Daffy Dilly (1948)
Article 5785 by Dave Sindelar
Directed by Chuck Jones
Featuring the voice of Mel Blanc
What it is: Daffy Duck cartoon
Daffy is a flailing novelty joke vendor who decides his fortune can be made if he visits an ailing tycoon who hasn’t laughed in years, and finds a way to make him laugh. But first, he has to get past a surly butler.
The only real fantastic content in this one is the anthropomorphic animals, so ordinarily I wouldn’t cover it, but it is listed in the Walt Lee guide, so I’m making an exception. It’s an interesting cartoon in that Jones doesn’t use Daffy in quite the same way as he does in other cartoons. Daffy isn’t quite the narcissistic incompetent he would later become; he’s at least partially incompetent (his sales pitch on the street has dismal results, and he spends most of the cartoon being outwitted by the butler), but he does succeed with a long-shot psychological gambit worthy of Bugs Bunny. Furthermore, he’s not given to the fits of fury of his later cartoons, nor is he just the loony prankster of his earlier cartoons. Nevertheless, it’s a pretty entertaining cartoon, though I would have liked to have a sequence where Daffy attempts to entertain the millionaire with his novelty items; as it is, it goes for the final twist instead. I’d have to say that this cartoon is transitional.