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Disney v. WB: state your case

Well, that opened up a can of email worms. I'm working on something tentatively titled Warner Brother Cartoons v. Disney Cartoons. [Note, we are talking about cartoon characters, not movies and their characters] Now is the time to state your case, mention your favorite characters from either side, favorite television shows featuring those characters, best episodes that clearly show why your choice is superior, testaments, oaths, devotions, etc. We will put this fight to rest once and for all. Update: Case in point: This witch would kick this witch's butt.


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» The Great Cartoon Debate, Part I from Blogcritics
Disney, Ducks and Goofiness: The first in a series in which we seriously debate cartoons. [Read More]


Daffy Duck would trash Donald in a fight. Not only could Daffy take a point blank shotgun blast to the bill, but he would stare Donald into submission!

I don't know who has the rights, but I'm a big fan of the classic Popeye cartoons.

Warner Brothers (Bugs, Roadrunner, Marvin) comes in second, Disney third. Maybe not third, if I include Tom and Jerry, Herman and Catnip, and those Tex Avery things. Disney is a nice place to visit, but I hate ALL the cartoons (though the movies are hit and miss).

Oh, and Daffy would really kick Donald's ass in a match with quarterstaves: Spin! Dodge! Parry! Thrust! Boinginginginginginging!

WB over Disney any day.

In no particular order, my favorites would be:

Daffy with Porky
Taz (of course)
Sylvester with child and kangaroo


Tom & Jerry (my 2 yr old loves them too)
the original Johnny Quest
those two Crows (Heckle & Jeckel?)

I could probably do better, but I need to get back to work.



Simple for me,Bugs vs Mickey?no contest,Bugs rules every time.

Old-school violent WB beats Disney any day.

Disney simply lacks MAYHEM. Disney is nice, start to finish.

Anything truly funny is (imho) either cruel or bizarre, and on WB delivers the goods out of these two.

It looks to me like Disney writers were going for 'kid friendly', while WB writers were just trying to crack each other up.

i'm sure i'll be the only one to say this... but my absolute fave cartoon was... the ant and the aardvark. anybody remember that one?

the best was when he'd fight the green aardvark to get the ant.

occasionally, the inspector was funny. "not si, oui!"

those were all in the Pink Panther family, i think.

It's Warner Brothers over Disney any day of the week. I can't recall ever laughing at a Mickey Mouse cartoon. Donald Duck has his moments, but he's no Daffy. I have a soft spot for the classic Goofy "how-to" cartoons, but Disney just doesn't do it for me otherwise.

You just can't beat Bugs Bunny. The rest of the WB lineup is just gravy.

Oops, forgot best characters: Bugs and Daffy arguing over who gets shot, and of course Daffy gets a 12 gauge to the face every time. Or... Bugs versus Dracula. "Abra ca pocus! Hocus Cadabra! Wall Walla Washington!"


I loved Ant & Aardvark! I always thought the Aardvark sounded like an angry Jack Klugman.

Animaniacs from WB!

Bah...Warner Brothers wins hands down simply because of Mel Blanc and Chuck Jones.

Case? Let's look at the basics first:

Animation of both was clunky in the old days but Chuck Jones made the STORY trump the animation and with Mel Blanc telling the story, you almost forget these are animated characters.

As for the Characters themselves, I can't think of a single Disney character with the same spunk as Bugs. Not a one.

I totally forgot about the Pink Panther toons. They were great! Wonder if I can find some for my little one.

WB, definitely. Rabbit Fire, Duck Amuck, Duck Dodgers in the 24 1/2th Century, and What's Opera, Doc.

But, don't forget Tex Avery's MGM Red Hot Riding Hood series. Red was the inspiration for Jessica Rabbit.

For characters and writing and pacing and music, WB, no question. For technical achievements in animation, Disney. And for those who say that last category isn't that important, well, it is when you're discussing, you know, animation.

VHMPrincess -

Ah yes..."Pronoun Trouble" is definately a favorite Bugs and Daffy bit.

