Screwball "Screwy" Squirrel is a cartoon character, an anthropomorphic squirrel created by Tex Avery for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. He is generally considered the wackiest of the screwball cartoon characters of the 1940s, which included Warner Bros.' Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck, Disney's Aracuan Bird, Terrytoons's Heckle and Jeckle and Walter Lantz's Woody Woodpecker.[1]

Among the most intangible and non-standard cartoon characters ever created, Screwy can do almost anything to almost anyone: he pulls objects out of thin air, doubles himself, and constantly breaks the fourth wall, all the while uttering a characteristic cackling laugh. The character was not as successful as Avery's Droopy was at this time, and Screwy was killed off after appearing in only five cartoons: Screwball Squirrel (1944), Happy-Go-Nutty (1944), Big-Heel Watha (1944), The Screwy Truant (1945), and Lonesome Lenny (1946).[2]

The character was notable for being brash and erratic, and is considered by some to be annoying with few sympathetic personality characteristics such as Bugs Bunny's nobility or Daffy Duck's pathos. Most of his cartoons revolve around him inflicting various forms of torture on his enemy (usually Meathead Dog, voiced by Dick Nelson) for seven minutes. In The Screwy Truant, Screwy hits a dog across the head with everything he can find in a trunk labeled "Assorted Swell Stuff to Hit Dog on Head". When he finishes, the dog remarks, "Gee whiz! He hit me with everything but the kitchen sink!" Screwy responds with, "Well, don't want to disappoint you, chum," then pulls out that very item and bashes him over the head with it.[3]

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