Director: Chuck Jones
Release Date: July 24, 1948
Stars: Bugs Bunny, Marvin the Martian
He’s only volunteering when he notices the supply of carrots in the rocket. The rocket scene is reminiscent of Bob Clampett’s ‘Falling Hare’ (1943). On the moon Bugs encounters Marvin the Martian (in his first screen appearance) and his green, talking Martian dog, who resembles Willoughby a little but who speaks with the dumb voice of Junior Bear, provided by voice actor Stan Freberg.
The two Martians are on the first Mars-Moon expedition and want to blow up the Earth. But it’s Bugs who blows up the two and accidentally half the moon, too. In the end we see the three hanging on the left piece of the moon with bugs screaming to the control room: “Get me outa here!”.
‘Haredevil Hare’ is one of the first science fiction-themed films that flooded the post-war era. It even predates the first post-war live action features set in outer space, ‘Rocketship X-M’ and ‘Destination Moon’ by two years. In the 1950s outer space would become a popular film setting. Indeed, Chuck Jones himself would revisit outer space several times in his cartoons, most notably in ‘Jumpin’ Jupiter‘ (1955), ‘Rocket Squad’ (1956), and the greatest of all science fiction cartoons, ‘Duck Dodgers in the 24½th Century‘ (1953).
The latter cartoon also features Marvin the Martian, who would reappear in three more Bugs Bunny cartoons: ‘The Hasty Hare’ (1951), ‘Hare-Way to the Stars’ (1958) and ‘Mad as a Mars Hare’ (1963). Of all cartoon villains, Marvin the Martian is the most extraordinary. He’s as gentle, polite and mild-mannered as he is destructive. Although he would never become a major star, he’s still popular today.
Apart from introducing Marvin, ‘Haredevil Hare’ is a notable cartoon because of some nice and weird animation by Ben Washam of Bugs being a nervous wreck after his voyage to the moon: we watch him changing from one bizarre pose into the other, almost without any animation in between.
Watch ‘Haredevil Hare’ yourself and tell me what you think:
‘Haredevil Hare’ is available on the DVD set ‘Looney Tunes Golden Collection, Vol. 1’
This is Bugs Bunny cartoon No. 51
To the previous Bugs Bunny cartoon: Bugs Bunny Rides Again
To the next Bugs Bunny cartoon: Hot Cross Bunny