Pinky and the Brain (1995–1998)
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Inherit the Wheeze 

Lab scientists subject The Brain to experiments testing the addictive properties of cigarettes, an experience that endangers his latest plan for world domination.


Nelson Recinos


Earl Kress, Tom Ruegger (story by) | 6 more credits »




Episode credited cast:
Maurice LaMarche ... The Brain (voice)
Rob Paulsen ... Pinky (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Pam Grier ... Julie Auburn (voice)
T'Keyah Crystal Keymáh ... Singer (voice)
Tress MacNeille ... Nicky O'Time (voice)
Michael McKean ... Mel Aroma (voice)


Lab scientists subject The Brain to experiments testing the addictive properties of cigarettes, an experience that endangers his latest plan for world domination.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis






Release Date:

14 February 1998 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


[Brain puffs a cigarette smoke ring]
Pinky: Ring around the Pinky, Brain is really stinky.
See more »


References Space Jam (1996) See more »


Pinky and the Brain Theme - Dutch Version
Performed by Edward Reekers with Marcel Jonker and Reinder van der Naalt
See more »

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User Reviews

Cigarette endangerment
20 March 2019 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

There wouldn't be any question of seeing anything animated regardless of the studio, director, style, how old it is and its critical reception, being a lifelong fan. That said, will hardly say that everything animated is great. there is some bad or worse animation out there. These feelings and love and appreciation has overtime significantly increased, with my knowledge having been extended and broadened.

'Pinky and the Brain' has long been one of my favourites and even consider it even better than another personal favourite of mine 'Animaniacs', not an easy feat. All of that show's numerous qualities are present here while making them even better, even more in quantity and even bigger in quality. Love both shows, but particularly 'Pinky and the Brain', even more as an adult, due to more knowledge of animation and understanding the humour more. Same with animation in general. 'Pinky and the Brain' is like 'Animaniacs', it has something for everybody and children and adults alike will love it, it is so much more than "just another kiddie show" and should never be dismissed as such.

It is not easy making something truly entertaining out of anything to do with smoking and the dangers of it, while also educating without preaching or showing any bias. "Inherit the Wheeze" achieved this pretty brilliantly.

Quality of animation is very appealing on the eyes. The characters designs have no stiffness (personally think they have a little more refinement than those in 'Animaniacs'), the backgrounds are very detailed and the colours are a mix of vibrant and atmospheric. The music is also faultless. The scoring is dynamic and composed in a way that is always adding to the actions, expressions and gestures and doing what good music scores in animation should do in enhancing them.

Have never faulted the writing. It is very smart, its best parts riotous and the exchanges between Pinky and Brain are mini masterpieces. There is zaniness, wit and surprising intelligence and has references that will delight adults especially as they are more likely to get them, while having some educational parts for children. It achieves a perfect balance of never being too simplistic or too convoluted. What could have been heavy-handed and one-sided was intelligently done actually, in a way that was understandable for those younger without any dumbing down or treating anybody like idiots.

Formulaic is not always a bad thing and 'Pinky and the Brain' in my mind is proof of that, because of the cleverness, creativity and idea variety of the writing and storytelling, here benefitting from a different opened up location. One worries about repetition, no worries are needed because there is a lot of freshness and variety to stop that from happening.

Younger audiences will have little trouble understanding but adults will get more out of it, because the humour is more understandable when older due to more familiarity. It is easy to follow while not being childish, with a subject that could go over young audiences' heads. Yet it is done in an accessible way.

Characterisation always was a major strength. Pinky and Brain were two of 'Animaniacs' best characters, Brain especially stole the show whenever he appeared and elevated already very good to great episodes to an even better level, and more than deserved their own show. For me they are even more interesting and defined here than in 'Animaniacs'.

Have always found it very hard not to endear to Pinky and his inane comments and actions (obvious in his "ring around the pinky" line), he is not the brightest mouse on the block and Brain's frustration is understandable. But he is one of the finest examples of stupid not falling into the trap of being obnoxious, throughout the show's run Pinky never once annoyed me. Pinky instead is very funny and often hysterically so and simply adorable.

Brain is the infinitely smarter one of the two, a genius in fact, although also the meaner and more intricate one. This has always been a very large contrast. Somehow though he is still very lovable, it is impossible not to fall in love with his schemes. Nor is it impossible not to love his deadpan personality and dark sarcasm.

Have always loved the relationship/chemistry between the duo, their always compelling personalities never feel false or overdone, and the depth to their contrasting personalities and relationship has not once been forgotten. The chemistry between them is just delightful, sometimes antagonistic but there is more substance to it than all of that. It is essentially the show's heart, it was essential for it to work (make or break) and it does brilliantly.

Replacing Rob Paulsen and Maurice LaMarche, two of the best and most prolific voice actors, as Pinky and Brain would be impossible. Both are amazing and throughout the show gave some of their best ever work, especially LaMarche. They are one of the main reasons as to why the characters work so well, their voices suiting the them and their personalities perfectly. The bond between them throughout 'Pinky and the Brain' has always been present and never been lost.

All in all, brilliant. 10/10

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