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Censorship

 

 Like a number of other animated cartoons in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, Tom and Jerry was not considered politically correct in later years. Some cartoons featured either Tom or Jerry in blackface following an explosion, which are subsequently cut when shown on television today, although The Yankee Doodle Mouse blackface gag is still shown in other countries. Other ethnic stereotypes are also omitted, particularly the black maid, Mammy Two-Shoes, whose voice was redubbed by Turner in the mid-1990s in hopes of making the character sound less stereotypical. One cartoon in particular, His Mouse Friday, is often banned from television due to the cannibals being seen as racist stereotypes. If shown, the cannibals' dialogue is edited out, although their mouths can be seen moving. In 2006, UK channel Boomerang made plans to edit Tom and Jerry cartoons being aired in the UK where the characters were seen to be smoking in a manner that was "condoned, acceptable or glamorised." This followed a complaint from a viewer that the cartoons were not appropriate for younger viewers, and a subsequent investigation by UK media watchdog Ofcom.[2] It has also taken the US approach by editing out blackface gags, though this seems to be random as not all scenes of this type are cut.

Later television and theatrical cartoons

 

In 1975, Tom and Jerry were reunited with Hanna and Barbera, who produced new Tom and Jerry cartoons for Saturday mornings. These 48 seven-minute short cartoons were paired with The Great Grape Ape and Mumbly cartoons, to create The New Tom and Jerry/Grape Ape Show, The Tom and Jerry/Grape Ape/Mumbly Show, and The Tom and Jerry/Mumbly Show, all of which ran on ABC Saturday Morning from September 6, 1975 to September 3, 1977. In these cartoons, Tom and Jerry (now with a red bow tie), who had been enemies during their formative years, became nonviolent pals who went on adventures together, as Hanna-Barbera had to meet the stringent rules against violence for children's TV.Filmation Studios (in association with MGM Television) also tried their hands at producing a Tom and Jerry TV series. Their version, The Tom and Jerry Comedy Show, debuted in 1980, and also featured new cartoons starring Droopy Dog, Spike, and Barney Bear, not seen since the original MGM shorts. The thirty Filmation Tom and Jerry cartoons were noticeably different from Hanna-Barbera's efforts, as they returned Tom and Jerry to the original chase formula, with a somewhat more "slapstick" humor format. This incarnation, much like the 1975 version, was not as well received by audiences as the originals, and lasted on CBS Saturday Morning from September 6, 1980 to September 4, 1982.One of the biggest trends for Saturday morning television in the 1980s and 1990s was the "babyfication" of older, classic cartoon stars, and on September 8, 1990, Tom and Jerry Kids, produced by Hanna-Barbera Studios in association with Turner Entertainment, debuted on FOX. It featured a youthful version of the famous cat-and-mouse duo chasing each other. As with the 1970s H-B series, Jerry wears his red bowtie, while Tom now wears a red cap. Spike and his son Tyke, and Droopy and his son Dripple, appeared in back-up segments for the show, which ran until October 2, 1993.In 2000, a new Tom & Jerry cartoon entitled The Mansion Cat premiered on Cartoon Network. It featured Joseph Barbera as producer and as the voice of Tom's owner, whose face is never seen. In this cartoon, Jerry, housed in a habitrail, is as much of a house pet as Tom is, and their owner has to remind Tom to not "blame everything on the mouse". A new Tom & Jerry short, entitled The KarateGuard, which had been written by Joseph Barbera, directed by Barbera and Spike Brandt, storyboarded by Barbera and Iwao Takamoto and produced by Joseph Barbera, Spike Brandt and Tony Cervone premiered in Los Angeles cinemas on September 27, 2005. As part of the celebration of Tom & Jerry's sixty-fifth anniversary, this marked Joe Barbera's first return as a writer, director and storyboard artist on the series since his and Hanna's original cartoon shorts from 1940-58. Director/animator Spike Brandt was nominated for an Annie award for best character animation. On Friday, January 27, 2006, the short debuted on Cartoon Network. During the first half of 2006, a new series called Tom and Jerry Tales was produced at Warner Bros. Thirteen half-hour episodes (each consisting of three shorts) were produced, with only markets outside of the United States and United Kingdom signed up. The show then came to the UK in February 2006 on Boomerang, and is currently airing on Kids' WB! on The CW in the US. [3]. Tales is the first Tom and Jerry TV series that utilizes the original style of the classic shorts, along with the violence.

