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Literature / Geronimo Stilton

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Everyone, act natural!note 

Geronimo Stilton is a children's book series originally written and published in Italy that stars the titular hero, Geronimo Stilton, a mild-mannered but brave mouse who works as a famouse journalist for the Rodent's Gazette, the most popular newspaper in New Mouse City.

He goes on several kinds of adventures, ranging from catching master thieves to searching for sunken treasure to racing across America to participating in cooking competitions. He is often accompanied by his sassy sister Thea, his boorish cousin Trap, and his favorite nephew Benjamin.

All of the books are written by Geronimo in first person, detailing all of his thoughts and experiences about the crazy things that come to his doorstep.

The books have been successful enough to spawn several Spin-Off series:

  • The Thea Stilton Series: Thea becomes a journalism instructor at Mouseford Academy. While Thea is the title character, the books actually focus on a group of her prize students, "The Thea Sisters". Five girls from around the world, the Sisters become not only Fire-Forged Friends, but a Multinational Team of Amateur Sleuths. This spinoff itself has a spinoff in both the form of graphic novels, for a higher reading level, and the Mouseford Academy series which takes place in the titular academy.
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  • The Creepella von Cacklefur Series: Creepella, Geronimo's Elvira-like friend/abhorrent admirer, is a Vegetarian Vampire who lives in a Haunted Castle with her Addams/Munsters-style relatives. They solve mysteries.
  • The Cavemice Series: These prehistoric tales star Geronimo Stiltonoot, editor of Old Mouse City's Stone Gazette, and other Identical Ancestors of the main cast. They live in a Flintstones-like world where dinosaurs (some of which talk) provide transportation, and the threats include frequent natural disasters as well as Tiger Khan and his marauding horde, The Saber-Toothed Squad.
  • The Spacemice Series: These books are set in an Alternate Universe where Captain Geronimo Stiltonix and the crew of the MouseStar 1 explore the universe and interact with aliens. Expect plenty of Space Opera tropes.
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  • The Heromice Series: These books take place in Muskrat City where Geronimo is a superhero known as Geronimo Superstilton as he fights off villains while trying to master his new cheesy superpowers.

The original book series has been adapted into an animated series as a joint venture by Italy, Canada and other countries; first aired in Italy (Italian) and Canada (English), and shown in several other countries shortly after. The 3rd season premiered in September 2016 in Europe. Despite being based on the books, the show is about 98% original material.

