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File:Coonskin 1730.jpg


"Warning: This film offends EVERYBODY!"

—The blurb on the movie's VHS box

Coonskin is a 1975 Blaxploitation Parody (and Darker and Edgier take on the Br'er (pronounced "bruh", for brother) Rabbit stories) written and directed by Ralph Bakshi. It has been described as a spiritual predecessor to The Boondocks. Bakshi once described it as his best film.

What's that? You say you've never heard of this film? Blame Al Sharpton and CORE, who protested the film (without seeing it; Sharpton famously said "I don't got to see shit; I can smell shit!") despite its getting support from the NAACP as "difficult satire".

Tropes used in Coonskin include:

I see ya Lord, I sees ya Lord, I see ya Lord and you'd better well, fucking well, see me!

  • The Promised Land: Subverted: Rabbit, Fox and Bear go to the last place they can keep hustling, Harlem. Turns out Harlem's a dump. Just to underline the fact that it's a dump we get a short story from a woman and her baby who were left by her cockroach husband (literally a cockroach) up to her shooting a (literal) rat in the face.
  • Roger Rabbit Effect
  • Shout-Out: The story about Malcolm the Cockroach pays tribute to George Herriman, noted African American cartoonist and Bakshi's favorite cartoonist.
    • A cockroach named Malcolm also appears in Bakshi's later shorts Malcolm and Melvin and Babe, He Calls Me.
  • Shown Their Work: Ralph not only did his research for this movie, many African-American viewers remarked that they couldn't believe that this was written and directed by a white guy, as much of it rang true for them in its portrayal of how blacks have been treated both in the United States and by the film industry.
  • Stock Footage: Old newsreels are frequently played behind the animation.
  • Surreal Humor / Surreal Horror: The whole movie due to its lack of a consistent plot thread, but especially Madigan's death and the Tar Rabbit scene.
  • Take That: Ralph Bakshi hates The Mafia and the film The Godfather. There's a massive Take That towards The Godfather in this movie, and the Mafia is generally portrayed negatively here and in Heavy Traffic. Also, this entire film is a Take That towards the Blaxploitation genre, Disney's Song of the South, and the history of racist portrayals of African Americans in Hollywood films.
  • The Ugly Guy's Hot Daughter: The Sheriff and his daughter.
  • Uncle Tomfoolery: Several of the background characters.
  • White Dude, Black Dude: A variant joke in the opening:

350 of you folks committed suicide by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge and out of the 350 there was only two that was n****rs and one of them was pushed.