Created By: XFllo on August 15, 2015 Last Edited By: eroock on March 13, 2018

Chariot Drawn By Cats

A cat-drawn (or big-cat-drawn) cart, chariot, carriage or sleigh. Played for awesomeness or laughs.

Name Space:
Main
Page Type:
Trope

Discussion:

  • We need input on whether to extend this idea to other unusual animals pulling the vehicle.

Description:

Cool and unusual vehicle pulled by cats or big cats. Used for awesomeness or comedy.

(Draft description to be added. I intend to work on it, but ideas are welcome!)


Trope title ideas:


Examples:

Literature
  • In Bubaci a Hastrmani (Bogeymen and Water Goblins) by Josef Lada, a kindly, good-natured water goblin Brčál has a vehicle pulled by six black cats. In the animated version, he only has four of them. Inspired by Czech mythology.
  • From Dave Barry's Year in Review (2000):
    [...] there is tension at the Democratic convention in Los Angeles, where the Gore camp suspects that Bill Clinton is trying to hog the limelight. A Clinton staffer denies this, claiming that "security considerations" led to the decision to have the president enter the convention hall riding a chariot drawn by lions.
  • In several of the Land of Oz books, Princess Ozma's chariot is pulled by the Cowardly Lion and the Hungry Tiger. This is often the extent of their participation in the books.

Live Action TV
  • In Community episode "Basic Intergluteal Numismatics", Star-Burns tries to develop the world's first cat-powered vehicle. He's seen trying to escape on a prototype. In a Brick Joke, there appears a crowd-funding video in which Star-Burns asks for donations for his cat car idea.

Mythology
  • As part of her role as goddess of war, the Babylonian goddess Ishtar is depicted as riding in a chariot drawn by seven lions.
  • The Greek Mythology deity Dionysus is shown in artwork as being in a chariot drawn by panthers.
  • Goddess Freyja, goddess of love from Norse Mythology, drives a chariot pulled by two black or grey cats.
  • Cybele, a Phrygian mother goddess worshipped by the Greeks and (eventually) Romans as a goddess of nature, mountains, wild animals, magic, and city walls, is often depicted driving in her chariot drawn by lions.
  • Water goblins (evil beings residing in water areas like rivers or ponds who drown people and store their spirits in pots) from Czech mythology traditionally drive (or ride in) a carriage pulled by six black cats, though it's not their most known feature.
  • Jakub Krčín of Jelčany is a real person who founded many fish ponds in southern Bohemia. A legend of him emerged after his death — he was so successful in his business because he made a deal with the devil. He is seen riding in a shabby black carriage drawn by six black tom-cats.

Tabletop Games
  • Warhammer: High elves have chariots pulled by white lions.

Web Original
  • This gif features a guy driving a cart pulled by five grey cats. It's heavily edited.

Western Animation
  • Crazy cat lady of The Simpsons is seen in the intro to "White Christmas Blues" driving a sleigh pulled by several of her cats.
  • In the Looney Tunes short "Kiss Me Cat" (a sequel to "Feed the Kitty"), Marc Anthony tries to get Pussyfoot to catch the mouse that has been raiding the kitchen. Instead, the mouse hitches Pussyfoot to a wagon and uses him to get more food.
  • Filmation produced the cartoon series Tarzan Lord Of The Jungle in 1976. The lost City of Gold has Queen Nemone riding in a chariot drawn by a pair of lions because she's an Alpha Bitch. Her royal guards also use paired lion chariots, most especially Phobeg, the queen's most badass guard.


