Saturday, 3 February 2018

Yakky Doodle in Ha-Choo to You!

Produced and Directed by Bill Hanna and Joe Barbera.
Credits: Animation – Ralph Somerville, Layout – Tony Rivera, Backgrounds – Fernando Montealegre, Written by Mike Maltese, Story Director – Alex Lovy, Titles – Art Goble, Production Supervision – Howard Hanson.
Voice Cast: Yakky Doodle – Jimmy Weldon; Chopper – Vance Colvig; Fibber Fox – Daws Butler.
Music: Hoyt Curtin.
Episode: Production R-13 (sixth Yakky in production).
Copyright 1961 by Hanna-Barbera Productions.
Plot: Cold-ridden Chopper tries to stop Fibber Fox from eating Yakky. Instead, everyone ends up with a cold.

Fairy tales have always been fodder for animated cartoon writers. In Ha-Choo to You!, Mike Maltese doesn’t actually do a straight parody of any fairy tales but he incorporates aspects of them into his story. We don’t get a farce on “Little Red Riding Hood” or “The Three Little Pigs,” but elements from them are woven in as characters, wittingly or unwittingly take on fable roles.

The thing binding this all together is the fact that Chopper has a cold (he chased a cat into a refrigerator before the cartoon began). He’s comforted in the fact that Yakky is bringing him a basket of hot bone soup. Don’t ask why the soup doesn’t leak through the basket. Just accept it and move on.

After Yakky burns our ears singing special soupy lyrics to “Camptown Races,” Fibber Fox enters the picture. “Well, for heaven’s sake, it’s Little Red Riding Duck taking hot soup to his grandmama,” says the fox, regardless of the fact Yakky isn’t wear a red hood. Fibber goes through the Red story to himself, including the shortcut to grandma’s. “I know a shortcut for that duck. (Points) Right into my stomach.” Fibber gives an evil grin, then frowns to the camera. “For Pete’s sake, stop wincing,” he says to the audience. “Foxes have to eat, too, you know.” While characters in Hanna-Barbera cartoons talk to the viewers all the time, this is a rare occasion when one directly chastises the people watching at home.

After burning his hand in the soup (Yakky invites him to try it as an appetiser and, yes, he did know there soup was in there) , Fibber carries on with the Red Riding Hood analogy, dumping Chopper from his dog house over a cliff and then taking his place as Yakky arrives. Now the duck gets in on the routine. “My, what a big nose you have, Chopper.” Yes, he cannot tell he is addressing Fibber who doesn’t even look like Chopper; Yakky is not terribly bright in this one. Chopper arrives to punch out Fibber but sneezes him and the duck through the back of the dog house. “Oh! You’re Fibber Fox. You’re not Chopper,” says Yakky. Hey, MENSA! Sign up that duck.

After being sneezed out of some hiding spots, the Yakky-clutching Fibber runs into a house. Chopper switches fairy tales. “You better open up or I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll sneeze your door down!” That’s exactly what he does. “Well! If I had known you were coming, I would have baked a cake. With a bomb in it, of course,” says Fibber. Before the dog can clobber Fibber, he gives the fox his cold. The last sequence has Yakky bringing them both hot bone soup, but then he gets a cold and the cartoon ends with the lot of them in bed.

The credits say the backgrounds were painted by Monte.

Some dry brushwork from members of Roberta Greutert’s ink and paint department.

There’s nothing spectacular about the music. All the cues are familiar and fit the action.

Finally, an endless cycle. There are eight drawings of Fibber Fox, one to a frame. The background takes up 24 frames before repeating. Alas, Fibber is doomed to run forever without eating that duck.


  1. And, as usual, the best thing about this cartoon is Fibber Fox! He and Alfie Gator may very well be the greatest of the non-starring H-B characters!

    1. I always saw Chopper and Fibber as the real stars of this series.

    2. I did, and do, too. And Alfie Gator.Steve

  2. Despite the fact that they certainly aren't masterpieces, I can't dislike Yakky Doodle, Chopper and especially Fibber Fox.

  3. "Yes, he cannot tell he is addressing Fibber who doesn’t even look like Chopper; Yakky is not terribly bright in this one."

    To be fair, I never could understand how Little Red Riding Hood can't tell that her "grandmother" is really the wolf — or, at the very least, not a human (and therefore not her grandmother).