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Cartoon Friday Watercooler


Are you pondering what I’m pondering? No Pinky, it’s Cartoon Friday, again!

Brainy Smurf meets the Brain

Brainy Smurf meets the Brain. Remains of Gargamel discovered by police later that night.

Tonight’s selection is “A Pinky and the Brain Christmas” from Pinky and the Brain. This Christmas special aired on December 13, 1995. This episode won a Primetime Emmy award in 1996 for “Ourstanding Animated Program.”

Pinky and the Brain began as a supporting feature to The Animaniacs, who we should really visit with someday here on Cartoon Friday. The title characters are a pair of lab mice in Acme Labs who have been given human (or superhuman) intelligence at the cost of their sanity. Pinky, the tall mouse, is a babbling lunatic, while the short mouse — Brain — has become a megalomaniac who tries every night to take over the world.

Tonight’s plot involves Santa’s elves and a bizarre “must-have” Christmas toy called the Noodle-Noggin Doll. It’s a bit of pointed commentary on the annual consumerist crazes that’s aged better than the Regis Philbin jokes. I enjoyed the somewhat nonsensical dig at those once-ubiquitous Garfield dolls though.

The series resulted from a collaboration between Steven Spielberg and Warner Brothers Animation. It was created by Tom Ruegger, who also worked on other cartoons like Animaniacs and Tiny Toon Adventures. Maurice LaMarche, the voice of The Brain, appeared more recently as Kif Kroker on Futurama. Rob Paulsen, voice of the brain, also gave a voice to two different ninja turtles among many others.

Bonus: A list of answers to the Brain’s frequent question, Are you pondering what I’m pondering?

Egad! Narf! What are your favorite cartoons?

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Photo by JD Hancock released under a Creative Commons license.
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Kit OConnell

Kit OConnell

Kit O’Connell is a gonzo journalist and radical troublemaker from Austin, Texas. He is the Associate Editor and Community Manager of Shadowproof. Kit's investigative journalism has appeared in Truthout, MintPress News and