Daffy Duck

Daffy Duck is the ultimate cartoon Rorshach Test. Directors, writers, and artists could project whatever emotion, color, ridiculous situation that they wanted on Daffy. It was all just well... Daffy...

Daffy debuts in Porky's Duck Hunt.

Daffy Duck, film icon parodier extraordinaire.

The team up every one waited decades to see.

Just The Facts

  1. Daffy Duck was the third most featured character in the Looney Tunes stable. He only trailed behind Bugs Bunny and Porky Pig.
  2. Daffy Duck had shifting relationships with most of his fellow Looney Tunes characters. Daffy was shown as both friend, mentor, and rival to almost every other character depending on the situation.
  3. Due to an unfortnate experience with a cable tv company, there is a rumor that Daffy is now masquerading as the crime fighting 'Fist of Goodness.'

Every Legend Has A Beginning....

Have you ever seen those old commercials that told you that you may have what it takes to be an artist? You can correspondance course your way into a successful career? Well, they send you things to draw. You draw them and send them back to be judged. It is all the same attempt at the same drawing, however there are slight and subtle interpretations of the drawing that set them apart. Each artist, no matter how subtlely, will project their own understanding of the source material. On a grand scale for the last scale, Daffy Duck has served as that drawing for cartoons. He is supposed to be the same chaeacter, but in the hands of each creator, Daffy more than any other character becomes their own.

Daffy first appeared in Porky's Duck Hunt which was directed by Tex Avery and animated by Bob Clampett. This was in April of 1937. The next year, the same set up was used for Daffy Duck and Egghead. Porky and Egghead was just Porky's Duck Hunt in color and Egghead was simply the proto-Elmer Fudd.

Porky's Duck Hunt

Daffy Duck And Egghead

You might notice that Daffy in the early shorts looks more like...well... a duck. Of course, you can see how Egghead ...

Would morph into Elmer Fudd...

Porky and Daffy

Daffy started out with a rather adversarial relationship with Porky Pig. Porky establishes their relationship early on in Proky's Duck Hunt by trying to straight up murder Daffy. The next collaboration did not go much better for their friend ship with What Price Porky.

In this cartoon, Porky is a hapless farmer....

Who is caught in a war between Ducks and Chickens....

Daffy annoints himself as General Quacko in this one....

The next time Proky and Daffy saw each other was Porky And Daffy... Porky decides that Daffy is lazy and should earn his keep... by cockfighting...

Daffy winds up winning because with every subsequent head injury, he manages to go into a frenzy that features an orgy of violence...

Daffy would get the upper hand in The Daffy Doc. Daffy plays a quack Doctor who keeps trying to diagnose and treat Porky for fake ailments.

Porky is ultimately lucky to make it out alive even by cartoon standards.

Wise Quacks marked a turning point in the relationship between Porky and Daffy. Daffy is informed that his Mrs. Daffy is going to give birth to multiple hatchlings.

This inspires Daffy to go on a drinking binge to drown out his sorrows.

until a crazed eagle steals all of his chicks...

Daffy and Porky team up to save the chicks with the power of beer. The get the eagle and his family so drunk they no longer care what happens to the young chicks.

After this, Porky goes from being a worthy adversary to Daffy Duck to being a lovably funny sidekick.

Bugs and Daffy

Bugs Bunny also vacilates between being Daffy's friend and tormentor. In Daffy's most famous and critically acclaimed cartoon Duck Amuck, Bugs is revealed to be a sadistic God-like controller of Daffy's fate. Bugs seems malevolent for no other purpose than to just torture Daffy drawing him into incredibly ludicrous and cruel situations.

Even in the best of circumstances, Bugs and Daffy could probably be best described as 'frenemies.'

There were many cartoons which centered around Bugs actively getting Daffy shot by Elmer Fudd. This led to Daffy's immortal line "Your despicable....."

Daffy Takes on Pop Culture

Daffy Duck is the go to Duck when you want to do a movie parody. First, he is an incredibly inept Robin Hood...

Who spends the entire cartoon messing up until he runs into a better one.

Porky seems to continually have the correct response to Daffy's attempts at this.

Daffy would also end up playing and incredibly inept Ghostbuster.

Lets not forget Daffy as space traveler...

A really poor rendering of a famous gumshoe...

An embarassingly terrible cowboy...

Or an oafish lout of a swashbuckler...

Daffy And Speedy Gonzales

Sppedy Gonzales seemed to knowingly play to every negative racial stereotype ever.

Thankfully, Daffy was willing to go right down to Mexico and put an end to all things Mexican once and for all.....

Daffy usually played a self appointed defender of some sort of rules to be enforced south of the border. While he usually lost, Daffy never seemed to lose his sense of authority.

The good news is that after several years of antagonism, Daffy and Speedy were able to become friends as well as occasionally fighting a common foe.

The only serious part.

In 1989, the legend of Daffy's voice and so many of he voices of the Looney Tunes Mel Blanc was lost.

This led to one of the most beautiful and moving tributes to anyone who passed in any medium.