What's Up Doc? Bugs Bunny's Gweatest Hits

Today is not only Memorial Day, it's also the birthday of the voice behind many of the most beloved cartoon characters of all time. In his more than 50 years in Hollywood, Mel Blanc (1908-1989) gave audiences countless "Merry Melodies" via Daffy Duck, Porky Pig, Foghorn Leghorn, Yosemite Sam, Tweety Bird, and Sylvester the Cat, said to be the character closest to Blanc's natural speaking voice. (Sufferin' succotash!)

But besides the Looney Tunes stable, Blanc voiced such characters as "Sy the Little Mexican" on Jack Benny's radio show in the '30s. He was the original voice of Woody Woodpecker and Barney Rubble on The Flintstones, one of several characters Blanc did for Hanna-Barbera after moving over from Warner Bros. in the early '60s. He kept working into the '80s, voicing Twiki the robot in Buck Rogers and reprising Sylvester, Tweety and a few other Looney Tunes favorites in 1988's Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

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Chris Gray has been Music Editor for the Houston Press since 2008. He is the proud father of a Beatles-loving toddler named Oliver.
Contact: Chris Gray