Elmer Fudd is finding new ways to shoot himself in the foot — now only figuratively speaking — in HBO Max’s new Looney Tunes Cartoons series.
The longtime gun-toting Bugs Bunny antagonist, just as famous for his double-barrel shotgun as he is his “wascally wabbitty” speech impediment, is no longer bearing arms on the new streamer’s reboot of the Warner Bros. animated staple.
“We’re not doing guns, but we can do cartoony violence — TNT, the Acme stuff. All that was kind of grandfathered in,” executive producer Peter Browngardt told the New York Times. While Fudd’s disarming is drawing the bulk of media attention, his fellow legacy gunslinger Yosemite Sam has also lost his trusty firearms since the new series launched late last month.
Unsurprisingly, the decision has been met with equal parts accolades and scorn in a country still fiercely divided on gun issues.
“You can’t take away his gun!” Joe Piscopo, the Saturday Night Live comedian-turned-radio host said on Fox News. “Drop an anvil on his head, it’ll be fine. Explode some dynamite, that’ll be fine.
“Give Elmer Fudd back his rifle. It’s Looney Tunes, it’s the best in the world. And they can’t start being politically correct with cartoons, please.”
Fox News guest is livid Elmer Fudd will no longer have a gun
Joe Piscopo: “You can’t take his gun away! … And what’s worse, they leave his speech impediment but they take his gun away. I can’t figure this one out” pic.twitter.com/2X33yyLq2C
— Lis Power (@LisPower1) June 8, 2020
Even Star Trek alum William Shatner appears upset, coyly referencing the show’s “presentism.”
So they are remaking Looney Tunes?🤔😳 I cannot wait to see what presentism will do them. 🙄
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) June 7, 2020
As absurd as it might seem for a cultural battle over the gun rights of a hand-drawn cartoon character, Piscopo does make a pair of valid points. One, if you’re going to still feature a hunter as an antagonist, why wouldn’t he have a rifle, as hunters do? And two, Fudd isn’t any less violent when using explosive devices.
This article was originally posted on yahoo.com/entertainment/.