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Looney Tunes #159

Posted: Monday, February 11, 2008
By: Ray Tate

Various
Various
DC Comics
In a sci-fi themed issue of Looney Tunes Bugs Bunny contends with Daffy Duck in a trio of tales. All three have something amusing to offer the reader, and all three have art that stays to the model of the Warner Brothers characters.

"March of the Mutant Carrots" is the most enjoyable and funny of the triad. Robbie Busch comes up with an original menace for Bugs to fight. Their nature also wields a double-edged sword. They're threatenting because Bugs loves them and often forgets himself while drooling, but this love gives Bugs a method to defeat the alien menaces. At the same time, Busch squeezes in a new riff on the "Duck! Rabbit! Duck! Fire!" routine and provides absolutely hilarious dialogue for one Elmer J. Fudd, whose ineptitude and fear steals the cartoon from our stars. When Elmer refers to Bugs as "Mistew Wabbit," it just kills.

The art by Scott Roberts and Mike DeCarlo is also notable. Roberts and DeCarlo depict Bugs and gang in angles that differ strongly from those that we're used to seeing. Their expressions of panic in Elmer and even throw away gags that depict the menace's fashion choices make this tale a buffet of laughter.

Scott Cunningham's "Serve Me Well Done" carries off the prize for unexpectedness. How did Bugs Bunny get to the twenty-fourth-and-a-half century? The usual method he gets anywhere. Nevertheless, you really could not have predicted Bugs to show up in Daff's territory.

Both Bugs and Daffy soon find themselves under threat by primitive Martian lifeforms, and this gives artist David Alvarez and DeCarlo, overworked inker, the opportunity to design new monsters as well as put a new spin to the old species switching that Bugs and Daffy have occasionally employed to escape Elmer. Bugs does things that he has never done before in a cartoon, and you wonder exactly why Michael Maltese or Chuck Jones hadn't thought of those tactics.

Busch returns for "Mars Need Swimmin'". Now, I'm guessing he based this absurd story on the pun and just drew the plot from the title. Whatever he did works. It shouldn't, but it does. This is a story in which anything can happen to shove the reader into the deep end. Fourth wall breakage occurs. Unexpected guest stars appear and one twist simply feels like being hit in the forehead by a bat. This is a tale that leaves one dazed. Leo Batic's artwork is much more sublime in depicting Bugs and Marvin the Martian, and it gives fluidity to a narrative that functions on complete chaos. "That's all folks!" Looney Tunes lives up to the title, and gives the reader her money's worth.



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