As of 2023, I discovered clips of it from YouTube and enjoy them, although I first discovered the show in 2001, when they aired reruns 3 years after it ended.
The show centers around 3 animal siblings: Yakko, Wakko, and Dot Warner. Their species is unknown, although they can wag their tails like dogs–I’m not making any theories about this, though.
The Warner siblings interact with famous people, including historical figures, make gags, and overwhelm other characters.
Well, the show name does include the word, “maniac.” I find them hilarious and laugh a lot when watching clips of them.
Below are my favorite moments.
An alternative scene in place of a sad one from “Old Screamer” (based off of “Old Yeller”)
Yakko is directing an alternative tragic scene about a boy and his sick dog. He has a man play the dog, Old Screamer, Wakko play the boy, and Dot play the mother.
Yakko yells, “And… action!” Then the scene switches to a farm, where Wakko expresses sorrow over Old Screamer’s illness. Dot suggests that Old Screamer is put out of his misery. When Wakko is scared about what to do with Old Screamer, Dot surprises him with a new, cuddly puppy.
Wakko is happy with the new puppy, and then says, “Goodbye, Old Screamer.” He bangs him with a giant mallet.
Aside from turning a tragic scene into a happy one, I loved the idea of the man playing the dog. He would go, “Bark, woof, bark.” It is so silly.
When Wakko played “Yankee Doodle” with his armpit
After an act at a formal setting that tired the Warner siblings, Wakko asked if anyone wanted to hear him play, “Yankee Doodle” with his armpit.
Later, the siblings participate in the performance. They have a boat setting and wear sailor attire. Yakko and Dot hum the tune to “Yankee Doodle” while Wakko does the armpit farts.
I laugh hard watching this, especially because Yakko and Dot look like they hold their noses. I considered the boat background very creative because it was something I would have never expected.
When they annoyed their teacher, Ms. Flamiel by repeating her words
Ms. Flamiel demands that they go to their desks. They repeat every line she says until she runs out and screams. They do it, too.
Not only did I find the Warner siblings copying their Ms. Flamiel’s commands funny, but also when she screamed and ran out of the classroom. How hilarious – but also unprofessional.
She could’ve just sent them to the principal’s office – except that there is no principal because the classroom is just a schoolhouse. Even then, who would the principal call?
Other clips reveal that the Warner siblings don’t have parents. I’m not sure if they even have relatives. Or if they do, they’re too far away, and/or the siblings do not know about them.
Well… it is a cartoon, and the siblings are animals. So, their lack of a family doesn’t ruin the show.
In fact, if they had parents or any form of family, they would get in trouble with them all the time due to their typical gags and wild behaviors – and perhaps always be grounded.
That certainly would have defeated the premise itself, and the title wouldn’t be “Animaniacs.”
When they showed a scientist, Dr. Otto Scratchansniff, their “drawings”
The Warner siblings “draw” pictures–except that there is nothing in their notepads.
Dot “drew the Eiffel Tower in Italy.” Wakko “created” a cow eating grass–but the grass is gone because there is no point of having a cow there if there’s nothing to eat.
As for Yakko, he “drew” a cartoon. But it hasn’t started yet.
I found this funny and clever at the same time. Darn, the Warner siblings can be smart at times–just in a different way.
The “Chopsticks” song
Wakko and Dr. Scratchansniff sing a couple of songs during the day. But in the evening, Wakko sings a song repeating the word, “chopsticks,” as well as singing, “chop chop” with it.
It annoys Dr. Scratchansniff because he’s had enough with the singing. But it amuses me, especially the catchy tune and tempo.
The candy shop scene
The Warner siblings go into a candy store run by a cranky seller. The siblings go crazy. They lick lollipops, melted chocolate, and other sweets that they didn’t pay for.
The candy store guy demands that if they want to see something, they should ask first. Dot wants to see the jellybeans. The candy seller brings a jar to them.
But Wakko points at a jar far above to the point where it scares the man. When he climbs a ladder to get those jellybeans, he approaches a mountain goat and an astronaut (which was probably meant to be exaggerated).
After he takes the candy and climbs down the ladder, stressed out, he asks the siblings how many pieces they want. But Yakko reveals that he and his siblings just wanted to see them.
There are so many aspects that stand out to me, besides the obvious and hilarious mountain goat and astronaut. One is that the siblings tasted different candies without paying for them, which would get them arrested in real life. But it’s a cartoon, so realism doesn’t matter.
I also found it silly, but also insensitive, when Dot told the candy man not to look down–otherwise he would die and parts of his brain would pop out.
A major part, and flaw, is the candy shop’s architecture. What kind of candy store would be allowed to be constructed to practically the size of an apartment building?
When the Warner siblings howled on a plane because their feeling were hurt
There is a scene where the siblings are flying on a plane. They sit together, and complain to Hello Nurse about hurting their feelings. So, they howl like dogs.
I saw this clip on YouTube through a compilation of different clips from the show. Although I don’t know the context behind it, it cracks me up.
Wakko’s “State Capital” song
Ms. Flamiel has the siblings play Jeopardy. She asks Wakko the capitals of all 50 states.
Wakko pulls down a map, plays the violin in a country style, and sings each capital that belongs to the respective states. He also adds some occasional facts and opinions about the states and their capitals.
But–he was buzzed as wrong because he didn’t list the capitals in a question form.
I still enjoy his song very much. I actually move my head from side to side.
When the Warner siblings played “The Piano Rag”
Authorities attempt to capture the Warner siblings. But they end up capturing a man, who gets angry when he’s in the back of the police truck.
The scene switches to Yakko, Wakko, and Dot taking turns playing the piano. They start off with solos and then sing together at the end. The audience applauds.
I enjoy this scene-not just because of the Warner siblings’ talents, but the catchiness of the song. It sounded like a fast-paced jazz song.
As you can tell, I am a very casual and beginner fan of Animaniacs. I don’t feel ready to purchase any episodes. And unfortunately, the show is not available to stream on any services, like HBO Max–at least as of 2023
But I might check out some of the episodes later. In the meantime, I will just stick to clips on YouTube.
If you grew up watching this show in the 90s, you could remember these moments. Although there were reruns in 2001, I don’t think I watched any of the episodes. I only remember the theme song.
For those of you who’d like to learn more about the series from the 90s, you can go to Wikia. I personally like to stick with the original series. But if you’re interested in checking out the reboot, you can go to this Fandom page.