)
"That's a trope, son, ya missed it!":
- Animals Lack Attributes: Foghorn has no spurs (a near-universal secondary sexual attribute among roosters) on his legs. This is may be for ease of animation, though, since the Leghorn breed is named for the fact that even a lot of the hens have them.
- Art Evolution: Foghorn's comb is shorter in the first shorts; it became its usual length starting in the late '40s/early '50s. He was also chunkier in the first shorts, though that was across the board for Robert McKimson's shorts at the time.
- Awesome by Analysis: Egghead always outdoes Foghorn at every "manly" activity he tries to teach the kid by utilizing what he's learned in the books he reads. (One cartoon even ends with Foggy asking him if he "has any more" of those books.)
- Awesome Mc Coolname: Seven decades, and it still sounds catchy!
- Big Electric Switch: Used in "Weasel Stop" and "The High and the Flighty".
- Borrowed Catchphrase: Henery Hawk would occasionally adopt Foghorn's "I say". Notably at the end of "Walky Talky Hawky", which ends with him dragging Foggy, Barnyard Dawg and a horse behind him:Henery: One of these things, I say, one of these things has got to be a chicken!
- Nowadays, Foghorn mostly calls people "son", most likely because a Southern rooster calling people "Boy" wouldn't be considered funny anymore. This only happens in the English version, as other dubs keep the phrase or adapt it for their respective countries. However, he used the phrase "boy" in his Toon Marooned appearance.
- A lot of his cartoons have been edited for violence, dangerous imitable acts, and some mild racism (mostly stereotypical depictions of Native Americans) on ABC, CBS, WB, FOX, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, and Boomerang (though Cartoon Network and Boomerang only edited "Feather Duster" and banned "Crockett Doodle Doo"note . The violence and dangerous imitable acts are left intact).
- Bratty Half-Pint: Henery Hawk.
- Butt-Monkey: Foghorn or sometimes Barnyard, depending on who has the upper hand in their Escalating War in the short. Prissy is often bullied and alienated by the gossipy hens of the pen.
- Catchphrase: Foghorn has numerous ones, which he uses frequently and make his speech pattern very distinctive."I say, I say..."
"Pay attention when I'm talkin' to ya, boy!"
"Nice boy, but he doesn't listen to a word you say."
"Boy's about as sharp as a bowling ball."
"What in the- I say- what in the..."
"That's a joke, son!"
- Chain of Deals This is the basis of "Leghorn Swoggled". The Dawg offers to help Henery Hawk catch a chicken in return for a bone. When asking a cat where he can find a bone, the cat offers to tell him if Henery can give him a fish. Then while wondering where he can get a fish, a mouse offers to tell him if he brings him some cheese. In the end, after he gives each animal its desired item, the Dawg bashes Foghorn on the head with his bone, knocking him out and letting Henery take him away.Henery Hawk: If I get the dog a bone, I'll get a fish. Uh, if I get a mouseno. If I get the fish a dog, the cat wants cheeseuh, no, no, the mouse wants the cheese. Gosh, I wonder what the cheese will want.
- Cocky Rooster: Foghorn is rude, loud-mouthed and often plays mean-spirited pranks on the Barnyard Dawg.
- Comedic Spanking: Foghorn's preferred way to rile up Barnyard Dawg was to grab his tail while he was sleeping in his doghouse, lift him up by it and give him a good 8 to 10 whacks with a paddle. This always worked.
- Crazy-Prepared: Upon having all his feathers blown off in an explosion: "Fortunately, I keep mah feathers numbered for just such an emergency!" He repeats this gag in other cartoons with an assortment of other preparations, like the time a hay bailer plucked him, a tornado stripped him, or a Daffy Duck exploitation scheme caused his feathers to get electrocuted off of his body. In one case he even pulls out an instant spare feather kit.
- Don't Explain the Joke: Frequently after making a lame joke, Foghorn would say, "That's a joke, son!"
- Dragged into Drag: In Banty Raids, poor Foghorn is bound and beak-tied and forcibly dressed in drag by a machine, then married to a horny bantam rooster.
- Enemy Mine: He and Dawg call a truce in Fox Terror to get rid of a fox after the chickens, and again in The High and the Flighty when they realize Daffy is making money by getting them to fight each other.
- Escalating War: Many cartoons centered on the perpetual Foghorn vs. Dawg back-and-forth. Which character starts the conflict varies from toon to toon, but Foggy usually ends up getting the worst of it.
- Fake-Out Fade-Out: Foghorn ends at least two cartoons this way, just to get in one last line of dialogue.
