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The Looney Beginning

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Tiny Toon Adventures
The Looney Beginning
Season 1, Episode 1
TLB-TC
The Title Card
Air date September 14, 1990
Written by Paul Dini, Sherri Stoner
Directed by Glen Kennedy, Dave Marshall, Ken Boyer, Rich Arons
Gag credit Created By - Buster & Babs
End tag Buster & Babs: "Aloha!"
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The Looney Beginning is the first episode of the animated series, Tiny Toon Adventures. It was written by Paul Dini & Sherri Stoner, and directed by Glen Kennedy, Dave Marshall, Ken Boyer & Rich Arons. It is a fictionalized origin story for the series. It premiered as a stand-alone special on CBS on September 14, 1990.

Plot

The episode begins with Daffy Duck pitching his new film idea (Honey, I Shrunk the Laundry) to Warner Bros. Studios, only to have them reject it by booting Daffy off the property. Bugs Bunny welcomes the viewers at his mansion (which has a large pool shaped like his head and specialized glass plates in the windows that resemble a carrot), and tells them that he agreed to narrate the origin of Tiny Toon Adventures as long as he is paid in advance. A disembodied hand gives him a check. But he doesn't accept checks, as they always bounce (he demonstrates literally by drop-kicking it). After being paid in a dump truck full of carrots, Bugs begins narrating.

An animator is in big trouble. His new cartoon series idea, The Montana Max Show, is rejected by the network, so he needs a new idea for a series or he'll lose his job. Bugs suggests having a rabbit as the main protagonist (as Bugs was the main protagonist of Looney Tunes), so the animator attempts to create various rabbit characters. After rejecting a sweet-talking baby rabbit ("That thing will give people cavities!") and a Rambo-esque muscular rabbit (That won't get past the Parents/Teachers Association!"), he eventually "splits the difference" and creates Buster Bunny. After being given a splash of color and a red shirt, Buster asks for a best friend, so the animator creates Babs Bunny. Buster is reluctant at first to have a girl for his best friend, but is impressed by Babs' many impressions (Glinda the Good Witch, Dolly Parton, Jessica Rabbit, the latter which ends with a kiss that electrifies and melts Buster). Shortly afterward, they are given their names and then jump off the page and kiss the animator. Embarrassed by that, the artist crumbles them up, discards them in the trash and leaves.
001

Buster and Babs being drawn for the first time by the animator.

Babs and Buster escape from the trash in a crumpled condition, ironing themselves when they land, and decide to create the new series by themselves. They create the show's setting of Acme Acres and hold auditions for characters to inhabit it. They select sidekicks and friends in Hamton, Plucky Duck, Furrball and Sweetie (and Gogo Dodo who they promptly send to Wackyland). They also decide that they need more characters, so they let everyone else in that was still in line (which includes Bookworm, Shirley, Fifi, Concord, Sneezer, Byron, Calamity, Beeper, and Barky Marky).

They also need villains for their series, so they go to the villains' box (which Buster pushes off of a shelf) and unleash Dr. Gene Splicer and other nasty meanies. Elmyra and Dizzy are two of the last to exit the box (which Buster calls "leftovers"), as Elmyra chases Dizzy into the drawing of Acme Acres. Buster remarks that they will be pushovers, as suddenly Montana Max comes bursting out of the box (now with flames bursting out from it) with an angered roar, scaring the bunnies. Angry that his show was rejected by the network after the animator promised him his very own show, he goes looking for the animator in the drawing of Acme Acres (which Babs falsely points to when Monty demands to know where he is).

The bunnies work hard at completing many scripts for the show (as Hamton types them all out), but Monty sneaks up, riding Arnold, and knocks the bunnies out of the drawing with a golf club. He steals their scripts and their show, renaming it "The Montana Max Show," which he (as Monty states) will be the only star. Buster and Babs are ready to give up, as Monty continues to wreck havoc on Acme Acres and the characters. Bugs decides to step in, as Buster and Babs plead and beg on their knees for his help. Bugs paints in Acme Looniversity, where the characters will get cartoon knowledge from past Warner Bros. cartoon stars as their teachers, including learning how to deal with their adversaries (who, according to Bugs, "always fall for cheesy disguises").

Buster and Babs disguise themselves as Yosemite Sam and Elmer Fudd, respectively, to get the scripts back from Max and head to his mansion. Max locks the scripts away in a wall safe, as the bell rings and he lets in "his heroes." The disguised bunnies want to know how Monty got rid of "those varmints," and they demonstrate various dangerous ways (on Monty) of what he could have done to accomplish this (including dropping a bowling ball on his foot and hitting him with a giant fly swatter). Monty responds, "Nope, all I did was steal their scripts," and points to the open safe with the scripts in plain sight. The disguised bunnies take the scripts and begin to leave, but Monty sees through their disguises and a chase ensues (similar to The Raiders of the Lost Ark's opening scene) with Buster and Babs being nearly taken out by many of Monty's booby traps, including giant snapping teeth, cannons that shoot bags of money and a giant gold coin (with Monty's picture on it) rolling after them.

