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Slicked-up Pup (1951)

Approved  |   |  Animation, Family, Short  |  30 August 1951 (USA)
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 335 users  
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Spike has just washed his pup. Tom and Jerry's chase knocks him into a mud puddle. Spike makes Tom clean him up again and promise to keep him clean which of course is Jerry's opening to get Tom in trouble.

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Title: Slicked-up Pup (1951)

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Storyline

Spike has just washed his pup. Tom and Jerry's chase knocks him into a mud puddle. Spike makes Tom clean him up again and promise to keep him clean which of course is Jerry's opening to get Tom in trouble.

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Release Date:

30 August 1951 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Tom in Sachen Sauberkeit  »

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(Technicolor)
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Did You Know?

Connections

Followed by Pent-House Mouse (1963) See more »

Soundtracks

Love That Pup
Written by Scott Bradley
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User Reviews

 
Wicked fun.
2 April 2001 | by (dublin, ireland) – See all my reviews

this marvellous short is another Tom and Jerry exercise in hierarchies of repression and power, with our heroes doubled by Spike and his pup. Tom and Jerry have always been imps subverting the harmony of 40s and 50s conformist suburbia - here, suburbia is still their battleground, but their mischief now affects the animal world.

Appropriately, the apparent shift is figured in the same terms, with Spike and Pup exemplars of the domestic harmony Tom and Jerry will destroy. Spike is a new man, a loving dad turned violent madman whenever his son is in danger, a far cry from the gutless executives that comprised American masculinity of the period (if we believe films and sitcoms). This insight into the violence necessary to sustain family stability is telling, especially in an Eisenhower-era, post-war context.

Tom and Jerry attack this family by introducing notions of difference - Pup must remain clean, his identity as DOG intact; the son must eventually follow in the footsteps of the father. Tom and Jerry, however, repeatedly dissolve this identity to the point where Pup changes species, and Spike can't recognise his own son. Ironically, this altered personality allows Pup emerge from meek obedience to his father; he learns to impersonate, to act, to lie, to accept other possibilities, while at the same time, hitting back at repressive, more senior sources. While tom, through fear (like all conservatives), tries to desperately uphold the status quo, it is Jerry, the most vulnerable in this chain, who controls through revolt.

Of course, we don't watch Tom and Jerry for social critique - though we should - we watch them for exquisitely choreographed rondelays of violent action, an expressive use of primary colours, and richly inventive soundtracks that both give texture to and ironise the narrative. All of which 'Slicked-up pup' provides, and more.


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