Road Runner


"The Road Runner did not change a lot visually over the years; he has very little personality, as he is a force. I tell students that the secret of drawing the Road Runner is learning how to draw dust: just draw a cloud of dust and hook a Road Runner onto it. Many people do not know there is such a creature as a roadrunner outside Warner Bros. cartoons. An ornithologist at the University of Iowa, who is a roadrunner expert, told me that the first question asked by her students every year is, “Does the true roadrunner really go ‘beep-beep’?” and they do not believe her when she tells them that it doesn’t.

My Road Runner is a rare case in which the animated animal is almost exactly like its living model. It has a small body, a long neck, a large tail, and wings that look as if they should work but don’t. The head shape of the real roadrunner is slightly different, and it does not have such a prominent crop (except when excited), but body and neck are pretty accurate. My Road Runner has legs like elongated chicken legs, and a high forehead gives the bird a youthful look. It has a chest and a pelvis, just as we do, and the backbone extends a little at the tail.

The Road Runner’s immortal “beep-beep” was an accidental find, inspired by the sound Paul Julian made as he blindly tried to clear a route for himself along a Termite Terrace corridor. It seemed unimaginable to ask anybody but Paul to record this sound, so we invited him into the studio." --Chuck Jones, "Chuck Reducks" 1996

The Road Runner appears in:

  • Fast and Furry-ous
  • Beep Beep
  • Going! Going! Gosh!
  • Zipping Along
  • Stop! Look! and Hasten!
  • Ready, Set, Zoom!
  • Guided Muscle
  • Gee Whiz-z-z
  • There They Go-Go-Go
  • Scrambled Aches
  • Zoom and Bored
  • Whoa Be-gone!
  • Hook, Line and Stinker
  • Hip Hip-Hurry
  • Hot Rod and Reel!
  • Wild About Hurry
  • Fastest with the Mostest
  • Hopalong Casualty
  • Zip 'n' Snort
  • Lickety Splat
  • Beep Prepared
  • Zoom at the Top
  • To Beep or Not to Beep
  • War and Pieces