- Fat Bastard: Subverted. Foghorn, although when shown without his feathers, he appears a lot skinnier.
- Also, the dog, who is somewhat chunky himself.
- Friendly Enemy: Even though Henery Hawk is a predator trying to hunt him and his fellow chickens, Foghorn always sees fit to give some honest advice and encouragement on how he should go about it.
- Give the Dog a Bone: Occasionally, Foggy will actually get the best of his adversaries. Such as in "Raw, Raw Rooster!" and "The Dixie Fryer".
- Goofy Print Underwear: When his feathers are blown off (see Crazy-Prepared, above) he is revealed to have polka-dotted underwear underneath them.
- Gossipy Hens: The hens of the farm are usually depicted as this, usually with Miss Prissy as the subject of their snide gossiping (out of earshot or not).
- Henpecked Husband: Literally becomes one in a one-shot short where his wife demands he sit on the nest and watch the egg while she's off enjoying herself. He calls her "Dream Boat" to her face, but quickly changes it to "Tug Boat" behind her back. Naturally, Dawg steals it simply so he can call her to rat on him, and by the end of the cartoon, she's beaten him unconscious.
- Honest John's Dealership: In The High and the Flighty, Daffy Duck appears on the scene as a salesman representing the Ace Novelty Company of Walla Walla, Washington. He has arrived to profit from Foghorn's rivalry with the Dawg by independently selling them both elaborate practical jokes to each play on the other. Unfortunately, Daffy pushes his luck too far when he sells them both the same thing, the Pipe Full of Fun Kit #7. Foggy and the Dawg realize they've been had, and they put their rivalry aside to get even with Daffy, by using his own novelty device against him.
- Hypocritical Humor: He will often accuse others of not listening or talking too much, and he will do most if not all the talking, while the other character can't get a word in edgewise, leading the foil to finally exclaim "Aah, shut up!"
- After being told to shut up, he says that most folks will just go on talking, while he claims to know when to shut up, followed by a long-winded rambling.
- I Resemble That Remark!: Even more so than Hypocritical Humor. In fact, he may not be the Trope Namer (Groucho Marx takes credit for that one) but he's clearly the Trope Codifier.
- Incompetent Guard Animal: Throughout most of the shorts starring Foghorn Leghorn, Barnyard Dog is shown to be an almost counter productive guard dog. Almost always sleeping on the job, he tends to only pay attention to farmyard predators like Henery Hawk and "Bill" the Weasel when directing them towards his Arch-Enemy Foghorn, who trolls Barnyard ceaselessly for his idleness.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: To an extent, Foghorn is an obnoxious loudmouth and a prankster, but does have occasional moments of good intentions, and is rarely, if ever, portrayed as a villain outside the original cartoons, unlike characters such as Daffy.
- A Lady on Each Arm: Seen during 1981's the Looney Looney Looney Bugs Bunny Movie. At the start of the third act "the Oswalds", we see Foghorn arriving at the awards show with a pair of lady chickens accompanying him.
- Lampshade Hanging: Occasionally, such as when Egghead pitches a baseball cleanly through both Foghorn's bat and a series of trees. To quote the rooster himself, "There's something goin' on around here that just don't add up..."
- Large Ham: One of the largestnote hams on the Warner Brothers menu.
- Leitmotif: "Camptown Races" for ol' Foggy, either played on the soundtrack or sung by Foghorn himself.
- Mad Libs Catch Phrase: "Nice kid, but [describes a perceived flaw with an undercurrent of Hypocritical Humor]."
- Meaningful Name: "Foghorn" describes the character's loud, overbearing voice, and leghorn describes a breed of chicken. And both are intended to resemble "Claghorn", the original inspiration for the character.
- Mind Screw: While hiding in a feedbox in a game of hide-and-seek, Egghead manages to find Foghorn by doing some math, digging a hole in the ground, and pulling the chicken out of it. Foghorn is understandably flabbergasted and goes to check the feedbox he was hiding in, but then decides against it for this reason.Foghorn Leghorn: No, I better not look. I just might be in there.
- Motor Mouth: Though he would disagree - through, naturally, a long winded speech."Okay, I'll shut up. I'm not one who has to keep talkin'. Some fellas just has to keep their mouths flappin' but not me! I was brought up right. My pa used to tell me shut up and I'd shut up. I wouldn't say nothin'! One time I darn near starved to death." (iris out, Foghorn stops it so he can keep talking) "WOULDN'T TELL 'EM I WAS HUNGRY!"