Of course, there's always Elmer Fudd and Bugs doing Wagner with the not so subtle sexual overtones..."Spear and Magic Helmet?" and "Oh Bwunhilda, you're so wovewy..." ... "Yes I know it....I can't help it"... cracks me up everytime

Well this is no contest. The best cartoon characters, animation and story lines are from Warner Brothers/Looney Tunes. And of course the best of the bunch is Yosimite Sam... a clear supporter of the second amendment.


Technical ability is certainly important, to the extent that it aids the story. But I think Disney's recent dry spell at the box office (cows? COWS??!!) demonstrates that ample technique without the rest of the package gets old and dry fairly quickly.

That said, I've actually always preferred WB's animation style, even if Disney's is at time "technically" superior. The use of dimensions and space, the character development, and the pacing, make it all seem to come together better (I am of course referring to the earlier years; anything involving Bill Lava's scoring is, to my mind, unbearable).

[Favorite moment exemplifying why WB better: Bugs on one side of door. Large scary orange hariball on other side, battring it down. Bugs, sweating: "Is there a doctor in the house??!!" Silhouette of audience member standing, saying "I'm a doctor!" Bugs, in semi-repose: "Ehhh, what's up, doc?"]

OT, but my nominations for Ultimate Super Best Cartoon Charcter Battle Royale (with Cheese):

The Aardvark - "Another day, another ant." Words to live by, IMO.

Homer Simpson - "You tried your best and failed miserably. The point is never try."

Peter Griffin - "Oh my god, Brian, there's a message in my Alphabits. It says, 'Oooooo.'"

Warner Brothers. Not even close. Donald is the only major Disney character worth anything (some of the other ducks are okay, but they aren't really major characters).

Daffy is my favorite, with my favorite bit being the singing of Liszt's second Hungarian rhapsody ("Greetingth. My name ith Daffy . . .") Bugs is wonderful in The Rabbit of Seville and whatever feature it is with scenes from Wagner's Ring cycle.

Among less-important Warner Brothers characters, I like Pepe Le Pew and Foghorn Leghorn.


I enjoy the Disney cartoons, but for sheer mayhem, WB wins. Every time.

Especially Daffy. "Duck Amuck" has to be one of the funniest cartoons EVER.

And anyone who disagrees with me is a lying scumbag.

Fleischer Popeye/ Goon Island.

Pre-boop Betty boop-like character/ Bimbo's Initiation.

Betty Boop/Minnie the Moocher

Alright...now see what you've done. Another half hour of the Commonwealth's time wasted on a fruitful search for Warner Brother's lyrics...


'..."Spear and Magic Helmet?" and "Oh Bwunhilda, you're so wovewy..." ... "Yes I know it....I can't help it"'

These bits are all funny, but what makes "What's Opera Doc?" a true classic is the fact that it has Bugs, in Valkyrie drag, riding downhill, in slow motion, astride the fattest horse in the history of cinema...animated or otherwise.

How about the WB for the mid 90's "Batman - the Animated Series" and the current "Justice League."

And how come nobody has mentioned Foghorn Leghorn? "That boy is about as sharp as a bowling ball." "She reminds me of Paul Revere's ride - a little light in the belfry."

I'm afraid Heckle & Jeckle would kick ass on any Disney or WB toon.

...and for those of you Geniuses out there I now present for your perusal my favorite company's Catalog...


Warner had Chuck Jones. Disney did not.

That sums it up for me.

Jones was a genius (although his crowning achievement, even beyond the Road Runner, remains the Grinch).

One of the great ones was the Bugs-Coyote cartoon, where the Coyote talks ("I am Wile E. Coyote, I.Q. 207, Sup-ahhhhhhh Genius.")

Also fininshing above Disney: Rocky and Bullwinkle, The Simpsons and Futurama, a second vote for SPOOOON! (I liked the live series, too), and even the Smurfs were better.

Must be the writing. (Pixar isn't Disney, which is a good thing).

