Pepe Le Pew: A character not worth defending

Cancel culture sucks, but so does Pepe Le Pew

Movies/TV Social Commentary

I’m not down with cancel culture, but I’m down with cancelling Pepe Le Pew.

With the release of Space Jam: A New Legacy slated for July of this year, the internet is abuzz.

As someone who saw the original movie in theaters, had a Tune Squad jersey, had pretty much every action figure, played the shit out of the Space Jam video game on my Sega Saturn, and even snail-mailed a fan letter to Michael Jordan begging for a sequel with football players (I suggested John Elway and Emmett Smith), I’m a little more than skeptical of this sequel. 25 years is a long time, and I’m not a huge fan of LeBron James.

I still plan on seeing A New Legacy, but I’m not going in with childhood nostalgia blinders on.

The film is already making headlines with the recent confirmation that Pepe Le Pew will not be in the movie, and most likely not be used again in future media. This is due to accusations that Pepe promotes “rape culture”. Cancel culture strikes again, folks!

Just like with Gina Carano’s recent controversy, social media is aflame with people defending Pepe and lambasting the “snowflakes” that want him cancelled. These people say that Pepe is a classic cartoon icon, an important character in the Looney Tunes universe.

I’m here to say fuck Pepe Le Pew.

Yes, I said it.

I’m glad this stupid skunk is getting “cancelled”. Take your torches and pitchforks and shove them up your asses, I have perfect reason for my opinion.


The reason for Pepe’s “cancellation” is bullshit.

Before I get into why I’m glad Pepe Le Pew is being cancelled, I want to clarify my stance on the reason he’s being cancelled.

The reason for Pepe’s removal from the movie is complete and utter bullshit.

The idea that Pepe Le Pew promotes rape is laughable, and anyone who genuinely believes this should star in this movie because they’re fucking looney. Anyone who’s ever watched a Pepe Le Pew cartoon knows that his behavior isn’t glorified in any way. Pepe is basically portrayed as an obsessive creep who won’t take a damn hint. Nobody has ever watched a Pepe Le Pew cartoon and said “Man, that skunk is my fucking hero! I wanna be just like him!”.

What’s worse, the scene that was cut from the movie actually vilified his behavior. This snippet from the Deadline article describes the removed scene, which featured actress Greice Santo:

“Pepe was set to appear in a black-and-white Casablanca-like Rick’s Cafe sequence. Pepe, playing a bartender, starts hitting on a woman at the bar played by Santo. He begins kissing her arm, which she pulls back, then slamming Pepe into the chair next to hers. She then pours her drink on Pepe, and slaps him hard, sending him spinning in a stool, which is then stopped by LeBron James’ hand. James and Bugs Bunny are looking for Lola, and Pepe knows her whereabouts. Pepe then tells the guys that Penelope cat has filed a restraining order against him. James makes a remark in the script that Pepe can’t grab other Tunes without their consent.”

Santo, a victim of sexual harassment herself, was reportedly upset that the scene was cut. Her spokesperson said this:

“This was such a big deal for Greice to be in this movie. Even though Pepe is a cartoon character, if anyone was going to slap a sexual harasser like him, Greice wished it would be her. Now the scene is cut, and she doesn’t have that power to influence the world through younger generations who’ll be watching Space Jam 2, to let younger girls and younger boys know that Pepe’s behavior is unacceptable.”

In their crusade against rape culture, these overzealous assholes accidentally promoted rape culture by removing a statement against it. Great job, morons!


Pepe Le Pew isn’t funny.

With that out of the way, I’m going to say what needs to be said.

Pepe Le Pew isn’t funny, and I won’t miss him.

I don’t find the character funny in the least, and it has nothing to do with “rape culture” or whatever nonsense Gen-Z is crying about now.

Of all the popular Looney Tunes characters, Pepe brings the least to the table. Hurr hurr, he’s a poon hound with a funny French accent!

The French accent is stupid. I’m all for bashing France (except when Islamic terrorism is involved), making fun of those snooty bastards should be every American’s favorite pastime. I also have great respect for Mel Blanc, the Man of 1,000 Voices.  Associating the French with a perverted skunk should be fucking hilarious. Yet somehow, I just can’t find it funny. That’s how terrible this character is, he’s ruined something as awesome as making fun of France.

The poon hound joke is just as stupid. There’s only two poon hounds that are funny, Norm MacDonald and Bill Clinton. Especially when Hillary catches Bill in the act:

Bill Clinton perving on Ivanka Trump
Hillary catches Bill perving on Ivanka Trump at Trump’s inauguration. Careful Bill, or you might suddenly commit suicide…


Yes, I purposely didn’t mention Glenn Quagmire from Family Guy, because he isn’t funny either. Blow me.


Pepe’s cartoons are boring and repetitive.

Literally every single Pepe Le Pew cartoon is the same boring bullshit.

Pepe spots Penelope Pussycat. Due to some stupid mishap usually involving paint, Penelope looks kind of like a skunk, which causes Pepe to lust after her. Penelope rebuffs Pepe’s advances, but that oblivious Pepe just won’t take no for an answer! Finally, after several failed attempts, the paint washes off and Pepe realizes that Penelope wasn’t a skunk after all. The episode usually ends with Pepe backing off, but sometimes it ends with Penelope giving Pepe a taste of his own medicine and pursuing him against his wishes.

That’s it, that’s the summary of every single Pepe Le Pew bit.

Bugs Bunny has classic bits like “Baseball Bugs”, “Kill the Wabbit”, or my personal favorite “Bugs and Thugs”. Daffy Duck has “Rabbit Season/Duck Season” and “Duck Dodgers”. Porky Pig has the outro to almost every single Looney Tunes cartoon. These characters have a variety of hilarious and memorable skits that stand the test of time, and that’s what makes them icons.

Pepe Le Pew has the one where he chases after the cat thinking she’s a skunk. And the other one where he chases after the cat thinking she’s a skunk. Oh, and don’t forget the one where Pepe thinks the cat is a skunk and chases after her. I honestly can’t distinguish between individual episodes of Pepe Le Pew cartoons, that’s how repetitive they are.


The Take-Away

While the reasons behind Pepe Le Pew’s removal from Space Jam: A New Legacy were obviously Gen-Z cancel culture bullshit, I’m not going to miss him or his unfunny poon hound gimmick. All of his cartoons are just the same joke repeated ad infinitum. There’s no variety nor any memorability, and he’s certainly not worthy of standing alongside legendary icons like Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, or Porky Pig.

This unfunny skunk’s act stinks, and I have no sympathy seeing him as roadkill. Space Jam and the Looney Tunes universe will be just fine without him.


What do YOU think about Pepe Le Pew’s cancellation? Will you miss Pepe? Let me know in the comments!


Hailing from the fine village of Northeast Philadelphia, AJ has been creating content on the internet for over 15 years. None of it has really been funny or entertaining, but he keeps trying anyway. Maybe he's bored, maybe he's drunk, maybe he's both.