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The following page documents the series bible for the original Animaniacs. The transcription of the Animaniacs bible is sourced from Ron "Keeper1st" O'Dell's website. This version was revised on December 2, 1991; and contains elements of the series that were either kept-in, modified, or scrapped entirely.

Introduction

Steven Spielberg Presents
Animaniacs
Starring
The Warner Brothers
Revised
December 2, 1991

Who Are The Warner Brothers?

The Warner Brothers are the living personification of what Warner Bros. cartoons mean. They're nuts. These two brothers and one sister are everything their name represents. They have the essential "Warner Bros." personality traits: wacky, irreverent, sly, brash, willing to be pushed only so far, capable of "getting even". Their cartoons contain comic mayhem and zaniness -- everything that Warner Bros. cartoons are, and everything that Disney cartoons are not.

The "Warner Brothers" consist of something old and something new. Their name is familiar, but they're new creations. Their design has an old-fashioned quality, yet these characters have never been seen before. Their antics are reminiscent of classic Warner Bros. cartoons, yet these new characters put their own spin on comedy.

The Warner Brothers' Goal in Life

These kids just want to have a good time. They mind their own business until someone comes along and pushes them around. They then show the jerk the error of his ways.

What Do the Warners Do in Their Cartoons?

They annoy people who deserve to be annoyed. They are the worst nightmares of anyone who deserves to have such a nightmare. They are the cartoon world's answer to loony justice, when the unjust must be taught a lesson.

The Warner Brothers' Origin

Where do the Warner Brothers come from? The back story on these two brothers and one sister goes something like this...

"The Warner Brothers" were an experiment in animation comedy that went awry. They were designed, drawn, and animated for maximum wackiness by a gifted animator, but the end result was too wild and uncontrollable for anyone to handle. The cartoon creations drove the animator around the bend, and the wacky Warner Brothers (and sister) ran amok in the studio.

The studio soon realized that these anarchic cartoon characters could not be safely unleashed on the world. Disavowing any knowledge of their existence to the media, the studio locked away the warner characters In the climate-controlled, perma-sealed chamber inside the Warner Bros. water tower. Their existence is a corporate secret, known only by the studio president and the head of security.

But somehow, each day, the Warner Brothers (and sister) manage to escape from their cage, dash across the studio (where they can encounter famous movie stars working on the lot), race out the gate, and run riot throughout the city.

Warner Brothers Character Profiles

The Warner Brothers are kid siblings. They are the touchstones for our predominantly kid audience. There is a subversive quality to the activity of the Warner Brothers. They pull their gags on jerky, pompous and mean adults, who deserve to be given "the business". They represent what kids would like to do to the jerky adults in the world. They are the epitome of a kid-relatable dream-come-true.

The brothers and sister are not one-sided character. As our constant hosts, they are able to go to different emotional places, as well as different areas of skill. They each have a dominating characteristic, e.g. good natured wise-cracking or insanely wacky, etc... but they all have a couple of more things that they do or ways that they behave.

The Warners are a modern-day mixture of the Marx Brothers, Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Lucille Ball and Gogo Dodo, rolled together into three new and distinct characters.

Yakko

He is the oldest of the Warner Brothers. He's the gang lender, the glib, fast-talker and sly wise-guy in the Groucho/Bugs Bunny mold. He's the thinker, the planner, the schemer, and the trio's recreation director. Each day, he has lots of unique ideas of things for the group to do. He's full of boyish enthusiasm, and he's the master of verbal warfare.

Yakko is a cheerful character with a devilish twinkle in his eye. The world is his playland, and he takes great pleasure in finding a deserving target for the Warner Brothers' patented style of mayhem and destruction.

Yakko Yakking

One of his standard routines is yakking an adversary's ear off with never-ending questions and comments. He does this to annoy someone who deserves to be annoyed. "Oh, oh, oh, I know what to do. I got it, I got it, I got it! Ya know what? Ya know what? Ya know what?" Yakko's chatterbox routine entertains himself and the audience -- he makes eye-contact with us during these verbal assaults, as if saying, "Watch me drive this jerk out of his mind."

Protective Leader

As the older brother, Yakko is very protective of his younger siblings, whom he loves dearly. Of course, his kid brother and sister are very resourceful, and it's actually their adversaries who need protection.

Fakes Interest, Mimics Others

In some situations, Yakko does a Chevy Chase "listening routine", which means when the speaker is watching him, he looks like he's paying strict attention, but when the speaker turns away, Yakko assumes bored, goofy poses and makes ludicrous faces, or mimics the speaker; then, when the speaker turns back, Yakko quickly resumes his attentive attitude.

Yakko Leaves The Fighting To His Siblings

Yakko, being the verbal, cerebral member of the family, does not get involved in excessive physical labor. He does not engage in wholesale destructions as much as his brothers do. Instead, he stands on the sidelines, marvels at their success ("they're gifted"), and makes knowing comments to the hapless villains and to the audience.

Yakko's Finger Snap

Yakko has the miraculous power of being able to stop his siblings' destruction with a mere snap of his fingers. "They do everything I tell them."

The Humble Bow of Apology (And Stick It Up Your Nose)

While apologizing to an adversary, Yakko bows humbly, then falls forward in a somersault, and comes out of the somersault right in the face of the adversary, where Yakko makes a wacky face and honks the adversary's nose, as if to say... "NOT!"

Yakko's Quest For Adventure

Yakko comes up with offbeat adventures -- like elevator races in office buildings, or mountain-climbing expeditions across a city skyline. He's just having a good time, and can't understand why adults are annoyed by the trio.

Yakko's Answers

Yakko answers frustrated questions about why the Brothers have done something by saying "It seemed like a good idea at the time." But sometimes his answers are complete non-sequiturs. when a frustrated store clerk demands, "WHAT DO YOU WANT?!?" Yakko waits a beat and responds, "I just want... to DANCE!" At which point he waltzes off with the clerk.

