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|Tom and Jerry series|
reissue title card
|Directed by||William Hanna
|Produced by||Fred Quimby|
|Story by||William Hanna
|Music by||Scott Bradley|
|Animation by||Ray Patterson
|Release date(s)||December 10, 1949|
|Preceded by||Jerry's Diary|
|Followed by||Little Quacker|
Tennis Chumps is a 1949 one-reel animated cartoon and is the 46th Tom and Jerry short released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, directed by William Hanna and Joseph Barbera, and produced by Fred Quimby. The cartoon's music was scored by Scott Bradley, and the footage was animated by Ray Patterson, Irven Spence, Ed Barge and Kenneth Muse. It is the last cartoon to be produced in the 1940s.
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The cartoon starts with Tom emerging from a locker room at a tennis court. His entrance is interrupted by a black cat named Butch, who slams the door into Tom causing him to look like a figure in Egyptian hieroglyphics. Jerry then comes out from the locker room, but Tom orders him to pick up his tennis equipment. Jerry hands Tom his racquet and a tennis ball, and a match between Tom and Butch begins. With no further need for the mouse, Tom dismisses Jerry by hitting him into the locker room wall and he ends up landing in the drinking fountain. Jerry's mad while standing in the fountain.
Tom serves the ball and Butch returns it with such speed that it causes Tom's racket to burst into flame when it grazes the handle. Tom grabs another racket and serves three balls to Butch. Butch then splits his racket into three and returns all three balls back into Tom's mouth, and they settle into his tail.
Tom's next serve resembles a badminton serve and he pulls the net to force a drop shot. Butch then hits the ball hard into the ground and Tom has to stretch his arm all the way to the end of the court to make the return. Butch is then shown making many returns at the net, but the ball is actually bouncing off Tom's face. The ball eventually bounces back toward the end of Butch's court and Butch hits it with a lot of backspin, causing it to buzz in the air. Tom tries to chase after the ball, but ends up running into the post of the net and wrapping himself in the net.
Jerry now gets in the fun by playing the cats against each other. He hands Tom a small white bomb which looks like a tennis ball so as to blow up Butch. Jerry winks at Tom and Tom winks back. Tom lights the bomb and serves it to Butch. Butch is about to return the bomb but it explodes just before he makes contact with it, making him look like a blackfaced ballet dancer. Jerry then removes a round, white piece of a gate that resembles a tennis ball. It is heavy enough to cause Butch to be pulled into the ground when he grabs it. Jerry winks at Butch, who winks back and swings the racket, allowing the force of the net to serve the heavy ball to Tom. The overconfident Tom gets hit in the head and breaks into pieces.
Jerry starts to laugh at this and then he ducks out of the way as Tom is trying to hit him with tennis balls. Jerry ends up swallowing one of the tennis balls and he gets used as a rodent tennis ball between the two cats. After a small rally, Jerry lands up walking on the net like a tightrope and then wobbles onto Butch's head. Tom swings, hitting Butch instead and then throwing him onto the ground behind Tom. Butch is about to hit Tom but he sees Jerry running away on the other side of the court and he hits a tennis ball toward Jerry.
Jerry grabs a tennis racquet and starts rallying with Butch. Tom gets involved in the rally when a ball gets stuck in his mouth, which Butch simply hits out of it. Butch runs through a chain link fence to return the next shot by Jerry, and Jerry has to move the sideline after a ball hits the net and drops over.
Tom tries to get involved again, but Butch stops him. The rally continues and Butch runs back and forth on his side of the court with Tom next to him. Jerry then hits a really high ball and both cats run toward each other with an attempt to hit the ball, but they crash into each other and become a pair of conjoined cats. They separate and realize that they need to work together. They run toward Jerry and he runs toward an automatic tennis ball server, activating it at its highest speed. The huge force of the tennis balls hits the cats before they can dodge them, pushing them into the net, then through it all the way into a tree thousands of feet away, where they were tangled in the net, acting like marionettes.
Jerry's now then shown putting a fancy jacket on and in use of a marker,he writes his name on a tennis trophy cup. He stands up and waved to a crowd of people with him accepting the championship cup.
On Boomerang in the United Kingdom Butch smoking is cut out. Also, the tennis ball (which is a bomb) exploding on Butch causing him to be in blackface is censored, but not the American version of Boomerang (nor is it edited on the American Cartoon Network).
- "Smoke's no joke for Tom and Jerry". BBC News Online (BBC). 21 August 2006. Retrieved 24 December 2009.