Sylvester the Cat; from Looney Tunes to Merrie Melodies

Sylvester the Cat; from Looney Tunes to Merrie Melodies

Sylvester the Cat

I tawt I taw a puddy tat” said Tweety Bird at the thought of having seen Sylvester the Cat. Tweety probably had some talking issues but so did Sylvester with his “You’re dethspicable” or his trademark line “Sufferin’ succotash!“, which is sometimes used by Daffy Duck in some show episodes.

For us grown-ups, Sylvester the cat is a reminder of our awesome childhoods watching him getting outsmarted by Tweet Bird, Speedy Gonzales, or Hippety Hopper.

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Sylvester the cat goes by Sylvester J. Pussycat Sr. as a full name. The name Sylvester was taken from Felis silvestris, the scientific name of the wildcat. This is just a play though since the character is actually a Tuxedo cat, a cat breed of domestic cat (Felis catus). The fictional character has won three Academy Awards.

His first appearance happened on September 20, 1941, in the title “Notes to You“.  But the character as Sylvester the cat debuted on March 24, 1945, in “Life with Feathers” by Friz Freleng. Within a couple years, he was paired with Porky Pig (1946) and with Tweet Bird (1947).

Sylvester has appeared in 103 cartoons from the golden age and is the fourth most popular character only after Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, and Porky Pig. Three of his cartoons have won Academy Awards.

The Character

The main characteristic of Sylvester is his sloppy lisp. It is very similar to that of Daffy Duck but with a more exaggerated slobbery lisp. In many episodes, Sylvester is seen sticking out his tongue, which makes it think that the lisp is intentional.

He has this tendency of going on a long rant, just like Daffy Duck, just to finish with the word “sakes”. Due to his slobbery, he usually mispronounces lines such as “you’re desthpicable” or “Sufferin’ succotash!“, which seems to be his attempt at saying “Suffering Savior”.

The Voice Actor

Sylvester has been voiced by several voice actors. The first one and probably better-known one, Mel Blanc, who also voiced Daffy Duck. This was from 1945 to 1989 due to his passing away. During the 90s, he was voiced by Joe Alaskey. He is presently being voiced by Jeff Bergman.

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