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Western Animation / 101 Dalmatians: The Series

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"Get those puppies!"

The success of the live-action 101 Dalmatians prompted a spin-off Animated Series that ran in both syndication (as part of what remained of The Disney Afternoon) and as part of ABC's One Saturday Morning lineup in the 1997-98 season. This was produced by Jumbo Pictures, the firm that produced Doug and PB&J Otter.

The series takes place in an odd Alternate Continuity of sorts after the movie where the Dearly Family (originally Radcliffe in the films) have moved to a farm to house their large canine family. Despite the title, the show actually focuses on four characters: Lucky, Cadpig, Rolly and Spot (who is actually a chicken but nevertheless their friend) and their misadventures interacting with the other puppies and livestock around the farm. While also dealing with Cruella de Vil who, of course, still has her eyes on the puppies for her own schemes.


The television show was seen briefly as part of the Disney Junior lineup on Disney Channel and was one of the shows that launched with the Disney Junior network (albeit in the early morning slot, so obviously it was just considered filler), but as of September 3, 2013, it is no longer airing on the network.

It is available to purchase in the United States on iTunes, Google Play, and YouTube.

Not to be confused with 101 Dalmatian Street, another cartoon spin-off of 101 Dalmatians, which began in 2018.


This cartoon contains examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Dumpling has a very outspoken crush on Lucky.
  • Absentee Actor:
    • In "Home is Where the Bark Is", Spot is out of commission, but she is shown for a split second at one point in the episode.
    • Spot is absent in "You Slipped a Disk" and in "Cadpig Behind Bars".
    • Lucky does not have any lines in; "A Christmas Cruella".
    • In Episodes, such as "Smoke Detectors", "Frisky Business" & "Cadet of The Month", Horace appears, but not Jasper?
    • In "Horace and Jasper's Big Career Move", the main pups are absent for a majority of the episode. They do appear in the flashback sequences, but they also appear briefly at the very end, and Lucky has one little speaking part.
  • Accidental Misnaming: A Running Gag with Cruella is that she usually refers to Roger by other names that begin with "R", generally out of apathy. Interestingly, she actually seems to remember his name when she's particularly scheming against the Dearlys.
  • The Ace:
  • An Aesop: In almost every episode. (Well, it is from most of the same writers and artists of Sabrina: The Animated Series.)
  • Animal Talk: Played straight for the most part, just like in the original novel and animated movie, but the episode "Virtual Lucky" both averted and played this trope straight. At the beginning of the episode, when Lucky is yelling at Cruella for ruining his stunt, all she hears is barking. But then when Cruella and Lucky get sucked into Roger's new computer game Cruella hears Lucky speaking and is shocked (Lucky tells her that this is because they're in a video game, where anything can happen), and outside of the computer, when Cadpig tries to tell Roger what happened, all he hears is barking.
  • Animation Bump: The show's animation quality is all over the place, due to multiple Animation teams working on the show. Some episodes' animation is noticeably more lavish than others.
  • The Artifact:
    • The prominent "One-oh-one"s in the theme song is apparently a holdover from when the show was going to be titled Dalmatians 101 which they changed at the last minute.
    • Patch is featured prominently among the other main characters in the second half of "Prima Doggy" (though with only two lines), as the episode was produced very early in the run and he was initially planned to be a major character. He's a minor character for the rest of the show.
  • Author Guest Spot: Jim Jinkins appears in the final episode as the leader of a cult of alien followers. He also provides a Shout-Out by dressing up like his Author Avatar, Doug.
  • Babysitting Episode: The series had two instances, which were paired up together. "Rolly's Egg-Celent Adventure" had Rolly taking care of Cornelia's eggs, which hatched at the beginning of the episode when he sat on them. "Wild Chick Chase" was about Spot having to babysit Peeps, a chick who kept getting into danger.
  • Batman Gambit: Ed Pig did nothing to sabotage Lucky's run for Mayor because he knew it'd be a matter of time until Lucky screwed up and he'd become Mayor again.
  • Brainy Brunette: Spot, who was completely brown and black along with being The Smart Girl qualifies for this.
  • Brand Names Are Better: In one episode, Dearly Farm runs out of its usual supply of Kanine Krunchies. Lucky, Cadpig, Rolly, and Spot are offended and horrified when they hear that they'll get AnyMutt brand kibble instead, arguing it must be worse because it doesn't have TV adverts. After foiling an attempted robbery on the local store, the pups and chicken are rewarded with dog food. Said dog food is AnyMutt, yet they didn't notice the difference. Or care since AnyMutt is apparently just as good, if not better.
