by KC Carlson
Out this week is Mighty Mouse: The New Adventures, a 3-disc DVD collection of the 1987-1989 Ralph Bakshi-directed Saturday morning cartoon series. It’s considered by animation historians one of the early examples of the modern-day kid-vid animation resurgence. (And all it took was to actually make the cartoons funny!) An amazing array of animation talent worked on the series early in their careers, including John Kricfalusi (Ren & Stimpy) Bruce Timm (Batman, Superman, Justice League), Andrew Stanton (WALL-E, Finding Nemo), Kent Butterworth (Tiny Toons, Sonic the Hedgehog), Tom Minton (Animaniacs, Freakazoid!) and many, many others.
The show is best known for introducing such crazy characters as Bat-Bat (an insane parody of Batman), The Cow, Petey Pate, the Glove, Scrappy the Mouse, some savage parodies of other Saturday morning fare — including Alvin & the Chipmunks — and also features cameos by the Mighty Heroes and other old Terrytoons characters. Occasionally, Mighty Mouse is also on the show.
An episode also famously upset the Rev. Donald Wildmon, which is actually a great recommendation for the series. This is discussed in a great new hour-long documentary about the show, featuring new interviews with all the principal creators. Plus, there are original vintage Terrytoons cartoons (first time on DVD), commentaries including John K., Minton, Butterworth, and others. All 19 episodes have been newly remastered. This set has been long-awaited by animation fans and highly recommended.
We’ll have a review next week by a special guest contributor, but in the meantime, here’s a Wired article on the show’s significance.