Western Animation: Bounty Hamster
"Meanwhile, on the other side of the universe..."
Bounty Hamster (2003-2004) is a British animated science fiction comedy series.
Teenaged girl Cassie and her father were separated when their space ship was attacked by space pirates; she made it to an escape pod, he didn't. Now, she's off to find him again, with the assistance of the biggest, meanest bounty hunter money can hire — but the biggest, meanest bounty hunter her
money can hire is a small, blue-grey, hamster-like critter called Marion, who has enough attitude for several regular-sized bounty hunters but not a lot to back it up with. He does, however, have two special advantages: he has all kinds of useful stuff stashed in his cheek pouches (now, if only he could find what he needed when he needed it
...), and he goes into an Unstoppable Rage
whenever someone calls him "cute"
Each episode is packed with homages
and shout outs
to earlier works of animation, science fiction, and comedy (the episode where Applied Phlebotinum
creates seven Marions — one happy, one bashful, one grumpy, and so on — is classic
This series contains examples of:
- Aliens of London
- All Just a Dream: In the season finale "School's Out" it turns out the whole series is just a comic Cassie is drawing in class... or is it?
- Applied Phlebotinum
- Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: "You stand accused of breaking the Prime Directive, 5000 speed limits, and a really nice vase!"
- Autocannibalism: In one episode, Marion discovers his Bag of Holding cheeks are actually a portal between dimensions so, in order escape the dimension they're trapped in, he eats Cassie then himself.
- Badass Adorable: Yes, Marion is played for laughs and he's a cute little hamster like creature. He's also capable of kicking some serious butt when he needs to.
- Badly Battered Babysitter: "Bringing Up Baby"
- Bag of Holding: Marion's cheeks.
- Balloon Belly: Cassie gains one for a short time in "Chin Raiders" after eating lots of pancakes.
- Bar Brawl: "Bringing Up Baby"
- Berserk Button: "Don't... call... me... CUTE!"
- This even includes any word that has "cute" in it (ie "acute")
- Bluff the Impostor: In "Twin Cheeks" Cassie realises Alt!Marion isn't the real one when she calls him cute and he doesn't flip out.
- Bouncer: "Fashion Victim"
- Bounty Hunter
- Brick Joke: Lampshaded in "The Good, the Bad, and the Adorable". A group of cute critters accidently take off on a huge rocket engine and fly around the entire planet returning just in time to run over the Big Bad at the crucial moment, whereupon Marion pops up and says, "Bet you forgot about those guys, huh?"
- Bungling Inventor: Professor Notgerman
- Captain Ersatz: A silver C-3PO sometimes shows up out of nowhere to point out their odds of surviving, with Marion beating him up in response. On at least one occasion Cassie wonders who he is.
- Clip Show: "The Trial"
- Conspicuous CG
- Crowd Song: "The Good, the Bad, and the Adorable" is set on a planet of crowd-singing creatures.
- Cuckoo Nest: "School's Out"
- Cute Critters Act Childlike: The critters in "The Good, the Bad, and the Adorable".
- Disguised in Drag: "Fashion Victim"
- Elmuh Fudd Syndwome: Cassie, occasionally.
- Energy Weapon
- Evil Laugh: In "Lonely Planet" Cassie and Marion laugh evilly while shining flashlights in their faces.
Cassie: I have no idea why we did that.
- Evil Twin: Alt!Marion in "Twin Cheeks". Alt!Cassie looks evil, but she's more of a Jerk Ass.
- Eyepatch of Power: Marion, one of several shout-outs to True Grit
- Alt!Cassie from "Twin Cheeks" also has one.
- Fartillery: In "Somewhere That's Green" when they're eaten by a man-eating plant, Cassie gets Marion to pull her finger, causing her to fart and the plant to spit them out.
Cassie: If we ever do find my dad, don't you dare tell him that I did that!
- "Freaky Friday" Flip: "Trading Spaces" is an entire episode full of body-swaps. A criminal steals a body-swapping device and uses it to go joy riding in other people's bodies. Highlights of the episode are Cassie stuck in the body of a humanoid rhino, a body-swap conga line with over half a dozen body-swaps in a row and the criminal, Cassie and Marion all being stuck together in the same body, where they try to beat each other up. The insanity ends with the criminal's mind trapped inside of a cactus.