Yakko Sample Dialogue

  • "To this goal we are committed -- and if we're not, we oughta be."
  • "Now you've gone and hurt his feelings."
  • "Aww, we're just spoofin' ya!"
  • "Hey, Mister, that's an awfully big nose for ya -- TA HAVE!"
  • "I don't know what that is you're eating, but it's not food."
  • Upon seeing a girl: "Helllooo, Nurse."
  • "Ready for the punchline?" (The villain gets punched.)
  • "Don't worry, they do whatever I say."
  • "How do you make your face all red like that?"
  • "Whatcha doin', mister? Huh, huh, whatcha doin'?"
  • "'Course we're opposed to be here."
  • "Your veins are stickin' all up. You look like a roadmap."
  • "Can I tell ya something, Mister, huh? Huh? Can I tell you something?"
  • "Don't mind him... he's cra-azy!!!"
  • "They're gifted."
  • "They do everything I tell them."
  • "Woah, dumber than advertised."
  • "Whenever you talk to me, shut up."
  • Yakko apologizes after his sibling has malleted the foe: "Forgive him. He knows not what he does."
  • After the angry Wakko kicks an adversary, Yakko explains: "That's just his way of saying that he likes you."

Wakko

Wakko is the youngest brother. Ha has the blissed-out facial expressions and mirthful demeanor of Harpo Harx. He is the cartoon equivalent of an atom bomb. He is the most destructive character in the history of cartoondom. Whatever he pushes or pulls results in a chain reaction of unintentional chaos. His siblings are well aware of Wakko's innate talent, and they employ him in this role to Full effect.

Wakko is Gogo plus Daffy plus Harpo. No puns, just nonstop literal translations. He has been smacked on the head with a mallet too many times. He finds most things amusing. He is the king of props. He carries a wacky sack out of which he can pull any object we can think of. He will nod "yes" and say "no." He walks backwards as easy as forwards and means everything he says except what he means. He loves you to pieces. He will change the environment at the drop of a suggestion. He is the looniest, but they are all loony. He is apt to kiss anyone at anytime for any reason. And if someone were to hurt his feelings... he would be VERY hurt.

Where Yakky is verbally irreverent, Wakko is physically irreverent. He is completely off the wall. He does things in reverse. He may eat anything at any time, perhaps for shock value, but most likely because it just might taste good. He is a master of funny walks. Both his siblings are undeniably good at them, but Wakko is the master. He also loves to grab people and give them a big smooch, accompanied by a line like "Did ya miss me?" He has one rule - no rules. But unlike Harpo, he speaks.

Wakko's Temper

If you were a bad guy and found Wakko's playful antics annoying, pray that you don't see the other side. Because when Wakko gets steamed, you get scalded. Wakko has a temper that rarely gets unleashed, but when it does, he becomes a tornado of destruction. When he starts to boil over, Yakko and Dot recognize the symptoms, shake their heads and look to the victim to say; "You shouldn'ta said that." After releasing his anger, Wakko always looks refreshed, saying, "Ya hold that stuff in, you get an ulcer."

Wakko's Animal Routines

He's constantly pretending to be one animal or another. He'll bark like a dog, and give someone a big sloppy lick on the face. He'll prowl like a cat, hiss at someone, say "meow," and refuse to do anything a cat wouldn't do.

Wakko Will Eat ANYTHING

Like a nanny goat, Wakko will eat anything, adding salt and pepper to it until it suits his taste. This grosses out and/or baffles foes.

Wakko As Destructor

Wakko often instigates wild physical comedy by innocently asking, "Hmmm... wonder what this does?" When the antagonist ultimately shouts for the kid to stop doing the intolerable thing he's doing, Wakko bursts into tears. The foe tries to soothe the inconsolable wailing child, and folks nearby think the guy is a brute for making the kid cry.

Wakko: "Look at me!"

Wakko shouts: "Look at me. I'm an elephant!" He squirts water out of his nose at his adversary.

Or "Look at me! I'm a kitty." He scratches the villain to pieces.

Wakko Fantasy Schtick

Wakko can pull off his tail and ears and use them as props (cranks, ropes, mallets, etc.) a la Felix the Cat.

"Look, it's a butt!"

He likes to point to people's butts and proclaim, "It's a butt!" which is pretty much the funniest thing that's been said this century: he cracks himself up.

The Gag Bag

Wakko has a bag of gags and tricks. He takes it with him wherever he goes, and it contains anything the Warners will ever need. Except what they really want... True love.

Ha! Just kidding.

"What's in Your Hair?" Gag

To confound the bad guy, Wakko will point and say: "You've got something in your hair (or in your teeth)." And from the hair or teeth of the bad guy, Wakko will pull out huge props, like mallets, refrigerators, etc.

Brainchild

Wakko says, "Wait! I gotta brainchild!" Let's hear it. Wakko pulls out a large brain (wearing a diaper) that wails.

Wakko Sample Dialogue

  • "In cartoons, a fella can get away with just about anything."
  • "Aww, we never have any fun."
  • "How do you dooooo?"
  • "Aw, he fall down go boom!"
  • "Hey, watch me pretend to throw up!"
  • "I know a great knock-knock joke. You start."

Dot

Dot for all practical purposes IS a Warner Brother. The fact that she is a girl, doesn't bother her one bit. She can do anything the boys can do and still look cute (and she knows it). Even though her name sounds like an afterthought: "Something you do to an 'I'" (Yakko would add: "I put eye drops in mine.") Dot can hold her own in any situation. If anything, her femininity is a weapon she uses to hold saps hostage.

