Think James Bond meets Monty Python with an eyepatch-wearing rodent as Bond. In this cartoon, the "Greatest Secret Agent in the World" lived in a mailbox, drove a flying car and had a trembling hamster in suit and glasses as a sidekick. Danger Mouse originated in Britain in 1981 and came to the U.S. in 1984, where it became an instant hit on Nickelodeon.
Together with aforementioned hamster Penfold ("Crumbs!"), Danger Mouse foiled the nefarious plots of Baron Silas Greenback, a croaky-voiced toad with a caterpillar-like pet named Nero. Greenback's chief henchman was Stiletto, a crow in a gray trench coat who spoke with a Cockney accent (Italian in the original British version). The knife-wielding baddie was backed up by fellow crow LeatherHead.
In every episode, DM's walrus-like commander, Colonel K, blustered his way through a mission assignment, taking Danger Mouse and Penfold everywhere from the Bermuda Triangle to the depths of space.
The show scored with both kids and adults, amusing the latter with nonstop political and social satire delivered with that unmistakably dry British wit. As an added treat, the offscreen narrator often digressed into routines of his own, threatening to walk off the job or singing sappy songs to cheer our heroes on.
The plots were always spectacularly silly, whether it was the Baron's threat to destroy the world with the combined bagpipe music of all of Scotland, or an escaped enzyme that turned everything white (surely an inexpensive episode to animate). The show also featured Agent 57, master of disguise, and introduced Count Duckula, the vampire duck who went on to star in his own self-titled series.
Always heroic and always entertaining, Danger Mouse was a major hit for the fledgling Nickelodeon, which aired the show's 89 episodes from 1984-87 and from 1991-94.
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