Characters: Tom and Jerry

Thomas "Tom" Cat

  • Anthropomorphic Shift: In "Puss Gets the Boot" he's barely recognizable as a four-legged cat, and has only subtle anthropomorphic mannerisms. His duration of shorts through the forties would gradually evolve him into his trademark more humanoid design.
  • Anti-Villain: There have been times where he does not start the conflict, only trying to protect the house, doing his job, or other things.
  • Arch-Enemy: Jerry.
  • Big Eater
  • Butt Monkey: He rarely wins, and suffers all kinds of slapstick and cartoon violence.
  • Cats Are Mean: Implied in most shorts, for better or for worse.
  • The Chew Toy: A large number of episodes have Tom chasing Jerry strictly so that Jerry will not mess up the house he's living in, thus resulting in not only Tom not getting dinner, but being beaten with whatever is handy by his owner.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: As clumsy and unlucky as Tom can be, Tom generaly does pose a credible threat to Jerry and has more than a few victories over him.
  • Determinator: He never gives up going after Jerry, even when it would probably be wise not to do so.
  • Did Not Get the Girl: When he loses his love interest to Butch in an episode. Sometimes he loses her to Jerry.
  • Face Death with Dignity: "The Duck Doctor" has it happening to Tom. Having no way of escaping a falling anvil, Tom digs himself a grave, blindfolds himself and has a last smoke. Then the anvil hits him on the head (making him fall inside the grave, which makes the dug earth jump onto him, completing the burial) and falls into position to serve as a tombstone. In "The Bodyguard", he goes even further - after digging the grave and lying in it, he hastily scribbles a will, then clutches a flower while awaiting the inevitable.
  • Friendly Enemy: Tom can be very friendly and laidback towards Jerry when not chasing him.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Usually buffoonish, though to what degree varies. In some shorts he is completely outclassed by Jerry, in others he is a more feared persuer and can actually run circles around Jerry for a lengthy duration (or even score a victory).
  • Hero Antagonist: Sometimes
  • Iron Butt Monkey: So goddamn much.
  • Jerkass: In episodes where he starts things off by abusing Jerry for no reason. Though as those of you who have had cats will know, they can be sadistic little bastards to their prey.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Sometimes. He can be nice to Jerry when he wants to be, like in the shorts where they team up against a common enemy.
  • Karma Houdini: Most of his rare victories were due to Jerry being the instigator instead of him, but not always.
  • Love Makes You Crazy
  • Made of Iron: Tom has been crushed by anvils, pianos, and a lot of heavy things and manages to stay alive in most shorts.
  • Motive Decay: In many early shorts he wanted to eat Jerry or chased him at his master's orders (even if enjoyed doing so either way). In many later shorts, he just seems to chase Jerry out of reflex.
  • Punny Name: A male cat is called a "tomcat".
  • The Rival: Butch (Depending on the Writer)
  • Silent Bob
  • The Slacker: Tom is extremely lazy, when not chasing Jerry that is. Several cartoons have Tom be so much of a slacker that he doesn't even care about catching Jerry until his owners threaten to have him kicked out if he doesn't do his job.
  • Simpleton Voice: When he's actually voiced.
  • Smug Snake: At times, particularly in early shorts, where his blissful toying with Jerry was often his own undoing.
  • Species Surname
  • Super-Persistent Predator: He just doesn't know when to quit.
  • Team Rocket Wins: Roughly 10% of the time, Tom actually got the last laugh on Jerry at the end of a short.
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: On a slightly more common level, he was allowed to occasionally end on a happy note or make a truce with Jerry. According to the Tom and Jerry Wiki, Tom wins in 24 cartoons (out of 164 shorts).
  • Too Dumb to Live: Alot of his defeats were from his lack of preperation beforehand & he's ridiculously easy to fool, which is how Jerry gets away with torturing him on many occaisions.
  • Troll: Sometimes took toying with his prey to an elaborate degree. In the first cartoon for example he replaces Jerry's mouse hole with a painted on lookalike and watches him smack into it repeatedly.
  • Villain Protagonist
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Butch (Depending on the Writer). Same thing with Jerry in some shorts where they hang a lampshade on their rivalry.
  • Wouldn't Hit a Girl: Jerry is able to cross-dress to fool Tom sometimes, and Tom won't go after him because of this, until Jerry's dress falls down or something.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Though probably not again after the beating Jerry gave him for hitting Nibbles. He has tried to catch and despose of Nibbles on several occasions afterwards. Jerry almost always stops him and turns Tom's attention onto him before he can act it out however.

Jerry Mouse

Mammy Two-Shoes

  • Audience Surrogate: In the sense that she was written to be a bridge between the everyday human world and the insane antics of Tom and Jerry, and is often the only human character present in the shorts she's in.
  • Butt Monkey: Sometimes, when she has to deal with Tom and Jerry's antics.
  • Captain Ersatz: Of a very similar Disney character voiced by the same actress.
  • Comedic Underwear Exposure: Often subjected to this.
  • Eek, a Mouse!!
  • The Faceless: And who never wanted to see her face as a kid? Come on, hands up! Her face is very briefly seen in "Saturday Evening Puss".
  • Jerkass Ball: When she ends up punishing Tom for something he didn't even do!
  • Large Ham: "And when I says 'Out,' Jaspah, I means 'Out!' O-U-W-T, out!"
  • Mammy: Though it wasn't made apparent whether she was a housekeeper who lived in a nice house or if that was her house. Given the time period, it can assumed to be the former...
  • Only Sane Woman: Not that she has much choice, with Tom and Jerry in the same house.
  • Put on a Bus: Her original character is replaced after 1952.
  • Race Lift:
    • In the recent Tom and Jerry Tales, Mammy Two Shoes became a white version of herself, whose accent now sounded like a mix between Irish and Southern U.S.
    • In the 1960s edited for TV versions of some Tom and Jerry cartoons (done by Chuck Jones when was hired by MGM), Mammy was redrawn, usually as a white, Irish-accented version of herself (similar to the one that would be used in Tom and Jerry Tales). In "Saturday Evening Puss", however, Mammy was redrawn and redubbed as a teenaged white girl named Jeannie who's going out to dance with her boyfriend instead of playing bridge with her club. This is an odd decision given that her face was still kept off-camera, and an even odder one given that the story now had a slim teenage babysitter breaking down a door with her bare hands.
  • Sassy Black Woman: And how!

