Yosemite Sam and Elmer Fudd are now unarmed, thanks to the reboot of the classic Looney Tunes characters on HBO's new streaming platform.
Neither the irascible prospector nor the befuddled hunter will carry their trademark pistol or double-barrelled shotgun in the new cartoons, being shown on HBO Max.
Strangely, however, Fudd is still a hunter in the new shows, and is still hunting his nemesis Bugs Bunny, but instead uses a serious-looking scythe.
Speaking to The New York Times, the series' showrunner Peter Browngardt confirmed: “We're not doing guns, but we can do cartoony violence — TNT, the Acme stuff.
“All that was kind of grandfathered in.”
Later in the article, animator Johnny Ryan adds: “We’re going through this wave of anti-bullying, everybody needs to be friends, everybody needs to get along.
“Looney Tunes is pretty much the antithesis of that. It’s two characters in conflict, sometimes getting pretty violent.”
The decision to remove firearms from the classic cartoon series has been met with some... interesting reactions online.
gonna be so much more horrifying when Elmer Fudd kills Bugs Bunny with his bare hands— BUM CHILLUPS, NPR CLASS PUNDIT (@edsbs) June 7, 2020
I can't believe this needs to be said, but Yosemite Sam and Elmer Fudd were never responsible gun owners anyway. pic.twitter.com/4dgJ83WVgu— Dr. Jacqueline Antonovich (@jackiantonovich) June 7, 2020
anyway, anyone who is mad about them taking away Elmer Fudd's hunting rifle probably has not watched any Looney Tunes media in the past 10 years where he rarely has it and also once was implied to have regular sex with a grilled cheese sandwich. pic.twitter.com/w3PdBbomrA— Hey FizzyJay (@hey_fizzy_jay) June 7, 2020
Not sure what's funnier: Warner Bros taking Elmer fudd's gun as some sort of weird empty gesture about gun violence or the people getting genuinely upset over it and saying that they're gonna unsubscribe pic.twitter.com/kqF2JLnhHJ— Please Social Distance.🌠🌃🌌💙 (@nightandtime) June 7, 2020
Others noted that the move is a notable about face from more recent Looney Tunes material...
2020 Looney Tunes: "Gun violence has inspired us to take away Elmer Fudd's signature hunting rifle."— NeonManta (@NeonManta) June 7, 2020
2012 Looney Tunes: pic.twitter.com/qadEBaAd07
There’s no news about if and when the new Looney Tunes cartoon will be made available for UK audiences.