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Cartoons That Break the Fourth Wall

Discussion in 'The Termite Terrace Trading Post' started by Pietro, Jun 18, 2004.

  1. Pietro

    Pietro Member

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    I thought it would be fun if we could list some of the cartoons that break the fourth wall (a term that applies to the invisible wall that seperates the audience from the film).

    "Porky's Duck Hunt" (1937/Avery) - After the "Moonlight Bay" bit, Porky turns to the audience and comments, "Th-th-there's s-s-s-something fishing about th-th-that!"

    "Stage Door Cartoon" (1944/Freleng) - Elmer at the start of the cartoon ("I'll bet you think I'm going fishing...") and Bugs at the end ("I gotta million of 'em!")

    "Hare Remover" (1946/Tashlin) - The fascinating aspect of this cartoon is that it breaks the fourth wall continuously; from the opening scenes of Elmer in the lab ("I'm twying to make a formuwa that will change an ordinawy chawacter into a deviwish fiend!") to Bugs mistaking a grizzly bear for Elmer ("What do ya know! Dis stuff woiks!")

    "Duck Amuck" (1953/Jones) - The whole thing is basically an entire deconstruction of the fourth wall.

    These are just some examples off the top of my head, I'm sure you guys can add more to the list.

    -Pietro:daffy:
     
  2. The Spectre

    The Spectre Member

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    There should be a distinction between those which include a simple 'aside' to the audience which is essentially the character's thoughts (like your examples from "Hare Remover") and when they actually address the audience as an audience (like your example from "Stage Door Cartoon")
     
  3. Bakertoons

    Bakertoons One Sly Princess
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    "Canadian Can-Can" (The Inspector): Inspector makes an animator to put Two-faced Harry in jail.

    "Frog Jog" (Tijuana Toads): Pancho asks the animator to draw him smaller.

    Daffy Duck and Egghead: When Egghead shoots an audience to the theater (this was cut out in Cartoon Network)

    "Rabbit Rampage" - This of course was a remake of Duck Amuck, so it has alot of 4th wal breaking
     
  4. J. B. Warner

    J. B. Warner Increasing my wordiness

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    I think it was Frank Tashlin's "The Case of the Stuttering Pig" that had the antagonist foiled by some guy in the third row.

    Both "My Favorite Duck" and "Rabbit Punch" end with the film breaking. In the former, Daffy walks onscreen and tells the audience what happened in the ending, but Porky drags him offscreen and hits him over the head with his gun; in the latter, Bugs apologizes for the inconvenience, but holds up a pair of scissors and says "Confidentially, that film didn't actually break".
     
  5. J. J. Hunsecker

    J. J. Hunsecker Active Member

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    Also in the same cartoon: when that darn fool duck retrieves Porky's dog, Rin Jin Jin, instead of the other way around, Porky points out that that wasn't in the script.
     
  6. Cartman

    Cartman Flute Player

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    THUGS WITH DIRTY MUGS - Killer and the cop both interact with an audience member.

    HOLD THE LION PLEASE - Bugs' line to the audience, "King of the jungle and he ain't even master in his own domain! Now me, I wear the pants in my family."

    A DATE TO SKATE - Popeye asks someone in the audience for a can of spinach.

    THE MOOSE HUNT - After Mickey thinks he has accidentally shot Pluto, he says "Is there a doctor in the house?"

    HILLBILLY HARE - After the Marten Brothers shoot at Bugs' carrot, Bugs says "Persistenant little cusses, ain't they?"

    DAFFY DUCK AND THE DINOSAUR - Casper Caveman says to the audience at the beginning "I'm sure a lot of you are cranky before breakfast too!"

    THE BIG SNOOZE - Elmer asks if any of the women have the same kind of experience that he has when the Hollywood wolves howl at him.
     
  7. guy incognito

    guy incognito Ultra-Maroon

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    In "Hair-Raising Hare", when Bugs asks if there's a doctor in the house, and later in the same short when he alerts the Monster to the horrifying presence of "PEOPLE!"

    In "Rhapsody Rabbit" and "The Ducksters", when Bugs and Daffy respectively shoot at audience members. (I'm rather surprised Pietro didn't mention the latter, given his avatar and all. ;) )
     
  8. Brandon Pierce

    Brandon Pierce Summer Glau Fanatic

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    strange, I always thought "breaking the fourth wall" meant a really wild gag. I appear to be way off.
     