Nibbles / Tuffy

  • Big Eater: He has both Tom and Jerry beat in this department, which is quite a feat itself.
  • Bilingual Bonus
  • Canon Immigrant: Actually debuted in the comics before appearing in any shorts.
  • Composite Character: When he appears in modern Tom and Jerry adaptations, his name has usually reverted back to Nibbles but he still speaks in a French accent, a nod to the Mouseketeer shorts.
  • Cousin Oliver: Though he doesn't seem to be widely hated for it. The fact that he only shows up in the occasional short may help.
  • Doorstop Baby
  • Gratuitous English: Slipped in a few English phrases in some of the Mouseketeer shorts.
  • Gratuitous French: In modern adaptations where he's speaking English with a French accent.
  • Half-Dressed Cartoon Animal: Always wears what looks like either a pair of diapers or white shorts.
  • Heartwarming Orphan
  • I Have Many Names: Well, only two, and they haven't been used with much consistency. He was Tuffy in the comics, in the Mouseketeer shorts and some of the later shorts, but in his first animated appearances and in some of his modern ones he goes by Nibbles. They could also be two different mice, since the short Two Little Indians features two young gray mice drawn with the same exact character model as Nibbles.
  • Kid-Appeal Character
  • Silly Walk: One of his trademarks in his classic appearances is that he doesn't walk so much as he runs, and rather stiffly at that, shuffling his feet at a high speed. This trait is toned down for many later appearances, such as the Mouseketeer cartoons, but he still displays hints of it.
  • Take a Third Option: One iconic short involves Jerry trying to teach him how to steal food and avoid Tom, while Nibbler simply asks Tom politely for food and befriends him instead.


  • Androcles' Lion: He protects Jerry in a lot of shorts after Jerry does him a favor.
  • Angry Guard Dog
  • Bad Cop/Incompetent Cop: Some argue that instead of going after Tom, he should be guarding the house which is his job. TV Trash pointed out that at some point where he was beating on Tom, the house could have been robbed. In any case, he usually fails to notice Jerry causing problems, well intentioned or not.
  • Berserk Button: Messing with his son, waking him up, or taking his bone away. Usually if he has any new Trigger, Tom can find it.
  • Breakout Character: He and Tyke had a very brief series of shorts to themselves in the fifties. They also have solo episodes in Tom And Jerry Kids and a short stint of comics.
  • Bruiser with a Soft Center: He's this with his pup, Tyke.
  • The Brute
  • Bully Bulldog: Though when given a personality he's usually a pretty nice guy, without one he's typically mean and angry at all times.
  • Butt Monkey: Originally an inflictor of Misplaced or Disproportionate Retribution, but in most later shorts he usually goes through enough torment that it's easy to understand his contempt his Tom.
  • Dogs Are Dumb: This is one incredibly dumb dog. On one occasion he couldn't tell between Tom and Tyke until Tom meows in a failed attempt at barking. Lampshaded by momentarily replacing him with a Jackass figure when he realizes he's been fooled. Also lampshaded in a short where Tom and his friends watch a Clip Show highlighting the times of Tom making a fool of Spike.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper
  • Hero Antagonist: Most of the time, from his perspective at least, the abuse he dishes onto Tom is provoked. Jerry sometimes exploits this however.
  • Jerkass Ball: Happens to him a lot.
  • Just Whistle: Makes this arrangement with Jerry on occasion, after Jerry gets him out of some sort of trouble.
  • Nice Guy: Surprisingly. In episodes that feature all three of them starring together, Spike will usually be played as a lot nicer than either Tom or Jerry but constantly being forced to get angry. When there's an option to put aside their differences he's usually be all for it, if not the one trying to enforce the peace.
  • Papa Wolf: Spike mellowed somewhat when they added his son, Tyke. But if you mess with him...
  • Sympathetic Inspector Antagonist: Especially prominent in later shorts where he (and sometimes his son) are often genuinely the Butt Monkey to Tom's antics.
  • Wild Card: Spike is usually a very neutral force - he only wants to be left alone and will only go after anyone (usually Tom, but on the rare occasion this can also include Jerry) if they bother him in some way, which leads to many of his appearances having him be an Unwitting Pawn as Jerry leads Tom do anger him. Likewise, he usually only helps someone (usually Jerry) if they help him in some way first. A few episodes have him being a danger to both Tom and Jerry, with Jerry being crafty enough to avoid pain while Tom is not.



Toodles Galore


Little Quacker

Jeannie the Babysitter

  • Parental Neglect: She's not a parent, but the same standard applies since she spends all her time talking on the phone rather than doing her job. If it wasn't for Tom and Jerry watching out for the baby, it probably would have come to harm a long time ago due to her irresponsibility.