  • Butt-Monkey: Spot and Rolly tend to get the most abuse.
  • Can't Get Away with Nuthin'/Downer Ending:
    • In "Mall Pups," Lucky, Rolly, Cadpig and Spot sneak away from Bark Brigade training to attend a mall event featuring the first lady and first dog. They are eventually caught by the Colonel, do not get to meet either the first lady or the first dog, and the Colonel says he's going to tell their parents to give them a three-week grounding and also implies that Pug is going to make them pay for everything he went through with the Secret Service dogs.
    • In the episode "Snow Pups", when the pups are denied permission by Pongo to go on the mountain camping trip with him and Roger, they stow away to prove that they can survive. But things go south when they encounter Cruella, who is also camping out in the cold, and a huge blizzard strikes. Hilarity Ensues from there, but the pups still manage to survive the blizzard. But in the morning, Pongo and Roger discover Cruella and the puppies asleep in a cave. When Pongo demands to know what they're doing there, Lucky points out that they were capable of surviving in the wilderness. But Pongo claims that they also disobeyed him, and grounds them for a week, smugly adding that they'll survive if it if they "work together".
  • Catchphrase: Rolly has two known catchphrases: "Oh, papa!" and "Are you calling me fat?" The pups have also said, "Holy Chimichanga!" a couple of times, but that one didn't really catch on.
  • Characterization Marches On: Compared to the original movie, Lucky is a lot closer in temperament and personality to his book-counterpart.
  • Chaste Toons: Anita and Cruella both had nieces. Which really take after their aunts.
  • Christmas Episode: "A Christmas Cruella", the inevitable Yet Another Christmas Carol parody. Later released on video.
  • Church of Happyology: "The Society for Achieving Utopian Consciousness via Extra-Terrestrial Rebirth and Desert Operational Lacrosse Team" (or Saucer Dolts), they are waiting for the mother ship to take them to another planet but can't agree which one.
  • Composite Character:
    • The whole show is a mix of the animated film and the live-action one. For instance, Cruella still owns a fashion company and employs Anita (like in the remake), but she apparently never went to prison (like in the cartoon... maybe).
    • The series has Cadpig who was in the book, but was never mentioned in either the animated or live action movies.
  • Cone of Shame: Lucky in one episode had to wear a cone after falling from a high tree branch and getting stitches. Cue humiliation from the other dogs.
  • Continuity Nod: In the pilot episode, when Cruella has the three main pups locked in their old home in the city to use as ransom for the farm, the pups try to escape through the chimney, but they fall and get covered in soot (in the original film(and book) the dogs covered themselves in soot to make Cruella think they were labradors). Lucky even lampshades this:
    Lucky: This feels very familiar.
  • Cool Old Guy: The Colonel may come off as a tad stuffy and dull in his tone, but he's more more capable and competent than his film counterpart.
  • Covers Always Lie: The VHS cover of the Christmas Episode is a perfect example.
  • Cultural Translation: The show is clearly set in the U.S. judging from the accents and the presence of a mailbox reading "US MAIL" at one point. All the characters from the movie jarringly have their British accents and mannerisms altered according to this (this is particularly noticable with the Colonel, originally an uptight Britannic officer parody, now a Southern-Fried Private).
  • A Day In The Lime Light: Some episodes were featured on one character of the cast. LT. Pug, Tripod, Two-Tone, Spot....
  • Dead All Along: Dimsdale De Vil in "De Vil-Age Elder".
  • Demoted to Extra:
    • Pongo and Perdita. See Spin-Offspring below.
    • The large majority of the animal cast from the original movie for that matter, most episodes focusing mainly on Lucky, Rolly, Cadpig and Spot as the leads.
  • Didn't Think This Through: When the other three express reluctance to skip Bark Brigade to go to the mall, Lucky says they can just get the first dog to give them an official pardon. Of course, that plan hinged on them actually getting to the first dog, which they ultimately fail to do.
  • The Ditherer: Two-Tone. A Running Gag with her involves her opinion of someone or something rapidly changing as she talks about it.
  • Dub Name Change:
    • Cadpig is Goliathnote  in some dubs, others Penny (a character from the 1961 movie).
    • Spot is called Kwoka in the Russian dub. Don't ask why.
      • In the Dutch version Cadpig is Floppy.
  • Evil Brit: While the rest of the characters are Americanized, Cruella, judging by her accent, remains British. Hmm...
  • Evil Knockoff/Evil Twin: A literal example in "The Two Faces Of Anita".
  • Expressive Ears: The dogs' ears droop when they are upset about something.
