"Oh people call me Daffy, they think that I am goony..."
Since 1937, Tex Avery's manic character Daffy Duck has been making generations laugh. Be it his zany early self, his deviously greedy self, or his aspirations of high culture, everyone can relate to Daffy on some level. As Chuck Jones had often said, Bugs Bunny is what we always hope to become, while Daffy is exactly what we are. While true that there is perhaps no greater anarchistic comic hero than Bugs, Daffy's persona was as real, as diverse, and as varied as the men behind him. Thus, Daffy became not only the cohesive product of several different animation units, but he also became the embodiment of the Termite Terrace spirit.
On home video, Daffy's career had almost as many ups and downs as his theatrical career. Warner Home Video first offered individual character videos in 1985, and for the next seven years, whenever there was a Bugs video, a Daffy video was close behind. Granted this system gave Daffy more of a "second banana" feel than he probably would have liked, it provided fans with most of Daffy's "key" films from 1948 and on. When one combines this with the fact that most of the Porky Pig videos released during this time contained shorts that starred both he and Daffy, by the end of 1992 much more of Daffy's complete filmography was available on home video than of Bugs's.
During this time, MGM Home Video and Turner were also hard at work releasing videos of the Warner Bros. shorts in their possession. Since the MGM releases couldn't rely on the "Bugs vs. Daffy" rivalry (mainly because they didn't have access to cartoons exhibiting such), Daffy was very much presented as his own star, paired more in ideology to Porky than to Bugs. This was hardly a coincidence, as many Daffy's most outstanding solo shorts were in Turner's control. By 1990, all of the Daffy cartoons MGM could release were released.
The rest of the '90s weren't nearly as generous to the little black duck. Only two character videos were issued in the United States (and another through mail-order), with one featuring many previously released cartoons. Daffy had much better success overseas, with such additional collections as Bugs & Daffy and Monsieur Sans Gene. But no matter where you lived, by the end of the decade there were very few key Daffy shorts left unreleased.
And ever since the start of the new century, Daffy is as important to the Looney Tunes stable as ever. His adventures with Porky took up one-fourth of the shorts on Warner Bros.' first DVD set, he starred in the brand-new half-hour series Duck Dodgers, and he was the central character in 2003's feature film Looney Tunes: Back in Action. Not bad for a "second banana!"
So whether you're a fan of Clampett's Daffy or Jones's, or Daffy's pairings with Porky or Speedy, this guide is here for you to find all your favorite shorts starring that crazy darn fool duck in an easy manner.
"And besides, it's fun! Hoo-hoo, hoo-hoo!"
|61% of Daffy's theatrical shorts have been released on DVD by Warner Bros.|
Click here to see which shorts are not yet on DVD
61% of Daffy's theatrical shorts have been released on VHS by Warner Bros. and MGM