Baby Puss is a 1943 one-reel animated cartoon and is the 12th Tom and Jerry short directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera and produced by Fred Quimby, Baby Puss was released to theaters on Christmas day, 1943 by Metro-Goldwyn Mayer.
This is the first Tom and Jerry short to be animated by Ray Patterson, who arrived from Walt Disney Productions after working on The Old Army Game, a Donald Duck cartoon also released in 1943. Except some time spent at Walter Lantz Productions in the 1950s, Patterson would continue to work for Hanna and Barbera into the 1980s.
- Tom Cat
- Jerry Mouse (main antagonist)
- Nancy (debut)
- Butch Cat (debut) (secondary antagonist)
- Topsy Cat (debut) (tertiary antagonist)
- Meathead Cat (quaternary antagonist)
A little girl named Nancy is playing house, and pretending to be the mother and has also dressed Tom, apparently the family pet, up to be her pet kitten. She is scolding Tom, who is hiding under some furniture. She drags Tom out by his tail and threatens to spank him. Tom is resentful over his treatment and feels humiliated. She carries him to the bassinet, tucks him in, and shoves a bottle of milk in his mouth. She warns him, under threat of more spanking, to stay in bed while she goes downtown to buy a new girdle. Indignant at first, Tom gets a taste of milk and quickly accepts his lot, cooing like a baby and drinking from his baby bottle.
Jerry peeks from behind a doll house and sees Tom. Incredulous at first, Jerry proceeds to mock him by playing "Rock-a-bye Baby" on the turntable and pretends to be a baby himself. Tom is furious and chases Jerry into the dollhouse. Just when it seems that Tom has Jerry cornered, Nancy returns and scolds Tom again. Tucking Tom back in bed, Nancy threatens to feed him castor oil if he gets out again. Tom goes back to his role playing. Jerry emerges from the doll house and runs to the window to get the attention of Meathead (first seen in Sufferin' Cats!), Butch and Topsy, Tom's three alley cat friends who are outside. When the trio see Tom, they begin to make fun of him. When Tom confronts the other cats, they continue to tease and humiliate him, tossing him like a ball causing him to land in a fish bowl resulting in a wet diaper. They then proceed to change his diaper with oil and powder, before fitting him with rubber pants.
The three cats, now joined by Jerry, are caught up in their abuse of Tom, singing Carmen Miranda's "Mama Yo Quiero". Jerry looks behind the window and cackles. Then Nancy reappears and the other three cats rush off from the scene, leaving Tom to take the heat. Tom, as promised, gets scolded by being forced to have a spoon of castor oil. Tom resists, but with a little help from Jerry by squeezing a nutcracker on his tail, he takes the castor oil. He immediately feels sick, and rushes off to be sick out of the nearby window. Jerry, victorious, continues to laugh at Tom's humiliation. However, his triumph is short-lived as karma catches up to him, in the form of the castor oil spilling down from the high chair, and right into the mouse's laughing mouth. Jerry also immediately feels sick and rushes to be sick out of the window next to Tom.
- Sara Berner as Nancy and Jerry Mouse
- William Hanna as Tom Cat
- Harry E. Lang as Butch Cat, Topsy Cat, and Meathead Cat
- Jack Mather as Topsy Cat (song) when dressing up
- Jack Mercer as Butch Cat (song) While Rock a bye baby
- This is the first appearances of Butch, Topsy, and Nancy. This is also the only cartoon of Topsy's four appearances in which he speaks. Besides singing, he exclaims, "Hey, look! I'm dancin'! I'm dancin'!" while dancing with a doll.
- This is the only Tom and Jerry episode to be released on Christmas Day.
- This is also the first cartoon to use "An MGM Tom and Jerry Cartoon" end title as well as the "The End" which would be used until 1956.
- This is the first to have the lost Tom and Jerry 1943-46 intro. Since the original negatives were burned in a fire, none of the current backup prints feature this title card.
- This short can also be heard in the background of the music video for Fatboy Slim's "Ya Mama (Push the Tempo" (A.K.A "Push the Tempo").
- This is one of fourteen cartoons in which both Tom and Jerry lose in the end. The other thirteen cartoons are Muscle Beach Tom, Fraidy Cat, Saturday Evening Puss, Polka-Dot Puss, A Mouse in the House, The Framed Cat, His Mouse Friday, Blue Cat Blues, Feedin' the Kiddie, Tot Watchers, Filet Meow, Advance and Be Mechanized, Safety Second, The Little Orphan, and Baby Butch.
- When Tom was seeing in Jerry while griming in shower scene was cut.