Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd are still chasing each other in the new Looney Tunes Cartoons series that premiered as part of the new. But the weapons look a bit different. Executive producer and showrunner Peter Browngardt told The New York Times that guns are out, but the same old anvil-dynamite-booby trap violence is still there.
“We’re not doing guns,” Browngardt told the paper in an article published in late May that’s now drawing attention. “But we can do cartoony violence — TNT, the Acme stuff. All that was kind of grandfathered in.”
There’s plenty of that cartoony violence. In one episode, Elmer Fudd chases Bugs with a scythe, and Bugs turns the tables on the hunter by stuffing dynamite sticks in his mouth. In another, “Siberian Sam” (aka, Yosemite Sam) tries to use dynamite hidden in Russian nesting dolls to blow up Bugs, and blows off his own skin. Wile E. Coyote attempts to blow up the Roadrunner, and chars himself before turning to a very 2020 solution — attaching his dynamite to a flying drone.
Guns may be out, but the iconic cartoon enemies aren’t singing Kumbaya and giving each other flowers.
“We’re going through this wave of anti-bullying, everybody needs to be friends, everybody needs to get along,” story editor Johnny Ryan told The Times. “‘Looney Tunes’ is pretty much the antithesis of that. It’s two characters in conflict, sometimes getting pretty violent.”
The Looney Tunes Cartoons shorts run one to six minutes long, and feature classic characters such as Bugs, Elmer, Daffy Duck, Porky Pig and more. Currently, there are ten episodes on HBO Max, the new streaming service from HBO that premiered May 27.
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