. Needs a Better Description
, mice are often portrayed as nice and heroic even though they are common household pests.
Being very small and cute, yet traditionally wild, the mouse is an animal often used as a metaphor for someone easily underestimated. Thus, mouse character and humanoid mouse races tent to be heroic and really good people, yet easily underestimated. In many works, this last trait is something they have grown to deeply resent. It's hard to demand respect from someone when you can't even reach his knees and your voice is very squeaky - no matter how brave you are.
These mice characters designed to be likable one way or another. Some are heroic, some are nice, and some are both.
Contrast You Dirty Rat
for rodents (more specifically rats) who are portrayed as disgusting and maybe carriers of literal or metaphorical disease. Also related to You Dirty Rat
- In The Chronicles of Narnia, mice is the most badass race, and the only race that gets a racial storyline of its own. All other races of talking animals are given speech as a divine gift at the dawn of time. The mice, however, are so small and insignificant that they are overlooked by Aslan himself. However...
- Moving on to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the mice earn their rank among the ascended animals by making a heroic attempt at Save Your Deity.
- In that story, mice chew off the ropes that bind The body of Aslan. As a result, mice are promoted to that rank of talking animal, and many years latter the mice are considered among the most bravest and honorable of all the animals. The chief of the mice, Reepicheep features in Prince Caspian and Voyage of the Dawn Treader as one of the main heroes of the books.
- In Prince Caspian the mouse militia fearlessly go up against far larger enemies, routinely taking them out by being ignored in the fray and chopping them from underneath. Culminating in the Heroic Sacrifice of their commander Reepicheep and his army's quite special way of dealing with that situation.
- In Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Reepicheep is one of the main charactes, and arguably the bravest of them all. Lucy works quite hard to resist her urge of cuddling him, since she understand that such behavior from her would hurt his pride. The local Jerkass human taunts him for his size, but he quickly teaches the far larger human to fear him. Also, while the other heroes just happen to be on that journey for miscellaneous reasons, Reepicheep is the one doing the journey as a holy quest. The book ends with his ascension into unity with God.
- In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, mice are revealed to be highly intelligent pan-dimensional beings; the little furry squeaky things we see are just their avatars in this dimension. Millions of years ago, they built the super computer Deep Thought as a means of discovering the Answer to the Great Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything. They succeeded.
- Despereaux and the other mice in The Tale of Despereaux (rats are bad, except for Chiarascuro, who is good)
- In The Wonderful Wizard of Oz fieldmice rescue Dorothy, Lion, and Toto from the poppy field by dragging them away. (In the film The Wizard of Oz Glinda makes it snow to rescue them.)
- Pinky and the Brain: Pinky is nice, if completely cracked. The Brain -- not so much, but he's a Jerk with a Heart of Gold.
- Tom and Jerry: a lot of Jerry's nastiness is in provoked self-defense from Tom, but some of it is just tormenting Tom for the hell of it. When it comes to other animals, though, Jerry is pretty universally nice. He's nice to canaries, baby woodpeckers, baby ducks, baby seals, escaped lions, circus Elephants (on more than one occasion even).
- Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse: Both are nice. Hands down.
- Subverted with Mortimer Mouse though.
- Hanna-Barbera: Dixie and Pixie were usually only acting in defense from Mr. Jinks, and only did the stealing of the cheese to survive, if memory serves.
- Looney Tunes: Speedy Gonzales is a mouse who pretty much only steals cheese to help his compadres. Sniffles is well-meaning, if annoying.
- The mice from Capitol Critters were nice.