Pepé Le Pew, a Looney Tunes character, has recently been retired by Warner Bros after a New York Times op-ed claimed the character “normalized rape culture.”
However, the cartoonist’s daughter, Linda Jones, has come out in support of her father’s work in an interview with TMZ.
Chuck Jones’ daughter, Linda, told TMZ that she does not agree with the allegations of NYT columnist Charles M. Blow.
Linda said that the character was never meant to be portrayed as predatory or inspire or encourage anyone to rape or harass people.
However, Linda did admit that Pepé’s approach towards Penelope Pussycat is not acceptable by today’s standards. She explained that viewers who watched the show in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s did not think it normalized rape culture.
Perhaps that was wrong or ignorant of audiences back then, she considers, but that just wasn’t the vibe, nor the intention, she explains to TMZ. Linda said Pepé’s purpose was purely comedic.
Pepé will not be appearing in in the upcoming LeBron James film “Space Jam 2,” the sequel to the 90s Looney Tunes movie starring Michael Jordan.
Linda told TMZ that it’s Warner Bros’ decision to remove Pepé from the film, but suggested a rebrand to help Pepé to fit with today’s standards.
Linda would like to keep the spirit of her father alive by rebranding Pepé as a perpetual job-seeker who keeps getting rejected, but constantly changes up his routine thinking he’s the perfect candidate.
Follow Annaliese Levy on Twitter @AnnalieseLevy
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