Today’s model sheet comes from Warner Bros and he’s on TV Guide‘s 2013 list of The 60 Nastiest Villains of All Time.
For me as a kid, he was one of the most frustrating characters because he constantly did the stupidest things even though we clearly saw he was building that hut on the train tracks! It was in many ways like watching a Ben Stiller movie before they existed.
My two-year-old daughter summed it up for me best the first time she ever saw a series of Coyote and RoadRunner cartoons. She was watching the coyote set up some Rube Goldberg sort of trap which naturally fails, sending a boulder sky high and down towards poor ol’ Wile E. Coyote.
The next trap involved a him trying to trick the RoadRunner to run off a cliff which of course backfires sending him off instead in the classic scene we all know and love.
She covered her eyes.
The third time involved some sort of bungie and bird seed and it was pretty clear he wasn’t going to succeed. he jumped off an arch suspended over a pile of bird seed intending to grab the RoadRunner as he was chowing down only to be ricocheted back up to the arch and breaking it off. At this point my daughter riveted to the TV and again only 2 says “Oh no! Not again!”
Still makes me laugh! Anyway, This model sheet was beautifully drawn by, I believe, Shawn Keller.
Here’s some more interesting information about Wile E. Coyote on Wikipedia:
Wile E. Coyote was created by animation director Chuck Jones in 1948 for Warner Bros., while the template for their adventures was the work of writer Michael Maltese. The characters star in a long-running series of theatrical cartoon shorts (the first 16 of which were written by Maltese) and occasional made-for-television cartoons.
In each episode, instead of animal senses and cunning, Wile E. Coyote uses absurdly complex contraptions (sometimes in the manner of Rube Goldberg) and elaborate plans to pursue his quarry. It was originally meant to parody chase cartoons like Tom and Jerry, but became popular in its own right.
The Coyote appears separately as an occasional antagonist of Bugs Bunny in five shorts from 1952 to 1963: Operation: Rabbit, To Hare Is Human, Rabbit’s Feat, Compressed Hare, andHare-Breadth Hurry. While he is generally silent in the Coyote-Road Runner shorts, he speaks with a refined accent in these solo outings (except for Hare-Breadth Hurry), introducing himself as “Wile E. Coyote — super genius”, voiced with an upper-class accent by Mel Blanc. The Road Runner vocalizes only with a signature sound, “Beep, Beep“, recorded by Paul Julian, and an occasional “popping-cork” tongue noise.
To date, 48 cartoons have been made featuring these characters (including the three CGI shorts), the majority by Chuck Jones.