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Thomas Harriet "Tom" Cat is a major character in Tom and Jerry, and half of the academy-award winning Tom and Jerry cartoon cat-and-mouse duo. He is a blue/grey cat who first appeared in the 1940 animated short Puss Gets the Boot.
Tom is a mute, Russian Blue cat. With green eyes and yellow in the whites of his eyes, Tom has a white torso and has white hands and feet. The tip of his tail is also white. The rest of his body is gray.
His full name, "Tom Cat," is a pun on "tomcat", a phrase which refers to male cats. He is very rarely heard speaking with the exception of a few cartoons (such as Tom & Jerry Tales' League Of Cats) and "Tom and Jerry: The Movie". Although occasionaly, he would make yawning noises and "Ouch!" noises if he is hurt. As well as saying "Don't you believe it." in a low, monotonous voice.
Tom is portrayed as a normal cat that continuously chases after Jerry, for whom he sets traps, many of which backfire and cause damage to him rather than Jerry. Tom rarely sets out to eat Jerry, only to hurt or compete with him, going to great lengths in order to torment Jerry. However, Tom is shown to get along with Jerry at times.
Tom is also thick-skinned and quick-tempered. His anger is triggered, especially when he is annoyed by Jerry's antics.
Tom has changed his personality remarkably over the years, especially after the first episodes. For example, in his debut, he was quadrupedal and had normal cat intelligence. However, over the years (since the episode Dog Trouble), he has become almost completely bipedal and has human intelligence. As a slapstick cartoon character, Tom has a superhuman level of elasticity. When acting as Jerry's antagonist, Tom is usually defeated in the end, although there are some stories where he outwits and defeats Jerry.
Anchors Aweigh & Dangerous When Wet
Tom and Jerry appeared together in the 1945 Technicolor Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer musical Anchors Aweigh where Tom briefly appears as a butler for Jerry, the latter who has a dance sequence with Gene Kelly, and also in another musical with the same studio Dangerous When Wet (1953), where, in a dream sequence, main character Katie Higgins (Esther Williams) does an underwater ballet with Tom and Jerry, as well as animated depictions of the different people in her life.
Clarence Nash: Vocal Effects in The Hanna-Barbera era (1940–1941)
Tom sometimes has a happy ending in some episodes but when Spike Bulldog has a happy ending, Jerry will also have a happy ending.
In the first Tom And Jerry episode, Tom was called "Jasper".
Toots, a fluffy yellow cat who appears in Puss n' Toots and The Mouse Comes to Dinner, the latter being her only speaking role. This version of Toots also appeared in some 1940s Tom and Jerry comics.
Toots, a different cat by the same name who appears in The Zoot Cat. (She has occasionally, erroneously been referred to as "Sheikie," but this is actually Tom's nickname, as seen on a gift card in the cartoon.)