Blacque Jacque Shellacque

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Blacque Jacque Shellacque
Looney Tunes character
Created byRobert McKimson
Tedd Pierce
Voiced byMel Blanc (1959–1962)
Billy West (1999)
Maurice LaMarche (2003–2014)
Jim Cummings (2017-present)
Information
SpeciesHuman
GenderMale
OccupationCriminal
NationalityCanadian

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Blacque Jacque Shellacque is a fictional cartoon character in the Looney Tunes cartoons. He was created by Robert McKimson and Tedd Pierce, and first appeared in the 1959 Merrie Melodies short Bonanza Bunny set in the Klondike of 1896.[1] Maurice LaMarche voiced the character from 2011-2014 in The Looney Tunes Show.[2] The character was the inspiration for a specific version of five card draw poker mixed with blackjack named "Blacque Jacque Shellacque" in which the pot is divided between the winning poker hand and the winning blackjack hand. If everyone loses in blackjack, the winning poker hand takes all.[3]

Like many of other Bugs Bunny's enemies, Blacque Jacque Shellacque is a male with a foreign accent and a beard; playing into a character trope of evil un-American foreigners with facial hair.[4] While similar in many ways to Yosemite Sam—both are short in stature and temper—Blacque Jacque possesses his own unique characteristics, not the least of which is his comically thick French Canadian accent, performed by Mel Blanc. Also, like Yosemite Sam and many other villains, Blacque Jacque Shellacque does not have a high level of intelligence, preferring to use force instead of strategy to fight Bugs. His usual swear word is Sacrebleu, and he is often portrayed as a thief.[5]

Appearances[edit]

Blacque Jacque first appeared in Bonanza Bunny, which takes place in the middle of the Klondike gold rush. Blacque Jacque attempts to seize Bugs' bag of gold (actually "a bunch of old rocks and some yellow paint," according to Bugs) through card cheating, trickery and out-and-out threats, but Bugs outwits him as always and defeats him by replacing his bag of gold with gunpowder while poking a hole in the bag and tossing a lit match on it, causing a massive explosion.

Blacque Jacque later clashed with Bugs in 1962's Wet Hare, in which his illegal damming of a river ("I feel like pezky little beav-aire!") brings him into conflict with the rabbit—not only because he is committing a crime, but because he has blocked off the waterfall that Bugs uses as a shower. After demolishing several of Blacque Jacque's dams, Bugs turns the tables by damming the river upstream of Jacque's dam. Jacque, unsurprisingly, is enraged and wheels a small cannon along the riverbed to destroy Bugs' dam—but when he does he only reveals another dam further upstream. Jacque blows up several of Bugs' dams in succession and finally follows Bugs all the way to the "Grand Cooler Dam" (a pun on the name of the Grand Coulee Dam). Jacque tries to blow it up with his cannon, but the dam is so massive and thick that the cannonball he launches ricochets back into the cannon's barrel and the recoiling force lands both Jacque and the cannon into the back of a waiting paddy wagon, which then takes him away.

Legacy[edit]

Blacque Jacque is one of the more obscure Looney Tunes characters, but he has his share of fans. Canadian television networks in particular put his shorts in regular rotation (on shows such as The Bugs Bunny and Tweety Show), and the cartoons have an unusual number of Canadian references for the time period in which they were made (for example, Bugs claims that he received a call from Jacque's girlfriend, "Fifi from Montreal").

In the video game Bugs Bunny: Lost in Time, he appears in various levels as an enemy to defeat. During this appearance, he was voiced by Billy West.

Although Blacque Jacque did not appear in Looney Tunes: Back in Action, he was featured in the film's video game adaptation, voiced by Maurice LaMarche. He was stealing paintings from the Louvre and being defeated by Bugs Bunny.

Blacque Jacque Shellacque appears in The Looney Tunes Show, voiced again by Maurice LaMarche. In this show, Blacque Jacque Shellacque is the cousin of Yosemite Sam. In the episode "It's a Handbag," his picture is seen in a police notebook. In "Ridiculous Journey," Blacque Jacque Shellacque was hunting Hugo the Abominable Snowman in Alaska when he turns his attention towards Sylvester, Tweety, and Taz and pursues them. Blacque Jacque Shellacque catches up to them on a train heading south and starts hunting them. Sylvester, Tweety, and Taz escape him by detaching the cars that are connected to the train. Blacque Jacque Shellacque then finds them in the cars of the Three Bears and tries to grab them until Baby Bear throws him out of their car and off the Golden Gate Bridge. Blacque Jacque Shellacque catches up to them in the desert when they end up in the desert and ends up cutting Beaky Buzzard's balloon. Blacque Jacque Shellacque then goes on the attack and manages to catch them. It turns out that Blacque Jacque Shellacque was hired by Bugs Bunny and Granny to rescue them upon the two of them being hooked up by Yosemite Sam.

Blacque Jacque Shellacque appears in New Looney Tunes, voiced by Jim Cummings.

References[edit]

  1. Roy Lieberman (2015). Vitaphone Films: A Catalogue of the Features and Shorts. McFarland Publishing. p. 328. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  2. David Perlmutter (2018). The Encyclopedia of American Animated Television Shows. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 371-372. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  3. James Ernest, Phil Foglio, Mike Selinker (2005). Dealer's Choice: The Complete Handbook to Saturday Night Poker. Overlook Duckworth. p. 86-87.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link) Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  4. Clinton Sanders (1990). Marginal Conventions: Popular Culture, Mass Media, and Social Deviance. Popular Press. p. 122. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  5. Francis Earle Barcus (1983). Images of life on children's television: sex roles, minorities, and families. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 96. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png


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