Duck Dodgers is an American animated television series produced by Warner Bros. Animation from 2003 to 2005, based on the 1953 theatrical cartoon short Duck Dodgers in the 24½th Century.
The series is a space opera, featuring the fictional Looney Tunes characters as actors in metafictional roles, with Daffy Duck as the titular hero and Porky Pig as his eager Young Space Cadet. The James Bond-inspired theme song was sung by Tom Jones.
The series originally aired on Cartoon Network, and currently airs on sister network, Boomerang.
Episode Five of Season One features Duck Dodgers and his Young Space Cadet encountering Count Muerte, a Nosferatu-inspired vampire. The animated episode was scripted by no less than four writers: Spike Brandt, Tony Cervone, Paul Dini and Tom Minton. Brandt and Cervone directed.
Duck Dodgers pines to be ambassador of the people of Earth but the spooky spaceship he and his Space Cadet land on “looks scary” and seemingly abandoned.
Nevertheless, a dinner table is set and a host is waiting. Dodgers forces his Cadet to introduce him to Count Muerte. However, the Count is seemingly uninterested in the arrogant duck and more interested in his fat pig Cadet.
Meanwhile, a piece of tossed tofu inadvertently burns the vampire’s hand as he is allergic to healthy food. Recovering, he hypnotises Dodgers, who becomes a bug-eating crazy Renfield-like character with the voice of actor Peter Lorre.
Three vampire ladies appear and find the Cadet to their liking, as he has a genuine personality, unlike skinny Dodgers whom they attempt to eat as a “light snack”.
Surviving the female vampires’ half-hearted onslaught, Dodgers creates a coffin full of spikes and pretends it is a bed for the “piggy”. He tries to make the Cadet go to sleep but the latter wants water, a toothbrush, toothpaste, the toilet and then a call his grandma before bedding down! Becoming angry, Dodgers jumps in the bed then gets stuck in a liposuction device…
Giving up on cunning plans, the Count turns into a bat and chases the porky Cadet around until he sees his shadow, which he then eats… and dies.
It turns out the canny Cadet made the voracious vampire eat a decoy full of healthy food, which he is allergic to. Fazed by the near-death encounter, Dodgers suggests that next time the Cadet should be the ambassador of the people of Earth…
“Never send an imbecile to do a vampire’s job.”
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