“That Animaniacs Johnny Depp dig is shocking,” a fan tweeted after the cartoon debuted on Hulu. Adding, “World’s got a long way to go in recognizing victims of abuse outside of stereotypes. Whoever came up with that and also went through with it should be ashamed.”
Warner Bros. has not responded to the backlash over the apparent Depp joke, but a Twitter account for the Animaniacs podcast, The Animanicast, claims the joke is merely referencing the nursery rhyme “Johny Johny Yes Papa,” which became a popular Meme in 2018.
A change.org petition has started by fans calling for a boycott of Warner Bros. over the joke, saying, “This is a cartoon for young audiences, basically teaching kids that it’s ok to bully and mock a male victim of domestic violence and Warner Bros. is clearly sending the wrong message to the public with this.”