Dot has a higher tolerance for jerks than her brothers, and she tends to give them the benefit of the doubt: "Let's just calm down and talk this through." BUT when the adversary says something like: "That's a good little girl," she goes off: "Someone gimme a mallet, quick" and she pounds the schmoe with reckless abandon.

Dot is everything that all animated female characters have never been. She is ascerbic, witty, violent and (above it all) cute. (She can't help it... she just is!)

Introduction Bit

When Yakko and Wakko introduce themselves as the "Warner Brothers" Dot always pipes in with: "and the Warner sister."

Or when introducing themselves, all three say, "We're the Warner Brothers!" The confused foe points to Dot and says, "But you're a girl." Dot screams, "Sexual harassment!" and has the jerk arrested.

Dot's Name

When she introduces herself, she says: "My name is Dot, but you may call me Princess Angelina Contessa Lousia Franchesca Banana Fanna Bo-besca... the third."

She Uses Her Bow As A Prop

She can remove it and stretch it, turning it into anything needed.

She Plays The Weak or Dumb Female

If the time is right, or she is lazy, Dot wil play "the weak female." If a situation arises where say, she doesn't want to carry groceries, she will play the weak, helpless female to the bag boy: (whining) "It's just so hea-avy!" He will carry her groceries. Meanwhile, we see Dot clobber the Grocery Checker with an anvil.

She also will "play dumb." "It just hurts my head to think that hard!" After which she will look to CAMERA and either hold up a disclaimer sign or wink.

Dot And Men

When her brothers drool over the sight of a pretty girl, she crosses her arms and turns to CAMERA with a "I don't get it" look. She might even say: "Men. Go fig." Then, a handsome guy passes by and Dot turns into a Tex Avery Dream Come True... whistling, pounding herself with a mallet and yelling: "HELLO, NURSE!" She would chase a cute guy to the ends of the earth. And then swoon in his unsuspecting arms, asking him: "Do ya think I'm cute?"

Calls People "Kid"

Like Fanny Brice, Dot calls most everyone "Kid." This drives adults crazy.

"Wanna See Our Pet?" Gag

She has a pet that she keeps in a small box. She pulls it out as necessary and says: "Wanna see our pet?" An impossibly huge monster leaps out of the box, scaring the victim, disappearing back into the box. "Gets 'em every time."

Baby Talk

To torture someone, she'll regress into cutesy girlish baby talk.

Wild Take

When she does a "wild take," her dot eyes fly off her head like ping pong balls. She replies "I hate it when that happens." Yakko and Wakko play ping pong with her dot eyes.

"I'm Not Your Honey"

Dot reacts angrily in a way according to any diminutive cutsie name: "Honey" - she pours honey on the guy, or slams a hive around his head. "Punkin" - she slams a jack-o-lantern on his head. "Sweetie" - she whallops him with a giant sucker. She says, "Honey! I'll show you honey; or there's your honey!" She adds, "The name is Dot, don't forget it."

Dot's Retaliation

The brothers try to protect Dot from a creep, but when she gets mad, they have to protect the creep from being annhiliated [sic] by her in the same manner.

"Big Baby"

When Dot cries for sympathy, the antagonist says, "You big baby." Dot stops crying and says, "No, this is a big baby." She introduces a giant baby who picks up the villain and shakes him like a rattle.

Her Music

Dot can play any instrument. She tries to calm nerves by producing one and playing sweetly, but can't control herself and always rocks out, turning the tables on the bad guys .

"If You Weren't So Big..."

Dot says, "If you weren't so big, I'd... I'd..." "You'd what, shrimp?" She steams and does "This and this and this!" whomping him, then gets contrite and says, "Not really." The pummeled villain says, "Whew, that's a relief."

"HEY. THAT'S MY SISTER"

When anyone comes down on Dot, Yakko says in a tough voice, "Hey, you're tlakin' [sic] about my sister!" The guy apologizes, and Yakko says, "No, I meant she's worse! She's ho-o-o-o-rible!" And Dot proves it by lighting the guy on fire or something.

"If Someone Laughed, It Was Worth It"

After a particularly cruel piece of retaliation, Dot says, "As long as there was one person somewhere who laughed, then it was worth it."

Dot Sample Dialogue

  • "I'm every other inch a lady."
  • "It's in my genes... and I wear a skirt." or "It's in my genes... and I'm not wearin' any!"
  • "Call me Dotty and you die."
  • "It sounds stupid, dangerous and impractical... when do we start?"
  • "Too much of a good thing is fine by me."
  • "You're just sayin' that because you mean it."
  • "Let's initiate him!"
  • "I'm as fresh as clothes dried in the sun!"
  • "Am I cute or what?" (Yakko counters with: "Or what" or "I give up.")
  • "I'm sporadic."
  • "Give us a kiss, kid."
  • "Hey, I can't help it if I'm cute!"
  • "Courtesy laugh, courtesy laugh (weak laugh: "heh heh heh")."
  • "Hello nurse!"
  • "Wheeee-eeee."
  • "This is all you do."
  • "We just love ya to pieces."
  • (grossed out) "Ewwwwww!"
  • "Deeeee-sgusting!"
  • "Aw, the poor man, he fall down and go BOOM!"
  • "Do you think it's proper for a girl to date on the first kiss?"

Recurring Supporting Players In The Warner Brothers' Adventures

This is the big, oafish studio security guard from "Hollywood Plucky". "Duh." Frank Welker's big, dumb guy on the lot. He pursues the siblings in the main title, recaptures them in the end title, and occasionally shows up within the show to give chase.
The studio's first-aid squad, and sometimes keeper of the Warners. Their chaperone on studio-approved furloughs from the water tower. She's pretty, and whenever they see her they say, "Helllloooooo, Nurse," (They say that whenever they see a pretty girl.) The rumor is she's not really a nurse at all but another zany who thinks she's a nurse.
A Freud type who has been assigned to psycho-analyze the Warner Brothers, in an effort to get these kids under-control. "You're just too zany," says the shrink. Respond the Warners: "We've been zani-tized for your protection." The shrink wants to "de-zanitize" them. The Warners torment this guy mercilessly.

