Title Card

Bunco Busters is the 64th animated cartoon short subject in the Woody Woodpecker series. Released theatrically on November 21, 1955, the film was produced by Walter Lantz Productions and distributed by Universal International.


A detective from the Bunco Squad (Dal McKennon) serves as narrator, telling the viewing audience about "The Case of the Gullible Woodpecker." Woody (Grace Stafford) inherits a fortune and Con-man Buzz Buzzard (McKennon) decides to use every trick he can to swindle him out of his new wealth (including using a phony treasure map).


  • The title Bunco Busters refers to the Bunco Squad, a specific group of policemen who investigate confidence swindles. The original "bunco" was a dishonest gambling game. It is believed "bunco" is a variant of "banco," from the Spanish word banca, a card game similar to Three-card Monte. The term evolved over time to mean any sort of swindling or fraud. Though the phrase "bunco busting" was originally used from the 1940s through the 1960s, this type of law enforcement is still common today.[1]
  • Bunco Busters marked Buzz Buzzard's final appearance in a Woody theatrical "cartune" until 1969’s Tumble Weed Greed. He would eventually be replaced as Woody's main foil by Dapper Denver Dooley and Gabby Gator. This was also the final time that Woody has green eyes in the series.[2] He would not have them again until the cartoons for The New Woody Woodpecker Show appeared in 1999.

A quote that has entered Hollywood cartoon folklore: "If Woody had gone right to the police, this would never have happened."


Bunco Busters contains one of the most memorable quotes in the Woody Woodpecker canon:

  • Bunco Squad Detective: "If Woody had gone right to the police, this would never have happened.", the phrase is repeated various times during the cartoon.

External linksEdit

Watch Bunco Busters here.


  2. Cooke, Jon, Komorowski, Thad, Shakarian, Pietro, and Tatay, Jack. "1955". The Walter Lantz Cartune Encyclopedia.

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