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Out of Odor (Tiny Toon Adventures)

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Out of Odor (Tiny Toon Adventures)
OutofOdorTitleCard.png
Something stinks here, and it ain't Fifi...
Series: Tiny Toon Adventures
Part of Season: 1
Episode Number: 55b
Air Date: February 11, 1991
Writer: Arleen Sorkin and Beth Milstein
Director: Art Leonardi
Previous episode: "The Weirdest Stories Ever Told" (episode)
"Pluck o' the Irish"
Next episode: "Buttering Up the Buttfields"
"Son of the Wacko World of Sports" (episode)


"Out of Odor" is the second segment of episode 55 of Tiny Toon Adventures, "Viewer Mail Day". The title is a play on the phrase "out of order".

Plot

Elmyra has her heart set on making Fifi LaFume her latest pet, simply because the former thinks the latter is a kitty. Once Elmyra learns how truly stinky Fifi is, she hatches a scheme to get rid of her scent, with very unpleasant results.

Why It Stinks

  1. The entire cartoon is basically one big torture episode for massive fan favorite Fifi LaFume. Elmyra Duff, the least popular character among fans, comes off worse than usual by practically stalking Fifi and putting her through so much undeserved torment which eventually leads to Fifi, as stated below, getting captured in the end.
  2. Elmyra is at her absolute worst here, not only for the reasons stated in WIS#1, but even sinking as low as to take advantage of Fifi's crush on Pepe Le Pew by disguising herself as him to lure Fifi into a trap.
  3. Much of the humor falls pretty flat.
    • As usual, Elmyra comes off as highly unlikable and annoying. Her abuse towards animals is clearly played for laughs, but, especially as established in this cartoon, it comes across as just plain cruel and mean-spirited. It's particularly bad here because Fifi, despite being a toon, has been established as a much more sympathetic character than her Looney Tunes counterpart.
    • Elmer choosing Fifi to read the part of Maggie The Cat from "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" serves as nothing more than a ridiculously contrived plot device to keep the already unfunny "Elmyra thinks Fifi is a cat" joke going.
    • When Elmyra disguises herself as Pepe Le Pew to lure Fifi outside so she can get rid of her scent, she does a poor attempt at mimicking Pepe's accent and yet Fifi still falls for the ruse. It's obviously meant to be ironic, but it's very poorly executed here, not only due to the bad accent being plain unfunny, but while Fifi has been known to fall for any guy with a stripe down his back, she should really know better than to fall for a "skunk" that doesn't even sound remotely like her crush.
    • The cartoon uses the tired overused gag of skunks being avoided because they, well, stink. When Fifi desperately begs to borrow a parade float so she can get away from Elmyra, everybody runs away like dirty cowards because of her species' reputation. It really doesn't help Fifi's sympathetic nature at all.
    • Being the kind of show Tiny Toons is, the horrible ending isn't meant to be taken seriously, but being that Fifi is the most popular character among the fanbase and (once again) very sympathetic, it comes across as extremely cruel and unfair in many viewers' eyes.
  4. Plot Hole: It is never established how Elmyra knows the location of Fifi's home so she could leave her presents or where she got the box of tomatoes to splatter all over Fifi and the Pepe Le Pew costume. At least Calamity has been established to order his gadgets from Acme so he can get his hands on Little Beeper.
  5. Why does Hamton appear to be on the girl's basketball team?
  6. The infamous ending: After a brief chase in two parade floats hijacked by Fifi and Elmyra, Fifi manages to regain her stink after going through a car wash (which washed off the tomato juice she was soaked in), but unfortunately, Elmyra turns out to be allergic to the roses that were part of the float she was driving (a plot point which comes completely out of nowhere), and after Fifi fails to drive Elmyra by going Rambo on her with her tail, Elmyra, having lost her sense of smell, gleefully takes Fifi back home with her, forcing the poor skunk to be her pet for a while. Much like "Someone's in the Kitchen with Sandy", it is a prime example of a character that so many fans sympathize with getting the shorter end of the stick, but it's especially bad here with the most hated character coming out on top. As Fifi herself infamously said at the end, "Zis ending stinks!"

Redeeming Qualities

  1. Despite being animated by an inferior studio, some of the animation on Fifi is pretty good, particularly the shot with her looking right and left to see who the sender of her presents is, likely because of the movement of her tail and the way her chest is drawn.
  2. As usual, Kath Soucie does a fantastic job voicing Fifi.
  3. Despite her torment, Fifi does pull off some cool feats like using her stench launch Elmyra into the air to score a slam dunk and going all Rambo with her tail.

Reception and Infamy

Ever since its original airing, "Out of Odor" has slowly evolved over time as one of the most widely despised episodes of Tiny Toons, particularly among diehard fans of Fifi LaFume, due to the most popular (and one of the most sympathetic) character in the fandom losing to the most despised character in the fandom. It doesn't even help that the writers have claimed that Fifi is one of their least favorite characters simply because she proved to be more popular than the other characters, and thus, the fans constantly demanding more Fifi episodes and screentime is the main reason she has the least stories centered around her.

Trivia

  • There has been a fan theory that this cartoon was written to show how Fifi got captured in "Hare Today, Gone Tomorrow", despite said episode preceding this one in both production and airing order.
  • The "tomato juice skunk cure" trope established in this episode is nothing more than a myth, as it cannot actually completely erase a skunk's scent.

Comments

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