Marvin the Martian the Movie?
I’ll just let a video of the Faceless Wonder lede this post the way my humble writing talents simply won’t allow me to:
Cute lil’ bugger, ain’t he? I believe this clip is from one of Marvin the Martian’s first appearances in a Looney Tunes short, way back in 1948. Back then, as you can see from the clip, Marvin was a pretty smart cartoon for a kids’ show. He waxed philosophically about the human condition, how unintelligent the “insects” called human beings can be, but all the while he is so wholly ignorant of his surroundings that he doesn’t recognize the bomb headed straight for him.
Of course, children will watch him cute-talk the bomb as if its a pet, giggle like the little idiots they are and move on to the next ‘toon, which more than likely will contain at least one joke pertaining to some bodily function. But as a 20-year-old that pretends to know way more about the world than he actually does, I think that little one-minute clip packs a pretty profound message into its minuscule run-time. One culture (Marvin) completely dismisses the other as unworth of his time. The other (humans) just blows him up with a nuclear bomb before even finding out what he was trying to accomplish by coming to Earth. Maybe I’m just looking too much into it, I thin the Looney Tunes dudes were trying to talk about the necessity to understand other cultures and different people around the world … through a spartan-helmet-and-tights wearing Martian.
With such a rich history of character development (Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Taz, Speedy Gonzalez, Pepe le Pew, friggin’ Foghorn Leghorn, Sylvester, Elmer Fudd, those little f-ing Goofy Gophers, Yosemite Sam, etc. etc. etc.) I don’t think I ever would have pegged Marvin the Martian to carry an entire Looney Tunes feature, but it makes sense. But only if they can incorporate some of the same ideas, themes and morals into the movie, because it so important to teach those kinds of messages to American Youth before old-school hate and racism become ingrained in their everyday lives. And the official, albeit brief, synopsis of the project definitely has potential:
(Steve) Crystal, a former Warner exec with a first-look deal at Alcon through his Charlie Co. banner, developed the pitch as a Christmas story, with Marvin coming to Earth to destroy Christmas but being prevented from doing so when he’s trapped in a gift box.
He wants to destroy Christmas because he doesn’t understand its mystique, and the humans want to destroy him because they don’t understand what he’s all about. There’s no reason the movie can’t have the stupid potty humor that seems a prerequisite for kids’ films nowadays, but that doesn’t mean a series message can’t be embedded in the fibers of the story arc (like WALL-E … I can’t pass up an opportunity to talk about that movie.)
Oh, and also, “Marvin the Martian” will follow in the footsteps of the last few Looney Tunes movies by incorporating both live-action actors and CGI characters. Sometimes this works (“Space Jam” was kinda cool, right?) and sometimes it really doesn’t (Remember “Looney Tunes: Back in Action”? Yeah, me either).