Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner Were Parodies of Tom and Jerry
The "chase" cartoon is a classic trope in the animation genre. The Tom and Jerry cartoons are some of the most famous pioneers, but there are endless variations: Sylvester wanted to catch Tweety so he could eat him, Elmer wanted to shoot Bugs or Daffy because he was a hunter and Pepe Le Pew wanted to rape Penelope because he was French. And a rapist.
Warner Bros. "Mommy, what does 'DVDA' mean?"
In 1949, writer and animator Chuck Jones decided he wanted to take a gentle jab at the genre by writing a chase cartoon, but take it to absurd extremes. While earlier Tom and Jerry shorts had featured a battle of wits:
... Jones' vision, about a hungry coyote chasing after a cocky roadrunner with several extra IQ digits, featured ridiculous gadgets and a universe with ludicrously inconsistent rules:
Warner Bros. That's Road Runner running down a tunnel that Wile E. just painted into the wall.