Below Disney: Mr. T's animated series, PacMan (or was that Q-Bert?), Godzilla, Dungeons and Dragons, and Punky Brewster. I'm sure there are many more, but I choose not to remember.

Always favored WB; always will.

Saturday mornings were always the best part of the week. Bugs and Daffy in straw boaters and jackets, dancing with canes singing, "Overture, curtain, lights...this it, we'll hit the heights...and Oh! what heights we'll hit...on with the show, this is it!" I'm somewhat partial to Foghorn Leghorn (West VA Senator Robert Byrd's twin, separated at birth!), the sheepdogs who punched in and out of work on a timeclock, and Pete Puma (How many lumps would you like...?).

Hey Michelle: now knowing how you feel about pantsless cartoon animals...what's your take on Porky Pig? Always had a jacket; never wore pants. Inquiring minds want to know!

Sorry, Michele. I put an extra "l" in your name in my previous post. Please forgive me!

I loved Ant & Aardvark! I always thought the Aardvark sounded like an angry Jack Klugman.

That voice was done by the one and only Jackie Mason. My favorite line, "I hate you instant hole!"

Daffy definitely rules, "Consequences Shmonsequences, as long as I'm rich..."

TV (Harry)

WB rocks.

My fave character: Marvin the Martian

Best cartoon: Daffy as Robin Hood with Porky ala Little John laughing at him the whole time.

Badger, it's actually Sen. Ernest "Fritz" Hollings (D-SC) who's Foghorn Leghorn's twin. Though I can definitely see the resemblance to Bob "What White Sheet?" Byrd as well.

What about "I'm a chickenhawk!"

WB wins hands down. My favorite cartoon of all time is the one where Daffy's selling cookbooks in Alaska, where the Yosemite Sam brothers (there were two in this cartoon) are starving to death in a lonely cabin. "Sprinkle liberally with crushed Duck."

WB over Disney, hands down.

Bugs and company
Coyote and Roadrunner
Mel Blanc

Any questions?

WB, hands down. Brooklyn Rabbits Rule!

Another good thing about WB,I don't have to explain to my daughter why one or more of the parents get killed.

Tough to beat the Warner Brothers. I think there was really something to be said for the fine MTV programming: celeb death match. i'm not ordinarily a proponent of MTV, or ever, really, but something like that could really settle the matter indefinitely. any guerilla animators out there willing to take up the challenge? copyright infringement is fun!


Bugs: Duck season!

Daffy: Rabbit season!

Bugs: Rabbit season...


Fudd puts a shotgun shell right in his face.

Hilariously violent...can't beat that.

I have to cast a vote for WB as well. The only cartoons in the Disney canon I enjoyed were Donald Duck ones, and he'd usually get short changed on TV airings in favor of Mickey Mouse (yuck).

But WB had Bugs, Daffey, Elmer, Yosemite Sam, Pepe le Pue, Sylvester and Tweety, etc, etc. So I could watch just about every WB cartoon without wantin to switch channels.

Also, the writing for WB cartoons were usually a lot punchier and funnier than Disney.

Actually, speaking of shortchanging - I think that WB wins on quality hands down, but I wonder if it would make a difference if Disney had actually shown their cartoons more, giving us more exposure as kids? Looney Toons are everywhere, whereas I get a channel that is devoted entirely to Disney cartoons, and all it shows is modern dreck like Duck Tales and Goof Troop.

WB all the way. My Lord, just reading these responses has me cackling.

And no love for Pete Puma? Sam Sheep-Dog? Gossamer? Come on people.

Depends on the beholder:

Disney before about age 5, and those with the ability and desire to experience <5 childhood innocence.

WB after the loss of <6 childhood innocence.

I vote for Tex Avery's Wolf (if he has a name, I don't know it). The one who walks around with his hands in his pockets, whistling a jaunty toon. He's so relaxed most of the time (as opposed to the psychotic Coyote of WB).

On the other hand, Lilo's older sister is seriously hot....


Please see my post above. Pete Puma get his props, along with the sheep dog! Great minds think alike...

