As a reaction against the news of this ill-advised project, earlier today I presented the first ever cartoon appearance of the character who would eventually be known as Marvin the Martian. Now, I present my favorite appearance by the vertically challenged enemy of Planet Earth and, actually, my favorite Warner Brothers cartoon.
Ladies and gentlemen, from 1953, “Duck Dodgers in the 24 1/2 Century,” written by Michael Maltese and directed by Charles M. “Chuck” Jones. Watch Daffy Duck and Porky Pig as they fight against the villainous thing from another world in a to-the-death battle for humanity’s right to a close, comfortable shave. Please hold your applause until the end.
I try hard, very hard, to keep an open mind about upcoming projects. However, this attempt to try and reboot one of my favorite Warner Brothers animated creations, the character who eventually came to be called Marvin the Martian, just sounds weak. However, I want to be upbeat today and ignore the 1,000,001 reasons why a CGI Marvin surrounded by live action characters “in the manner of “Alvin & The Chipmunks,” makes me cringe. I sort of doubt it has much promise commercially either. (The little kids who loved furry Alvin might not cotton to a helmeted black ball with legs.)
So, instead of dwelling on the character’s uncertain future, why not take a look at his glorious past? Here is director Chuck Jones and writer Michael Maltese introducing the character not yet named Marvin opposite Bugs Bunny in 1948’s “Haredevil Hare.” You might notice that Mel Blanc’s initial voice characterization of the Trojan-hatted alien is somewhat different from the voice we now know and love. It’s also a bit ahead of its time for a brief allusion to rabbit-on-dog outer space gay romance. Put something in cartoon form, and you can away with moider, I tells you.
Note: If you have any problems viewing this, there’s a slightly lower resolution version available on YouTube.