[[quoteright:320:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Itchy_and_Scratchy_Show_713.png]]

->''"They fight! They bite!"''

''TheItchyAndScratchyShow'' is a [[ShowWithinAShow Show Within a Show WITHIN a Show]] on ''TheSimpsons''[[note]]which itself was a Show Within a Show, from ''The Tracey Ullman Show''[[/note]]. It passes itself off as a cat and mouse chase, based on the old cartoon shorts of ''WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry'' and ''WesternAnimation/HermanAndKatnip'' (mostly the latter). The cartoons are usually aired during ''The Krusty the Klown Show''.

The show was part of ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' since the first season, and since Season 2 there have been episodes directly involving the company that makes the cartoons, establishing a rich history/backstory that starts in TheSilentAgeOfAnimation and hits many of the medium's high and low points in the West. They even got their own VideoGame or two as well as a short comic book series (which crossed over with ''[=BartMan=]'' in the ''[[CrisisCrossover When Bongos Collide]]'' story).

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!!This Show in a Show provides examples of:
* AdolfHitler: Makes a cameo in a 1940s style WartimeCartoon.
** steamrollers an immobile Scratchy in a King's Speech Parody.
* AmusingInjuries: Especially to the people in "The Simpsons" universe. For us as viewers, the violence is horribly over-the-top and especially unfit for a children's audience.
* ArtShift: The ''Itchy and Scratchy'' cartoon "Spherical on 34th Street" is animated differently.
** The "Marge-approved" shorts aired during "Itchy & Scratchy & Marge" had a subtle art shift. Itchy and Scratchy's eyes are drawn with a noticeably "softer" feel.
** The aforementioned wartime cartoon is animated in a style reminiscent of 1940s cartoons.
** ''Itchy & Scratchy Meet Fritz the Cat'' has an R. Crumb-inspired look.
* AxCrazy: Itchy. In fact, Itchy is a mixture of Ax Crazy and [[TheSociopath sociopath]], sadistically killing Scratchy in various painful ways.
* AssholeVictim: One WartimeCartoon featuring them has them [[EnemyMine team up against]] NaziGermany
* {{Autocannibalism}}: In one short, Itchy (disguised as a restaurant employee) serves Scratchy his own belly. The unknowing Scratchy's attempt at eating it only results in the bits of it he swallows popping back out of a hole cut in it.
* BlackComedy / DeadBabyComedy
* BloodyHilarious
* ButtMonkey: Scratchy.
* CatStereotype: Scratchy plays the unlucky part of the black cat stereotype.
* TheChewToy: Scratchy
* ComedicSociopathy: In every episode, Itchy murders Scratchy in some horrible manner just for fun. Viewers in-story invariably find it hilarious.
* CosmicPlaything: Scratchy. Even the show's incarnation of ''God himself'' sides with Itchy killing him (and even sends him to burn in hell for the cream on top).
* CreatorsPet: Poochie, InUniverse. After mountains of hype, his premiere episode is little more than a giant shill of why kids should like him.
* CruelAndUnusualDeath: Scratchy suffers one OnceAnEpisode.
* DarkerAndEdgier: In TheDarkAgeOfAnimation, I&S appeared in the adults-only animated feature ''Itchy & Scratchy Meet Fritz the Cat''.
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: There's often a ShoutOut to another film or cartoon series.
* EarlyInstallmentWeirdness:
** In the show's history, early cartoons were fairly routine. In their first appearance in a Tracey Ullman-era short called "The Bart Simpson Show" Itchy places a firecracker in Scratchy's mouth; in their first series' appearance (Season 1's "There's No Disgrace Like Home"), the show is simply another "place a bomb in Itchy's mouth and watch the explosion" cartoon. Future cartoons would be more detailed.
** Add to that in both cartoons, Scratchy actually started the feud chasing Itchy like a traditional cat and mouse cartoon. Episodes afterwards skipped the formalities and just started with Itchy brutalizing Scratchy for kicks.
** In-universe, "Manhattan Madness", a cartoon created entirely by Chester J. Lampwick, only features Itchy and had him visiting Manhattan to attack people. "That Happy Cat", meanwhile, is a solo Scratchy effort by Roger Myers Sr. with {{no plot|NoProblem}} whatsoever. Then Myers stole Itchy and his formula and used them in "Steamboat Itchy", and the rest is history.
* EnemyMine: The duo brutalized Hitler in one war time cartoon (before Itchy double crossed Scratchy and decapitated him too). Another has them team up against an annoying blue haired squirrel berating their antics (see TakeThat).
