Director: Friz Freleng
Release Date: October 10, 1942
Stars: Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd

The Hare-Brained Hypnotist © Warner Brothers‘The Hare-Brained Hypnotist’ was only the sixth encounter between Elmer Fudd and Bugs Bunny, and only the second by Friz Freleng, but already the routine was ripe for experiment.

In ‘The Hare-Brained Hypnotist’, penned by Michael Maltese, Elmer consults a book on hypnosis to catch Bugs. His hypnosis skill work on a bear, which Elmer makes think it’s a canary. It fails on Bugs however, who in turn manages to hypnotize Elmer, making him think he’s a rabbit. Elmer immediately swaps into a Bugs Bunny routine, leaving Bugs to play the straight guy. But after another hypnosis battle down the rabbit hole, Elmer returns to his former self, fleeing into the distance, while Bugs tells us he’s the B19, referring to the Douglas XB19, a huge experimental bomber plane, which had had its first flight on 27 June 1941.

‘The Hare-Brained Hypnotist’ is not a very funny cartoon. The comedy suffers, because Bugs is forced into the role of the straight guy, a problem the cartoon shares with e.g. ‘Tortoise Beats Hare‘ from 1941. Nevertheless, Elmer’s Bugs Bunnyarisms are quite hilarious, especially in a scene where he makes Bugs eat several carrots at one time.

Watch an excerpt from ‘The Hare-Brained Hypnotist’ yourself and tell me what you think:

This is Bugs Bunny cartoon No. 13
To the previous Bugs Bunny cartoon: Fresh Hare
To the next Bugs Bunny cartoon: Case of the Missing Hare