Indexes:

Community Feedback Replies: 62
  • August 15, 2015
    shimaspawn
    Does it have to be cats? Or can it be any unusual animal to have power a vehicle. I think the later would get us better examples.
  • August 15, 2015
    Berrenta
    ^ Seconded. Expanding the focus to incorporate other animals will increase viability for this trope.
  • August 15, 2015
    XFllo
    Well, I actually think it should be just cats. I think it's strange that there are quite a few examples already. We have Swan Boats and Horse Of A Different Color and Dragon Rider — these are also quite specific. But if there are more examples with unusual animals, then I guess it would be ok to expand the definition and the trope would be very broad.
  • August 15, 2015
    Chabal2
    • From Dave Barry's year in Review (2000):
      [...] there is tension at the Democratic convention in Los Angeles, where the Gore camp suspects that Bill Clinton is trying to hog the limelight. A Clinton staffer denies this, claiming that "security considerations" led to the decision to have the president enter the convention hall riding a chariot drawn by lions.
    • Warhammer Fantasy: High elves have chariots pulled by white lions.
  • August 16, 2015
    Arivne
    This is startlingly common in ancient mythology.

    Mythology
    • As part of her role as goddess of war, the Babylonian goddess Ishtar is depicted as riding in a chariot drawn by seven lions.
    • The Greek Mythology deity Dionysus is shown in artwork as being in a chariot drawn by panthers.

    One of the first two is probably the Ur Example.
  • August 16, 2015
    XFllo
    ^ Thanks, Arivne, I added Ishtar and Dionysus. Freya was one of my first examples in the draft :-) Though I noticed this wiki spells her Freyja.

    ^^ I don't know what category Dave Barry should be in. I've seen him in folder titled "comedy" or "newspaper".
  • August 16, 2015
    Arivne
    • Blue Linked (Norse mythology).
    • Corrected spelling (wno -> who, apppears).
  • August 16, 2015
    Chabal2
    ^^ Put him in Literature.
  • August 16, 2015
    XFllo
    ^ The Review is what exactly — an artcile, or a book? I ask because of formatting. :-)
  • August 16, 2015
    LordGro
    More Mythology:
    • Cybele, a Phrygian mother goddess also worshipped by the Greeks and (eventually) Romans as a goddess of nature, mountains, wild animals, magic, and city walls, is often depicted driving in her chariot drawn by lions.
  • August 16, 2015
    Chabal2
    It's a newspaper column, but many of his columns are compiled into books as well.
  • August 16, 2015
    TonyG
    Needs A Better Description
    • In the Looney Tunes short "Kiss Me Cat" (a sequel to "Feed The Kitty"), Marc Anthony tries to get Pussyfoot to catch the mouse that has been raiding the kitchen. Instead, the mouse hitches Pussyfoot to a wagon and uses him to get more food.
  • August 16, 2015
    randomsurfer
    • In several of the Land Of Oz books Princess Ozma's chariot is pulled by the Cowardly Lion and the Hungry Tiger. This is often the extent of their participation in the books.
  • August 17, 2015
    Snicka
    I favour the idea of having chariots pulled by unusual animals in general instead of cats only - like Horse Of A Different Colour, except not as mounts but as carriage pullers. So horses, oxen or reindeer don't count, but other, more strange animals do.
    • In The Hobbit, Radagast the Brown's sleigh is pulled by giant rabbits (Radagast calls them "Rhosgobel rabbits").
    • In The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe, the White Witch goes to battle in a carriage pulled by polar bears. (At least in the movie she does, I haven't read the book.)
  • August 17, 2015
    XFllo
    ^ It would make more sense to keep that in another trope, likely a supertrope to this draft, and keep cats and big cats as its subtrope. But I'll respect the communituy's wishes.
  • August 18, 2015
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ You haven't given a reason for focusing on cats, other than just having examples, which isn't enough to make a trope without a solid concept. So what's the concept that makes cats stand out over other atypical animals?
  • August 18, 2015
    Chabal2
    ^ Possibly cats being independent and unlikely to work with each other.

    If we go beyond cats:
    • The Iliad: In order to avoid being drafted into the Trojan War, Odysseus tries Obfuscating Insanity by greeting the delegation of kings by plowing the beach and sowing salt with a plow pulled by a donkey and an ox. He is found out when his wife and infant son are placed in the plow's path.
    • Lucky Luke: One story has Luke escort a wagon convoy west. At one point the convoy packs up and leaves in the dark, hitching animals without checking who they belong to, resulting in wagons being pulled by pairs of donkeys, horses, cows, and one very confused buffalo.

