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Hare Yesterday, Gone Today

From a Cartoon Network press release, dated April 10, 2001: "The ninth annual June Bugs Marathon on Cartoon Network will make the first time in history that every Bugs Bunny cartoon ever made will air on one network. The 49-hour marathon, which starts at 11 p.m. (ET, PT) on June 1 and runs through midnight June 3 will include 55 cartoons making their Cartoon Network debut. Overall, Cartoon Network will air 188 Bugs Bunny cartoons during June Bugs."

From The Wall Street Journal, May 12, 2001: "It's a side of Bugs Bunny many fans have never seen. In All This and Rabbit Stew, Bugs distracts a black rabbit-hunter by rattling a pair of dice. In Any Bonds Today? he appears in blackface. In Frigid Hare, Bugs calls an ungainly Eskimo a 'big baboon.' These and other racially charged cartoons were going to be included in a Bugs Bunny retrospective slated for next month on Cartoon Network. The insensitive cartoons--12 in all--would have given weight to the network's claim that this year's Bugs Bunny marathon, originally intended to feature every Bugs cartoon ever created, will be a historic television event. In, ahem, toon with the times, however, Cartoon Network executives have abruptly changed course. The retrospective will still run as scheduled, but it will be a dozen cartoons short of the promise. Although the 12 cartoons were to have been presented with prominent disclaimers, network executives became worried that they still would be seen as offensive."


June Bugs runs from 10 p.m. June 1 through 11 p.m. June 3 on Cartoon Network.

From National Review, May 28, 2001: "What's up, doc? The dander of America's numerous and powerful 'victim' groups, that's what, if this kind of thing were to be aired in public...Warner Brothers, which owns the jaunty rabbit, did not have that much faith in the ability of American adults to act like, well, adults...There are some things just too shocking, too outrageous for modern sensibilities--among them, apparently, the antics of a cartoon rabbit."

From me, May 31, 2001: When is a rabbit most like a chicken? When he's on the Cartoon Network.


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