* ExposedAnimalBellybutton
* EyeScream: Often.
* FurAndLoathing: Parodied. Itchy steals Scratchy's skin, fur and all. When Scratchy gets it back, and tries to put it back on, fur protesters beat him up for wearing his own fur.
* FurryFemaleMane: Many of the female InexplicablyIdenticalIndividuals Itchies and Scratchies have this trait. All of the female Itchies ad Scratchies in "Downton Tabby" have human-style hair, but so do some of the male ones.
* GameShowAppearance: Itchy and Scratchy appeared on an episode of ''[[TheHollywoodSquares The Springfield Squares]]''.
* {{Gorn}}
* HollywoodAcid: Often employed. Always used to reduce Scratchy to a skeleton.
* ImAHumanitarian: A few episodes have Itchy actively ''cannibalizing'' Scratchy, whether by turning him into butter that Itchy puts on his toast, or by selling his internal organs to some hungry dogs.
* InexplicablyIdenticalIndividuals: Many of the cartoons do this with both Itchy and Scratchy, including "Downton Tabby." The InexplicablyIdenticalIndividuals of both can be either male or female.
* KarmaHoudini: Itchy, who never receives any punishment for his brutal and unprovoked attacks on Scratchy (except for one episode).
* LighterAndSofter: After Marge's crusade to tone down the show's violence succeeded, the show went through a phase invoking this trope.
* MoralMyopia: Itchy constantly abuses, torments, mutilates, and murders Scratchy and enjoys it all the while. But if someone else takes enjoyment out of watching Scratchy be in pain, he gets all up in arms.
* TheMovie: In-story, the show had a movie released in theaters and either had a sequel or rerelease at the start of ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsonsMovie''.
* TheMusical: In-story, the cartoon received a stage adaptation in the form of ''Stab-A-Lot'', a parody of ''Theatre/TheLionKing''.
* MrAltDisney: Itchy and Scratchy's inventor[[note]] well, Scratchy's inventor at least[[/note]], Roger Myers Sr, is a thinly disguised spoof of WaltDisney with his theme park and the urban legends surrounding his antisemitism and being cryogenically frozen after his death.
* NiceMice: Averted with Itchy.
* OhCrap: Several shorts have Scratchy seeing his impending doom coming, and screaming in terror as he hopelessly tries to avoid it.
* OlderThanTelevision: OlderThanRadio, even. the UrExample being honoured is George Herriman's newspaper cartoon dating from 1913, ''ComicStrip/KrazyKat'', syndicated nationally and revolving around the titular Krazy, a cat who is forever on the receiving end of flying bricks from a sadistic mouse called Ignatz.
** The concept may even be much, much, OlderThanSteam: there are Egyptian drawings from 3,000 years ago showing mice enthroned as Pharoah receiving tribute from subservient cats. One drawing shows a mouse-Pharoah ordering the death of a cat-serf who has displeased him. Or her.
* OverlyLongTongue: Scratchy's isn't so much long as stretchy; at one point it gets tied to a rocket which reaches the moon before Scratchy even notices.
* PantslessMalesFullyDressedFemales: In "Downton Tabby," the female InexplicablyIdenticalIndividuals Scratchies are more fully dressed than the HalfDressedCartoonAnimal male Scratchies. Inverted slightly with the InexplicablyIdenticalIndividuals Itchies; both are fully dressed, but the female ones are barefoot while the male ones wear shoes.
* {{Plagiarism}}: In "The Day The Violence Died" it turns out that the character Itchy wasn't thought up by Roger Myers Sr, but by Chester J. Lampwick.
* PutOnABus: Poochie. "I must go now, my planet needs me"
** BusCrash: "Poochie died on the way back to his home planet."
*** Though that doesn't stop him from showing up for Scratchy's funeral in another episode.
* RememberTheNewGuy: Poochie. Didn't go without LampshadeHanging, of course.
* ReTool: Into a LighterAndSofter show. It was changed back when Marge Simpson, who started the protests against the show's violence, had a wholly different opinion on Michelangelo's David (which was on a coast-to-coast tour of the United States at the time) from the rest of the protesters.
** The first cartoon in 1928, "That Happy Cat" only showed Scratchy walking down the street and whistling. Unsurprisingly, it wasn't a success, and the series only caught on when Itchy and violence were added (read: [[PlagiarismInFiction stolen from Chester J. Lampwick]]).
* {{Retraux}}: Itchy and Scratchy are obvious homages to the violent cartoons from TheGoldenAgeOfAnimation like ''WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry'' and ''Herman and Katnip''.