Guest Stars

In some episodes, the Warner Brothers and the Animaniacs will be joined by celebrity guest stars, who will be caricatured and will provide their own voices for the soundtrack.

It's our hope that Steven will help line-up some of this top-flight celebrity talent.

The Warner Brothers As Hosts/Guides

How do these nuts introduce other cartoon segments?

In the wraparounds, the Warners pass by or encounter the stars of the next cartoon. Say, Slappy Squirrel at her tree house, the Hip Hippos walking down the boulevard, Bossy Beaver berating Doyle in some work setting, etc. The Warners barge in or look on as Slappy (or whoever it is) performs a quick gag. The Warners react favorably to the gag. It's always something in the tradition of Warner Bros. cartoons. This serves as the set-up for the next cartoon, which features the character who just appeared in the wraparound.


Each Half-Hour Show Has A "Theme"

We treat each show like a "special" since each show has its own theme. And the theme is offered up each day, in a unique way, by the Warner Brothers.

The theme is announced by a card at the top of the show, and the three or four cartoons in the episode will directly relate to the theme.

Here are some of the themes/show titles to consider for our sixty-five episodes:

  • Animaniacs At Home: Their lives at home.
  • Animaniacs In Love: Their affairs of the heart.
  • Animaniacs At The Movies: Going to the theatre, as well as parodies.
  • Animaniacs At War: Domestic squabbles and international hijinx.
  • An Animaniacs Halloween: Spooky stuff with our stars.
  • Animaniacs On The Road: Travels with our cast.
  • Animaniacs In History: Our stars participating in major historical events.
  • Animaniacs Go To Washington: And send our political system for a loop.
  • An Animaniacs Sports Spectacular: The cast attends and takes part in various sports.
  • An Animaniacs Thanksgiving: Holiday fare from the cast.
  • Animaniacs in Hollywood: The stars in Tinseltown.
  • Animaniacs And The Family Relatives, and sibling rivalries.
  • Animaniacs At The Beach: Fun in the sun.
  • Animaniac Classics: Classic novels and stories starring our own cast.
  • Animaniacs In Concert: Music plays a key role in this episode.
  • Animaniacs In The Stone Age: The primordial past with our stars.
  • An Animaniacs Christmas: Holiday cheer and lunacy.
  • Animaniacs In Outer Space: Visitors from another planet and space exploration.
  • Animaniacs In The World Of Art: Modern and classical art gets skewered.
  • Animaniacs In The Future: Our cast looks at life in the year 3000.
  • An Animaniacs Winter Wonderland: Skiing, sledding and snowball-fighting with the cast.
  • Animaniacs Mysteries: Crime and sleuthing with the stars.
  • Animaniacs Out West: With gags not found in "American Tail II."
  • Animaniacs Vs. The Monsters: Sci-fi and horror with the crew.
  • Animaniacs And The L.A.P.D.: Darryl Gates finally gets booted out of office.

Show Format

Blackout Gag: Teaser

A quick gag with the Warner Brothers and sister. This blackout gag relates to the theme of the day.

Main Title

In the show's main title, we start at the Warner Bros. studio in Burbank, where the Warners have broken out of the water tower. They're on the loose again! Alarms go off and people start running for their lives. They race out into town where they encounter and pass by the other stars of the show (Slappy Squirrel, Rita and Runt, the Pigeons, Marilyn Mink, Hip Hippos, Mindy and Buttons, Pinky and the Brain, etc.)

Acts One, Two, And Three

A card announces the day's theme, followed directly by the Warner Bros. in the wraparound.

As "guides/hosts", the Warner Brothers offer up the day's theme, or they take us to a new city setting each day -- downtown, the wharf, the theatre district, the beach, the zoo, the circus, the financial district, city hall, the park -- where the location provides the theme.

The Warners' wraparounds provide segues to cartoon shorts featuring other characters in the show (cartoons with Slappy, Rita and Runt, etc.). Often, one of the three shorts will feature the Warner Brothers.

End Title

The animated end title shows the Warner Brothers being recaptured by the Warner security guard and carted back to the studio (or they elude their captor and, in the Warner cartoon tradition, go "woo-woo-wooing" over the horizon).

More About The Warner Brothers

Who Are The Targets Of The Warner Brothers' Comedy?

The targets of the Warner Brothers' assaults are people who are: pompous, rude, snide, bossy, cruel, boastful, and selfish. The Warner Brothers take the offensive against the Offensive.

While the Warners' main stock-in-trade is wreaking havoc, they are not without their redeeming social value. In their adventures, the trio will aim its mayhem against such modern-day pariahs as litterbugs, reckless drivers, bigots, corrupt politicians, polluters, greedy land developers, unsportsmanlike athletes, noisy neighbors, mobsters, anyone associated with Child's Play 3, bullies, prima donas, and those who create unnecessary hassles for kids in the world.

They Are A Positive Force In Nature

The Warner Brothers are ultimately redeeming characters who see something wrong, and use their unique brand of comedy to right it.

Stories With A Moral

The Warner Brothers' cartoons are inherently moral tales. The brothers attack only those who most certainly, and richly, deserve it. In the world of the Warner Brothers, the greedy become penniless, the pompous get popped, and the litterbug gets bugged.

The Warners Are Winners

They may lose an occasional battle, but they always win the war in the end. They are ultimately winners.

The Warner Brothers (And Sister) Love Each Other

The Warners love each other immensely. They're inseparable, but each has the ability to get on the others' nerves.

How Old Are They?

