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Western Animation / Porky's Hero Agency

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"Porky's Hero Agency" is a 1937 Looney Tunes short directed by Bob Clampett, and starring Porky Pig.

In this short, Porky, depicted here as a child, falls asleep reading Greek mythology and dreams that he's the hero "Porkykarkas". He is hired by the Emperor to vanquish the Gorgon, who is turning the populace into statues, and steal her life-restoring needle.

"Porky's Hero Agency" provides examples of:

  • Crashing Dreams: Near the end, the Gorgon has Porky pinned and tries to make him open his eyes. The scene then fades to reality, where Porky's mother is trying to get him awake for the morning.
  • Creator Cameo: Outside the Gorgon's lair are statues of various Warner Bros. artists (including Bob Clampett and Chuck Jones) forming an impromptu picket fence.
  • Expressive Accessory: The snake headpiece the Gorgon wears sometimes mirrors her expressions. In the scene where the Gorgon turns to the audience after seeing "Apowello", the snake winks at the camera.
  • Monkey Morality Pose: Three of the Gorgon's victims are turned into statues that take on the "wise monkey" poses.
    "Guess I made monkeys out of them!"
  • Pictorial Speech-Bubble: When Porky fears being turned to stone, a thought bubble appears showing him as a piggy bank.
  • Shout-Out:
    • The name "Porkykarkas" is a reference to Parkyakarkas, the stereotypicaly Greek stage persona of comedian Harry Einstein. The Emperor himself is an impersonation of Parkyakarkas.
    • The film also references the 1933 film version of The Emperor Jones.
    • The Emperor is shown making a fireside chat.
    • The needle is called the "bring-em-back-alive life restorer", a reference to Frank Buck's bestselling book Bring 'Em Back Alive.
    • The Gorgon is based on Lizzie Tish, a character from radio's Al Pearce and His Gang.
      • Porky says "I hope, I hope, I hope", the catchphrase of another Al Peace character, Elmer Blurt.
    • Among the Gorgon's victims are expies of The Three Stooges.
    • At one point, Porky says the title of the song "No! No! A Thousand Times No!"
    • Porky disguises himself as Dick Apowello, a mash-up of the god Apollo and movie star Dick Powell.
    • While restoring the stone sculptures, Porky places a pair of Popeye arms on the Venus de Milo statue, complete with the sailor man's theme playing. He also uses the needle on a temple, and then on a smaller one marked "Shirley".
  • Taken for Granite: Here, the Gorgon petrifies people using a special camera, and the effects are reversed by a magic needle (depicted as a syringe).
  • Traveling Salesman: A statue of a salesman sticking his foot in the door is used as a doorstopper for the Gorgon's lair.