My previous posts on Porky in Wackyland have been about limited aspects of the cartoon: overall structure in the first post, self-conflict in the second post (along with more structural analysis), and the third post was about some gags used in introducing the do-do. Now I want to step back from that and look at the whole cartoon: What’s going on?
Why’s Porky going to Wackyland? We aren’t told. We have to infer his motive, if possible, from the newspaper cover announcing his trip:
While it is possible that Porky is a naturalist interested in rare creatures, the emphasis on the do-do’s value suggests a different motive: He wants to get rich, quick!
According to the Wikipedia, the phrase “get rich quick” has been around since the beginning of the 20th century. By the time this cartoon was made, it was a well-known cultural trope. If “get rich quick” is what Porky was up to, then Porky in Wackyland would be a commentary on get-rich-quick-schemes.
The film’s basic comment follows from the fact that Porky doesn’t get rich: such schemes don’t work. Porky sets out to get rich and what happens? He ends up in this crazy place where nothing makes any sense. It’s worse than that, however. The cartoon makes a very interesting comment on the kind of craziness that is “get rich quick.”