Geronimo's literary adventures include examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Creepella Von Cacklefur to Geronimo among others.
  • Actually, I Am Him: When Geronimo first met his newly-hired assistant, Pinky Pick, he assumed she was his assistant's daughter, since she's only fourteen years old.
  • All Just a Dream: The Wild, Wild West is revealed to be this in the end since Geronimo had fallen asleep while watching a show involving said Wild West.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: Chef Stewrat's long and very disgusting list of ingredients for his stew recipe ends with "...[plus] a little salt and pepper!"
  • Art Evolution: In the first books, Trap looks different, wearing a white shirt and red suspenders. Later he gets his current look, with the ponytail, earring and Hawaiian shirt. Some reprints of older books redraw him with the current look.
    • Also, the poltergeist that lives in the Cacklefurs' castle is just a Bedsheet Ghost in his first appearance. He gets mouse features in the spinoff series.
  • Barefoot Cartoon Animal: Despite being otherwise fully-dressed, almost none of the characters wear shoes. The most notable aversion is Pinky Pick, and how! Although the Thea Sisters start this way, in the later books they (and most of the other characters) wear shoes more often than not.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: In "I'm Too Fond of my Fur!"
  • Big Shadow, Little Creature: This happened with Benjamin (Geronimo's nephew) in one book.
  • Blind Without 'Em: Geronimo. In the show, however, he doesn't wear glasses.
  • Bond, James Bond: "My Name is Stilton, Geronimo Stilton!"
  • Catchphrase: Shif T. Paws in Watch Your Whiskers, Stilton!.
    Shif T. Paws: Watch your whiskers, here comes Shif T. Paws!
  • Cats Are Mean: The titular pirates in Attack of the Bandit Cats and the Saber-Toothed Squad from the Cavemice books.
  • Chaste Toons: Benjamin is Geronimo's favorite (and only) nephew. A rather extreme example, as Geronimo's only mentioned sister, Thea, is not Benjamin's mother, nor is any mention of her made in any of the books (yet). All this despite there being Loads and Loads of Stiltons.
  • Cool Car: Get Into Gear, Stilton! has two of them: Solar, a talking, robotic car with Artificial Intelligence, and its evil equivalent Lunar. Geronimo is the only driver Solar will accept, which isn't surprising once it's revealed that Solar's voice and personality are modeled after Thea, his sister.
  • Cool Shades: Geronimo wears a pair of golden ones in Get into Gear, Stilton! that lets him talk to Solar with his mind.
  • Cool Uncle: Geronimo dotes on his young nephew, Benjamin.
  • Cut Lex Luthor a Check: Glauseter, the video game company owner. steals an idea for a video game called Ratzilla from a little boy named Chas, and commits numerous crimes in order to keep people from knowing the game was Chas' idea - including wiping their memories with an amnesia machine. Why doesn't he make money off of that and not some Godzilla ripoff game?
  • Creepy Good: Creepella.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: The Cacklefurs who live in a dreary castle but are shown to be very nice and friendly among other things.
  • Death Trap: In Watch Your Whiskers, Stilton!, the game show "The Mousetrap" centers around a gigantic bladed mousetrap that the contestant is chained to.
  • Disguised in Drag: In Paws Off, Cheddarface! Trap is made up to look like Sally Ratmousen in order to counter her Identical Stranger Gambit.
  • The Door Slams You: Happens to Geronimo a number of times in Watch Your Whiskers, Stilton!
  • Even Evil Has Standards: In The Giant Diamond Robbery, Sally Ratmousen's profile states, "She's known for breaking the rules, except on the golf course, because that's unethical!" This is proven at the end when it's revealed that Sally's cousin, The Shadow, was trying to cheat so she can get away with the diamond while Sally is absolutely shocked that her cousin would do something like that.
  • Funny Animal/World of Funny Animals
  • Hold Your Hippogriffs: The books are stuffed with mouse-ified phrases.
  • Hurricane of Puns: Mouse puns, mostly.
  • Identical Stranger: Paws Off, Cheddarface! revolves around someone masquerading as Geronimo to ruin his name (and causing Geronimo to go into quite a bit of despair too).
  • Irony: Thea will frequently tease Geronimo about his Cowardly Lion/Lovable Coward tendencies. However, all of her brother's books are firsthand accounts while Thea is rarely if ever involved in the actions of the books that bear her name.
  • Jerkass: Sally Ratmousen would be the biggest example.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Trap may be greedy and an unrepentant prankster towards Geronimo, but he's not a bad rodent.
  • Literary Agent Hypothesis: All the books in the main series are "written by" Geronimo himself. The Cavemice books were written by Geronimo's prehistoric ancestor and translated by present day Geronimo. The Thea Sisters books start with Thea learning about the Sisters' latest adventure, then (supposedly) recounting it.
  • Nepotism: Benjamin is the most prominent example but the graphic novels added Cousin Trappy, a female miniature Trap (though she's much more intelligent) and Creepella's niece is a major player in her spin-off.
  • Not Allowed to Grow Up: You'd think that after all the adventures the gang goes through, they're portrayed as being older.
  • The One Who Wears Shoes: Pinky Pick.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Inverted. Many side characters are referred by name, surname and nickname.
  • Plot-Driven Breakdown: In "A Very Merry Christmas," Geronimo accidentally picks up someone else's bag instead of his own. The other person calls her own cellphone and starts to make arrangements for her and Geronimo to meet up and exchange bags, but her phone dies just before she says where to find her.
  • Punctuated! For! Emphasis!: Some lines in the books are irregular and in color to emphasis the characters' thoughts.
  • Scenery Porn: Later books have BEAUTIFUL backgrounds. Most notably is the Fantasy Kingdom books (The third one has a beautiful depiction of New Mouse City in spring)
  • Rainbow Speak: SO. FREAKING. MUCH.
  • Sequel Hook: Some books end with Geronimo talking about something that happened after the end, saying "But that's another story, which I'll tell you very soon!". None of these sequels happened yetnote .
    • A particular case was the Oliver story. It was a short book about one of Benjamin's schoolmates, the titular Oliver, having problems to move around with his wheelchair. With the help of his friends and Geronimo, he gets the mayor of New Mouse City build more entry ramps in the city, and the story ends with a scene from ten years later where an adult Oliver wins at the Special Olympic Games, with Geronimo's "I'll tell you very soon!" speech, and a advertisement promising a full series starring Oliver and dealing with a different disability in each book. Both of these things never got released, sadly.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: "Geronimo Stilton, Secret Agent"
  • Shout-Out: In "The Secret of Cacklefur Castle," the Cacklefurs have a pet cockroach named Kafka, a reference to The Metamorphosis.
  • Species Surname: Not as many as you'd think though.
  • Stock Animal Diet: The Stiltons and pretty much any character who doesn't have a Species Surname will have one referencing a type of cheese. Geronimo and other mouse characters across adaptations are very fond of cheese.

