Looney Toon Fascism


A reader sends this info along (as part of the discussion of Mussolini v. Hitler’s popularity in the 1930s):

Some datapoints from 1930s popular culture.
         The first 2 appearances of Mussolini in Warner Brothers cartoon
were in 1933 (I Like Mountain Music, I’ve Got To Sing A Torch Song).  In
the first he’s one of the good guys.  At the end of the cartoon he sends
out his black shirts* to help round up the bad guys.  In the second he’s
portrayed comically (as is every other identifiable person in that ‘toon).
         However, in Hitler’s first WB cartoon appearance (Bosko’s Picture
Show – 1933) he is shown chasing Jimmy Durante with an axe.  He has no
funny lines or even a line of dialogue.  He’s just running down the street
with an axe chasing Durante.  Like a monster from a slasher movie.

*with rifles and bayonets.

         I’m going to watch* all the WB toons but I haven’t got past 1934
yet.  I’ll let you know when Mussolini pops up again.

*don’t hold your breath – the ‘toons are way down my list of things to watch.


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