Unpopular Opinions: Keep Daffy Duck Daffy!

Recently, thanks to one of our regular correspondents Inspiration Date, it has come to our attention that Warner Brothers’ Wabbit: A Looney Tunes Production has been re-christened New Looney Tunes.

New Looney Tunes

And with the new title comes a slight alteration in the show’s format: the series now features the rest of the Looney Tunes gang alongside Bugs Bunny. Here’s the new opening:

Upon learning of this, I perked up a little when I read that this format change would include new shorts featuring my favorite Looney Tunes character, Daffy Duck.


I was initially apprehensive about how this team of producers and writers were going to render Daffy, especially in the wake of The Looney Tunes Show, but then I read that this take on Daffy would be “totally nuts”, and then I saw some clips:

And this was my reaction:

Which brings us to today’s Unpopular Opinion: I’ve always liked the earlier, crazy Daffy Duck more than the later, greedy, selfish version.

Angry Daffy


Don’t misunderstand me; I like the egomaniacal, greedy, cowardly version of Daffy well enough. I enjoyed the “Duck Season/Rabbit Season” trilogy. Chuck Jones did a masterful job of playing this darker version of Daffy opposite Bugs Bunny and as the completely unfit genre film heroes in the 1950’s shorts, but unfortunately Jones seemed to have done his job too well; for a long time afterwards many artists, writers, producers and fans have come to accept this version of Daffy as the definitive version, and this is the take of the character that most often permeates his appearances.

I have nothing but respect and admiration for Chuck Jones, but part of me wishes he had never tried to change Daffy (maybe Jones could’ve used another character for the greedy, selfish jerk role, like resurrect Gabby Goat or Beans or somebody else) so we could still have the bonkers version of the character throughout the subsequent decades, as that version’s always been my favorite. For a long time, I had to settle for imitations, like Quack-Up from Hanna-Barbera’s Yogi’s Space Race.

Quack Up

Go Duck Yourself!

In fact, I sometimes like to imagine an alternate universe in which the loony Daffy never went away, so we could get that version in productions such as Tiny Toon Adventures. How cool would it have been to have a Tiny Toons version of insane Daffy Duck? Imagine how different Plucky Duck would’ve been.


Gogo Dodo

The only disadvantage to having a nut-job Daffy protege would be that with one absurd bird on the show, then Gogo Dodo wouldn’t have needed to have been on the show, which would’ve been a shame, but a small price to pay.

I don’t know how the general public is reacting to New Looney Tunes‘ version of Daffy, since for some reason Turner/WB and Cartoon Network are fridging the show and not airing it in the US (it’s not even airing on Boomerang Online!), which ticks me off, but that’s a separate rant unto itself, but if I could say one thing to Warner Brothers, it would be this:

Crazy Daffy Duck

Daffy Duck is fine as a greedy, selfish, snarky, cowardly, self-serving loudmouth, but he’s best when he’s unhinged, demented and totally nuts! Keep Daffy Duck daffy! It’s in his name, for crying out loud!


2 thoughts on “Unpopular Opinions: Keep Daffy Duck Daffy!

  1. Hot take: There are pros and cons to each version of Daffy. The wacky Daffy is funnier, but he’s kinda one note and can get real annoying real quick. The greedy/jealous Daffy is more fleshed out and you can care for him more WHEN DONE WELL, but it’s very easy to take either his rotten luck (Show Biz Bugs) or his assholishness (those godawful Daffy/Speedy shorts, for the most part) too far

    The best version of Daffy, for me, would be to make a hybrid version. Which version is more dominent and which is more subdued depends on the version and the plot, but I’ve always been a fan of the 1950s McKimson approach- typically a lovable rogue, often in a salesman or con artist role. He has a slick wit and charm to him, while keeping his greed as a primary motivator, and while he often does have rotten luck, it’s usually either deserved due to his earlier actions (like trying to swindle Porky into buying insurance in “Fool Coverage” or playing Foghorn and Barnyard Dawg for chumps in “The High and the Flighty”, or even accidentally screwing things up due to misinterpreting the situation like in “Stupor Duck”) or he gets a break at the end (getting the girl in “Muscle Tussle”, getting one up on Elmer in “Quack Shot”, or beating Taz senseless after the latter steals his money in “Ducking the Devil”). While the extremes have their moments (Baby Bottleneck, Book Revue, and Draftee Daffy for the Clampett version; the Hunting Trilogy, Duck Dodgers, and Robin Hood Daffy for the Jones version), I prefer to meet somewhere in the middle.


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