The Big Snit (1985)

In Richard Condie’s award-winning animated short, a couple’s minor argument escalates amidst the end of the world.

Over a tense game of Scrabble with googly-eye pets as spectators, a husband’s nerves are rattled as he tries to complete his turn with an impossible selection of letters. His wife gives him a moment to think, but tempted by his favourite TV show, he tunes into “Sawing for Teens” and dozes off. When nuclear war breaks out, both husband and wife are oblivious to the catastrophic, worldwide event. The sneaky hubby awakens to peek at his wife’s letters and is caught, and his bad sportsmanship leads to an argument as the world dissolves into chaos. Will their love survive a nuclear blast?

This goofy animated classic takes on the bigger issues within a small world and shows that pettiness doesn’t stand a chance against nuclear doom. The Big Snit did well in 1985, winning several awards and was nominated for best animated short at the Academy Awards in 1986. Condie is a renowned animator and musician hailing from Winnipeg and is respected for his style and wit.

Review by Carolyn Mauricette

Available on:




Animated Stories, Free to Watch, Oscars

Canadian connection

Written and directed by Richard Condie
Condie is a long-time contributor collaborator at the NFB and did the music and voice for another Oscar-nominated animated short in 1988, The Cat Came Back, directed by Cordell Barker. He also directed another Oscar-nominated short, La Salla, in 1996.