  • August 18, 2015
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ Not the only animal that does that, so it's still not a good reason to focus solely on cats.
  • August 18, 2015
    Rjinswand
    I'd suggest broadening the trope to include any Real Life animals that aren't usually used for pulling chariots.
  • August 18, 2015
    XFllo
    My thoughts were in this direction: this seems to be related to Cats Are Magic, that's why I think it should be kept separate.

    I don't think Odysseus fits at all. He was ploughing, so it is not an insance of Travel Cool. Oxes and horses are common animals to pull a vehicle, especially in agriculture. I'm not sure about donkeys, but they might work as well. Lucky Luke seems a bit different, considering the wild west context, but only the buffalo really stands out. :-)
  • August 19, 2015
    Sharlee
    I agree that this trope should be broadened to include non-feline species. Creatures like the sleigh-pulling boars from Hogfather or Radagast's sledge-team of rabbits in The Hobbit surely aren't any more manageable than cats, as draft animals, and carry much the same overtones of magic as the OP was going for.

    Sled dogs, much like horses, donkeys, mules, oxen and reindeer, should still be omitted from this trope, as pulling things around is what their breeds exist for; however, types of dog that aren't normally expected to pull vehicles would probably qualify. Camels and llamas are occasionally used to pull carts IRL, so should also be exempt.
  • August 19, 2015
    DragonQuestZ
    Unusual Sled Animals could be the new name.
  • August 24, 2015
    Dalillama
  • August 24, 2015
    WalterSmith
    I propose this trope picture, if you will.

  • August 24, 2015
    LikeSnowyNights
    If cats are particularly significant then it can have its own section in the trope like how nekomata and oni have their own section in the Yokai page
  • August 25, 2015
    XFllo
    Soft-split pages are the worst. :-( They are very hard to manage in my opinion.
  • August 29, 2015
    XFllo
    Hmm, seems like the majority is in fabour of doing it not cats-only way. Ox Of A Different Colour seems like a good idea. Seems like a sister trope to Horse Of A Different Colour.
  • August 29, 2015
    LordGro
    Not sure if that is the best name, because horses are common draft animals too. Plus it is a snowclone, because "horse of a different color" is an idiom, while "ox" etc is not. Also, both horses and oxen are used to pull carts and plows; if the latter is excluded, the trope name should preferably indicate that.
  • August 30, 2015
    Arivne
    Horse Of A Different Color is about using creatures other than horses to fill the roles of horses. It includes the following:

    Horse-replacements may also be used as draft animals.

    To replace the larger draft animals, vaguely ox-like creatures and large lizards seem to be popular, and some may be Mix-and-Match Critters.

    So this will be a Sub Trope of Horse Of A Different Color, and the above statements can be changed to Pot Hole to it when it's launched.
  • August 30, 2015
    DragonQuestZ
    ^ No, that is about fictional creatures, while this is about real ones. So this would be a Sister Trope.
  • August 30, 2015
    oneuglybunny
    Western Animation
    • Filmation produced the cartoon series Tarzan Lord Of The Jungle in 1976. The lost City of Gold has Queen Nemone riding in a chariot drawn by a pair of lions because she's an Alpha Bitch. Her royal guards also use paired lion chariots, most especially Phobeg, the queen's most badass guard.
  • August 31, 2015
    Snicka
    ^^ Actually, some examples in Horse Of A Different Color use real life species that are simply unusual choices as mounts.
  • September 29, 2015
    BOFH
    The image on some versions of "The Cart" (one of the major arcana cards of a Tarot deck) is a chariot drawn by two sphinxes.
  • November 1, 2015
    DAN004
    ^ you mean The Chariot
  • November 1, 2015
    DAN004
    So Horse Of A Different Color counts unusual carriage pullers too? If so then we don't need this.
  • November 1, 2015
    NoirGrimoir
    I'm willing to entertain that this could be it's own trope, but an actual description as to what makes fantastic chariot animals different/special compared to fantastic mounts. Like is there specific plot points that tend to happen around this version only? Same with it being only cats. What's the difference between if this was cats or say lizards? If there isn't one, that's a problem.