I can't believe it! 48 comments to this post and not one mention of Hanna Barbera?!?! I'm WOUNDED! Yogi, Huckleberry Hound, Magilla, Secret Squirrel, Pixe & Dixie, Peter Potamus, Quick Draw McGraw, Snaglepuss, Wally Gator, the Wacky Races, Penelope Pitstop.

And the greatest cartoon duo of all time: Dasterdly and Muttley!

Then there's the whole Jay Ward ball of wax, including my personal favorite Boris of Rocky & Bullwinkle fame.

And then Underdog. He's kick Goofy, Pluto, and Spike's asses into next week.

People! What's wrong with you!

There's a reason for that, Faith.

How do I put this politely? Most HB cartoons, well, just aren't very good. ;-)

Them's fightin' words Big Brother. No appreciation for the classics.

Bugs Bunny kicks Ass! No one touches him. No one!

Chuck Jones was a genius. That cartoon where the bulldog adopts the little kitten and he thinks its getting baked alive manages to be both funny and shockingly sad.

Late period WB cartoons from the sixties are very underated, the humour got kinda weird around 1963-65, just before they stopped making them.

The only good thing about Hanna Barbera is they gave Adult Swim an endless supply of material.

NOTHING beat's Tex Avery's Droopy cartoons. Especially the first one where he's chasing the escaped convict Wolf. "I do this sort of thing to him all through the picture folks."

The ant and the aardvark!

My favorite! With the aardvark being Joey Bishop and Dean Martin as the ant and (I swear) Ted Kennedy as the villian. Or was that the Sugar Bear commercial?

Bugs Bunny, no contest.

The episode where he's messing with the French Chef.

"I would do THIS to his red to-mah-toe nose, FLICK-BOINGGGGGGGG."

And you want to talk about disturbing, what is up with the Transvestite Devil named "HIM" in Powerpuff Girls? My eight year old changes the channel on that one.

Anyone remember which house had the overly polite squirrels? British accents? I think it was Warner because I seem to remember them messing with Bugs...but then againI seem to remember them messing around with Donald Duck too. Did one rip off the other?

"After you."
"No, really, after you."
"Are you sure."
"Indubidably." (sp?)
"Thennnn kyu."

Disney sucks rotten eggs.

Classic WB cartoons represent the height of the art form. Bugs, Daffy, Foghorn Leghorn, Wile E. Coyote, Pepe LePew, Sylvester, Yosemite Sam - the list of great characters is almost endless.

For me, WB represents keen intelligence and wicked humor while Disney represents sanitized, dimwitted pablum for the lobotomized set.

First, about those witches: since IIRC they were both voiced by the great June Foray (who also did Rocky the Flying Squirrel), it'd be a draw. :)

Generally, Looney Tunes is better (though they went downhill after about 1950). There's more character, attitude and sly humor, whereas Disney tends to be more white bread and straightforward.

However, Disney's earlier stuff can be very powerful, such as Silly Symphonies, especially where a darker side is displayed. There's "Lullaby Land" about a baby's dreams, and in one part of the dream he enters a region full of tempting things "baby mustn't touch" - pins, scissors, matches, knives, curling irons! (He doesn't get hurt.)

When I was a kid in the 50s, I saw "The Golden Touch" about Midas only once that I can recall. I didn't see it again until I got the Disney Channel. I was surprised at the details I remembered, such as Midas looking into a mirror and seeing his image change into a skeleton making a throat-cutting gesture!

And who could remain unmoved at Snow White's transparent coffin with the mourning dwarves and animals?

jon mentioned Popeye. When I was a kid, I liked the later ones in color by Paramount. Now that I'm an adult, I prefer the earliest b&w ones. They're more stylish, less slick.

Couldn't Maleficent kick all witch's butt??

Hey MikeR,

Thanks SO much for managing to insult people in a thread about cartoons.

I agree with you that WB cartoons are superior and funnier. That doesn't mean that those who like Disney toons are idiots. Disney turned out some wickedly funny toons as well, for example the "Sport Goofy" series, or "Der Fuhrer's Face."

