Here he comes, that Mighty Mouse,
Coming to vanquish the foe with a mighty blow...
An all-new 1987 series, Mighty Mouse, The New Adventures, was the brainchild of animation pioneer Ralph Bakshi. Bakshi fleshed out the Mouse's character by making him more introspective and giving him a sidekick, Scrappy, to whom he could confess his troubles.
In this wacky take on the Terrytoons creation, Mighty had an alter ego in the form of Mike the Mouse, who worked at a factory owned by former damsel in distress Pearl Pureheart. The mouse also gained a sidekick named Scrappy, a floppy eared wisecracker. Blending 1950's art with a modern sensibility, the show served up such oddball creations as BatBat (Batman as an actual bat), who "drove" around in the four-footed Manmobile.
Right from the opening credits, a bouncy new a cappella theme song promised viewers, "Things won't be like they've been before..." The guiding hand of Ralph Bakshi offered the proof. Bakshi had worked with Mighty Mouse before, directing episodes of the 1960's Mighty Mouse Playhouse, and he had dabbled with superhero comedy in his own the Mighty Heroes, but the pioneering animator was best known for his adult-oriented animation in films like Fritz the Cat and Wizards. The lure of Mighty Mouse was enough to lure Bakshi back to Saturday morning, but he brought with him a irreverent, satirical sense of humor that set this Mighty Mouse miles apart from its two television predecessors.
Nearly pushing the limits on "inside jokes," this latest version concentrated on spoofing other well-known cartoons as well as bringing back characters who had long been forgotten. With the help of John Kricfalusi (who went on to create The Ren and Stimpy Show), Bakshi took no prisoners, using his latest cartoon to mock the industry he had worked in for so many years.
The series developed a cult following among children and adults, but the numbers were heavier on the latter group. Unfortunately, many of the references were lost on children, and the series was cancelled after two seasons. Sponsors felt no need to advertise kiddie products on a show watched primarily by their older siblings and parents, so the plug was pulled after only two seasons.
Two Mighty Mouse Adventures were shown in each half-hour show. The series ran for two seasons.
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