    If you can't satisfactorily answer these questions than there is no point to this.
  • November 2, 2015
    oneuglybunny
    I believe this could be a characterization trope, in that cats are not draft animals; they'll rip you to flinders if you try to harness them. Therefore anyone who succeeds in making felines substitute for equines must be a) awesome (Batman), b) a wizard (Merlin), c) nigh omnipotent (Darth Vader), or d) cuckoo (crazy Cat Lady). It's also a sign of highly unconventional thinking.
  • November 2, 2015
    DAN004
    ^ what do you think of other non-draft animals?
  • November 2, 2015
    oneuglybunny
    ^ Offhand, it seems there are enough examples particular to cats to warrant a distinctive trope, with non-draft animals as a whole as a supertrope. Most telling is the six examples under Mythology and Folklore, indicating that cats as a hitch team is a grandfathered mechanism, which has fallen into disuse upon the invention of the automobile.
  • January 21, 2016
    Kartoonkid95
    • In the Popeye cartoon Seasin's Greetinks, Bluto is introduced being drawn on a sled driven by a small dog.
  • January 21, 2016
    mariovsonic999
    • In Age Of Wonders 3, the Tigran Sabertooth Chariot are pulled by sabertooth tigers and the Frostling Ice Queen are pulled by polar bears.
  • January 21, 2016
    Snicka
    ^^^ It's not about the number of examples. I still fail to see what makes cats special compared to other unusual, fantastic carriage pullers. Bears, for example, are also untameable and fierce, therefore a carriage pulled by bears is equally awesome / insane, and a handful of bear examples came up already here.

    I'd say a carriage-pulling animal compared to a mount is distinct enough to have it as a Sister Trope to Horse Of A Different Color. The power relationship is different: a mount has a close, special bond with its rider, based on mutual respect, while carriage-pullers are more like slaves, with the carriage-driver dominating them, therefore having a special mount and having a carriage pulled by unusual animals tells something different about the rider / driver.
  • May 9, 2017
    XFllo
    This was abandoned a year ago. I remembered I started this trope idea, and I would like to start working on it again — and see if this should be discarted and incorporate the ideas to existing tropes, or we will see if it might have its own page.
  • May 9, 2017
    Astaroth
    In Warlords Battlecry, The Empire's Titan unit is The Lion Throne, a war chariot pulled by lions.
  • May 9, 2017
    oneuglybunny
    I propose that this become a child trope to Horse Of A Different Color. Ancient Egypt had the cat-headed Bastet (or Ubaste) as a warrior god and defender of the throne. The medieval period had witches' cats, called familiars. At the time, close association with cats came to denote magic or specialness, sort of like a human unicorn. Of course, nowadays there are other cues that signify magicians / wizards / sorcerors and such, making this a Forgotten Trope. Still, in period works, someone who can harness cats into a hitch team hints at Reality Warper powers.
  • May 12, 2017
    alnair20aug93
    Cat-illac?
  • May 12, 2017
    Snicka
    If the trope is limited to cats, but also includes cats that are ridden like a horse, Cat A Mount would be a great punny name ("catamount" being a name for the large American wild cat also known as cougar or puma).
  • May 17, 2017
    Pichu-kun
    I've only heard of this trope with rabbits or rodents, never cats.
  • May 18, 2017
    alnair20aug93
    ^^ Should it be expanded, He Man and Tyrande Whisperwind from War Craft (the RTS games) comes in mind.
  • May 18, 2017
    Snicka
    ^^ I've also seen carriages pulled by swans in fiction. That's why I suggested that this trope should be "carriages drawn by any kind of unusual animals" in the first place.
  • August 10, 2017
    alnair20aug93
    "Meow." It's feline for "bump."
  • November 9, 2017
    Theriocephalus
    Personally, I support the idea of making this a sister trope to Horse Of A Different Color and expanding it to include the use of any "exotic" animal (i.e. not oxen, draft horses, sled dogs, etc.) as beasts of burden. There just doesn't seem to me to be a good thematic reason to only include cats — the reasoning seems to be that they're difficult to train and associated with magic, but these things apply to a lot of animals.

