The Looney Tunes Censored Eleven

If you’re human- and I assume that you’re all human- then you’ve almost certainly seen some Looney Tunes cartoons, Warner Brothers’ beloved animated series featuring the wacky antics of Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Sylvester and Tweety, and the like. But there are some Looney Tunes cartoons you probably haven’t seen. They’re known as the “Censored Eleven”. They’re the eleven animated shorts that United Artists kept out of syndicated rotation starting in 1968. This is because “the depictions of black people in the cartoons were deemed too offensive for contemporary audiences”, per Wikipedia. Personally, I think it’s important to raise awareness of these animated shorts.

Specifically, I think it’s important because all pop culture content, even the offensive stuff, provides a snapshot of society at the time the content was created. It’s a learning tool. Those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it, and so forth. To be fair, I appreciate that Warner and United Artists had their heart in the right place in 1968 when these cartoons were removed from rotation. I’m sure they had their own corporate image in mind when they did it, but I’m sure they also realized the offensiveness of these cartoons. More than forty years later, I think we can look at these objectively, and recognize them for what they are- a historical artifact of a time we’d rather not revisit. Here are the Censored Eleven. I’d proselytize about how offensive these are, but it goes without saying. See for yourself.

Hittin’ the Trail for Hallelujah Land (1931)

Sunday Go To Meetin’ Time (1936)

Clean Pastures (1937)

Uncle Tom’s Bungalow (1937)

Jungle Jitters (1938)

The Isle of Pingo Pongo (1938)

All This and Rabbit Stew (1941)

Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs (1943)

Tin Pan Alley Cats (1943)

Angel Puss (1944)

Goldilocks and the Jivin’ Bears (1944)


9 Comments

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9 responses to “The Looney Tunes Censored Eleven

  1. Craig

    It’s important not to whitewash history, so to speak.

    Society has come a long way, but there’s still room for improvement.

    I just wonder what people in 20/30/40 years time will think of our culture.

    • I think there are some things that people 40 years from now will find appalling. And I don’t even say that because there’s anything in particular that outrages me. It’s just that it’s only natural for a society to go through that much change over 40 years.

  2. Pingback: Links 8.20.12 « Speakeasy

  3. surroundedbyimbeciles

    Thanks for the videos. These will go well in my class on 20th Century U.S. History.

  4. I honestly believe that I saw a couple of these. But I guess that would be impossible if they were all banned in 1968. I turned 2 in ’68.

    • I wonder if there weren’t some loopholes. I know I’ve seen several of the World War II-era ones that are pretty offensive, although they (surprisingly) aren’t in the censored batch.

  5. Vladdy

    Thanks for getting these together in one place! How handy!

    • I almost had ’em all on Youtube. For whatever reason, there was only one that I had to track down on Daily Motion. Honestly, I wish Warner or United Artists or whoever owns the rights would release them all. I don’t blame them for not doing so- I understand. But it would do tons for intellectual honesty and respect.

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