“Cancel Culture” warriors have been out of control in 2021. Next on the “Cancel Culture” chopping block is Looney Tunes character Pepe Le Pew.
New York Times columnist Charles M. Blow has taken the lead pitchfork for this particular lynch mob. Blow claims that Pepe contributes to… get this… “rape culture”:
Warner Bros. have since removed Pepe from the upcoming Space Jam 2, the sequel to the Looney Tunes movie from the 90s that featured Michael Jordan.
Interestingly enough, Blow has no problem with other problematic examples of misogyny in pop culture. Like this, for example:
Won’t someone think of the children?
For those who do not know, legendary cartoonist Chuck Jones created in 1945. Screenrant adds some proper context to Pepe’s character:
Like many of Chuck Jones’ Looney Tunes characters, Pepe Le Pew was inspired by pop culture trends and personalities, mainly spoofing the depiction of romantic pursuit in European films and television of the time. Le Pew was also inspired by a colleague of Chuck Jones named Tedd Pierce, a self-proclaimed “ladies man” despite being a hapless romantic.
Jones’s daughter, Linda, even commented in defense of poop little Pepe. According to TMZ, According to ComicBook.com Linda Jones said the cartoons featuring Pepe were more about “how much he stunk as a suitor, despite thinking he was desirable.”
What we wouldn’t do to see a comparative study of the influence of Pepe Le Pew compared to Notorious B.I.G. when it comes to treatment of women. How hypocritically selective humorless killjoys like Blow can be is remarkable.
What this self-important virtue signaling dolt does not get is that context matters. Pepe Le Pew is the cartoon-ification of a troupe that we rightly hold out for hysterical ridicule and derision. Everyone but Pepe is in on the real joke: that he’s a cautionary tale of over-inflated bravado, not a symbol to emulate. Anyone with a brain can see that because Pepe rarely succeeds in the ways of l’amour.
Has everyone just become willfully ignorant? If audiences spanning over seventy years can get it, why can’t loudmouth losers like Blow? I guarantee you that he will never find a single person who claims Pepe Le Pew as a primary influence. But I also guarantee you that Blow knows most of Biggie’s lyrics. You know: the ones about say how he’ll “f*** around and hit you with the Hennessy d***.”
But again, just like Coca-Cola and Hasbro, Warner Bros has succumbed to “cancel culture”, as it announced that it has no future plans to incude Pepe Le Pew in any future Looney Tunes projects. The fear of bad publicity or boycott wins out again.
When will someone take a stand against this horrible trend?