Western Animation / The Grinch Grinches The Cat In The Hat

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What happens when Dr. Seuss' two most popular characters square off against one another? The answer appears in this 1982 animated television special, The Grinch Grinches The Cat in the Hat (aka The Cat in the Hat Gets Grinched).

Things start out on a typical day in the lives of the two title characters. The Grinch, under orders from his own reflection in the mirror, is out making people's lives miserable when he suddenly crosses paths with the Cat in the Hat, who is out trying to have a picnic. The Cat unwittingly incurs the wrath of the Grinch, who then proceeds to make the Cat's day miserable by building devices with which to warp the sounds of the Cat's voice, and those of other animals, and darken the Cat's surroundings. The Cat grows upset with the Grinch's hijinks and tries to figure out how to put a stop to it all.

This was the final Dr. Seuss television special to be produced by DePatie-Freleng Enterprises, shortly before they became Marvel Productions Ltd., and the second to last produced during Seuss' lifetime.

Tropes:

  • Always Chaotic Evil: The Grinch's reflection urges him to recite an oath that, apparently, all Grinches need to keep in mind. Said oath is basically this trope.
  • Animation Bump: The animation isn't quite up to where it was in How the Grinch Stole Christmas, but it's significantly better than the very cheap-looking animation that made up most of Halloween Is Grinch Night, and about on par with the first Cat in the Hat animated special.
    • Similar to how Chuck Jones added his own recognizable charm to the first special, Friz Freleng's influence is very obvious in some parts of the animation.
  • Berserk Button: The Grinch doesn't take kindly to being called "Mr. Greenface".
  • Bowdlerise: Some VHS releases cut out the second half of the car chase.
  • Card-Carrying Villain: After a look in the mirror, the Grinch is very adamant in proving how Grinch-like he is.
  • Casting a Shadow: The Grinch makes a darkhouse to cast darkness on the Cat.
    Grinch: A lighthouse makes light, so just for a lark, I built me a darkhouse. A darkhouse makes dark.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The picture of the Grinch's mother seen near the start might seem like a throwaway gag at first, but it ultimately turns out to be an important plot point.
  • Cool Car: The Grinch's car. The Cat in the Hat also drives one.
  • The Corrupter: The Grinch's reflection.
  • Crossover: Of two of Dr. Seuss' most iconic works.
  • Cry Cute: The Grinch is almost unrecognizable after being moved to tears by the Cat's final number.
  • Disney Acid Sequence: The Grinch inflicts one of these on the Cat and the other patrons of the restaurant he's visiting.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: After using the Vacusound Sweeper on the Cat, the Grinch tells him, "From now on, you will hear what I want you to hear."
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: How the Cat ultimately foils the Grinch.
  • Evil Brit: Bob Holt gives the Grinch a deep, sophisticated English voice.
  • Evil Is Petty: The Grinch obsessively harasses the Cat in the Hat the entire cartoon for blocking his car and calling him "Mr Greenface". Justified as that is just the thing to prove how Grinch-like he is.
  • Evil Laugh: The Grinch pulls one as he torments the Cat on several occasions.
  • Faux Affably Evil: The Grinch rather cordially presents to the Cat in the Hat his device with which he intends to relentlessly torment the Cat for the rest of the cartoon.
  • Freudian Excuse: While imaginary psychoanalyzing the Grinch, the Cat thinks he has one of these. Whether or not the Grinch actually has one is left ambiguous.
  • Heel–Face Revolving Door: The Grinch starts out just as pleasant as he was at the end of his original appearance, but one conversation with his reflection in the mirror turns him evil again. The Cat manages to redeem him again and when his reflection tries to talk him back into evil, The Grinch (or more specifically, Max) more or less tells him where to stick it.
  • Hollywood Darkness: When the Grinch turns on his "Darkhouse", the darkness it creates is such that the Cat "can't see my mitten in front of my face", yet the audience can still see what's happening.
  • Irony: After undergoing a Heel–Face Turn, the Grinch uses the Vacusound Sweeper on his reflection.
  • Lost My Appetite: Happens to the Cat, after the Grinch uses his device on the Cat's order at the restaurant.
  • The Man in the Mirror Talks Back: He corrupts the Grinch.
  • Manly Tears: The Grinch as a result of the Cat's moving song.
  • Nice Hat: No kidding, The Cat keeps a number of them on a rack.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: It is rather odd (even by Dr. Seuss' standards) to see the Cat in the Hat getting angry at the Grinch.
  • Protagonist Title: With both protagonists!
  • Public Domain Soundtrack: The restaurant scene features Dvorak's "Humoresque", followed by Jazz and Dixieland arrangements of it.
  • Troll: How the Grinch ultimately acts, particularly while operating his machine to torment the Cat.
  • Villain Decay: Whereas previously the Grinch previously tried to ruin the holiday season for everyone and then terrify everyone with freaky monsters, here he is little more than a Troll (see above).
  • Villain Song: The Grinch gets an original one called "Master of Everyone's Ears".

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