  • Expy: Being by the same creators and all, Mooch and his gang are very similar to Roger and his gang.
  • Eyedscreen: When Lt. Pug decides to face his nemesis in "Howl Noon," the scene is presented in letterbox widescreen, but then switches box to the normal aspect ratio when Cadpig (who is chained to Pug) pulls them underground to hide.
  • Fantastic Racism: Pug, who constantly expresses his inexpiable hatred of cats, even around Sgt. Tibbs who is a cat. All the Dalmatians and other Animals groan in disapproval when ever he gets like this, often saying "Not this again!".
  • Fate Worse than Death: In "De Vil-Age Elder", Dimsdale De Vil is cursed to spend eternity in Devilville with the people he tormented being mindlessly happy and immune to his cruelty.
  • Four-Fingered Hands: Mostly averted, as most humans we see are shown to have the correct number of digits on their hands. Though, it does get lampshaded, when played straight in "Close, But No Cigar", when a TV announcer used his hands to visualise a $10,000 prize, then realised he was lacking in digits.
  • Granola Girl: Cadpig is arguably the closest a (non-anthropomorphized) dog can get to this.
  • Great Detective: Spot's alter-ego — Pullet Marlow, Private Chick.
  • Green Around the Gills: In "The Dogs of De Vil", Lucky and Cadpig turn entirely green in a seasickness moment.
  • Growling Gut: Each one of the four main pups suffers one of these at some point in the series, but it most frequently happens to Rolly for obvious reasons.
  • Handicapped Badass: Tripod, the three-legged dog. Despite missing a leg, is clearly the most athletic and determined of the puppies.
  • Harem Ending: To Cruella of all people.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold:
    • Cruella showed subtle signs of this at times.
    • Also Horace.
  • Huge Rider, Tiny Mount: Cadpig has shown several times in the series that she can easily support Lucky's weight despite being much smaller than him.
  • Human Ladder: The main pups do this quite regularly. Most traditionally, the lineup is Lucky on top, Cadpig in the middle, and Rolly on the bottom, for obvious reasons. It's even shown twice in the show's opening sequence - curiously, though, in both cases it's Rolly who is on top.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Cadpig believes in world peace and preaches non-violent solutions to problems but then beats up other dogs for insulting her friends or family members or attacks Cruella right after stating her opposition to violence.
  • Idea Bulb: Lucky gets one in Barnboozled when he figures out to drive Cruella out of the barn.
  • I Don't Think That's Such a Good Idea: Spot is Closer to Earth than the puppies and will often voice her concern over their latest Zany Scheme, only to be ignored.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: Cruella is downgraded to one for the more slapstick tone of the show (Jasper and Horace are even worse). Several other one shots are also added to the mix.
  • Insurrectionist Inheritor: Malevola DeVil (Cruella's mother) named Cruella her sole heir when Cruella finally had the guts to tell how much she despises Malevola.
  • Interspecies Romance: Rolly fell in love with Dumpling the pig, and she was also attracted to Lucky.
  • It Runs on Nonsensoleum: When Lucky needs a needle, he finds one by tearing apart the nearest haystack. Cue groans.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold:
    • Inverted with Lucky, a very mild example who was usually nice.
    • Cruella, on the other hand, was quite clearly a lonely Jerk With A Heart Of Gold.
  • Kangaroo Court: "12 Angry Pups," complete with a public defender who openly states that he believes the defendant to be guilty and a judge who doesn't even try to hide that he's taking bribes.
  • Kid Heroes: The main cast were all pretty young after all.
  • Kavorka Girl: Cruella managed to attract a lot of men in this series, they all came Back for the Finale.
  • Laugh Track: In "You Slipped a Disk," one is briefly played after Lucky accidentally pounces Rolly and Cadpig suggests "Um... Lucky? Next time, why don't you tackle the bad guy?" It comes up again in the episode's second half, "Chow About That?," when she suggests that Rolly is having a "psychic sugar rush." It also comes up in "It's a Sawmp Thing" after Lucky says to Spot, "I said a scarf, not a muffler!"
  • Lawyer-Friendly Cameo: During the Grand Finale, Wile E. Coyote (!) briefly stops chasing the Road Runner to answer the Twilight Bark.
  • Little Miss Snarker:
    • Ivy De Vil.
    • And Cadpig.
  • Lost in Imitation (again): The premise and cast are a motley mix of all three previous versions. The characters all look (more or less) like the ones from the 1961 film, and Cruella apparently never went to jail, but Anita works for Cruella's fashion company, Roger is a video game developer, their last name is Dearly, and all the new puppies from the 1996 film get secondary roles. And Cadpig, who only appeared in the original book, is one of the lead characters!
