Cuban cigars and Brazilian parrots go together like whiskey and…Brazilian parrots. Which is why Disney thought it would be a good idea to create this bowtied ladies’ man as a way to appeal to a growing market in South America. Because that’s what South American kids like, you see. Nope, nothing weird or unethical about this at all.
Goofy is so stupid that I like to believe that he smokes because he caved to peer pressure from the other Disney characters. In my head, there’s a pivotal scene like in Michael Jackson’s video for “Bad,” but instead of rebuffing the bullies and breaking into a defiant dance, Goofy sobs, grabs a Virginia Slim, and smokes away his last sliver of independence and free will. I feel like this is a universal truth.
Donald smokes to curb hunger and to take the edge off of his obvious meth addiction. Again, a universal truth.
Daffy Duck and Porky Pig
You know how sometimes you go to a bar and, after a few drinks, you see a friend on his way outside for a quick smoke? So you follow him out and bum a cigarette while talking to him, even though you don’t really smoke and it’s not something you’d do if you were completely sober? That’s how Daffy and Porky end up smoking.
Cruella de Vil
Hey, another Disney character smoking! Seeing a pattern yet? Still, I guess using a cigarette holder and wearing a fur coat really masks the smoky smell and yellowed teeth.
As a true OG, Mickey is probably one of the oldest cartoon smokers there is, which is weird because his current image is so squeaky clean. But the truth had to come out eventually. After all, when you can light a cigarette with your foot, you’ve probably been smoking for a long time. Maybe too long.
Bugs is the only cartoon character that makes smoking look cool. He’s the Marlon Brando of cartoon smokers. He’s also the J. Edgar Hoover of cartoon smokers. He’s a lot of things.
True, Popeye smokes, but it’s actually for a good reason. First, he’s a sailor, and sailors need to cultivate an aura of manliness at all times lest they be skinned by pirates. Second, he needs a way to suck spinach past his characteristically misshapen jaw.
Joe gets a bad rap for pretty much selling cigarettes to kids the same way a drug dealer would set up shop at a playground or a pimp would trick trusting orphans into prostitution. But people forget all the the good he’s done too — not just for Camel cigarettes, but for the world. For example, it’s because of Joe that litigation unearthed R. J. Reynolds Tobacco’s secret plans to hook kids as a way to ensure future customers as they grew into adults. This revelation basically ended Joe Camel’s reign as a cigarette mascot. But we’ll always have the memories, Joe! Also lung cancer.