136. Blitz Wolf – Tex Avery

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SUMMARY: ‘Three Little Pigs’ is retold as a wartime fable, with the Wolf as Adolf Hitler fighting against the brave Sgt. Pork.

WHY IT’S HERE: With ‘Blitz Wolf’, Tex Avery made his debut as a director for MGM, where he would make some of the funniest cartoons of all time. ‘Blitz Wolf’, though it is not one of the very best, is an important and often very witty cartoon, if controversial by modern standards. It established Avery at MGM immediately, getting an Oscar nomination and featuring the sort of edgy humour and exceptional comic timing that became synonymous with Avery’s name. It also introduced Avery’s Wolf character, albeit in a Germanic variation. The Wolf would go on to star in some extremely famous cartoons but never quite achieved the same fame as other animated stars, perhaps because he was never given a name. ‘Blitz Wolf’ emerged when war-themed cartoons were extremely popular and many of its jokes may fall flat or even shock modern audiences. For instance, a sign reading ‘No Dogs Allowed’ is shown altered to read ‘No Japs Allowed’, which seen out of context seems utterly reprehensible. But these cartoons tell us much about wartime attitudes and are as important historical documents as anything from the era.

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