Hubie and Bertie enjoy a quiet moment together. That's Hubie in front.


Medium: Theatrical animation
Produced by: Warner Bros.
First Appeared: 1943
Creator: Chuck Jones
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Everybody knows cartoon director Chuck Jones is responsible for the Road Runner and Coyote cartoons, and quite a few know he's also responsible for those starring Pepe LePew. Some even …

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… know about his work on Inki & the Minah Bird. But other than toon aficionados, not so many people know he's also the man behind Sniffles the Mouse, Marc Antony the Dog, and these two, Hubie & Bertie.

Hubie and Bertie were part of a post-Bugs/Daffy wave of Warner Bros. cartoon stars, a wave that also included Beaky Buzzard (1943), Henery Hawk (1942), Tweety Bird (1942) and several others. This pair of rodents debuted on June 12, 1943, with the release of The Aristo-Cat, Also debuting in the same picture was a cat much, personality-wise at least, like Claude, a frequent co-star in the later cartoons.

They were a comedy pair, like Chip & Dale, Babs & Buster Bunny or Ziggy Pig & Silly Seal. Hubie was the one in charge, the one that had most of the ideas. He'd order Bertie around, slap him back and forth when need be, etc. Bertie, not as bright, was cheerful and agreeable — his catch phrase was "Yeah yeah, sure sure". Hubie's voice was done by Mel Blanc, the man who, among many other accomplishments, invented Woody Woodpecker's famous laugh. Authorities differ about who spoke for Bertie in the first cartoon, but after that he was definitely done by Stan Freberg (Joonyer Bear, Cecil the Seasick Sea Serpent).

They weren't among the studio's bigger stars, but they did turn up occasionally in the back pages of Dell Comics' Looney Tunes title. They appeared in six more cartoons, spread out over about a decade. The last one was Mouse Warming, released September 8, 1952.

Hubie and Bertie have remained in the public eye for the same reason all the other Warner Bros. stars did — endless reruns on TV. After a few decades of this, they got a bit part in Space Jam, the 1996 movie that brought back most of that gang. They've also made occasional appearances in DC Comics' Looney Tunes title — again, just because they were part of that old gang. It seems likely they'll continue turning up whenever those characters are trotted out for another encore.


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Text ©2005 Donald D. Markstein. Art © Warner Bros.