Posted in WB Cartoon Companion on March 22, 2004
Pint-sized predator who is eternally in search of chicken, voiced by Mel Blanc. One handicap: his youth and inexperience means he does not know what a chicken looks like. Hence the plot for nearly all of his appearences in Foghorn Leghorn shorts. Usually, these are the same: little tough hawk comes around, pesters Foggy, Foggy gets him to go after the resident dog, and the war goes back and forth.
The best performance of this character, in my view, came in a film directed by his creator, Chuck Jones. In You Were Never Duckier (1948), he meets up with Daffy Duck, who is trying to pass himself off as a rooster to get a 5,000 dollar first prize, as opposed to a fiver for best duck. Henery has all the little tough-guy attributes, but here he is paired with Daffy at his best, plus his menacing father, George K. Chickenhawk.
Depending on your point of view, Henery had his debut in either The Squawkin’ Hawk (Jones, 1942), where he is identified specifically a chickenhawk, or the slightly earlier The Bird Came C.O.D. (Jones, 1942), where he is a prop in a magic act, bedevilling Conrad