TAKE ME TO THE PICTURES
EPISODE TYPE: Growth Ray (Potion) & Blink Moment
(see Common Themes section for more on this category)
WHAT IS (unnamed) RAT?: A non anthro, non furry, gray rat
IS HE MACRO ORIGINALLY?: No
HOW DID HE BECOME MACRO?: Zapped by a growth ray
MACRO NAME: (If different from regular sized name) --SAME AS BEFORE--
REVIEW OF EPISODE: Your typical, someone small being told they are small all throughout the episode, only for it to come in handy towards the end situation. Been done before and after many times. This time though it wasn't the one being called small fry and short that became big, it was just some random rat and Molly actually got even smaller if anything. It's too bad this was a blink moment for the rat as it was a unique and different creature to get the macro treatment. And the rat did make for a good creature. They gave him an actual personality throughout the episode that in some way built up his character. As a rat he wasn't your typical stupid rat. He knew how to take care of rat traps and seemed fearless against anything and was more trouble then they had anticipated when everyone shrunk. But it was very limiting if anything and his moments as a giant ended as quickly as they came about.
It's too bad that this didn't work as well as it could have. The reason that this doesn't quite pull off an interesting situation is due to the way they have the machine that causes size changing set up. This is supposed to take place in the 1930's or so, and that being the case a lot of things that we take for granted today (laser beams and small devices and push button dials) were all not possible if they want to historically make this work. So think about what had to be done when the first computers were being used. They took up whole rooms and were big and clunky and awkward. That's pretty much the principle here behind this size changing device. They had four huge spires set up in the room and anything that was in between the four spires would be hit by an electric volt of some sort and that would give the size change after some spinning of some huge cranks and stuff occurred. Anything outside of the barrier of the four spires would be unaffected by the volts that were caused by the machine. So that being the case, they had to have the now giant rat stay in between the four spires, otherwise they wouldn't have been able to shrink him and the episode was towards the end by the time he did get to be big. It was a quick and silly situation where he had to stand there the whole time and growling and snarling and stuff and it was totally out of character to the rat we saw previously. He was still his tough and no nonsense self but he couldn't move from his position so there was very little that could be done and they ended it just as quickly by Molly using the fact that she is short to sneak by the rat and plug in the machine and the rat is about to finally jump out of his position only to be shrunk back down just in time. Having done very little but slam a paw down and growl a lot. It would have been nice if they showed the rat growing, but they wanted to make it a sorta surprise to everyone so they just show the rat zapped for a split second only to zoom out moments later after a huge growl is heard and they show the big rat now standing there.
This episode was very different then the usual Talespin episode. It almost was like they either ran out of ideas or had to figure out a way to get in their token Disney size changing episode into the series and this is what they came up with. Most of the times the episodes had to do with Baloo using his flying skills to outsmart the bad guys or to get out of some situation. This was a classic character shrunk and has to deal with the dangers of the now gigantic seeming room. Besides the fact that the rat is actually a cool character and given the right situation may have made a good macro monster, it is nothing original and gets sillier as it goes on. Moments like Baloo somehow getting his airplane, the Seaduck into the lab with no explanation as to how he got it inside with no garage or opening seen on either the outside of the building or inside of it to have made this possible. A swarm of hornets being defeated just because the shrunken Baloo used his Seaduck propeller on three of them. Some random centipede that looked like something out of Super Mario World becoming a horse of sorts for the shrunken Molly. And the fact that this lab was right out of the window to Hire for Hire when it was never there previously. Just some random building right there just made things a little too convient for my tastes. It wasn't like watching Talespin, it was more like watching a weird version of "Honey I shrunk the Kids" using Talespin characters in the place. I just think that this all could have worked better and they had some good ideas but it was too out of place and too silly and the giant rat just wasn't worth the build up that they created throughout the whole episode.
Overall I would have to say this was disappointing as far as a blink moment and even a size changing episode goes. I just feel they missed the boat here and could have come up with much better using the characters and rat and situation they came up with. Most of the situations were far fetched and other times they were just too convient to logically have worked if it weren't a cartoon with only 23 minutes to work with. If the rat had more moments macro or maybe if other characters got bigger too for awhile or even if the shrinking situation was handled better, this may have been a nice episode. As it stands it really is below average and doesn't give much to offer but some cool close ups of a giant rat who maybe was better off not getting involved with this mess in the first place. Shrinking fans will probably like the whole small person trapped in huge house situations that this episode gives, but giving that this page is a macro based one that's neither here nor there.
