Tom and Jerry is a classic cat-and-mouse caper that aired regularly on television starting as early as the 1940s. The show had a simple formula that made it irresistibly enjoyable: every episode, tom the cat would chase jerry the mouse in hopes of theoretically eating jerry. Of the 164 existing episodes, Tom never actually ate jerry, only chasing him in a perpetual loop of cat-chases-mouse that warmed our hearts like sweet apple pie and kept us watching like sweet apple pie.
What a lot of people don’t know is that Hanna Barbara had a secret missing reel of “Tom and Jerry” outtakes that resulted in something that I dare not even speak about until this very fateful day. You see, Tom and Jerry was for the most part a silent cartoon as the cat and mouse never talked; the show was instead filled with music that drove the clever animated short shorts.
You’re going to piss your pants when I tell you what happens in the middle episode. It’s called “Jerry Dies” and it’s about how Jerry dies. You may wonder how a mouse can be named jerry. The name jerry is never explicitly stated on the cartoon; it appears sometimes in the intro credits, but other times: it doesn’t appear at all.
This is really frighteneing, so stop listening if you are faint of heart. This story… may kill you. I told my friend and he died of a heart attack three days later… he was just screaming “TOM TOM” all over the hospital ambulance before the coroners finaly declared him dead… the absolute terror when everything you love dies.
The episode of tom and jerry was titled “Tom and Jerry in…everything you love dies!” Seemed like a strange title, but even more disturbing was a cat skeleton with two femur bones placed in X’s and a free masons symbol with a moving, rotating eye in the corner. The eye had a single evil eyebrow, peering out at the screen.
I just heard this eerie noise coming out as the intro played… a sense of doom pervaded the screen as it was very dark, and the drawings were more realistic.
Tom starts running like a cartoon cat and the animation is really fast… he’s running and chasing jerry while there’s a candlestick dancing in the background. Tom looks really, um, disheveled ’99 and I swear to god he’s wearing a football jersey and a football helmet, the old-timey one, instead of pig skin he’s running with a turkey. At first I thought it was a thanksgiving episode, but then I saw that the turkey had a head.
This was the episode where tom finally eats jerry. He runs and there’s a carpet on the floor and the carpet keeps bunching up until I realize his feet and internal organs are glued to the carpet. Who would staple a cat to a carpet. Then I hear the sound of a loud voice, usually it was a woman, tom’s owner, a mama cass type who would declare something to the television viewing public- but here!? Here! It sounded like…Adolph hitler, the infamous dictator who ruled Germany from 1922 to 1947. “THOMAS! COME GET YOUR CHICKENAPIDDUING!” he screamed, his thick, german accent, but you couldn’t see his face. “I’M NOT HITLER!” The hitler-sounding man screamed, but you couldn’t see his face, so maybe it wasn’t hitler. “I BOUGHT THIS HITLER AT A COSTUME SHOP-“ all of a sudden the tape popped, flickered, and tom starting sawing off his leg with a rusty metal saw, it looked like a chicken bone.
And then it happened, tom caught jerry, he reaches into the mouse hole, where jerry was, and jerry was screaming, as the mouse trap had snapped shut and snapped his tiny, pulsing, writhing internal organs full of half digested hair and ritz bits crackers, his little mouse eyes shaking as Thomas started shoving his fucking face with his lifelong friend.
The hitler man collapsed on the floor like a bowling pin.
They were all dead, and flowers started to grow out of their corpses, along with moss and baby head lice.
And that was when it happened- you see the camera pan to reveal toxic carbon monoxide- a colorless, odorless toxic gas, pouring into the room.
“It’s just carbon monoxide.” A voice says, but it didn’t sound like any voice actor from Hannah Barbara or any other major cartoon studio. A time lapse shows, tom growing more irritated though he’s dead, as years pass and the lot is bulldozed, and a funeral home is erected, with matching tom and jerry tombstones.
Then you see their ghosts rise up out of the mess and they can just be ghosts for ever. “That’s the weird thing about being a ghost.” It was Tom, but he had a voice. While tom talked in the tom and jerry live action film, this didn’t sound like that tom. This didn’t sound like that tom at all. “You live, maybe 12 years, and then you’re dead forever. And you’re a ghost…forever. I bet you don’t even believe in ghosts, or demons, or leprechauns, or jesus, or strawberry milkshakes with all the milk removed. When I find you, and I will, you will join the rest of us in the graveyard. I’m coming for you.”
The tape flickered, my heart shuttered and I had a small heart attack. You see jerry’s writhing internal organs get up and start doing a little dance. “Dance with me.” A disembodied voice said. “Dance with your jerry.” What the fuck. “Cmon, friend. Dance with your jerry.” The organs continued to dance, writhing and the stomach contractions and other pulsations became increasingly morbid as they left the skeleton, crawled for a few seconds, and then collapsed into a bloody pile of puke.
