An episode of Woody Woodpecker was once used in a scientific study to see how television violence affects children
Because let's be honest, hearing that laugh enough times would make anyone aggressive.
It's an argument that's been around nearly as long as the television has been a major fixture in every American home: For better or for worse, television affects your brain. This is especially true for children, whose brains are still developing. This can be a positive thing with the important educational content made specifically to teach children. However, some academics have argued that when children's content leans toward lower moral standards, including depictions of violence, it can cause the viewer to mirror those behaviors and become violent themselves.
This was the subject of a scientific experiment helmed by Dr. Alberta Siegel, who specialized in aggression and social policy as it related to child development. The experiment was relatively simple: Two children were invited to "watch a movie" and accompanied the experimenter to a playroom, where they were shown one of two films. Dr. Siegel then left the room for fifteen minutes while the children were left alone in the playroom. There, they would have fifteen minutes of what they believed to be unsupervised playtime.
After fifteen minutes, the experimenter would return. As the children watched the film, Dr. Siegel would take visual notes of the children's levels of anxiety as well as aggression. Afterward, the children would be observed by the experimenters, who would take note as to whether their playing behavior became anxious or aggressive.
The two films chosen for the experiment were "The Little Red Hen: Background for Reading Expression" and Woody Woodpecker in "Ace In The Hole." In the study, Siegal wrote that the film was chosen by psychologists for "its direct, unabashed, and easily comprehensible portrayal of extreme interpersonal aggression." Siegal also wrote that "Raw aggression and unrelenting hostility dominate almost every sense of this."