The bunnies come through at the end, as the giant coin rolls over Monty instead. Not only did they save their show, but they saved the animator's job, too. The network approves the new series and the animator gets a big raise. He asks how he can repay Buster and Babs, so they ask if they can get a "Created By" credit on the show. The animator responds, "Yeah, in your dreams, pal!" They then jump off the page and attack the animator as the episode ends. Despite the fact that the animator disapproves, they actually do end up getting the credit.

Cast

Voice Actors: Character(s):
Charlie Adler Buster Bunny, The Rejected Muscular Rabbit
Tress MacNeille Babs Bunny
Joe Alaskey Plucky Duck
Don Messick Hamton J. Pig
Cree Summer Elmyra Duff
Danny Cooksey Montana Max
Maurice LaMarche Dizzy Devil
Frank Welker Gogo Dodo, Furrball, The Animator
Candi Milo Sweetie Bird
Jeff Bergman Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Elmer Fudd, Tweety, WB Boss
Kath Soucie The Rejected Baby Rabbit (Uncredited)

Memorable Quotes

  • (The first line in the series) Daffy: "I tell you, T.S., it'll be a smash; Honey, I Shrunk the Laundry, starring Daffy Duck! What do you say, hm?" (gets kicked out of the studio) "Philistines."
  • WB Boss (tears a cartoonist's idea in half): "This is garbage!" (puts idea in the trash bin) "GARBAGE!" (balances the bin on his hand, then dumps the trash on the cartoonist's head) "No one wants to see a show about some rich little brat named Monty! You'd better come up with a hit show by 9:00 AM tomorrow, kiddo... (pulls out an ax) ...or it's the ax for us! Now, GET TO WORK!"
Cartoonist (stammering): "Yes, sir." (glumly comes out of boss's office and back to his desk) "Oh, it's hopeless! I don't even know to start!"
  • Baby Rabbit (giggles): "Golly, gee whiz. Aren't I just the cutest thing you ever saw? Uh-huh, uh-huh. I sure am. I'll go to your house and I'll live forever and ever and ever... ...and you'll never, ever, ever get tired of me. And I'll go hippety-hop, hippety-hop right straight into your heart."
Cartoonist: "Ewww. That thing will give people cavities."
Baby Rabbit: "I love everybody in all the world. (muffled) And I even love..." (voice gets muffled as the cartoonist crumples his sketch up) "... being rumpled and thrown away."
Cartoonist: "Maybe something a bit more manly." (draws in a Rambo-like rabbit)
  • Buster: "Say, how about drawing me a best friend? A buddy, a compadre, someone I can talk to rabbit-to-rabbit."
(the Animator paints in Babs)
"A girl?"
Babs: "Welcome to the '90s."
Animator: "Huh?"
  • Babs: "So, what's your name?"
Buster: "Good question." (to the animator) Hey, what are our names?! (The animator writes "Buster" over the blue rabbit) "I'm Buster Bunny."
(The animator then writes "Babs" over the pink rabbit)
Babs: "And I'm Babs Bunny."
Buster and Babs: "No relation."
  • Babs: "Darn. I'm 14 and I already have wrinkles."
  • Buster: "We'll create the show ourselves for everyone who loves toons. For the little guys, for the big guys... ...for the strange medium guys with bad haircuts!"
  • Babs: (after Buster creates the show's setting of Acme Acres) "So, what do you call it, Rembrandt?"
Buster: "Green Acres."
Babs: "Get current."
Buster: "Okay. Acme Acres."
  • Gogo: "I'm Gogo Dodo. And I shall perform Hamlet's Soliloquy. (clears throat) Two bees..." (splits into two bee versions of himself) "...or not 2B..." (Transforms into a door marked 2B and crosses the 2B out, then transforms into himself dressed as the Riddler) "...that is the question."
  • Plucky: "Sidekick? No way. I am no sidekick. Hamton's a sidekick type! He has all the earmarks of a sidekick."
  • Elmyra: "Come back, you spinny, purpley puppy thing.
Dizzy (gasps): "Dizzy out of here!"
Elmyra: "Elmyra just wants to hug you and squeeze you into itty-bitty pieces! And then I'm gonna change your diaper all by myself."
  • Babs: "Oh peanuts. That brat stole our show."
Buster: "Without those scripts, We're doomed."
  • Buster: "Oh, pater. Oh, mentor. Oh, great unaffordable one."
Bugs: "Eh, you can call me Bugs."
  • Babs: "Oh, I love the plush green carpet."
(The carpet reveals itself as a flattened Plucky Duck)
Plucky: "I've decided the sidekick role is workable."
Buster: "What happened to you?"
Plucky: "A steamroller with Monty's name on it!"