* {{Sadist}}: Itchy, who else?
* SadistShow
* ScrewySquirrel: Oh, Itchy...
* ShooOutTheNewGuy: A character named "Poochie", voiced by Homer, was introduced, gelled horribly with the show, and was dumped hastily out of the show.
* ShootTheTelevision: The short "Little Barbershop of Horrors", "[[PenName written]]" by Abraham Simpson, ends with Scratchy's head (now just a skull) going through a ceiling and into ElvisPresley's television set. Elvis promptly produces a revolver and shoots Scratchy's skull through the TV.[[note]]Referring to an incident where Elvis shot a TV set in his hotel room, supposedly when Robert Goulet appeared on-screen. Depending on the teller, Elvis was mad at Goulet dating one of his backup singers, didn't like Goulet's singing, or just plain had an AxCrazy moment.[[/note]]
--> '''Elvis:''' Aww, this show ain't no good! ''*BANG!*''
* ShoutOut: Many, to various classic cartoons. A notable one is Itchy having the subtitle of The Lucky Mouse in his first, lost cartoon, referring of course to OswaldTheLuckyRabbit
* TheSociopath: Itchy.
* SpiritualSuccessor: To ''HermanAndKatnip'', rather than ''WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry''.
* StockSoundEffects: At times during the early seasons, Scratchy's yells are ''very'' similar (if not outright exact) to Homer's.
* SubvertedKidsShow
* TakeThat: In response to Marge Simpson's protests on the show, there was an episode featuring a squirrel with Marge's [[YouGottaHaveBlueHair blue]] BeehiveHairdo trying to break off Itchy and Scratchy's fighting... only to get killed by them.
** Also, the ''I&S'' cartoon at the beginning of ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsonsMovie'' has Itchy nuking the moon with missiles; the [[ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill most extreme]] option is listed as "accidental bombing", with "accidental" in quotation marks.
** Roger Myers Sr is a very unflattering portrayal of WaltDisney. The backstory of the I&S studio is a mishmash of conspiracy theories about the Disney Company.
* TeamRocketWins: The '[[MissingEpisode lost]]' episode where Scrachy finally gets revenge on Itchy by running him down with a combine harvester.
** A storyboarded episode had Itchy steal Scratchy's pie, so Scratchy threw him in a vat of acid. Unfortunately, this was during a massive censorship push, so if they went with Marge's suggestion, Itchy would have shared the pie. [[BrokenAesop Which he stole.]]
** "Burning Down The Mouse" is apparently the only aired episode where Scratchy wins, by blowing Itchy up with a large arsenal of explosives. Unfortunately, the viewers never get to see the end, because one of Homer's college roommates who are crashing at his house unplugs the TV and doesn't plug it back in until it's over, where the TV just turns back on in time to see a huge mushroom cloud and "The End" superimposed over the shot (followed by Krusty declaring that "They'll never let us air ''that'' again! Not in a million years!").
** ATasteOfDefeat: Another episode still had Itchy kill Scratchy, but lost as well, having set up the prank for so long that when it's over the aged Itchy dies of a heart attack laughing too hard.
* ThereIsNoKillLikeOverkill
* TheyKilledKenny: Itchy brutally kills Scratchy in most episodes, but he's always back for the next one.
* TooDumbToLive: Scratchy.
* TotallyRadical: Parodied with Poochie, who is instantly reviled by Itchy & Scratchy fans.
* VillainProtagonist: Itchy
* VitriolicBestBuds: Scratchy continues to hang around with Itchy, regardless of the constant attacks.
* WartimeCartoon: In one episode, we see a clip of an untitled UsefulNotes/WorldWarII-era short, where a very WesternAnimation/TomAndJerry-esque Itchy and Scratchy team up to torment and kill AdolfHitler. Immediately afterwards, Itchy turns on Scratchy and cuts his head off, joined by UsefulNotes/FranklinDRoosevelt to kick the bodies.
** Roger Myers, Sr.'s other wartime contribution, "Nazi Supermen are Our Superiors", was not as well received.
* WhatDoYouMeanItsForKids: An in-universe example.
* WhiteGloves
* WilliamTelling: Itchy does it to Scratchy once. He hits the apple, but the arrow punctures a hole into the large tank of carbolic acid that Scratchy was standing right next to.
** Doubles as another case of HollywoodAcid, since carbolic acid is a) solid at room temperature and b) not really all that acidic (it's technically an alcohol).
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