7.2/10
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13 user 2 critic

What's Cookin' Doc? (1944)

When James Cagney wins the Oscar Bugs shows a clip from "Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt" (1941) and demands a recount of the voting.

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Cast

Uncredited cast:
...
Bugs Bunny / Emcee / Hiawatha / Audience Member / Hollywood Wolf (voice) (uncredited)
Robert C. Bruce ...
Narrator (voice) (uncredited)
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Storyline

Hollywood; Oscar night. After a live-action introduction establishing these points, Bugs Bunny says hi and begins blatantly lobbying for the Oscar that goes instead to James Cagney. Miffed, Bugs shows the audience a clip from Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt (1941), and the crowd gives it to him but not the Oscar. Written by Jon Reeves <jreeves@imdb.com>

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Release Date:

8 January 1944 (USA)  »

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1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Due to pressure from Warner Bros., this cartoon was one of 11 pulled from rotation by the Cartoon Network for its 2001 "June Bugs" marathon, which was to show the complete chronology of Bugs Bunny cartoons. This is in addition to the "Censored 11" that have been withheld from distribution since 1968. The reason given was its purportedly offensive depiction of Native Americans. See more »

Quotes

Bugs Bunny: [hurls reels at the projectionist] Roll 'em, Smokey!
[a stag film appears]
Bugs Bunny: HEEYYY!
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Connections

References Frankenstein (1931) See more »

Soundtracks

Merrily We Roll Along
(uncredited)
Music by Murray Mencher
Played during "The End"
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A great one-bunny show which is unfortunately marred by a poorly chosen Friz Freleng excerpt
9 January 2009 | by (Lincoln, England) – See all my reviews

Bob Clampett's 'What's Cookin', Doc?' is a brilliant cartoon with one major flaw. The premise here is that Bugs Bunny is attending the Oscars, confident that he will win a statuette for best performance. When the honour is instead bestowed upon James Cagney, Bugs blows his top and attempts to convince the voters to change their mind by showing a clip of one of his previous performances. This is where the problem comes in. Up to this point, 'What's Cookin', Doc?' has been a cartoon bursting with Clampett's trademark energy. The clip Bugs shows to the audience, however, is a poorly chosen extract from Friz Freleng's 'Hiawatha's Rabbit Hunt' in which very little happens. While this perverse choice was likely an in-joke of some kind, the segment from Freleng's cartoon severely slows 'What's Cookin', Doc?' down.

This little niggle aside, 'What's Cookin', Doc?' is a marvellous short. After the success of Chuck Jones's one character Daffy Duck cartoon 'Duck Amuck', a few attempts were made to create a solo vehicle for Bugs, resulting in the lacklustre 'Rabbit Rampage' and 'Baton Bunny'. This was entirely unnecessary since Clampett had already made the great one-bunny show with 'What's Cookin', Doc?'. While other characters are seen in silhouette or heard off screen, Bugs carries the bulk of 'What's Cookin', Doc?' entirely by himself with a remarkably energetic, shape-shifting performance. He impersonates Hollywood stars and pantomimes various acting styles, he shifts from smug, laidback nonchalance to disbelieving, ego-driven frenzy. Clampett makes this all characteristically beautiful. Bugs looks amazing here and snaps from one pose to another with breathtaking smoothness. Clampett tosses in a few of his trademark dirty gags too, one of which is the closing joke of the cartoon. 'What's Cookin', Doc?' is, in part, a masterpiece but its partial brilliance makes the unfortunate interruption from Freleng's uneventful excerpt positively infuriating.


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