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Western Animation / Really Scent

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"Love in its sweetest form"
Pepé Le Pew is visiting New Orleans in the hopes of finding a bride. As it so happens, a local cat, Fabrette, is unlucky enough to have been born with white stripes down her back, putting quite the damper on her attempts to find true love. She spies Pepé and, in an incredibly rare instance for him, falls for him at once...until she gets a whiff of his odor. Still, he seems like her one chance. Can she find a way to make it work?

This short is something of an oddball when it comes to Pepe's shorts, although a bit less so than Odor of the Day. This was the only Pepé short directed by Abe Levitownote  and it shows by shaking up the formula just enough while still sticking to the same idea. Unlike most Pepé episodes, the cat's skunk stripes are natural and her attraction is real; she would happily get with Pepé if she could. And Pepé is not a handsy Handsome Lech but a man confused by his beloved's mixed signals, embracing him one moment and fleeing the next. When he realizes his body odor is the problem, he is mortified and resolves to do something about it.

Overall, this has caused many to consider this short to have aged surprisingly well compared to Pepé's other shorts, with only a few scant bits of Values Dissonance being seen in the tail end of the short; in a way that also, surprisingly, doesn't involve Pepé. As a result, though it may not have won an award like For Scent-imental Reasons did, many proclaim it to be one of the best shorts he was involved in; and one of the few you can watch without feeling uncomfortable in the process.

This short provides examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: In this short, it’s only the smell that the cat finds abhorrent, and she desperately spends most of the short trying to deal with it so she can have a real relationship with Pepe.
  • Act of True Love: Upon discovering the meaning of “pew” and realizing that this is the reason why the cat is avoiding him, Pepé genuinely tries to get rid of his odor for her sake. Unfortunately for him, Fabrette has resigned herself to life as a skunk and locks herself in a Limburger cheese factory to acquire the appropriate scent.
  • Adaptation Name Change: "Penelope" (the official name for all of Pepé's feline paramours) is here named Fabrette.
  • Attractive Bent Species: Fabrette's birthmark frightens off all the male cats, but Pepé (a real skunk) thinks she's gorgeous.
  • Breaking Old Trends: In an exceedingly rare case for him, the cat in this short actually does return his affections; unfortunately, his odor makes a relationship seem impossible.
  • Desperately Craves Affection: Pepé and Fabrette are both guilty of this to different degrees.
  • Driven to Suicide: Fabrette is so depressed over her failed romance with Pepé that she nearly drowns herself. The narrator convinces her to try a different tack, since "if you can not beat them, join them."
  • Gift of the Magi Plot: Pepé dunks himself in chlorophyll to rid himself of his stench; Fabrette locks herself in a limburger vault to adapt herself to the life of a skunk. When they happily reunite, thinking their relationship troubles are past, he can't stand her odor.
  • Handsome Lech: Notably downplayed! Although he's still a hopeless romantic, Pepé doesn't force his affections on an unwilling target (he's merely baffled by the reactions he gets from her and everyone else). In fact, the second he finds out why his love keeps disappearing on him, he immediately feels awful about it.
  • I Just Want to Be Loved: Pepé and Fabrette both have this to degrees, with Fabrette's despair being played for something close to tragedy.
  • Internal Deconstruction: This short shows what would happen if Pepé actually did meet a cat that wanted to be with him: his odor makes a relationship impossible; Fabrette is so distraught over her one chance at love slipping away that she almost attempts suicide; and when Pepé finally figures out the reason why she (and everyone else) ends up running away from him, he's very dejected and disheartened.
  • Internal Reveal: Pepé finally learns why everybody says "pew!" when they see him. Needless to say, he's devastated.
  • Lemony Narrator: This short has a female narrator discussing the action, and even giving Fabrette encouragement and advice.
    Narrator: Fabrette! You are not going to let a little thing like breathing stand between you and happiness?
  • Love at First Sight: Unusually for the Pepé cartoons, Fabrette (the cat) falls for him. It's only when she gets a whiff of his odor that things go south.
  • New Orleans: The setting.
  • No Guy Wants to Be Chased: Granted, it was mostly because Fabrette decides to put on the aroma as well as the appearance of a skunk, but the short ends with her chasing Pepé into the woods.
  • Not Good with Rejection: Fabrette is a heavy case of this, especially in the end of the short.
  • Odd Ball In The Series: Though not as much as Odor of the Day, this short plays around with the usual conventions of Pepé Le Pew's shorts, in part thanks to having a different director than the usual crew. It should be noted that many of these changes were actually well received in hindsight.
  • Old Maid: Fabrette is so desperate to avoid old maidenhood that she is even willing to try and tolerate Pepé’s odor.
  • Panicky Expectant Father: The father cat at the start of the short when Fabrette and her sister Jeanette are born, complete with Cigarette of Anxiety (on a stemmed holder).
  • Smelly Skunk: As per usual in the Pepé cartoons, but treated much more tragically, as the cat genuinely wants to be with Pepé.
  • Unrequited Love Switcheroo: The ending. Pepé actually has himself de-scented to make himself desirable to Fabrette. Unfortunately for him, Fabrette has just spent time marinating in Limburger cheese in an attempt to become a true skunk.