“The end.” A voice whispered.
I didn’t want to watch this anymore. This wasn’t the family friendly program I had grown accustomed to- the blood, the gore- the violence, the lack of a plot emerging- but then! I screamed, as the organs crawled out of the tv and collapsed onto my satin throw pillow I keep in the family room. “Cool!” My son Jayden said, and touched the pulsing internal organs. “Radical!” It was my cat! My cat was talking. “Radical Thomas!” he yelled. Indeed, my cat had psychic telekinetic powers- I knew it all along.
I’m being controlled by the cat write now- as I write this, as you listen, as we listen- you are becoming one of the hive body- yes, for all the years you’ve been listening, and thinking, and thinking those thoughts that you are thinking- it never occurred to you that I was using feedback loops and subliminal mind programming.
“I’m crazy dave!” Hecklehkrhe! There was a pumpkin dancing outside my window! I screamed in horror, and I saw tape out there, it was raining tape. VHS tape, the kind you could find in the ‘90s at your local blockbuster, and if you didn’t rewind they charged a fee. “Well this is the fee.” My cat whispered, staring at me.
Suddenly I saw a delicious apple pie cooling by my window sill. “Cmon through the window!” The cat said- and jumped through the window. That wasn’t a window- it was a portal into the VHS dimension- there are many portals and that was one of them. “Doors are stupid- let’s use windows!” My lamp suddenly grew legs, got up and joined the window. Wait a minute- lamps don’t have legs. The table legs also grew legs. Tiny legs were growing on everything, in fact. That darn cat.
“When you get older you realize everything’s a lie. But you knew when you were a kid this was an illusion- cmon, jump through the window!” I didn’t want to jump through that window. There were dead bodies in there and I knew if I went in there I would die- but. I had an idea. Have you ever seen a venus fly trap eat itself? What about a black hole colliding with another black hole? Do you know what a paradox is? Do you realize you’re being recorded as we speak? “You don’t want to do this Katelyn.” The voice said, it was my cat. “We all love tom and jerry, it was a great cartoon- but if you throw that cartoon into the cartoon- well, my heart is in my fist.” The walls began to bend and crumple like a tin can as my tom-and-jerry wallpaper began running along the wall. I’m a huge jerry fan, and the moment they see that part of you, you lock it up and put it somewhere no one can ever find it.
I had to fight the cat- this was just a stray- just a stray I picked up- nobody know where knows what television does- this is all a dream- a hoax- an illusion. “You don’t want this, you don’t want to throw a window out the window you don’t want that.” I hit eject on my vcr, pressing my index finger heavily into the player. The tape popped out- The lost tom and jerry vhs tapes, and there are millions- millions of eyes were peering at me as the temperature in my apartment sunk to 30 degrees. I began to shake, the drops of sweat on my brow instantly freezing.
“If you throw that out- throw us out- throw this out- throw us out.” The tape had a mouth. I screamed. It had teeth, and eyes! “Throw me out!” He yelled. “Throw me out!” He yelled again.
This was all just reverse psychology, the creators at Hannah Barbara knew I’d be too afraid. They’d send magilla gorilla to break my legs. But not in my house- not today- NOT TODAY! I picked up the VHS tape and chucked it out the window, to the sound of screaming. SCREAMING! “AHHHH!” It screamed. “AHHH!” I screamed. The tom and jerry home houseware clock set exploded, tom exiting his cuckoo chamber and bursting into flames. The floor- the tom floor- was less tom, and when I opened the door- there was just another door! And behind that door- another door, door after door. Door door. Door.
And in the end you will become everything you hate.
I was letting go of my human things- my petty, frivolous human things. But what about cholera, property taxes, reality television and the harlem globetrotters? I’m frozen in stone- everything you feared is true, and more, and it’s coming to your door. It’ll be here soon- death is on its way. Maybe then you’ll feel for one day what I’ve felt my whole life.
I couldn’t let go- that cat and mouse thing- like a drowning man lining his pockets with gold coins- I dove in after the tape, and hear I am- and hear you are, and who wrote this? Not me, not you, not today, not tomorrow, even in your wildest dreams the worst of the worst is the best of what you’ll experience now. And me- I’m just a mouse. I’ve got to get away- I’ve gotta run away from that darn cat. I can’t escape him- he’s a part of me.
Don’t ever be afraid to leave this world- there’s a whole… cartoon kitchen out there and the animators won’t even bother to draw you- they’re too afraid, so you’ll be in every frame, every scene, every part of the scenery. There’s a whole- cartoon kitchen out there and me? Pft. I’m fine. I’m the chair in every tom and jerry cartoon. I’m the chair in every tom and jerry cartoon!