    Anyway, if the trope does get expanded, here's some examples for later. I included some examples I saw in the comments to put them all in one place.

    • In The Hobbit, Radagast is shown riding a sled pulled by a team of enormous rabbits.

    • In The Death Gate Cycle, the humans of Arianus use a species of enormous flightless birds known as tiers as beasts of burden.
    • In Leviathan, the Darwinists use a large variety of bio-engineered creatures as chariot-pullers and beasts of burden. Among those seen are elephantines and mammothines (presumably modified elephants and mammoths) as well as a cart pulled by a pair of wolf-tiger hybrid creatures.
    • In The Lion The Witch And The Wardrobe, Jadis the White Witch rides a chariot pulled by a pair of polar bears in battle.

    • Norse Mythology:
      • Thor rides a chariot pulled by a pair of billy goats.

    • Warhammer
      • The Dark Elves use chariots pulled by Cold Ones — essentially, vicious, scaly Jurassic Park-style raptors.
      • The Beastmen use chariots drawn by enormous, mutated boars covered in bony spikes.
      • Among the Greenskins, Orcs use chariots drawn by normal (but still huge and foul-tempered) boars, while the Goblins use wolf-drawn chariots instead.
  • October 19, 2017
    darkemyst
    If this becomes a sister trope to Horse Of A Different Color which I personally consider the best of the provided options here are some non-cat examples:

    Mythology
    • Classical Mythology:
      • Aphrodite's chariot is drawn by swans or geese when not being pulled by the Erotes.
      • Apollo's sacred swans pulled his chariot.
      • Artemis's chariot was pulled by a pair of her sacred deer.
      • Demeter gave Triptolemus a serpent drawn winged chariot after she was reunited with her daughter Persephone and her own chariot was drawn by her dragons.
      • Medea's chariot was pulled by flying dragons that were born of Titans blood.
      • Poseidon had a pair of hippocamps draw his chariot.

    Perhaps the cats can have their own soft split section with other animals listed beneath.
  • September 4, 2017
    Snicka
    In a quick vote count, it's 9 people suggesting to extend this to any unusual carriage beast (including myself) versus 3 people keeping it cat-exclusive.
  • September 8, 2017
    darkemyst
    For another which applies only if this trope ends up as sister to Horse Of A Different Color with the inclusion of fictional animals:

    Mythology and Folklore
    • The Korean gye-lyong, a cockatrice like dragon, is depicted as a chariot puller for various legendary figures.
  • October 28, 2017
    alnair20aug93
    S'more image proposals:
  • November 9, 2017
    WaterBlap
    This needs to be expanded to other animals. In Norse Mythology alone, I can think of at least three animals that pull chariots (cats, boars, and goats). Also, there's still no description despite the example list.
  • November 9, 2017
    PistolsAtDawn
    I vote for expand. also, here's an image with polar bears

    http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/tv_7.jpg

    • The cover of The Silver Warriors features a man in a sled being pulled by (weirdly tiny) polar bears
  • December 4, 2017
    Lymantria
    Expand the trope to other unusaul chariot-pulling animals, like with Horse Of A Different Color for ridden animals.
  • February 11, 2018
    XFllo
    Thanks for all your input. I hope to work on this. Current consensus leans to include all unsual animals used to pull chariots or sleds, and make this draft into a sister trope to Horse Of A Different Color.
  • February 23, 2018
    darkemyst
    Webcomics
    • The giant dogs characters ride instead of horses in Unsounded are also used to pull carriages.
  • March 13, 2018
    darkemyst
    Webcomics
    • In Girl Genius the Geisterdamen have a number of monsterous draft animals, including giant fuzzy things with webbed feet and tentacled faces and some kind of gigantic pale crustacean.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=pu461ny33o15zuqh927bussd