The Animated Adaptation includes examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer:
    • Geronimo gets one in the form of the Contessa in the S2 episode "Bloodlines".
    • Thea has one in a few villains, notably Prince Nogouda who repeatedly attempts to force her to marry him.
  • Adaptational Badass: While still somewhat a Nervous Wreck and a Butt-Monkey, Geronimo is noticeably braver than in the books.
  • Adaptational Personality Change:
  • Age Lift: As mentioned above, Benjamin goes from 8-9 years old in the books to 12 years old in the series.
  • Artistic License – Biology: "If I Could Talk to the Animals" had a pride of lions consisting of mostly males and only one female. In real life, females outnumber the males.
  • Bad Boss: Sally to Simon. Even when he performs well, she berates, mistreats and insults him.
  • Barefoot Cartoon Animal: Just as in the original books. However, as a variation, they do put on the needed footwear once they venture out of civilization.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch and Yeti: Big Toes, from the S2 episode "The Legend Of Big Toes". Though he's actually no different from the humanoid mice in the show; only much, much taller, hairier, and being speechless.
  • Bluff the Eavesdropper: Geronimo is tasked with keeping a singer's identity secret, while Sally Ratmousen has Simon spy on him in order to get the scoop on the singer's identity. Geronimo's solution: say the name of a different singer out loud for Simon to hear, and have a Disguised in Drag Trap impersonate the fake singer.
  • Broken Pedestal: If someone is introduced as being an old friend or former mentor of Geronimo's, they have a rather disturbing tendency to turn out to be a villain. Poor Geronimo has seen more of his former heroes turn out to be complete bastards than a lot of other protagonists.
  • Butt-Monkey:
    • Trap is more of this than his cousin Geronimo was in the original books.
    • Simon Squealer is this, too.
    • And of course, Geronimo himself.
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Parody: "Chauncey and the Secret Cheese" plays this mostly straight. Benjamin and Pandora win a contest to tour a top-secret bizzarely-built, whimsical factory run by The Wonka.
  • Composite Character: Benjamin in the TV series appears to be given the role and personality of his counterpart in the book series and Pinky Pick.
  • Chekhov's Gun: At the beginning of "The Mask of Rat-Jitsu", Geronimo takes out a vial of a rare, strong-smelling cheese from his safe and inadvertently puts it in his clothes. He finally got to use it during the said episode's climax to knock out the villain of the episode and his mooks.
  • The Chessmaster: Crunchrat is prone to be this way.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Geronimo can sometimes be capable of overcoming his clumsiness and apparent cowardice when the chips are really down, and Trap has his moments, too. Most notable of all is Simon Squealer, Minion with an F in Evil extraordinaire, who, while usually a clumsy and incompetent Smug Snake, is shown to possess martial arts skills that make him an even match for Thea!
  • Disguised in Drag: Simon... and he's surprisingly attractive as a redheaded. Trap also ends up in drag more than once.
  • Everybody Laughs Ending: Done for a few episodes.
  • Everything Is Online: The only explanation on how Benjamin could hack into almost anything.
  • Evil Twin: Geronimo deals with one in Paws Off, Cheddarface.
  • Five Mouse Band: The main characters are presented as this:
  • The Fool: Trap. Full stop.
  • Furry Confusion: Non-anthropomorphic rats have appeared in some episodes.
  • Good Feels Good: Simon comes to this realization when he impersonates a superhero and rescues Thea from drowning. Unfortunately for him, it only leads to a Heel–Face Door-Slam.
  • Hollywood Hacking: Benjamin does this in spades.
  • Hurricane of Puns: Expect a lot of rodent and cheese puns. Some of them might be funny.
  • Hypno Fool: Geronimo becomes one in "Hypno Tick Tock", courtesy of an evil hypnotist who plans to Mind Control the entire city.
  • Inevitable Waterfall: In the S2 episode "The Legend Of Big Toes", Geronimo was tricked into falling into the river and almost fell down one of these. He was saved by the titular Big Toes.