They're teens, but their age is not specified. Just like Tiny Toons, the characters can do kid things when they need to, and adult things when they need to. When you establish the hierarchy of an older brother, a middle brother, and the youngest, it really doesn't matter what their age is. The youngest will always be treated as the youngest, and so on.

The Warners Are Pure Energy

They are a lot like kids who have eaten too many "Twinkies". They are always on the move, always bouncing off the walls, always looking for something new to do.

The World They Live In

There is no distinction between humans and toons as far as reality goes. In this reality, toons are beings on the planet just like humans are. It is not strange to a human to see a talking beaver or an old lady squirrel at a baseball game. That is the reality.

They Are Kids Of The Nineties

The Warner Brothers' interests and concerns are contemporary. Even in an adventure set back in 1492, the Warners would be like kids of the 1990s.

The Location of Warner Brothers Comedy

The setting is always a location where civilized behavior is not only expected, it's required. It's any place where three hyperactive kids would be completely inappropriate, which is just about anywhere.

Warner Brothers Move In Unison A Lot

They often move in unison, like they are each other's shadows. And they bob up and down to the music best, even when standing still. (Too many "Twinkies".) They also scramble into scenes and do recoil bounces off each other.

The Villains Are Always Duped

The point is, of course, the Warner Brothers' adversaries always fall for the gags. They are always the stooges. They ALWAYS succumb to the idiosyncratic logic of the Warners.

The Warner Brothers' Parents

They have no parents. Or at least, no one will admit to being their parent.

Their Favorite Food

Ice cream. It's their weakness. They love it. Their favorite flavor: "Valinna".

Second Favorite Food

Piss-schetti.

The Warner Brothers Are Anywhere and Everywhere

They can be anywhere at any time. They can instantly appear in costume, they can be on t.v., they can pop up out of shoes. All needed props are instantly available. But none of this toony freedom is without a point or without direction. It is all part of the means to an end, which is razzing somebody who deserves it. It can be weird, but not just for the sake of being weird. (That gets boring fast.)

They Are Smart

They know everything that they need to know. Not necessarily about human experience and emotion, but book knowledge - historical events, three syllable words, etc.

The Warner Brothers And Girls

The brothers are attracted to girls. When they see a girl who's pretty, they say "Heeelllloooo, Nurse." When Dot sees a guy that's handsome, she says "Hello, Nurse."

What Adversaries Say To Them

  • "This is no place for kids."
  • "You should be home in bed."
  • "Children should be seen and not heard."
  • "You kids need to learn some manners."
  • "Behave yourselves."

Gags And Routines

Warner Brothers' Entrances

The Warner Brothers enter scenes in unique ways. The more unusual and surprising, the better. Sometimes they come "woo-wooing" over the horizon, or they come over the horizon in the form of tornadoes or a fight cloud. They might pop out of a cracked egg, or ride in on imaginary bicycles or pogo sticks or motorcycles or on an invisible carousel or an invisible Ferris wheel. They could pop out of a letter, emerge out of a car phone, or fax themselves to your office. The Warner Brothers enter in a unique way in each cartoon.

Warner Brothers' Dance Entrances And Dance Breaks

The Warner Brothers love to dance, and often enter scenes in mid-dance. Also, in the middle of a sequence, the Warner Brothers will scream "Dance Break" and start dancing. Among the dances they've mastered (all with appropriate garb) are: the Russian Cossack dance ("Hey!"); the Egyptian Cleopatra/snake charmer dance; the hula; the minuet; tap; the cancan; ballet; the Mexican hat dance; square dancing; belly dancing; Greek dancing; clog dancing, etc. They also wear Swiss lederhosen and yodel to polka music. Their adversaries often get swept up into the dance and get clobbered.

Warner Brothers' Exits

As unique as their entrances. One brother makes a motion that he's going to exit to the right, quickly moves left, and actually exits to the right. (Peter will demonstrate.) In another exit, the two brothers launch Dot, using their arms to make a slingshot.

Freight Train Bit

The Warner Brothers and sister also come chugging in as a freight train, with smoke coming out of the lead brother's ears.

Warner Brothers Fight Cloud

When the Warner Brothers (and sister) have a disagreement, they go spinning into a fight cloud, which occasionally screeches to a stop so that we can see the brothers in a strange freeze-framed pose, then the fight cloud resumes.

Also, a brother or sister can step out of the fight cloud and address the audience, claiming to loathe violence. In fact, they can all step out of the light cloud, and the cloud continues fighting on its own.

"Fight Cloud Uncensored"

After a fight cloud scene, they say, "Let's give the kids the uncensored version." Then show the fight itself.

The Ministers Of Funny Walks

The Warner Brothers and sister have several genuinely funny and confounding walks. In one walk, they hurry down the street in a zig-zag pattern, humming "Flight of the Bumble Bee." They also weave as they walk, refusing to follow the straight and narrow path.

The Warners' Huddle

Before they leap into action, the Warner Brothers go into an animated huddle of planning. From the huddle, all we can hear is: "MUMBLED WHISPERS." They break the huddle. The adversary asks: "Well, what did you decide?" The Warner Bros: "We decided to (Mumbled whisper - exactly what we heard).

Warner Brothers' Cheerleading Routines

To cheer each other on, or to torment their foes, they'll break into cheerleader routines, with megaphones and pom-poms. "Brikka Brakka Fire Cracker Sis Boom Bah. Warners Brother, Warner Brother, Rah Rah Rah." "Give 'em the axe, the axe, the axe, give 'em the axe, the axe."

The Warner Brothers Break Into Song

... to torment their adversary. In serapes, they do several comic verses of "Aye-aye-yi-yi." They perform in harmony (tenor, falsetto and bass) on "But I Haven't Got a Hat."

Kissing Routines

They kiss people a lot, along with lines like: "Did ya miss me?" "Do ya love me?" "I won't tell if you won't.

Russian Kissing Gag

They kiss everyone and each other like Russian diplomats. On the cheeks, and square on the lips. Then they suddenly realize what they've done, react to camera, and start spitting furiously.

"TIME OUT!" Gag

If things start to get out of their control, they call "TIME OUT!", and the action freezes. They have a huddle, arrive at a solution, call "TIME IN!", and the action resumes.

How Old Are You?

They never give a straight answer to this. "Old enough to know better" is one response.

The Warner Brothers' "Intellectual" Routine

If they're being chased, they may stop abruptly at a painting or an outdoor sculpture and jump into a pseudo-serious digression on it full of double-talk. "I appreciate the implied negative polarity of the artists yearning of succor." (NOT!) They tear off.

Boxing Ring Gag

In an exhausting chase, a bell rings, they return to their corner, get a quick rub-down, and then return to their fight.

Musical "Greek Chorus" Gag

On occasion, Dot and Yakky whip out a guitar and provide a brief "Cat Ballou" narrative chorus on the events.

Hand Gesture Routine

Similar to the Three Stooges hand business -- that is, the waving hands in front or people's faces that the Stooges do -- the Warner Bros. have a syncopated three-wave-hand-gesture that confuses their victim, and then they bonk him.

The Comedy Of Opposites

For comedy's sake, the Warner Bros. do the opposite of what's right. For instance, Yakko says, "Atten-tion." Wakko and Dot drop into the "at ease" pose. Yakko says, "At ease." Wakko and Dot leap rigidly into attention. "Forward, march." Wakko and Dot head backwards.

Warner Brothers' Court

They hold kangaroo courts to try the guilty party, and sentence the villain to some loony punishment (e.g., litterbugs must eat whatever they littered).

They Take Things "LITERALLY"

  • Someone tells them to "Take a seat." They rip up a park bench. Someone tells them to "Relax." They collapse to the floor in melted form.
  • Someone tells them to "Drop Dead" and they do the death scene from Camille. Someone tells them to "Go to Hell." They zip off and come back with red sunburns and suitcases covered with stickers from Hades.
  • When told to stop acting like monkeys (or barbarians, or gypsies, or fools) the Warners take this as their cue to act exactly that way. They actually transform themselves into these characters.
  • "Lets give him the business." They give their adversaries a flower shop.
  • "We work for the forces of good." They transform into superheroes.
  • "DUH" -- After something incredibly obvious has been stated, Dot will say: "Well, Duuuh." Wakko will say: "Well, Double Duuuh." Yakko will say: "Well, Infinity Duuuuh, I win."

The Warners Pretend To Be Other Animals

Dogs, cats, anything that will annoy their foe. As Wakko impersonates creatures, Yakko will say to the foe, "Guess what he is, go on, guess." The schmoe guesses. "Wrong, guess again. Guess again. Guess again." As a dog, Wakko barks at an oak, just so Yakko can say the line: "He's barking up the wrong tree."

Animal Impression Topper

When Wakko does his animal impression, Yakko asks the baddie, "Quick, what kind of animal is he?" When they answer correctly, he says, "No, this is a (crocodile, pit-bull, lion, etc.)" And the real animal shows up to decimate the dupe.

"YA KNOW WHAT?" Chatter Routine

Just when their adversary doesn't want to be bothered, Yakko will pester the guy with incessant chatter: "Ya know what? Ya know what? Ya know what? Ya know what? Ya know what? Ya know what?"

"What???" shouts the annoyed foe. Just then, an anvil drops on the guy. CLANG! "That's what," says Yakko.

"What Was The Question?" Gag

When an adversary asks a question, like "When will this insanity stop?" Yakko waves his hand and says: (spoken fast) "I know I know I know I know I know I know I know pick me pick me pick me pick me." The questioner points to Yakko who stops shouting, stares in confusion, and says: "What was the question?"

"Where Are Your Parents?"

When foes ask this question, the Warners break into a weepy melodrama, complete with violins, about the disappearance of their beloved parents (it's not a true story). With this tale of woe, they elicit a teary response from the foe. Then they push him over a cliff.

"Who Are You Guys?"

Response:

  • "We're the Warner Brothers."
    • "And the Warners' sister."

"What Kind of Animals Are You?"

Response:

  • "Wouldn't you like to know?"
  • "Only our hairdresser knows for sure."
  • "Guess." (They do animal impressions -- he guesses.)
  • "I never kiss and tell." (kisses him) I just kiss.

The Rivaling Rhymers Routine

To torment their adversary, they respond to everything he says with a rhyme. It drives the guy nuts.

The Warners Wallendas

They break into the routines of tumblers and acrobats, assembling themselves into pyramids, rolling O's, and other acrobatic shapes.

The Warners As Copy Cats

They mimic every word and move of their adversary. A classic method of annoyance.

"Monkeys Always Look!"

They tell a foe to "Look!" in some direction. The foe does so, then the Warner Brothers jeer at the schmoe and chant: "Monkeys always looo-oook! Monkeys always looo-oook!"

The Warner Brothers (And Sister) In Drag

One of their favorite bits. In any setting, they're ready to don appropriate and outrageous gender-bending attire to goof on their foes.

The Warner Brothers As Babies

Another of their favorite bits, the Warners don diapers and become the most annoying rugrats on the planet. "Change me."

The Warner Brothers Milk Sympathy

Just when their adversaries are ready to kill them, the Warners assume big-dewey-eyed sad puppy dog expressions. They whimper out some pathetic cockamamie sob story, to gain sympathy. It works every time. Then they hit the jerk with a mallet and laugh at him.

They Play Dead...

... to fill their foe with grief and remorse. Then they wake up and kick the guy in the pants.

Anvil Drop

When ordered not to drop an anvil or safe on somebody, they drop that somebody on the anvil or safe.

Awkward Position

When cornered, they say, "You've really put us in an awkward position here." Then they pose awkardly as something that will get them out of trouble.

"Barrel of Monkeys"

"We're more fun than a barrel of monkeys." They produce a barrel full and set them loose on the baddie, tagging the chaos with, "See? We'd have been more fun."

"This Is Only A Test"

"We interrupt this bit for an emergency broadcast test:" They all scream at the top of their lungs, shattering glass and scenery and characters. They conclude with, "This has been a test, only a test."

Can of Worms

"That opens up a whole new can of worms." They open up a can, the worms invading everything.

"Rewind!"

When something very bad happens to them, like death for instance, they only need to yell, "Rewrite!!!" or "Retake!!!" and the scene rewinds for them to do over right this time.

"Settle Out Of Court"

They call out their lawyers who will "settle out of court" for them. The lawyers are brutes who have passed the bar and annihilate the victims.

"Words Can Never Hurt Us"

"Sticks and stones may break our bones, but words like this: (they produce the written words used against them and beat them with them...) will never hurt us."

Afterlife

"Do YOU believe in an afterlife?" It the bad guy says yes, they kill them. If they say no, they just beat them up.

"My Ticket Out Of Here"

"This is my ticket outta here!" Whatever it is magically transforms into a ticket, and a ticket taker at a turnstile lets them go from the conflict. Nobody else can follow without a ticket.

Candid Camera

"Smile! You're on candid cartoon cam!" As the dupe smiles and looks around for the hidden camera, they ditch him or stomp him.

"CUT!"

When a situation goes bad, Yakko yells, "Cut!" and Wakko or Dot cut the bad guy in half with a pair of scissors or a two-handed crosscut saw. Yakko then yells, "Take five!" and they divide him up into fifths.

"You Bug Me"

They say, "You really bug me. Y'know what we do with guys who bug us??" They produce a bug zapper and throw him into it, frying the guy.

Playing Cards

They always stop in the middle of a chase or fight to play a quick hand of cards, duping the villain into playing, then cheating so he loses, then clobber him appropriately.

"Grow Up"

When an adversary tells them, "Oh, why don't you grow up?" They increase in size tenfold and crush the guy.

"I Just Want To Go Home"

As an excuse in a tough situation, they chant, "We just wanna go home, we just wanna go home," and a house falls on the nemesis and they enter it, saying, "Home, sweet home."

Redraw Character

When a badly designed character appears, they erase and redraw him, saying, "We hate bad animation."

"You're Over The Hill"

They tell an older character, "You're over the hill, pal. We'll help you back." They toss him over a hill.

"Kids These Days. Tsk. Tsk"

When they do something bad to the baddies, they shake their heads and say, "Tsk, tsk, tsk, kids these days," then turn to each other and add, "Aren't they beeyooooteeefull?!" and go hopping over the horizon.

Chats With Audience

After a particularly violent bout with baddies, the three siblings drag up chairs to the screen and lean forward to speak gently to the audience, "Let's talk about what's just happened here. You start." They then nod off.

The Warners Apologize With Gifts

Begging for forgiveness, the Warners shower their foe with gifts. "Take these flowers, take this candy, take this jewelry, take this... ocean liner." And an ocean liner lands on the villain. Says Yakko: "And that is comedy. Or so we are told."

The Warner Brothers Get Bored

Another one of the Warners' tricks is to become extremely bored like little children, e.g., waiting in line at the bank. When the Warner Brothers get bored they become extremely lethargic, their bodies go rubbery, they slump to the floor and roll around in slow-motion bored agony. when the villain picks them up to remove them from the premises, their limp bodies behave like mercury -- you just can't hold onto them.

"You'd Be Lonely If We Went Away" Routine

They tell their foe he'd be lonely and miss then if they went away... He says, no he wouldn't. They go. They take EVERYTHING WITH THEM. Sets, props, etc. leaving the guy alone in NOWHERE... he waits a beat. Ho looks around. He won't admit it... and finally... he sobs: "I'm LONELY!!" They return with everything and add a calm "Toldja so."

At Cartoon's End

They hop over the horizon, calling out the familiar Warners' catchphrase: "Woo-hoo, woo-hoo-hooooo!"

Catchphrases And Sample Dialogue

  • "We're so crazy, we don't know this is impossible."
  • "In cartoons, a fellow can get away with just about anything."
  • "To this goal we are committed -- and if we're not, we oughta be."
  • "The joke's on us."
  • "If you think we're going to keep this up all night, you're screwy, and we definitely mean you."
  • "Now you've gone and hurt his feelings."
  • "Aww, we never have any fun."
  • "We just love ya to pieces."
  • (grossed out) "Ewwwwwwwww!"
  • "Deeeeeee-sgusting!"
  • "Awww, we're just spoofin' ya!"
  • "There's something screwy around here or my name isn't Barry Caldwell, and it isn't."
  • "How do you doooo??"
  • "Hey, Mister, that's an awfully big nose for ya -- TA HAVE!"
  • "Well now, I wouldn't say that."
  • "I don't know what that is you're eating, but it's not food."
  • "Hey, watch me pretend to throw up."
  • Upon seeing a girl: "Hellloooo, Nurse."
  • "Ready for the punchline?" (The villain gets punched.)
  • Upon discovering the foe in a compromising position (which they have arranged): Sooo-ho-hooooo!
  • Yakko apologizes after his sibling has malleted the foe: "Forgive him. He knows not what he does."
  • When they witness that a villain does not bounce after hitting the floor of a steep canyon: "Who knew?"
  • A compliment paid to a brother who has just malleted a villain: "You're a smarty every day."
  • During a long chase, they stop suddenly to say, "Monotonous, isn't it?" Then the chase resumes.
  • After the angry Wakko kicks an adversary, Yakko explains: "That's just his way of saying that he likes you."
  • When someone screams in their faces, they wince in disgust, wave their hands at the air and say: "Ewww, whose pew?"
  • Adversary: "Will you please keep silent!!" Warner Brothers: "Silence is foo."
  • After they have defeated a villain: "Make the same mistake again and (a la Terminator).., we'll be back."
  • "Don't worry, they do whatever I say."
  • "How do you make your face all red like that?"
  • "Whatcha doin', mister? Huh, huh, whatcha doin'?"
  • "Aw, the poor man, he fall down and go BOOM!"
  • (A singing insult) "There's always an ogre in the crowd."
  • "Ya know what, huh? Huh? Ya know what?"
  • "'Course we're opposed to be here."
  • "You're veins are stickin' all up. You look like a roadmap."
  • "Can I tell ya something, mister, huh? Huh? Can I tell you something?"
  • "We're the Warner Brothers... who are you?"
  • "Don't mind him... he's cra-azy!!"
  • "You can't fool a fool."
  • "Woah, dumber than advertised."
  • "Waiter, no coffee, thanks, just the check."
  • "We can't help it -- we're loco in the coco."
  • "And to think you could be watching PBS!"
  • "Do you think it's proper for a girl to date on the first kiss?"
  • "Whenever you talk to me, shut up."
  • "I don't think so."
  • "How we doing on time?"
  • "One more cartoon and we're outa here."
  • "What do you mean by that?"

