Cartoon Hell #17 – “Quack A Doodle Doo”

March 14, 2009

Cartoon Hell is TheKarpuk’s attempt to review every single installment in an awful $5 collection called “150 Classic Cartoons” purchased at his local Wal-Mart. Your prayers are welcome.

The only Doodle you can count on!

The only Doodle you can count on!

This review was immensely easy to put off. Certain entries in Cartoon Hell I look forward to, sometimes because they involve a character who I actually watched in my youth and sometimes because it’s a damn easy target. “Quack A Doodle Doo,” brings neither of these things to the table, and instead brings a symbol of childhood revulsion I’d all but forgotten about.

Does this image excite anyone?

Does this image excite anyone?

That’s right, Baby God-damn Huey. Even as a child these cartoons evoked a weirdly strong sense of offense. They combine two of the ultimate shitty cheap shots of asshole humor, fat jokes and retard jokes. When you have a cartoon running less than ten minutes and your set up involves Baby Huey, it’s guaranteed to please the assholes in the crowd.

I’m going to break this down into fat jokes, and retard jokes, and along the way we’ll see if there’s an actual gag anywhere in this production’s runtime unrelated to either once Huey hits the scene.

The unnamed mother duck of Baby Huey sits in a small duck house covered in cobwebs in an attempt to suggest that this duck is suffering from some sort of depression in the absence of a child. To help with the childlessness she takes an entire bottle of pills, possibly to end her suffering. What she didn’t factor in is how difficult it is to overdose on once-a-day vitamins.

She would need so many stitches after that.

She would need so many stitches after that. At least she's enjoying it.

Mere moments after taking the vitamins, mother duck goes through violent spasms and passes an egg nearly as big as she is. You’d think pushing an egg that big out of a duck would come with a complimentary hysterectomy since it would tear apart her reproductive system, but no, she doesn’t even scream.

He will kill us all.

He will kill us all.

Retard Joke 1: Huey’s first word is duh. Technically he could be seen as smart since he talks straight out of the egg, but if your child came out talking and acting like Lenny from, “Of Mice and Men,” would you be thrilled?

Clock slap!

Clock slap!

Fat Joke 1: Mother places Huey on the scale, and the scale spins around so fast the front springs outward and smacks her in the face. That certainly tickles my funny bone. To death.

Fat Joke 2: I’m just going to clump together the many incidents where Baby Huey emphasizes that he’s starving. It barely counts as a joke, but collectively they share enough critical mass to make one mean little attempt at humor.

Fat Joke 3: Baby Huey gobbles up an entire trough of food, leaving none for the ducks, who are immediately displeased.

Hilarity of some sort.

Hilarity of some sort.

Retard Joke 2: Huey spies the swimming hole and jumps off the diving board. Mother Duck yells, “But Huey, you can’t swim,” As is required of the bad comedy code. His response is, “Duh, now she tells me.” From here on in just assume that his response always starts with “duh,” So I don’t have to continue typing it.

Fat Joke 4: His weight displaces the entirety of the water in the swimming hole. You’ve seen this gag before, you’ll see this gag again.

Here are the crappy remarks the other mother ducks have to say on the topic of Baby Huey: “He’s a menace to the community.” “A bad influence on our children.” “He’s just a bad egg.” “He should have stayed in his shell.” They banish him right off the bat. Ducks have a no tolerance policy I was not previously aware of.

Jesus, he’s been alive roughly 3 minutes. This film lacks any sympathetic character whatsoever.

All shall fear the poorly drawn fox.

All shall fear the poorly drawn fox.

The fox alarm is sounded, and it occurs to me that this film doesn’t have a single transition, the events of the cartoon appear to happen in real time.

Retard Joke 3: When Mother Duck runs out of steam Baby Huey pushes her in the carriage instead. He looks back and sees the fox with…. a large, crude looking hammer? He simply stares at fox with a big, idiot smile. At the very least most of us would be amazed that foxes had learned cruel tool manipulation.

Sometimes animators overshoot wacky and stumble into creepy.

Sometimes animators overshoot wacky and stumble into creepy.

Retard Joke 4: Baby Huey decides that the fox is play and squeezes his neck until his head turns blue. If Huey had just held on for a moment longer this cartoon would have gone from bad to haunting and poignant.

You just don't see gunplay like this anymore.

You just don't see gun-play like this anymore.

Retard Jokes 5, 6, 7, 8: The next few jokes involves wacky sub-Wiley Coyote stunts that Huey deftly defeats by being too oblivious to respond to them. There seems to be a common theme in bad cartoons where the plot devolves into a series of wacky, disconnected gags once the plot is established.

He dodges an axe. He’s dropped into a soup pot but knocks it on top of the fox. He squeezes the barrel of a shotgun making the gun burst when fired. The ultimate hackneyed gesture would have to be the anvil dropped on the head. Yes, it’s a cliché for a reason.

Finally Baby Huey realizes that maybe, just maybe, the fox is trying to kill him. He wrestles the knife away from the fox, somehow leaving the fox in nothing but his underwear.

Being horrible creatures, the ducks make a complete 180 and welcome Baby Huey back with adoration.  Perhaps in future he’ll be some sort of duck enforcer? Or he’ll accidentally kill the young wife of another duck and be hunted down and be shot by his best friend before the posse can find him.

UNPC Moment:
The whole of the cartoon once Baby Huey is introduced is pretty UNPC by modern standards. Few people can make jokes about someone too stupid to know better without it just being sad.

Rating: Nearly Unwatchable
My childhood assumptions actually proved pretty accurate.


One comment

  1. Man, I forgot how much I hate Baby Huey until you reminded me. Shame, Nick, shame.

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