Allusions

  • Many moments in the creation of Babs and Buster Bunny reference the Looney Tunes short, "Duck Amuck."
  • Buster's response to the animator's first attempt at his color scheme is a reference to the often-disastrous colorizations that Ted Turner was responsible for giving to the black-and-white films his company owned.
  • The 1988 Disney/Spielberg film, Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, is referenced twice in this episode. One of Babs' first impressions is Jessica Rabbit (Roger's wife), and when Buster and Babs escape from the garbage bin, Buster says, "Roger, Rabbit!," and Babs responds with, "You've got the wrong bunny."
  • One of Babs' first impressions is Glinda the Good Witch, specifically, Billie Burke Zeigfeld's interpretation of the character from the 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz, as she asks Buster, "Is it a good voice or a bad voice?" Babs also imitates Dolly Parton, Jessica Rabbit, Pee Wee Herman ("La la la! I'm Eraser Head!"), and Elmer Fudd.
  • Buster's original name for Acme Acres was Green Acres, a show on TV Land.
  • When Montana Max takes over Acme Acres, Gogo says, "Redrum, redrum!," which is "Murder" backwards, made famous in Stephen King's novel, The Shining, and its subsequent film adaptations.
  • The scene where Babs and Buster quickly escape from Monty's mansion with the episode scripts is similar to the famous opening scene of Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, which was directed by the same person (Steven Spielberg) who executive-produced Tiny Toons.
  • When Gogo says, "That is the question," he wears an outfit that resembles Frank Gorshin's version of The Riddler, on the 1960's Batman show.
  • In one of the deleted scenes, Gogo says, "You got parsley and sage but you're running out of time!" A reference to a repeating line in "Scarborough Fair", an English folk song popularized by Simon & Garfunkel.
  • The Rejected Muscular Rabbit is a parody of John Rambo of the Rambo film franchise.

Cut Scenes

  • When shown in reruns and syndication, several scenes were cut in US airings. These scenes can be seen on the Tiny Toon Adventures Season 1, Volume 1 DVD, as well as international airings. These scenes include:
  1. The animator painting Mexican clothes on Buster, and Buster sarcastically replying, "Ha ha. Tutu funny," before being put in his red shirt.
  2. Sweetie and Furrball introducing themselves to Buster and Babs during the auditions (Sweetie's name is still listed in the end credits).
  3. After Bugs' song about Acme Looniversity, Gogo Dodo appears out the clock tower and says, "You got Parsley and sage, but you're running out of 'thyme'!"
  4. Buster quoting Bugs' lesson about how "villains always fall for cheesy disguises" outside Monty's Mansion.

Trivia

  • An unused scene from this episode features Elmyra Duff introducing herself to Buster and Babs during the audition sequence, then capturing them, dressing them in baby clothes, and feeding them mud pies, only for them to outwit her and get back to the auditions. This scene would later be used (with a rough fade-in and altered dialogue) as the opening to Strange Tales of Weird Science.
  • The voice of the WB animator is none other than Frank Welker, although Welker was only credited as the voice of Gogo in this episode.
  • Although Sneezer is credited as the one Kath Soucie voiced in this episode, Sneezer only briefly appears as an extra. Instead, it is the Rejected Baby Rabbit that Soucie voiced. However, she used the same voice for both characters, similar to her voice for Lil DeVille in the Nickelodeon cartoon, "Rugrats".
  • After Babs says, "You're all in!," Montana Max and Dizzy Devil can be seen in the crowd, contradicting their actual appearances minutes later when they escape from the villains box.
  • Hamton isn't the first person in line for the audition, but is the first to go up to Buster & Babs.
  • Some of the villains who escape from the villains box include Dr. Gene Splicer (the main antagonist of the episode, Hare Raising Night), a Red Devil who appears in the ending to the episode, Sawdust And Toonsil, the Metropolis Marvels who appear in the beginning of the episode, The Acme Bowl, one of Monty's cronies from the episode, Gang Busters, and The Candy Bar Monster from the Best O' Plucky Duck Day episode segment, Sticky Feathers Duck.
  • During Bugs' song about Acme Looniversity, Wile E. Coyote is seen in Calamity's gray color scheme.
  • In the second deleted scene, as Babs tells Sweetie and Furrball that they're in, Furrball's eyes are yellow, not white.
  • Buster says he calls the town "Green Acres", however, "Acme Acres" is already written on the map before he even says it.
  • The Tiny Toons staff was not satisfied with the way Kennedy Cartoons animated the chase scene in Monty's mansion. So that scene was handled by Wang Animation.
  • This episode earned Tiny Toons its first and only Primetime Emmy nomination for Outstanding Animated Program (For Programming One Hour or Less) as it originally aired in primetime before it moved to daytime. It lost to The Simpsons episode, Homer vs. Lisa and the 8th Commandment.
  • The music for the "Welcome to Acme Loo" song would later be used for certain episode title cards.
  • During a scene where Monty (sat on the back of Arnold the Pitbull) when he confronts Babs & Buster, Buster is seen floating in mid-air.

Transcript

To read the transcript of the episode, click here.

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