  • Mad Libs Catchphrase: Cruella's "Memo to myself..."
  • Malicious Misnaming: Cruella has a habit of addressing Roger with other R words like Rupert, Roadhog, Retro, Rudolph, etc. Very rarely does she get his name right.
  • Monster Clown: In "You Say It's Your Birthday", Cruella attempts to sabotage the Dearlys' surprise party for the pups while under the impression that it's Anita working for her competitor. She infiltrates it while disguised as a clown. As if she wasn't creepy enough.
  • The Movie: The final three episodes of the series were also released as a direct-to-video movie, Dalmatian Vacation (but only in foreign countries), bringing the total number of 101 Dalmatian-themed Disney movies up to five.
  • Never Trust a Trailer: Before the series premiered, there was a promo of it at the beginning of the 1996 movies' VHS release, and a few VHS tapes of Disney's Doug showing clips that were never on the show (apparently from an unaired pilot); one sketch was shown of a female puppy named Penny who got cut out completely. Some promos on TV (including idents used by then ABC-owned WTVG-13, in Toledo, OH on Saturday mornings) showed unseen clips (presumably also from the pilot) as well.
  • Noodle Incident: Cadpig refers to Spot's "ugly Swiss bell-ringing incident" in "The Maltese Chicken".
  • Not Me This Time: In "Twelve Angry Pups," Mooch is accused of stealing things from around the farm. The true culprit is revealed to be Lt. Pug, who was "gathering supplies" for the "great cat invasion."
  • Off-Model:
    • The episodes animated by Wang Film Productions and Koko Enterprises come into this, albeit for different reasons. Also in play due to other studios  being involved.
    • The quality of the animation varies heavily, though it's justified as there were many studios working on the show, it had to be produced at a quick rate to get the episodes airing every weekday, and it gets difficult having to draw a large number of dogs all the same breed.
  • Parental Bonus:
    • In "Purred It Through The Grape Vine", Swamp Rat tries to sell a Magazine called "Eratica", with an image of a rat model. It is a play on the term; "erotica", which is another name for a pornographic magazine.
    • In "Cupid Pups", Cruella refers to some one as a; "Silicone Squeak Toy"...Which is another term for a breast job.
  • Picked Last: Lt. Pug picks Lucky and Tripod as team leaders for cohesion drills in one episode. Spot is the last picked and Lucky even tries to pick a bucket instead because she is a chicken and the rest are dogs. She gets her own back later in the episode, though.
  • Pink Means Feminine:
  • Playing Cyrano: In "Swine Song", Cadpig acts as Cyrano, telling Rolly what to say to Dumpling.
  • Pounds Are Animal Prisons: The pound that Cadpig gets sent to in "Cadpig Behind Bars" is situated on an island and actually does have cages with bars, a security card system to raise & lower the drawbridge, and a prison yard.
  • Previously On…: "Dalmatian Vacation", the three-parter.
  • Potty Failure: Wizzer (especially in part 1 of the 3-part series finale)
  • Punny Name: A three legged dalmatian has the name Tripod, and Cruella's relatives P.H. de Vil (a Mad Scientist) and Cecil B. de Vil (a film director). And, oh yeah, Spot.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Spot only appeared in one scene of Home is Where the Bark Is (asleep, no less) then in the next episode, she was friends with the main trio.
  • Rent-a-Zilla: Chockzilla, rented from an ad agency by Cecil B. de Vil to destroy the Dearly farm.
  • Road Sign Reversal: Occurs in the first episode to lure Cruella away from the three main puppies she's chasing after in her car.
  • Scooby-Dooby Doors: Happens when Lucky, Rolly and Cadpig pursue Scorch in "You Slipped a Disk".
  • Second Place Is for Losers/Spirited Competitor: Lucky.
    • Also Ivy in her later appearances.
  • Shaking the Rump: Lucky and Rolly do this to taunt a Sheriff. Lucky, Rolly, Cadpig and Spot later do this together.
  • Shellshocked Veteran: Lt. Pug will often panic in mundane situations that he mistakes for something much more serious.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Skunk Stripe: The De Vil family's hair color.
  • Skyward Scream: Rolly in "Chow About That?" "We... missed... LUNNNNCH!!!"
  • So Proud of You: Once Cruella finally has enough of her mother's relentless criticizing and calls her out for being a hateful, domineering bitch, Malevola de Vil bursts into Tears of Joy and exclaims how proud she is at seeing Cruella's spine.
    Malevola de Vil: At last! The daughter I've always wanted! COME TO MOMMY!
