The Yankee Doodle Mouse
Tom and Jerry series
Yankee Doodle Mouse Poster.jpg

Theatrical poster
Directed by William Hanna
Joseph Barbera
Produced by Fred Quimby (unc. on original issue)
Story by William Hanna (unc.)
Joseph Barbera (unc.)
Voices by William Hanna (uncredited)
Music by Scott Bradley
Animation by Irven Spence
Pete Burness
Kenneth Muse
George Gordon
Jack Zander (credited on original issue)
Distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Release date(s) June 26, 1943
Color process Technicolor
Running time 7:28
Language no spoken dialogue
Preceded by The Lonesome Mouse
Followed by Baby Puss

The Yankee Doodle Mouse is a 1943 American one-reel animated cartoon. It is the eleventh Tom and Jerry Short produced by Fred Quimby, and directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera, with musical supervision by Scott Bradley and animation by Irven Spence, Pete Burness, Kenneth Muse and George Gordon. Jack Zander was credited on the original print, but his credit was omitted in the 1951 reissue. It was produced in Technicolor and released to theaters on June 26, 1943 by Metro-Goldwyn Mayer.

The short features Tom the cat and Jerry the mouse chasing each other in a pseudo-warfare style, and makes numerous references to World War II technology such as jeeps and dive bombers. The Yankee Doodle Mouse won the 1943 Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film, making it the first of seven Tom and Jerry cartoons to receive this distinction.[1]


Tom pursues Jerry through a cellar, but the mouse successfully dives into his mousehole (labeled "Cat Raid Shelter"). Tom peers into the hole, and Jerry launches a tomato from a mousetrap into his face. Jerry then climbs up the wall and grabs a handful of eggs from a carton marked "Hen-Grenades". As Tom wipes the tomato off his face, he is promptly covered in egg, with one hit to the eye leaving the effect of him wearing a monocle. Jerry shoots off the corks from a champagne case, knocking the cat into a tub of water with only a pot to keep him afloat. The mouse promptly launches a brick from a spatula, sinking both pot and cat. A war communiqué is displayed, reading "Sighted cat – sank same. Signed, Lt. Jerry Mouse."

Tom approaches Jerry's mousehole with a mallet in his hand, while Jerry uses a pipe as a makeshift periscope to observe; spotting this trap, he instead opens the ironing board cupboard, sending the board crashing onto Tom's head. The mouse charges down the board on a jeep made from a cheese grater attached to a roller skate, tearing Tom's fur as he speeds past, after which the jeep crashes into a wall, sending a sack of flour tumbling down. Adapting quickly to the situation, Jerry grabs the sack and spreads a makeshift flour smokescreen, which blocks Tom's vision but not Jerry's. He smacks the nearly blind Tom in the rear with a board three times, but eventually Tom falls to the ground facing the mouse; he slaps Tom a fourth time before the cat can do anything.

Tom, now wearing a bowl as a helmet, throws a stick of dynamite towards Jerry, who immediately throws it back to Tom; this continues until Jerry performs reverse psychology by taking it from Tom, provoking the cat to steal it back and this new cycle to continue until Jerry leaves Tom to witlessly hold the exploding stick and it blows up as soon as the fuse goes off. Jerry jumps into a tea kettle to escape the cat's wrath, but Tom sees him and throws another firecracker into the kettle; Jerry panics, but the oxygen has run out and the mouse escapes through the spout with no explosion. The puzzled cat opens the kettle's lid and sticks his entire head in just as the firecracker goes off.

Continuing his attempts to blow up the mouse, Tom launches a paper airplane with a firecracker hidden on top, but Jerry blows it back beneath Tom, who barely spots the firecracker before it goes off and is again black in the face. Jerry then plants an enormous stick of dynamite behind Tom; the cat sees it and screams in terror until the cracker splits into successively smaller sticks reminiscent of matryoshka dolls, ending with a minuscule replica of the original firecracker. Tom believes this harmless, but the dynamite explodes powerfully.

Jerry then goes through a hole in a barrel and jumps into a makeshift plane fashioned from an egg carton (launched from a slingshot made from a rubber band) drops a succession of light bulbs and a banana bomb, which hit his head and face. Tom grabs a roman candle and skillfully shoots down Jerry's now weaponless plane, piece by piece. Jerry uses a brassiere to parachute from the plane, but is again shot down by Tom. Jerry races into his mousehole to escape, but Tom pushes another roman candle into the hole and fires off seven shots.

The fireballs pursue Jerry Through the mouse hole through the barrel going back and forth until he eventually he leads them into a hose, which he shoots like a machine gun back into the tube of Tom's roman candle. The barrel explodes, leaving Tom riding the remaining parts of the barrel like a bicycle, which then crashes into the wall. Recovering, Tom fires a dart gun at Jerry, which hits him on the tail as he again attempts to dive into his mousehole.

Tom grabs the mouse and ties him to an ignited rocket; Jerry pretends to help himself be tied up, but unknown to Tom he is actually strapping his own hands to the rocket. Jerry emerges from the ropes, and the puzzled Tom does not realize what has happened until Jerry waves at him. He futilely attempts to blow out the fuse, but the rocket shoots high into the sky and explodes there, forming the US Stars and Stripes. Jerry proudly salutes the flag, and a final communiqué is displayed, saying "SEND MORE CATS! Signed, Lt. Jerry Mouse."

Edited versions

The teapot exploding gag, which causes Tom's face to turn into a blackfaced sunflower, was removed when the short was shown on Cartoon Network in the early 1990s. Since then the gag has been restored and included on the Tom and Jerry Spotlight Collection DVD set. It is also included on the ITunes Store uncut.[2]


  1. Gifford, Denis (2001-03-24). "William Hanna: Master animator whose cartoon creations included Tom and Jerry and the Flintstones". The Guardian (London). 

External links

Category:1943 animated films Category:American World War II propaganda films Category:Best Animated Short Academy Award winners Category:Films featuring anthropomorphic characters Category:Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer animated short films Category:Tom and Jerry short films Category:World War II films made in wartime Category:Films directed by Joseph Barbera Category:Films directed by William Hanna Category:1940s American animated films Category:1940s comedy films

Community content is available under CC-BY-SA unless otherwise noted.