Case of the Missing Hare is a 1942 Warner Bros. cartoon in the Merrie Melodies series, directed by Chuck Jones and starring Bugs Bunny. The title is a typical play on words, and although it suggests a Mystery story, it bears no apparent relationship to the plotline. It is also one of the few cartoons where Bugs doesn't say "Eh, what's up, Doc?".


A magician named Ali Bahma is nailing self-promoting posters on every conceivable surface... including, as it turns out, a tree in which Bugs is living (apparently having moved from his "underground" home to a "high-rise"). He protests having his home encroached, proclaiming that "there's still such a thing as private property, you know". He begins to continue the protest until the magician apologizes and asks Bugs if he likes blackberry pie (this is one of the many non-carrot foods that Bugs devours). The bunny's expression changes to joy for the moment, as Ala Bahma produces a pie from under a "magic" cloth... until he splatters it in his face, walking away and ridiculing the rabbit. Bugs, with pie-filling and bits of crust dripping down his face, calmly turns to the audience in a closeup, and invokes the time-honored Warner homage to the Marx Brothers: "Of course, you realize this means war!"

The rabbit spends the rest of the movie at the theater where Ala Bahma is performing, wreaking havoc during his prestidigitations (although the magician sounds like fellow cartoon star Porky Pig when he tries to say that word; Bugs later does this as well). In a climactic moment, he thinks he has blown Bugs away with a shotgun. Instead, Bugs pops out of the magic hat and awards him a cigar... which promptly explodes in his face and stuns him. In a delicious bit of revenge, Bugs produces a pie from under a magic cloth. He says to the audience, quoting Red Skelton's "Mean Widdle Kid", "If I dood it, I dit a whippin'... I DOOD IT!" and splatters the pie in Ala Bahma's face. Bugsy then sings "Aloha `Oe" on a ukelele as he descends into the hat and the cartoon irises out.


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