The Tom and Jerry Show: Season 1 (DVD) – Series Review
Follow Genre: Comedy, Slapstick
Directed by Darrell Van Citters
Distributor: Warner Bros. Entertainment
Duration: 26 episodes, 15 minutes each

The Tom and Jerry Show: Season 1 (DVD) – Series Review

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Good: Funny, old school humor
Bad: Polished animation, a lot of the same
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Tom and Jerry. Legends in the cartoon business. The eternal fight between a sympathetic mouse and a grouchy cat. Sometimes they fight amongst themselves for whatever silly reason, at others times they (reluctantly) team up to fend off some other threat. No matter what the case is, they always do it with a lot of cartoon violence and fast looking animations. These historical cartoon animals have returned in a brand new show!

the-tom-and-jeery-show-bannerThe Tom and Jerry Show has some new adventures for the well-known cat Tom and his mouse nemesis Jerry. This new series we had the chance of taking a look at is inspired by The Tom and Jerry Show of 1975. While this may trigger a fear that the show is a dated piece of animation, this really shouldn’t be a concern. Tom and Jerry’s basic premise is still as entertaining as it was way back and the only thing that’s really changed is the art style. Even the music effects are taken from the old show, so you’ll get the crashes, bangs and tumble sounds from the time they were actually recreated in a sound studio.

Story wise there isn’t much new here. Tom is still a pretty silly cat, who gets riled up by the mischievous mouse Jerry. The show does offer four different basic settings, each of which are the starting point for a couple of episodes. The first setting is that Tom is the pet of a nice family, together with dog Spike. Jerry annoys Tom to the point that he starts wrecking the house, which in turn alert his owners. They of course don’t like their house demolished, so either Tom (or Spike if he can shift the blame) get in trouble here.

Another scenario is that Tom and Jerry are the pets belonging to two witches, named Beatie and Hildie. These two witches aren’t the most friendly people in the world (probably has something to do with the fact that they are witches) and they bully Tom, which Jerry really likes. Tom and Jerry aren’t always enemies however, they sometimes team up. One of these occasions is when they operate a detective agency, aptly named The Cat and Mouse Detectives. They attempt to solve cases, while sometimes getting in each other’s way. Lastly we have Jerry as a lab animal. Together with Napoleon the rat he is part of a laboratory. In this last setting, Tom is an alley cat, who is always looking from some shelter.

the-tom-and-jeery-show-2So, what does this show add to the one of 1975? Not that much really, which is both great and not so great. The creators of Tom and Jerry know what works – cartoon violence and chases – and stick to it pretty rigorously. There will probably be parents who don’t approve of the cheap violence, since we aren’t in the 70’s any longer, but for everybody else, the humor stays quite effective. The downside is, of course, that Tom and Jerry only do what they are good at. There is little deviation from the well-known formula, so all the episodes – when watched back to back – start looking like each other pretty darn fast. However, if you want to have a little laugh 15 minutes before dinner time and you need to keep the attention of your child away from the boiling hot pan, Tom and Jerry will be the perfect aid.

We said earlier that the sound effects are gathered from the old episodes. This gives the show a certain retro vibe, but sadly enough, there aren’t more merry melodies. Looking back, this was also something that was lacking back in the old days and it was the one thing that gave the cartoons of Bugs Bunny and Mickey Mouse their edge. Still, the smashes, banging and rackets sound genuine, which is enough for what the show is trying to do. The voice acting is pretty absent, since Tom and Jerry are mostly mute throughout the whole ordeal, except some screaming and saying “auwch”. The voices mostly come from the supporting cast. They do an alright job, but aren’t asked to do anything special. You’ll find it nice to know that there is some talent behind the animation with Rachael MacFarlane (sister of Seth), Jason Alexander (of Seinfeld fame), Grey DeLisle (Daphne in Scooby-Doo) and Chris Parnell (30 Rock).

the-tom-and-jeery-show-1One thing is noticeable though. With the arrival of digital animation, everything looks a lot more polished. This is not just the case for Tom and Jerry, but also for just about any animation currently running. For some, the cleanness works. For a show with a high pace and a lot of quick movement, the clean and polished animation leads to a loss of fluidity. If you’ve never seen the original you won’t miss it, elsewise you’ll find that you’ve finally reached the age of becoming old.


Tom and Jerry brings some old school cat and mouse action in the living room. The complete first season spans two DVD’s, each containing 13 episodes. Part one is called Frisky Business and part two is called Funny Side Up. All in all it’s close to nine hours of good fun. It might not be the most modern take on an old show, but the value is still there.


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