Sylvester is determined to get a woodpecker that just moved in, high in a tree. He climbs, but the bird greases the tree; he starts to cut it down, but a mean dog stops him (this becomes a running gag). Several other attempts follow; at one point, he puts his paw into the bird's home, and the bird puts a tomato there; Sylvester squishes it, and the bird dresses as an angel to torment him, but Sylvester sees through the disguise. Finally, Sylvester tries to blow up the tree; the dog again intervenes. Sylvester gets the dynamite off the tree and puts out the fuses, but the bird has lit them again, and now Sylvester really becomes an angel.
On Cartoon Network and Boomerang in the United States, the part where Sylvester holds the gun to his head and attempts to shoot himself after the "angel" woodpecker gives him the gun (only for Sylvester to realize he's been duped and blast the woodpecker in the rear end) was cut. This scene however airs uncensored on Cartoon Network and Boomerang outside the United States, as evident in the video on the page here.
This is the first cartoon where Sylvester chases birds for food. This is also the first cartoon where Sylvester doesn't speak.
The woodpecker was originally set to be a recurring character who would be paired with Sylvester by Friz Freleng, but after taking over Bob Clampett's unproduced 4th Tweety cartoon project (which pairs Tweety with Sylvester for the first time), Freleng decided that the woodpecker will be replaced by Tweety as Sylvester's most prominent co-star. Although the idea was initially objected by producer Eddie Selzer, Selzer then allowed Freleng to use Tweety in place of the woodpecker, which ultimately earned the WB cartoon studio its first Academy Award.
Both US and EU "dubbed versions" preserve the original ending card, unlike most dubbed version cartoons.
It was reissued in 1951 about six years after its release date. Like most reissued Merrie Melodies at the time, the original closing card was kept. The USA dubbed version shown in CN Latin America, has red borders, and the EU dubbed version on the video infobox has blue borders.
This is Sylvester's second appearance. In this cartoon, he is coloured a little differently to his classic black and white colouring - here he is black and light grey.