- The Future
- Getting Crap Past the Radar: From "Somewhere that's Green":
Marion: Let's go skinny dipping!
- "Beached" has Cassie say "What the... fog?"
- After Marion reveals that he is a man to the security guard attracted to him at the end of "Fashion Victim", he says he doesn't mind. Marion reacts appropriately.
- Grand Theft Me: "Trading Spaces"
- Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Cassie always does the right thing and gets angry with Marion when he doesn't.
- She was also able to ask the All-Seeing Chin a question that only answers those pure of heart, and it does.
- Hates Being Touched: Alt!Cassie.
- Herr Doktor: Parodied with Professor Notgerman, who isn't.
- Homage: Many, including one to Indiana Jones.
- Idiosyncratic Wipes
- Idiot Hero: Marion
- Intelligent Gerbil
- Interspecies Romance: Marion once got married to a Space Whale, who broke it off and hooked up with a defrosted, eloquent saber-tooth cat, and he once gambled Cassie away while trying to flirt with an alien like a multi-eyed, four-legged bird-woman.
- I Will Find You: The Opening Narration has Dad shouting "I'll come back for you!" as Casey drifts off in an Escape Pod. A Gilligan Cut then has Cassie saying "But he didn't...so I went looking."
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Marion
- Limited Wardrobe: It seems that there weren't any extra outfits in that escape pod.
- Literal Split Personality: Did we mention the episode where Applied Phlebotinum creates seven Marions?
- Lost Him in a Card Game
- Lotus-Eater Machine: "Wish You Were Here"
- Mad Scientist Laboratory
- Meaningful Name: Marion is a homage to the character played in the 1969 film True Grit by John Wayne, whose real name was Marion Michael Morrison.
- Cassie is short for Cassiopeia, named after the constellation. Her surname is Harrison, after Harrison Ford.
- Medium Awareness
- Mirror Universe: "Twin Cheeks"
- Missing Mom: Cassie's mother does not appear, even in Cassie's fantasy in "Wish You Were Here" where she's reunited with her father. According to Word of God, Cassie's mother is dead, and the Lotus-Eater Machine chose not to bring back someone Cassie knew was dead in order to maintain the illusion that it was real.
- The Napoleon: Marion.
- No Name Given: Cassie and Marion are being pursued by another bounty hunter (a horse with a poncho and Clint Eastwood mannerisms) who calls himself "The Horse With No Name". Cassie points out that if he's called "The Horse With No Name" then that is his name.
- Opening Narration
- Opening Shout-Out: In "Twin Cheeks" when Alt!Cassie gives her backstory.
- Parental Bonus
- Parents for a Day: "Bringing Up Baby"
- The Professor: Professor Notgerman
- Raised by Wolves: In Marion's case, literally.
- Recap By Audit: "The Trial"
- Rummage Fail
- Shout-Out: Tons, especially in "Lonely Planet".
- Small Universe After All: See the quote at the top of the page.
- Space Is an Ocean: Complete with Space Whales, in some episodes.
- Space Is Noisy
- Space Western: Several episodes.
- Temporary Bulk Change: Cassie in "Fashion Victim".
- This Ain't Rocket Surgery: "Actually sir, it is!"
- This Banana Is Armed: "Hah! You didn't think that banana was loaded!"
- Tomboy: Cassie
- Training the Peaceful Villagers: Parodied in "The Good, the Bad, and the Adorable".
- Tsundere: Cassie is this towards Marion at times.
- Turned Against Their Masters: "Mutiny on the Bounty Hamster"
- Unstoppable Rage
- Up to Eleven: During the Body Swap episode, when the villain (in Cassie's body) complains about Marion's ship going too slow, he takes out a marker and writes "12" on the speed controls. It actually works.
- Used Future
- Wig, Dress, Accent
- Younger Than They Look: Cassie looks and sounds like she's in her late teens, but she's actually 13.