- Muscles Are Meaningless: For such a huge rooster, Foghorn is able to be taken down by a tiny chickenhawk. Of course, Foghorn is not that easy to put away. It's actually justified whenever we see him without his feathers. All that bulk is pure puff, and he is actually pretty scrawny. This is further referenced in "All Fowled Up", when he decides to break Barnyard Dawg in two with his good right arm. He flexes his muscles in his arm, but it hangs limp. He realizes he's getting flabby and decides to do some pushups to build up his muscles.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed:
- Foggy himself was a caricature of Senator Claghorn, a popular radio comedian at the time of The Golden Age of Animation, although that's pretty much been forgotten to modern viewers.
- Rhode Island Red, Foggy's old college buddy from "Raw! Raw! Rooster", is based on Jackie Gleason. Interestingly, Red's voice actor, Daws Butler, would voice caricatured versions of Gleason's character, Ralph Kramden, as in the Bugs Bunny short "Half-Fare Hare" and the "Honey-Mousers" miniseries, which depicts the Honeymooners characters as mice.
- Off with His Head!: When he makes an appearance on Family Guy, Foghorn starts to compare someone to a chicken with its head cut off before he realizes what he's saying:"Well look at that boy, running all around like a chicken with his head cut — wait a minute."
- Older and Wiser: In one cartoon, he and the dog are senior citizens who have outgrown their feud, and can only look back on it and laugh. Unfortunately, their grandsons now take after them.
- Ostrich Head Hiding: In Mother Was A Rooster, Foggy adopts a baby ostrich, who hides his head in the sand whenever Barnyard Dawg called him an "ugly chicken." When Foghorn and Dawg get their heads stuck in the ground in he end, the ostrich says "They left me all alone. Where did everybody go?"
- Out of Focus: Henery Hawk eventually disappeared from the series after "All Fowled Up", although he returned for "Strangled Eggs".
- Papa Wolf: In "Mother was a Rooster", Foggy becomes one towards the ostrich he adopts, challenging Dawg to a duel when Dawg repeatedly claims it's ugly.
- Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Henery Hawk, who is a speck compared to the mammoth Foghorn, yet can clobber him and effortlessly drag him!
- Playing Both Sides: The High and the Flighty has Daffy Duck as a Traveling Salesman of practical joke devices who spurs Foghorn and Dawg into an Escalating War and sells them both gags (he was having a lousy time selling them, you see). Things finally backfire on him when he sells the both of them the exact same gag and they meet each other while setting them both up and figure out they've been had.
- Rolling Pin of Doom: Miss Prissy tries this in order to get a husband in one cartoon. After she tries it on Foggy, he advises her, "You're going about it all wrong. You don't bat 'em on the bean with a rolling pin. (Aside, to the camera) That comes later."
- Rube Goldberg Device: Occasionally either Foghorn or the Dawg gets dragged through one of these or has theirs backfire on them.
- Foghorn's speech pattern and phrases are based on Senator Claghorn, a fictional politician from the 1940s radio show The Fred Allen Show. Though according to Leonard Maltin, Mc Kimson claimed the influence for Foghorn goes back even further, to a sheriff from another radio show called "Blue Monday Jamboree"
- After Foghorn is Dragged into Drag and forced to marry the beatnik bantam in "Banty Raids", his protests of "But I'm a rooster!" are met with "We can't all be perfect."
- Shutting Up Now: At the end of A Fractured Leghorn, as Foghorn lectures the cat about dividing a worm in half for them to share, the cat, who hasn't said a word at all the whole cartoon, finally gets fed up and yells at him to "SHUT UP!", clobbering him in the process, after which Foghorn continues in the manner of this trope:"Okay, I'll shut up. I'm not one that has to keep talkin'. Some fellas just have to keep their mouths flappin', but not me! I was brought up right, my pa used to tell me "shut up" and I'd shut up! I wouldn't say nothin'! One time, darn-near starved to death!" (at this point, the iris-out starts to end the cartoon, but Foghorn stalls it briefly) "Wouldn't tell him I was hungry!" (cartoon ends)
- Sophisticated as Hell: Weasel While You Work opens with Foghorn rolling Dawg up into a snowman, after which Dawg pops his head out of the snowman head and says..."There is but one course for me to follow - I'LL MOIDER DA BUM!!"
- Stalker with a Crush: Prissy to Foghorn at times. Keep in mind, she is about an eighth his size!
