Marvin the martian is an alien from mars whose character debuted in 1984's Bugs Bunny cartoon, Haredevil Hare. While innitially started out as just another antagonistic figure towards Bugs, Marvin soon became a staple character in the Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies cartoons.
At this point it's safe to say especially nowadays anyone and their mother has atleast seen this funny little extraterrestrial somewhere whether it'd be in the cartoons/shows, merch etc given just how popular Looney Tunes is. That accompanied with the phenomenon (especially in online, mostly fandom spaces) of certain groups of people latching onto a certain character who isn't the main center of attention and going absolutely bat shit insane with them which is not surprising with a character such as Marvin.
I just so happen to fall into this catergory of people who obsess over Marvin, Marvin's always been a fan favourite of mine since young especially with my exposure to the Looney Tunes Show, movies and strangely enough the Baby Looney Tunes cartoon (this will be veryyy important to our discussion btw) so while I have not seen every single piece off media Marvin has a cameo in I have a base familiarity with him enough to be able to come to this conclusion, many people have already. So without further ado this is my analysis to why I believe Looney Tunes character Marvin the Martian has autism spectrum disorder.
Obviously like in my previous character analyzation for Nightmare Ned, I doubt the creators or really most people behind the production of the cartoons genuinely intended or are even aware of such, nonetheless for something like autism where it varies from person to person, it is a spectrum for a reason, however I DEFINITELY do think something was going on atleast with how the people working on the Baby Looney Tunes, "War of the weirds" episode decided to potray Marvin which is the biggest factor in this.
This episode is the debut episode of Marvin and sets a pretty different version of him compared to what and how's he's been potrayed in most cartoons. It's shown that baby Marvin is extremely shy and for the majority of the episode, nonverbal. Due to this the other baby looney tunes characters dismiss and shun Marvin for being "weird" cause of his behaviour (all except for baby Taz who makes an effort to be friendly towards him) first with them all forbiding Marvin from participating or touching their items. They later proceed to give him their broken down or spoiled toys due to seeing him as lesser but get mad at him for not playing along (an example being when baby lola threw a run down baseball towards him and the other proceeded to get angry at him not throwing it back) or even for actions he didn't do (such as baby Bugs attempting to stop Marvin from picking up a toy space shuttle but breaking it in the process and then blaming Marvin for it). They then proceed to discuss amongst themselves a way to get rid of Marvin in which they make Marvin pretend they're playing hide n seek and proceed to abandon him there and laugh at it. Luckily by the end when the baby looney tunes are trying to figure out where those worn out toys and trinkets they gave to Marvin are, they see him and Taz playing in the playground and learn that Marvin has actually fixed all their broken toys and eventually apologize for mistreating him earlier.
Now that's quite a lot and I really think just viewing the episode alone will give you more understanding but I will list in points many autistic traits/experiences Marvin has/deals with throughout the episode.
- Marvin is potrayed as being nonverbal and whenever he actually speaks during the episode which is a total of one time, it's of a singular word. He also tends to mumble or mutter his words and uses different ways such as gesturing to express his thoughts and emotions (examples such as shaking his head or nodding)
- Alongside that, Marvin is also shown frequently fidgeting his fingers and feet or "wobbling" around the others, this is very reminiscent of stimming.
- Marvin misunderstands social cues/does not follow the "rules" when playing with others such as when Lola passed the worn out ball towards him expecting him to throw it back and not expecting him to keep it.
- Is often labled as "strange" and "weird" by the others due to them not being able to understand Marvin and thus singeling him out and drawing the worst conlusions of Marvin due to what they think Marvin is like from his behaviour.
- Apart from Marvin quite literally being an alien, Marvin's experiences also corealate to the phrase/saying of feeling like you're from another planet/an alien due to alienation from an allistic majority which is what literally happens during the episode.
- Is seemingly extremely talented in a specific skill (for example fixing up toys)/savant talent.
Other examples from other media with Marvin apart from baby looney tunes:
- Marvin's inability to seemingly function without his laser who he qoutes "he has never been closer to anyone/anything in his life" in reference to it from the Looney Tunes Show Merrie Melody song "Laser Beam". He's shown to be very distressed over an inbalance in his usual routine/life, especially of an object he's very emotionally attached to such a degree (viewing his laser as an actual sentient being)
- He in most iterations, is potrayed as being extremely literal in speech and seemingly has no filter as well as very "robotic" sounding speech.
- Marvin is also potrayed in other pieces of Looney Tunes media as stimming such as clapping his hands/kicking his feet, he's also shown doing raptor hands/arms.
Autism be damned my boy can work a laser beam!
My looney tunes autism spectrum chart