The Solid Tin Coyote

The Solid Tin Coyote is a 1966 Warner Bros. Looney Tunes cartoon directed by Rudy Larriva.[1] The short was released on February 19, 1966, and stars Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner.[2]

The Solid Tin Coyote
Directed byRudy Larriva
Produced byDavid H. DePatie
Friz Freleng
Story byDon Jurwich
Music byBill Lava
Animation byHank Smith
Virgil Ross
Bob Bransford
Layouts byDon Sheppard
Backgrounds byAnthony Rizzo
Color processTechnicolor
Distributed byWarner Bros.
Release date
February 19, 1966 (US)
Running time
6 minutes


Wile E. tries to capture the Road Runner by covering the road with tar, but the bird simply runs directly over it. He stops himself from leaping into the tar (in anticipation of the Road Runner being stuck), and accidentally walks into the road where the tar is located to ascertain where his enemy has gone. Wile E. manages to free himself from the tar pit, but is now stuck in the bucket of tar. The coyote hops across the road, stuck in the bucket, until he has to outrun a truck coming from that direction. Ultimately, he fails to do so when he gets himself stuck in the tar pit a second time, and then gets flattened.

Hoping to get the Road Runner to run into it, Wile E. places a mirror on a curve on the very edge of a mountain, but soon discovers that his reflection is mocking him. To figure out where the "reflection" is coming from, the coyote snakes around the mirror to the side and discovers nothing there. Puzzled, the coyote retracts his neck, and soon suffers gravity due to his location in thin air. But in the dump where he falls is an inspiration: Wile E. scavenges a wealth of spare parts and takes them offscreen where construction noises are heard. Road Runner is left curious as to what his opponent is doing and curiously looks around the rock Wile is working behind. However, curiosity quickly turns to outright terror when Wile E. unveils his creation: a blue robotic coyote at least five times as tall as himself.

Using a dial-operated remote control, Wile E. gives the robot the following commands (with electric bolts coming out of robot's ears before executing each command):

WALK: The robot does so, but will not stop or change direction to avoid smashing his creator. Therefore... STOP/HALT: However, the robot fails to stop, crushing Wile E. underfoot.

LOWER HAND for Wile E. to climb on, then LIFT HAND for him to get a bird's eye-view of the landscape. HUNT: Robot gets "on his mark" and "set", hears the Road Runner coming, and starts chasing him as he passes by (a rendition of "Charge" is played every time the robot begins the chase). The Road Runner is uncharacteristically shocked at the sight of his enemy on the robot, and Wile E. is soon in striking distance to issue STRIKE. The robot turns his hand around (unfortunately for Wile E., it is the one he is standing on) and attempts to crush the Road Runner, but misses each time and ends up flattening the Coyote like a pancake.

Standing between the robot's ears, Wile E. hears the Road Runner coming and orders the robot to ATTACK, but the electric bolts from its ears burn him to a crisp.

Wile E. adds fangs to the robot's mouth, gives the order to HUNT, and the chase is on again. This time, the robot miraculously succeeds in catching the Road Runner. However, Wile E. fails to recognize the sensitive personality of his creation. He enters the command to EAT, but when this fails to prompt the robot, he fine-tunes one of the knobs to add the word STUPID. The robot promptly opens its mouth and throws Wile E. inside, giving the Road Runner a chance to escape. Crawling out of one of the robot's ears, and obviously irked, Wile E. flatly commands ONE MORE TRY, YOU IDIOT! Again, the robot starts after Road Runner, who is now standing on the other side of a collapsed road. Horrified, Wile E. tries vainly to stop the robot (TURN, STOP, HALT, BACK, WHOA, REVERSE, HEEL), but all commands go unanswered and both he and the robot fall into the chasm, destroying the robot upon impact with the ground and leaving Wile E. in the same heap of junk that he started with.


The Solid Tin Coyote breaks several of the conventions of the Road Runner/Wile E. Coyote series. Whereas most of the films in the series focus on a series of rapid-fire gags, the majority of this film is focused on one: the construction and use of the titular solid tin coyote. Furthermore, this is the only film in the series in which the Road Runner shows any form of alarm at Wile E. Coyote's schemes. It also is unique in that Wile E. Coyote successfully, if only temporarily, captures the Road Runner; however, in keeping with the spirit of the series, he does not succeed in eating him, and the Road Runner escapes unharmed.


This cartoon is available on the Supergenius Hijinks DVD.


  1. ^ Beck, Jerry; Friedwald, Will (1989). Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies: A Complete Illustrated Guide to the Warner Bros. Cartoons. Henry Holt and Co. p. 357. ISBN 0-8050-0894-2.
  2. ^ Lenburg, Jeff (1999). The Encyclopedia of Animated Cartoons. Checkmark Books. pp. 128–129. ISBN 0-8160-3831-7. Retrieved 6 June 2020.

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