- Surveillance Station Slacker: Barnyard is not good at his job of guard dog. He's rarely in sight when the likes of Henery Hawk or the Bill the Weasel waltz in, and sometimes he'll even direct them Foghorn's way out of spite.
- Talks Like a Simile: Does it all the time. Some examples: "Nice girl, but about as sharp as sack of wet mice." "This boy's more mixed up than a feather in a whirlwind" and "This kid's about as sharp as a sack of wet leather."
- Tempting Fate:
- In one cartoon, Foghorn tries to impress Egghead Jr. with an Indian Rain Dance (a pretty obvious fake) and then tells him to dance up a storm. Egghead complies by making it rain using a paper airplane to seed a cloud with dry ice. Foghorn dismisses it on account of it not having any thunder and lightning, and is promptly struck by a lightning bolt.Foggy: Some storm. Where's the thunder and lightning?
(Lightning crashes, striking him and blowing his feathers off.)
Foggy: I hadda ask. I hadda ask!
- In the same episode, Foghorn and Egghead Jr. play hide and seek. Foghorn hides in a shed and says that "boy would need a slide rule to find me in here!" Guess what tool Egghead uses first when he starts to look?
- Played with in "Crowing Pains". When Foggy declares that if he's a rooster, he's about to say that he hopes to be struck by lightning until a bolt of lightning almost strikes him and he decides to "put it another way. Way, that is."
- In one cartoon, Foghorn tries to impress Egghead Jr. with an Indian Rain Dance (a pretty obvious fake) and then tells him to dance up a storm. Egghead complies by making it rain using a paper airplane to seed a cloud with dry ice. Foghorn dismisses it on account of it not having any thunder and lightning, and is promptly struck by a lightning bolt.
- Thinker Pose: This happens to him at the end of All Fowled Up, after his big prank on the dog using quick drying cement backfires on him. ("Don't bother me, dog!" he manages to mutter. "Can't ya see I'm thinkin'?")
- This Means War!:
- Says it literally in Lovelorn Leghorn, where Foggy is woken up from his nap by Dawg, who splashes water on him, then shuts him up in his own umbrella.
- Leghorn Swoggled starts with Dawg offering Foggy a device to see a total eclipse, which is actually a set-up to slam a pumpkin over his head. Foggy turns to the viewer and says, "Now ya just know I'm gonna do somethin' about this."
- Translator Buddy: For Road Runner in the 2001 webtoon: Inherit The Windbag.
- Troll: Foghorn seems to enjoy pulling pranks on the dog responsible for keeping him and the other chickens safe, for no reason at all. Although, sometimes the dog is the one who starts it, and is also often implied to be rather bad at his job, in that whenever a predator lurks the barnyard it's because he is asleep on the job or actually trying to set it on Foghorn as part of their Escalating War. In this light Foghorn's animosity to him comes off as a bit justified.
- Unsympathetic Comedy Protagonist: Foghorn's a jerk who pulls all sorts of mean-spirited pranks on the Dawg without provocation, and he always gets his just desserts at the end.
- Verbal Tic:
- Foghorn often re — I say, he often repeats the first part of his sentences.
- In some shorts a drawn-out "yes" is all Miss Prissy says. It becomes much more drawn out if/when she's trying to seduce Foghorn.
- Villain Protagonist: Henery Hawk, when the series was initially his own. Depending on his mood, Foghorn himself may lean into this.
- Vitriolic Best Buds:
- With his old college roommate, Rhode Island Red; in the one episode where he shows up, Foggy does everything he can to get the guy to leave, except just telling him to, suggesting the trope applies to them. (Indeed, Red is pretty annoying.)
- He and Barnyard Dawg sometimes shade into this as well.
- Vocal Evolution:
- Foghorn's voice was more nasally and less baritone in the first couple of cartoons.
- Barnyard Dawg also spent a few shorts before he gained his gravelly snark. In "Daffy Duck Hunt" in fact, Blanc portrays him with the exact same prototype voice he gave Foghorn.
- You Talk Too Much: One of Foggy's personality flaws — sometimes played Up to Eleven to increase the comedy — is his talkativeness and overblown rambling on. The Barnyard Dawg is often annoyed by this and it frequently irritates Henery Hawk, but (in "A Fractured Leghorn") when a black and white cat takes the brunt of Foggy's motormouth and can't get a word in edgewise, he finally loses his cool. He grabs a nearby trash can, bashes it over the rooster's head and tells him to "SHADDUP!" But even a beating over the head (or a large headache) isn't enough to shut up Foggy — only the iris-out a few seconds later, which he tries unsuccessfully to hold open, finally closes his mouth.