Here are some rare Tex Avery MGM cartoons that are currently YouTubeified:
Avery's first cartoon at MGM, "Blitz Wolf" (1942) re-tells the story of the Three Little Pigs with the wolf as Hitler. (The wolf, by the way, is voiced by the great Bill Thompson -- voice of Droopy, Wallace Wimple on "Fibber McGee and Molly" and Jock in Lady and the Tramp.) No one had ever done a mainstream theatrical cartoon this grown-up before, not even Avery; it combines Disney-bashing (always a favourite Avery theme) with current events, fourth-wall breaking, a relentless pace and even an eerie anticipation of the events of three years later (a scene shows Japan being literally blown up). My favourite gag is the one where Avery freeze-frames over what would otherwise be a naughty line in the song "You're in the army now," but the bit that got the biggest laugh when I screened it for a an audience was the gag where a drooping gun is revived with a bunch of pills -- sort of a Viagra gag before there was Viagra.
"Uncle Tom's Cabana" (1947) is a cartoon you won't be seeing on television any time soon, though the racial stereotyping isn't on a "Coal Black and de Sebben Dwarfs" level. Contains the funniest erection joke in cartoon history (involving the villain, Simon Legree, and a cash register).
And, finally, no controversy involved, that all-time Avery favourite "Bad Luck Blackie":