Feature films

 

In 1945, Jerry made an appearance in the live-action MGM musical feature film Anchors Aweigh, in which, through the use of special effects, he performs a dance routine with Gene Kelly. In this sequence, Gene Kelly is telling a class of school kids a fictional tale of how he earned his medal of honor. Jerry is the king of a magical world populated with cartoon animals, whom he has forbidden to dance as he himself does not know how. Gene Kelly's character then comes along and guides Jerry through an elaborate dance routine, resulting in Jerry awarding him with a medal. Jerry speaks and sings in this film; his voice is performed by Sara Berner. Tom has a cameo in the sequence as one of Jerry's servants. Both Tom and Jerry appear with Esther Williams in a dream sequence in another MGM musical, Dangerous When Wet (1953). In the film, Tom and Jerry are chasing each other underwater, when they run into Esther Williams, with whom they perform an extended synchronized swimming routine. Tom and Jerry have to save Esther from a lecherous octopus, who tries to lure and woo Esther into his (many) arms. 1993 saw the overseas release of Tom and Jerry: The Movie, produced and directed by Phil Roman for Turner Entertainment and WMG. The film was released to theatres in the USA in 1993. A musical in the typical Disney-esque vein, Tom and Jerry: The Movie was criticized by reviewers and audiences alike for being predictable and for giving Tom and Jerry dialogue (and songs) through the entire film. Joe Barbera, co-creator of the characters served as creative consultant for the film. As a result, it failed at the box office. In 2001, Warner Bros., which had by then merged with Turner and assumed its properties, released the direct-to-video movie Tom and Jerry: The Magic Ring, in which Tom covets a ring which grants mystical powers to the wearer, and has become accidentally stuck on Jerry's head. Also, William Hanna and Joseph Barbera co-executive produced "Tom & Jerry" for the final time. Four years later, Bill Kopp scripted and directed two more feature films for WB Tom and Jerry: Blast Off to Mars and Tom and Jerry: The Fast and the Furry, the latter one based on a story by Joseph Barbera. Both were released on DVD in 2005, starting the celebration of Tom and Jerry's sixty-fifth anniversary. The Fast and the Furry was released theatrically in select cities on June 3, 2006 by Kidtoon Films. In 2006, another direct-to-video film Tom and Jerry: Shiver Me Whiskers tells a story about Tom and Jerry having to work together to get the treasure. Barbera was involved in the initial production stages of the next feature, Tom and Jerry: A Nutcracker Tale, which, due to his death on December 18, 2006, became his final animated project. Produced by Spike Brandt and directed by Tony Cervone, this holiday-set cartoon will be released on DVD on October 2, 2007.Feature films

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Other formats

 

 Tom and Jerry began appearing in comic books in 1942, as one of the features in Our Gang Comics. In 1949, with MGM's live-action Our Gang shorts long out of production, the series was renamed Tom and Jerry Comics. The pair continued to appear in various books for the rest of the 20th century. The pair have also appeared in a number of video games as well, spanning titles for systems from the Nintendo Entertainment System and Super NES to more recent entries for Playstation 2, Xbox, and Nintendo Gamecube.

Cultural influences

 

Throughout the years, the term and title Tom & Jerry became practically synonymous with never-ending rivalry, probably more so than the 'cat and mouse fight' metaphor did. The Simpsons characters Itchy & Scratchy, of the eponymous cartoon on the Krusty the Clown Show, are spoofs of Tom and Jerry--a "cartoon within a cartoon." The extreme cartoon violence of the Tom and Jerry is parodied and intensified, as Itchy (the mouse) dispatches Scratchy in various gratuitous, gory fashions. In one episode, Itchy & Scratchy is replaced by a cartoon called Worker and Parasite, a parody of the Gene Deitch Tom and Jerry cartoons. In The Simpsons episode Itchy and Scratchy and Marge Marge gets violence banned from TV and Itchy and Scratchy became friends (that whacking intro of theirs is replaced by gift-exchanging), causing the downfall of the series. Tom and Jerry are also parodied in the original Sally the Witch anime (1966), and The Fairly Oddparents film Channel Chasers (2004). The series was referenced in a 1980s Strawberry Shortcake television special, with Shortcake singing "And what do I see, when I turn on TV/My favorite cartoon Tom and Berry...", replacing "Jerry" with "Berry".