  • Spin-Offspring: In a way. Pongo and Perdita, the stars of the film, are Demoted To Extras, while their puppies Lucky, Rolly (both of whom were supporting characters themselves in the film) and Cadpig (who was only named in the book) take the spotlight. Lampshaded in the episode "The Making Of..." with a scene where Pongo and Perdita remark that they thought they were were going to star in the show but were told that the studio "decided to go for a younger look".
  • Squashed Flat: Cadpig tends to suffer from this whenever Rolly falls on her.
  • Stealth Insult: Cadpig, Lucky, and Spot's defense of Rolly against Mooch's accusation of cowardice in "Bad to the Bone" boils down to Rolly being "allergic to risk", preferring sleeping over fighting, and being a "cream puff". Rolly takes offense with being called a "cream puff".
  • Stealth Pun: During one of the group's attempts to break up Cadpig and Mooch in "My Fair Moochie", Lucky sets up a bogus ring toss booth while dressed as an old-timey boardwalk barker.
  • Sudden Anatomy:
    • Characters tend sprout thumbs whenever a pose or action requires them.
    • Dumpling gains fists instead of her usual front trotters briefly in "Mooove It On Over" (possibly due to an animation error)
  • Super-Strong Child: A lot of times, the main pups show that they're a lot stronger than they look, mainly Cadpig.
  • Sweet Home Alabama: Parodied in "Southern Fried Cruella," in which Cruella De'vil tried to convince a magazine editor giving out an award for humanitarianism that she was just a "good ol' sugar borrowing neighbor" of the Dearlys and failing miserably.
  • Theme Tune Roll Call: While technically this may not count, during the show's intro, each of the main pups gets their own character title card.
  • This Is Reality: Spot gives the line "This is a real life, not television," in "On the Lamb" when Lucky decides they should pursue Lambo.
  • Those Two Bad Guys: Jasper and Horace. There is even one episode of the series called "Horace and Jasper's Big Career Move" which focuses on the two of them applying for work. This episode takes the focus off Lucky, Cadpig, Rolly and Spot (who don't even physically appear until the end) to focus on Cruella's henchmen who aren't particularly interesting to start with, runs for a whole half-hour, and to top it all off, it's a clip show. This episode tends to be many fans' pick for the series' worst episode. Watch it if you're in desperate need of sleep.
  • Through a Face Full of Fur:
    • In "Spots And Shots", Lucky's fur eventually turns green and his spots turn pink, as well as his nose turning blue and swelling up. This is a result of him not getting the vaccination needed to prevent these symptoms of a highly contagious condition from happening, after he spent the day attempting to avoid seeing the vet.
    • In "Beauty Pageant Pandemonium", an irate Ivy's face turns red when her chances at winning the contest (due to her aunt Cruella's not-so-full-proof plan) turn bust.
    • In "Love 'Em And Flea 'Em", Lucky's fur is turned pink from pink food coloring that Mooch spills intentionally (in an effort to be Two-Tone's date at the dance instead), mixed with water and soap, after being bathed by Nanny. And at the end of the episode/segment, a steamed Mooch gradually turns red from bottom to top and steam comes out of his ears when his sabotage fails and Lucky tells him, "Cheer up, Mooch. You look so blue".
  • Time-Travel Romance: "De Vil-Age Elder" features the main cast (and Cruella) arriving in a time and space-transcending village cursed by a witch as a response to Cruella's ancestor's harshness. The witch's spell reduces all but Cruella and Spot to become mindlessly happy and never want to leave. During their stay, Lucky meets up with a carriage pup named Rebecca and becomes smitten with her. When the spell is broken and the main cast are making their escape before the village disappears, Lucky still shows legitimate feelings for Rebecca and asks her to come with them. While the feeling is mutual, Rebecca chooses to remain to keep an eye on Cruella's ancestor. And because it wasn't enough of a Bittersweet Ending, Laser-Guided Amnesia kicks in, leaving Lucky completely unaware of her existence not long afterwards.
  • Perdita, Cadpig, and Two-Tone all have blue collars.
  • Visual Pun: In "Oozy Does It", when Lucky is making a speech to the other animals of Dearly Farm about how sometimes a small group can make a big difference, he is literally standing on a soapbox.
  • Win to Exit: The end goal of the episode "Virtual Lucky".
  • You, Get Me Coffee: When Lucky first meets Thunderbolt in "Watch for Falling Idols," Thunderbolt tells Lucky to get him some lunch — "a mineral water and a croissant, if you can find it." Unlike most instances of this trope, however, Lucky is thrilled to do it, because he's so starstruck.


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