Warner Brothers cartoon character. Chubby little pig. Rarely wears pants. Chronic stutterer. Boyfriend of Petunia Pig.

Porky was Warner's first important cartoon star. He had his debut in Friz Freleng's "I Haven't Got a Hat" in 1935 as a cute little kid with a horrible stutter. He wasn't an immediate hit, but he grew more popular as he was featured in more cartoons. His appearance and attitude changed from cartoon to cartoon in the early days--he'd change from a shy schoolboy to an obese hog to a svelte loverboy to a country hick to a naive explorer. It was Porky who carried the fledgling animation studio through its infancy.

As more characters were added to Warner's roster, Porky became more of a straight man to the far daffier Daffy Duck and the more sophisticated Bugs Bunny. He occasionally stood in for Elmer Fudd in hunting cartoons. Porky was neglected throughout most of the 1940s until Chuck Jones began casting him as Daffy's regular foil, often commenting wryly on the egotistical duck's shenanigans, sometimes playing the eager young admirer who urges Daffy on toward more mayhem, sometimes even saving the day when Daffy proved too inept to do the job himself, and occasionally even jeering Daffy openly and humiliatingly.

Some of my favorite Porky cartoons include: "Porky's Romance", "Porky's Duck Hunt", "Porky in Wackyland", "You Ought to Be in Pictures", "Porky's Preview", "The Pest that Came to Dinner", "Little Orphan Airedale", "Scaredy Cat", "Drip-Along Daffy", "Duck Dodgers in the 24½th Century", and "Robin Hood Daffy".

UPDATE: kthejoker says: "You should mention that Joe Dougherty, who did Porky's original voice, actually did stutter (thus giving Porky his), but they fired him when Mel Blanc came along and gave them a controlled stutter."

"Th-Th-Th-Th-Th-That's all, folks!"

Why does Porky Pig wear clothes?

Think about it. The other Warner Brothers funny animals run around naked.

True, Bugs Bunny has those white gloves, but he otherwise eschews clothing (save for the purposes of disguise). He lives in a rabbit hole. He has to outwit hunters. Daffy Duck is another practicing nudist, who lives like a wild animal and fears duck season. Foghorn Leghorn inhabits a farm, the chattel of some unseen rural folk.

But Porky's lifestyle is that of a human being. He lives in a house, drives a car, and wears clothing (though rarely pants). The other, largely forgotten Warner Bros. pigs, Petunia Pig and Cicero, like imports from George Orwell's Animal Farm, do likewise. What's up with that?

Porky Pig predates his better-known fellows, having made his debut in 1935, and was a blatant attempt to imitate the Disney style. His role models are Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, and he lives more like a cartoon human than a cartoon animal. The studio began to develop its own style with the introduction of Daffy Duck, who suggested a new direction for their characters. Porky remains from an earlier era, and continues to lead a more anthropomorphic life than his animal co-stars.

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