Warner Brothers rocks.

I agree with the white bread scenario for Disney. Too cutsey, even for a (at that time) 6 year old. My favorite is their rendition of the Barber of Seville, with the razor chasing Elmer across the stage with Bugs acting like a snake charmer.

Imperial Keeper

I think the person who made the "eye of the beholder" comment was right. I remember ADORING certain Disney movies as a child. (And even as an adult, there's something about Dumbo that gets me, just a little bit). And I do have to admit to thoroughly enjoying Monsters, Inc. (a Disney/Pixar collaboration I think). In a certain mood, I want sweetness.

But, if I want to laugh, if I want eight minutes of mayhem, it's WB, hands down.

My favorite all-time character is Daffy: the combination of ego and braggadocio along with a certain dimwittedness, and then he always gets taken down a peg.

Other cartoon series or one-offs I like:

the Fred/Sam (sometimes it's Ralph) series with the sheepdog and the Coyote clock in in the morning, beat each other up, and then clock out at the end of the day, saying goodnight to each other.

When Bugs goes up against monsters or Dracula or mad scientists.

Pepe le Pew.

"What's Opera, Doc." the college I teach at plays that bit of Wagner every graduation, and I hear the lyrics to "Wetuwn my Wuv" in my head every time.

Other cartoons:

loved Pink Panther for a time when I was a kid, loved Ant and Aardvark (I had totally forgotten that one until someone mentioned it. Wonder if they're out on dvd?)

the old black-and-white Popeyes.

Hong Kong Phooey! Yes, it was cheaply made and badly animated, but when I was a kid I adored that show.

Magilla Gorilla. I can STILL sing the theme song.

Cartoons I never really understood the appeal of (not to say they were bad, I just didn't get them): Tweety. The Justice League cartoons after they added those weird twins and that monkey. Scooby-Doo, now that I'm an adult (I'm told I loved it when I was 4 and 5, I just don't see the appeal now).

Big Brother - Give me a friggin' break.

I don't care for Disney cartoons, and I expressed that opinion. I didn't insult anyone.

I didn't insult anyone.


Disney represents sanitized, dimwitted pablum for the lobotomized set.

Translation: if you LIKE Disney, then you're dimwitted and/or lobotomized. Look, I'm not going to turn this thread into a flamewar over frikkin' CARTOONS. Watch what you want, but don't sneer at those who want to watch something different. You can say "I don't like Disney cartoons" without calling people who do like them idiots.

Warner Brothers hands down. Even the WWII ones they won't show anymore.

I don't recall EVER seeing a Mickey Mouse cartoon on TV (not sure if I have since - unless it was a snippet shown in a documentary). Disney is actually quite foreign to me. WB, Pink Panther, Hanna Barbera - that's what was on when I was a kid in the 70's.

Hubie and Bertie are my favorite WB characters.

Hello! ma baby, Hello! Ma honey, Hello! ma ragtime gal.
Send me a kiss by wire, baby ma heart's on fire!

You know what I'm sayin'.

But then there's Tom singing "Is you is or is you ain't my baby."

The decline of Western Civilization started when Tom and Jerry began playing nice.

Last comment: Wouldn't you just love to see a classic Tom & Jerry with Tom singing MC Hammer's "U Can't Touch This" and Jerry providing mayhem?

Tom in Hammer pants.

i love both of them. But i REALLY love the WB cartoons from the 40s. Also the two you never see anymore- the one about the dancing shoes, i think it was a Porky Pig one with the crazy dodo critter in it. A big animated acid trip.

And the other one, where bugs meets the scientist who looks like Edward G. Robinson, and there's the big red monster and bugs gives him a permanent, and the scientist and bugs get high on ether and chase each other around the castle.

My wee years were misspent watching WB cartoons on Saturday morning. I do believe i have seen every last cartoon they made. ANd most of the others that have been mentioned here.