On a side note, Frank Welker and Dan Castellaneta both supply the voices for the newly introduced characters in this episode, (the Rat and Dr. Zhivaldo respectively) which is something that does save this episode a bit. Hearing two of the greatest voice actors in one episode is quite a treat and both are on par as usually is the case, as if second nature to them. They do save this episode as both give their characters personalities through the voice work they create for them. The doctor sounds a bit like Krusty from the Simpsons while the rat sounds like many creatures Welker has done before. (Not that that is a bad thing mind you)
MEMORABLE QUOTES AND MOMENTS IN EPISODE:
(The doctor looks alarmed as he tells everyone that his shrink machine has been activated)
Rebecca Cunningham "Tell me! Has my daughter been shrunk?"
Dr.: "Goodness. If she were do you know what this means? She is going to need a whole new wardrobe! What's more.. my invention.. WORKS!! IT WORKS!!"
(Rebecca has to keep the rat entertained while Molly goes to plug the machine back in. Rebecca waves up at it and calls for it in a sweet voice)
Rebecca: "Ummm.. Mr. Rat!!!?"
(The huge rat suddenly looks down at Rebecca)
Rebecca: "Did you hear about the two peanuts that got on the subway? One of them was a salted! Heh heh heh.."
(Baloo shakes his head as if they are doomed. Molly sneaks by the rat. The rat lets out a loud hiss at Rebecca and Baloo after the joke is told)
FINAL NOTES:*Talespin is loosely based on the Disney cartoon the Jungle Book. Baloo was the bear from it and he called the human Mowgli "Little Britches" much in the way Kit is called that by Baloo in this. Other characters like Shere Khan also make appearances but there really is very little reference besides that to Jungle Book as it's a new story taking place in a furry world with no humans of any kind. But does take place in the 1930's which is when the Jungle Book was taking place as well.
Factual -- There is no way that Baloo could have gotten the Seaduck into the building like was shown had happened. It is never explained how he got it in as they just show it suddenly being inside but there is no garage and no extending roof for them to have gotten the plane inside the building like they did and as quickly as they did.
Continuity -- After the doctor fixes the machine he comes out of it and all the switches and buttons suddenly look much larger then they were only a moment before. It looks like the size they would be if Kit and the doctor had shrunk but only moments before the machine wasn't as large as it looks now. At the end after the machine is destroyed it is back to it's normal scale again like it was at the beginning of the episode.
Continuity -- The machine was only supposed to be used to shrink things and the idea of making things bigger with it made the doctor laugh. But he explained that the machine was created for making it easier to take stuff with him on airplanes. That alone makes no sense as first of all what good with items shrunken be to him and you need the huge machine in the lab to return things to normal size again.
Continuity -- To make the machine be able to make things big the doctor has to go inside of it and rework things. So now when the same process occurs everyone was made regular sized and the rat bigger after another zap. Only a moment after this though the rat is shrunk back down using the same machine that was altered to make things big now. If it couldn't make things big without alterations and it was the same process used when it was a shrinking machine, it should have made the rat bigger not smaller the next time they used it on the rat.
+ :The rat is a unique animal to be macro and the one in this episode has a cool personality and makes the episode more then what it would have been otherwise. Some funny moments with the clueless doctor and Rebecca talking to the gigantic rat to get his attention.
- :A Blink moment that doesn't go anywhere. The rat is big for a short time and doesn't do much with his size due to the way the size machine was set up so the writers couldn't have the rat move out of a certain radius. A lot of far fetched and unoriginal situations make up a big part of this episode. Very different then your typical Talespin episode as this episode comes off more as a stretch for it to have worked in the Talespin universe. No growth of the rat was shown. Just him getting zapped for a moment.
PICTURES OF RAT
A small rat problem turns into one really huge rat problem after a rat gets hit in the beams of an enlarging ray. Now Baloo and friends have a lot more to handle than they were prepared for.