The Flea Circus is a 1954 cartoon directed by Tex Avery. The entire entourage of a flea circus runs away to join a dog.


The story starts out with the performance of the flea circus. The two main protagonists of the short are a sad clown flea named Francois (voiced by Bill Thompson, whom also does the voice of Droopy), whose act isn't well received by the audience, and a pretty female dancing flea named Fifi, the star of the show. Francois is in love with Fifi, and would do anything to win her heart. His attempts to show his chivalry flatter Fifi, but it is never enough to win her over completely, as she has admonished him every time he asks to marry her.

During Fifi's big dancing number (done to the tune of the Ira Gershwin and Burton Lane song, "Applause, Applause" and parodying the dancing scene in the movie, Give a Girl a Break), a dog walks into the rear stage door, and when the fleas see it, the show stops entirely, the fleas run off the stage and form the words, "WOW! A DOG!", then after a brief chase, latch onto it, causing it to run for the hills.

The circus owner, Pepito, tries in vain to stop them, but it's futile. Francois, the only flea to not run away after the dog, promises Pepito he'll find a way to get the circus going again, then takes off after the dog and other fleas.

The dog, after running quite a while, jumps into a pond to break up the fleas. As he sinks, it is found that Fifi doesn't know how to swim, and once the dog sinks below the surface, Fifi struggles and cries for help. Francois arrives in time and runs into the water to save her, but once he gets her back to dry land, he starts to walk away sadly, feeling even that wasn't enough to win her over...but it was. Fifi actually gets on her knees and asks him to marry her, which he more than happily accepts.

After marrying, Fifi and Francois procreate enough baby fleas to bring back to Pepito and revive the circus. During one performance, Francois goes to Fifi's dressing room to check on her to find her with knitting needles at work (as shown earlier when they were expecting the first time), suggesting they were going to have even more offspring.



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