  • Intergenerational Friendship: Pandora with Geronimo and Thea, particularly in the animated series and graphic novels. Geronimo lets Pandora into his inner circle and often brings her on his adventures, and Thea is like a Cool Big Sis to her. In at least one of the graphic novels, Pandora goes as far as to call Geronimo "Uncle G".
  • Karma Houdini: Crunchrat has a tendency to escape arrest and punishment for his crimes.
  • The Lab Rat: Literally in Professor Von Volt's case.
  • The Millstone: Though Trap obviously means well, he is generally more of a hindrance to Geronimo than a help.
  • The One Who Wears Shoes: Sally Rasmaussen wears a pair of killer heels.
    • When she's kidnapped by the titular gangster in "Barry the Moustache", Geronimo and company find a clue when she loses a shoe in the struggle.
  • Red Herring: Although the show is usually pretty straightforward with who the villain is, there have been a few exceptions where the character everyone suspects is innocent:
    • One episode had tomb-robbing in Egypt. Everyone suspected it to be the work of a kindly professor's shifty nephew with a Dark and Troubled Past who nobody trusted. It is eventually revealed it was his seemingly benevolent uncle and not him all along.
    • Another episode had Benjamin and Pandora visiting a cheese factory owned by Chauncey, when someone steals the only sample of a new kind of cheese. When it is learned one of the other kids in the tour is the son of a rival factory owner, everyone suspects him. But it is eventually revealed to be Chauncey's assistant, who wanted revenge on his boss because Chauncey only paid him in cheese. It turns out he was in cahoots with Sally Ratmousen, who wanted the scoop on the new cheese.
    • Geronimo and the gang went on a fashion shoot tour with a pair of hip (and strange) European fashion photographers, and everywhere they went, someone was robbed. Local police arrested Thea for it, and it seems as though the photographers are the real thieves who are just using the shoot as a cover for their crimes, but it eventually turns out to be the shoot's makeup artist, with the photographers entirely innocent and the shoot genuine.
  • Reformed Criminal: Barry the Moustache. He was a notorious crime boss who was inadvertently apprehended by Geronimo, and swore revenge as he is being arrested. However, in prison Barry meets his future business partner, who teaches him he can make more money as a legitimate businessman. At the end of his episode, Barry is revealed to be rich and the owner of his own private island, and is grateful to Geronimo.
  • Reused Character Design: The show has a few examples of this, but the most prominent are the two (or three?) large Mooks in black business suits. They're first used as Prince Nogouda's bodyguards, but later turn up in a variety of roles, either as private security (for good guys) or henchmen (for bad guys). Basically any time the episode calls for one or more big, tough-looking mice, these guys get drafted. In their most recent appearances, they've been doing muscle work for Sally. Either the animators are just really lazy... or it really is the same two or three guys working different jobs each time.
  • Rodents of Unusual Size: The mice, not to mention some other anthropomorphic animals, are human-sized.
  • Save the Villain: Zigzagged in "Barry The Moustache". Geronimo helps Simon look for Sally after she is reportedly kidnapped by the titular crime boss. It is subverted when it turns out that Sally faked her own kidnapping in a scheme to humiliate Geronimo. Then it is played straight when the real Barry the Moustache shows up, angry at having been wrongfully accused, and kidnaps them for real, forcing Geronimo to save Sally, Trap and himself. Finally, it subverted again when Barry is revealed to be a Reformed Criminal who did not mean them any harm, though Sally is punished by having to be the spokesperson for Barry's cheese snack company.
  • Savvy Guy, Energetic Girl: Geronimo and Thea.
  • Say My Name: "Crunchrat!"
  • Seldom-Seen Species: The S2 episode "Dude, Where's My Shark?" featured a copper shark.
  • Terrified of Germs: Prince Nogouda.
  • The Unfettered: Sally Ratmousen will stop at nothing to scoop Geronimo, humiliate him or otherwise enrich herself, up to an including committing actual crimes.
  • The Wonka: Chauncey.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Chauncey the cheese factory owner and Willy Wonka Expy has purple hair for... some reason.


Example of: