Release date: February 9, 1935.
Series: Merrie Melodies.
Supervision: Friz Freleng.
Producer: Leon Schlesinger.
Starring: Bernice Hansen (Bunnies).
Musical Score: Norman Spencer.
Animation: Bob McKimson and Paul Smith.
This cartoon reminds me of an adaptation of Beatrix Potter's A Tale of Peter Rabbit. Why do I think that? The concept of the story is pretty similar to the book and the fact that the boy rabbit of this cartoon is called "Peter" so there's no doubt it's a possibility they could've got the rights to the Potter story - but who knows??
Meanwhile inside the house, we see these two boy bunnies who are running to put their shorts on and they are strapping their suspenders. The suspenders are then tangled to another bunnies' suspender and as they are about to run - the straps stretch and then loosen with the bunnies crashing each other. Ouch - but it's a fine gag. The mother notices all her bunnies running to school but notices that Peter isn't around and shouts "Peter". Is the elderly bunny meant to be the mother or grandmother - of course; the vocals singers tell us it's their mother but she really looks like an elderly grandmother - in my opinion.
Peter Rabbit then sees a used can lying on the ground and kicks that out of the way. After doing that the second time the can then lands on a root that is sticking out of the ground. Peter then tries to kick the can but doesn't realize that he kicked a bit of wood in which it hurts his throbbing feet. As Peter yells for his foot in pain, he then notices a garden full of carrots. Peter Rabbit looks at the garden of carrots and appreciates the looks of it. He's about to take some rabbits until the voices of bunnies shout "We're gonna tell"...
Peter Rabbit then tries to act all brave claiming that he's "not afraid of any man". He thinks that he will just beat the man on the garden and thinks he's tough enough - which is all nonsense. All the bunnies don't take it all seriously and stick to the conclusion that they'll tell the teacher, and that he'll be sorry once "she's" met them. The schoolbell rings which is of course - school time for the children. All the bunnies rush to the school hall; and so does Peter Rabbit as he grabs his book. They all run inside the school hall but Peter Rabbit runs up and runs down pretending to run back. He stops and thinks if he ought to go indoors but the bell rings again and runs away from the school. I like how the song was organized as there was some rhythm in there.
It turns out that it wasn't peas in a pod that Peter Rabbit was eating - it was "Mexican Jumping Beans" - Uh-oh. Peter Rabbit then starts to jump due to eating those reactive beans. Of course it was meant to be a gag - but the timing wouldn't tell but I imagine if Friz made that cartoon years later - he'd make the timing really funny. But anyways the speed in timing wasn't really brought along yet before someone like Tex Avery or Frank Tashlin could do it right.
The cow then starts to moo down at the well. Meanwhile there is an old man who is mowing the lawn (doesn't he resemble Mr. McGregor - anybody?). The old ma then hears the sounds of the cow mooing and is furious because he believes that somebody has trespassed onto his farm and therefore he grabs out his rake. He finds Peter Rabbit standing on the well and then he starts to run away from the angry farmer.
Peter Rabbit (who can't control the lawn mower) then starts to mow the crops off but they are organized into stacks. Poor Peter Rabbit then gets covered in barrels of maple syrup as he is about to fall off that darn lawn mover.
You can't be certain if this is an adaptation of The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter because we don't have evidence if it was true or not. But Beatrix Potter tales did fall in the public domain in the U.S in the 1920s so they probably didn't need the rights. The similarities are the name "Peter Rabbit" itself - inc. the mother and bunnies; also the part when Peter Rabbit trespasses into the garden. Peter Rabbit has a red coat while in the book; his coat is blue. I quite liked this cartoon - the song of goodie two-shoes bunnies was quite good and set-up well. I thought it was kinda silly for Peter to look like a chicken at the end by impulsively clucking like a chicken.