Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The Playboy Bunny

Hugh Hefner may have selected the rabbit as his infamous Playboy icons for more reasons than we think. The Playboy Rabbit (the original male icon), was a "stand-in" for the male readers of the magazine, perceived to be less threatening than if a real human was in the photos with the women. The white Playboy Rabbit with the bow tie is perhaps one of the best known cultural symbols in America. But, it was not long until the rabbit gave way to the more commonly known Playboy Bunny, a female icon representing women's sexuality under the guise of a cute, cuddly, and innocent creature.

The Hoosiers "Run Rabbit Run"

Another song referencing rabbits: "Run, rabbit, run, as fast as you can..."

Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit"

Harris Hawk versus Jackrabbit

Rabbit versus Snake

So far, this video has attracted over 6 million viewers. But here, the rabbit is the brave one chasing the snake (not the other way around). This may be the way it goes more often than you think...

Monday, March 28, 2011

Rummy Dumb Bunny by Billie Anthony

An old American song by Billie Anthony. .

Comcast Internet Commercial

A commercial for Comcast High Speed Internet - featuring a rabbit-panther hybrid. Emphasizes the speed of the rabbit plus the strength of the panther to create a powerful creature, but what is the message? A rabbit is quick, but not strong? What happens when you combine predator and prey?

Brer Rabbit Car Commercial

A 1950s car commercial starring a clever and goofy Brer Rabbit.

Microwave Bunny

Energizer Bunny Commercial

Telus Rabbit Commericial - Bunny Love

Trix Rabbit Commercial

Bunny Burp 7up commercial

Even rabbits would break into someone's home to steal their 7-up, right? It's that good.

Cadbury's Caramel 1980 ad

Cartoon female rabbits are quite the opposite of their goofy male counterparts. Female rabbits represent sexuality, seduction, and temptation, as in this Cadbury caramel ad from 1980.

Classic Blue Bunny Old Time Ice Cream Commercial

A common theme of male cartoon rabbit depictions is the goofy, somewhat dumb, cute, and highly anthropomorphized creature that is seen here in this Blue Bunny Ice Cream Commercial.

Telus Rabbit Commericial

Rabbits are cute, cuddly, innocent, and definitely into carrots, right?

Skittles Singing Bunny

This Skittles commercial depicts rabbits as bizarre, annoying, and perhaps unusual; but most definitely nowhere near as good as a pack of Skittles candy. Why did Skittles choose a rabbit for this? Couldn't any animal have been used? More importantly, why would anyone want to send the message that a sweet treat is better than a living, sentient being?

The Cadbury Bunny

Does he look like a duck? No. Does he swim like a duck? Definitely not. Does he quack like a duck? Well, yes. But we still shouldn't consider the possibility that he is a duck, should we? What if he brings us Easter eggs? The Cadbury Bunny is one of the traditional Easter icons that we all remember from childhood, a white bunny who brings us yummy (or at least sweet) eggs. But bunnies do not lay eggs. But, if they quack like the Cadbury Bunny, maybe they do?

Sony Bravia Bunnies

Check out this Sony Bravia commercial. Bunnies emerging from everywhere, in every color; only to bleed into one giant rabbit and then trickle back down into their individual, color-filled personalities. What does this say to you about rabbits, if anything?

The First Blog Posting Ever

You might be thinking, rabbits in film, huh? What's there to know? Bugs Bunny, Roger Rabbit, Jessica Rabbit...they are all just cartoons. But the fact is that rabbit imagery is everywhere, and it is far more complex than most people think. Take the Playboy Bunny, for example; a symbol created by Hugh Hefner that still penetrates our society today. What fewer people know is that the Playboy Rabbit came first, a male symbol not only of virility but of success in relationships and careers; a man who has it all and knows how to get more of what he wants, all in the shape of a rabbit. The Playboy Bunny, the weaker and highly sexualized female symbol, came later. Rabbits are frequently used as stand-ins for humans in this way, but what are the repercussions of doing so? Is an image just an image, or does it have lasting effects on our impressions and perceptions? Look further, and you will find that there's the Trix Rabbit, the Energizer Bunny, Harvey, the Rabbit from Winnie the Pooh, the White Rabbit, the Easter Bunny, Brer Rabbit, John Updike's Rabbit Run, the Volkswagen rabbit, Blue Bunny ice cream, and the Cadbury Bunny. But more on all that later...the point is, rabbits are everywhere and it is fascinating that we, as humans, have chosen to have them represented in media so frequently. I do not believe that such representations are insignificant. So, this blog will be an initial investigation into the complex roles that rabbits play in our lives, both onscreen and off.