My favorite WB characters are the Big Red Monster and that goofy-assed little dodo guy.

Hey Rocky! Watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat!



Gotta drop this...

Pril, "Splitting Hares" is one of my favorites. I always say goodnight to my kids like this" "Nighty night...rab...bit..." The monster's name is Gossamer.
Monstahs are so int-er-esting.

not so subtle sexual overtones

Oh dear G-wd. I just watched Carrotblanca, I took the Casablanca DVD set out of the library expressly to do so. Nazi General Pandamonium, played by Yosemite Sam, is tricked by Bugs into locking himself in a jail cell. He slams the door, turns around, and his cellmate is sitting there wearing fluffy slippers, cleaning his nails, and ...grinning.


The cartoon with the dog Marc Anthony caring for a kitten was Feed the Kitty. I myself have always associated What's Opera, Doc with Apocolypse Now.

WB has the great lines:

“Be vewwy quiet. We're hunting Elmers.”

“This is a close-up?”

“I may be a scwewy wabbit, but at least I ain't going to Alcatwaz!”


“Would I turn on the gas on this stove?” “You might, rabbit, you might.”


“Well, what were you expecting in an opera? A happy ending?”

W-B, hands down...
followed by MGM before they let Hanna and Barbera loose...

W-B had the best mice, Hubie and Bert.

The absolute best duck, Daffy

Best dawg, the hound in the Foghorn Leghorn 'toons.

And the two gophers with the posh accents beat Chip 'n' Dale...

Then W-B goes through a whole pantheon of second tier characters that still beat anything Disney came up with:

The Tasmanian Devil: Ivery industrial facility I work in has at least one worker named "Taz".



Wiley Coyote

The Roadrunner

Yosemite Sam

Chester Chickenhawk

Pepe LePew

Witch Hazel

The list is too long...I've laughed at too many of them over the last 48 years. We got our first TV in 1956 and I think I saw Warner Bros cartoons then...

And they kept making them great up until Bill Lava started making the music suck..

It's sad that so many are no longer shown because of politicaly incorrect content, like the little African guy and the mynah bird.

But honestly, guys, if they can come up with the writers and stuff... The new computer animation is on the edge of taking things to a whole new level. I saw Shrek II with the kids a couple of weeks ago... It's impressive, and the multiple levels of the story appeal to all ages.

My personal favorite was the WB cartoon where Bugs takes on the two hillbillies.

The square dance routine with Bugs as the "caller" at the end was hilarious.

He had those hillbillies beating the crap out of themselves (and each other).

TWIMC: I do consider Disney to be in large part a purveyor of dimwitted pablum designed for maximum enjoyment by the lobotomized. No intention of amending that statement for political correctness.

However, my comment was directed at Disney - not those who may choose to watch Disney cartoons. Many highly intelligent people choose to watch all manner of shows that I believe to be born of crass motivations on the part of their creators. I did NOT say that one must necessarily be dimwitted to enjoy a Disney cartoon. The law of numbers alone would make it a certainty that there are many intelligent people who enjoy Disney cartoons. Hell, there are even intelligent people who think Barry Manilow is the greatest musician who ever lived.

The point that I was making and will not back away from is that there is abundant evidence in the vast majority of Disney cartoons that they are designed for a non-discriminating audience.

And yeah, Bugs would seriously kick that sorry little mouse's ass.

I grab my grandkids and snuggle them up and say, "I am thee locksmeeth of loove, no?", and "Eet ees not a spark, eet ees a flame", ala Pepe La Pew.
No one had mentioned Speedy Gonzales, "Ariba ariba!"
But Rocky and Bullwinkle just came out on dvd as a set, and guess who bought one of the first ones? I love Fractured Fairy Tales, and Mr. Peabody, and the way back machine.

Just gotta cast a vote for bugs. Definitely wins the quotability factor:

1. You realize this means war.
2. What a maroon.
3. I shoulda taken that left at Albuquerque.

and my own favorite (though more obscure)

4. I realize this defies the law of gravity. But I never studied law...