Songs

To the tune of "Three Blind Mice:"

We're three Warner kids. Three Warner kids.
See how we run. See how we run.
We all run out of the Warner's lot.
Escaping with hope that we'll never be caught.
‘Cause life in there ain't worth diddley squat.
Three Warner kids. Three Warner kids.


To the tune of "Yankee Doodle Dandy:"

We're the Warner Brothers and Dot
Warner Brothers do or die.
Real live siblings with no mom or dad.
Born on a Warner's drawing pad.

"The Formula" For Warner Bros. Cartoons

The Warner Brothers (Yakko, Wakko and Dot) are the central characters of "ANIMANIACS". As we start writing their scripts, it is essential that everyone understands the basic formula for the Warner Bros. cartoons. Once the structure is understood the writer can spend energy on what's important: making the cartoons funny.

There are currently two acceptable formulas for the Warner Bros. cartoons:

  1. We start with the Warner Brothers, who are minding their own business and having fun when they encounter a jerk. The jerk causes grief for them, they get pushed too far, and then they exact their revenge. Comedy beats here. It always ends with the jerk getting what he deserves and the Warner Brothers get what they want in the end too, and more.
  1. Slight variation on Formula II - In the beginning we start with the jerk showing what a complete asshole he or she is. Into the situation step the Warner Brothers. The jerk is rude and obnoxious to them as well, and the Warner Brothers turn the tables on him as in Formula II.

Use Show Bible

To write the Warner Bros. cartoons, it is essential to know and use the routines and gags delineated in the Warner Bros. Show Bible. Each script should be filled with variations on the gags indicated in the bible, or new gags in the same spirit of mayhem.

Mayhem With Logic

In the Warner Bros. cartoons, three little kids get even with a jerky adult. Yakko, Wakko and Dot each have their own logic. Each has his/her own agenda and the writer needs to keep an eye on each character and that character's desires in this particular story. While the trio all work well together, the brothers and sister each have their own bits of business to use against the villain. Each act of mayhem must have a logic to it. One thing needs to lead to the next thing in a logical manner.

Get Into Their Heads

If the Warner Bros. cartoons are to be successful, it is essential for the writer to know the inner workings of Yakko, Wakko and Dot. The stories should have a familiar quality. The situations are universal and are taken from stories we all know.

What makes the story "fresh" is what you do to make Yakko, Wakko and Dot unique and funny.

Animaniacs Characters Turnarounds

  • Bossy Beaver & Doyle (HOLD)
  • La Tidga

See Also

Animaniacs
Animaniacs (1993-1998)
Series OverviewEpisode Guide (Compilation Episodes) • Christmas Eve with Yakko, Wakko & Dot MarathonHooray for North HollywoodAnimaniac Attack! MarathonThe Ultimate Animaniacs Super SpecialSeries BibleSongsAlbumsCharactersSegmentsVideo GamesBooksDC Comic SeriesHome Media ReleasesGalleryBrain's Plans
Pinky and the Brain (1995-1998)
Series OverviewEpisode Guide (Compilation Episodes) • BrainwashedThe Ultimate Animaniacs Super SpecialWendy's CampaignSongsAlbumsCharactersVideo GamesDC Comic SeriesHome Media ReleasesGalleryBrain's Plans
Pinky, Elmyra and the Brain (1998-1999)
Series OverviewEpisode GuideSongsCharactersHome Media ReleasesGalleryBrain's Plans
Wakko's Wish (1999)
Movie OverviewSongsCharactersGalleryBrain's Plans
Animaniacs (2020-2023)
Series OverviewEpisode Guide (The Brain Teaches World Domination mini-series) • Twitter Watch PartiesFriends With AnimaniacsSongsAlbumsCharactersSegmentsHome Media ReleasesGalleryBrain's Plans
Other
Brain Snacks (1998) • The Big Cartoonie Show (1999-2000) (Episode Guide) • Animaniacs Live!MultiVersus (2024) • Fictitious MediaScrapped/Unreleased Projects and ConceptsDeleted ScenesCommercialsFourth wallHidden InnuendosRimshot punsOft-spoken phrases ("Hello Nurse" • "The Same Thing We Do Every Night" • "Are You Pondering What I'm Pondering?") • MerchandiseVideo GamesEventsPromotional SongsMiscellaneous SongsList of references to Animaniacs in popular culture
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