  9. Bakertoons

    Bakertoons One Sly Princess
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    Breaking the 4th wall is when the characters in stories or movies know they're just characters in the movie/story and usually talk to the audience or talks to the cartoonist.

    There's several "Rocky and Bullwinkle" episodes where the characters talk to the narrator.
     
  10. Cartman

    Cartman Flute Player

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    Actually in RHAPSODY RABBIT, Bugs shoots at a member of the RECITAL audience who is in the cartoon him/herself. It's not referencing a movie theater audience. I think the same thing applies to THE DUCKSTERS.

    I hope I'm explaining this well without it sounding too confusing.
     
  11. guy incognito

    guy incognito Ultra-Maroon

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    Yes, now that you mention it, both of those audiences were audiences *within* the premise of the narrative, so I guess you're right that they probably don't count as true fourth wall breaches.
     
  12. Nick

    Nick Cartoons are educational

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    More examples:

    In "King Size Canary" the mouse says that he's seen the cartoon before, and knows what happens in the end.

    After sawing Tom in half, Jerry holds a sign that says "Is there a doctor in the house" in "Mouse Trouble".

    Daffy notes that the animator has made a mistake in "Ain't That Ducky" by not drawing a barrel.

    The wolf skids off the edge of the film reel in "Dumb Hounded".

    The audience suffer from rabbititus in "Hare Tonic".

    And in "Big Heel Watha", Big Heel Watha says, "In a cartoon, you can do anything".
     
  13. JDWeil

    JDWeil Active Member

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    A Flip the Frog cartoon, from 1932 or '33 titled Room Runners has such a sequence.
     
  14. Peter Paltridge

    Peter Paltridge Knows about rock people
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    I'm surprised no one's done these:

    The Duckrakers: The cartoon ends with Daffy heading for the saw and yelling, "HEY LADY!!! IS THERE A DOCTOR IN THE BALCONY???"

    I forget which one, but there are several instances where the silhouette of an audience member stands up and is threated with a gun(or actually shot). I remember one really funny one where the guy holds his gun to the person leaving and he gets all nervous and says, "Uhh, sorry sir, I'll get back to my seat!"
    He pulls the gun away, and then leans in and says, "And I woulda DONE it, too!" LOL....

    There is also a Porky Pig cartoon that's done like a mystery, with some guy cackling "No one can stop me...not even the GUY IN THE THIRD ROW!" The cartoon ends with the guy caught and he's like, "Who ratted me out?" "IT WAS ME! THE GUY IN THE THIRD ROW!!"
     
  15. The Spectre

    The Spectre Member

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    You're probably thinking of "pushing the envelope".
     
  16. J. B. Warner

    J. B. Warner Increasing my wordiness

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    That's "The Ducksters", and that gag was already shot down in another thread when somebody pointed out that Daffy was addressing the radio audience.

    That's "The Case of the Stuttering Pig", which I already mentioned.
     
  17. guy incognito

    guy incognito Ultra-Maroon

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    Sylvester holds up a sign expressing the same idea in "Peck Up Your Troubles".
     
  18. Cartman

    Cartman Flute Player

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    What about SOUP OR SONIC where Wile holds up a sign to the audience that reads something like: OKAY, YOU WANTED ME TO CATCH HIM, NOW WHAT? This occurs after the Roadrunner goes through a pipe and becomes gigantic.
     
  19. J. J. Hunsecker

    J. J. Hunsecker Active Member

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    The entire plot of POWER OF THOUGHT breaks the fourth wall when Heckle and Jeckle realize they can take advantage of being cartoon characters and do anything they want.
     
  20. Jave

    Jave Beware of the SPLAT
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    I can't believe no one has mentioned what perhaps is the biggest wall-breaking gag in cartoon history.

    Tex Avery's "Batty Baseball" starts abruptly by inmediately showing the title card, followed by a couple of scenes of the cartoon. An angry baseball asks who did this cartoon, where's the opening with the lion roaring, etc. Then the cartoons starts all over, this time with the proper opening MGM sequence, credits and all.
     

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