Kids’ Shows Once Forgotten: T.U.F.F. Puppy


No one likes Butch Hartman, but even then, the shows he was a part of were some of the best, like “T.U.F.F Puppy.” The main character, Dudley Puppy, is played by Jerry Trainor. You most likely know him as the artistic, spaghetti-taco-making brother from “iCarly.” Dudley became an agent for T.U.F.F akaTurbo Undercover Fighting Force, after running for his chew toy and obstructing an investigation which he later solves with his natural agent skills. Another actor you may know from her voice is Grey DeLisle, who also goes by Grey Griffin. She plays Kitty Katswell in “T.U.F.F. Puppy,” along with Daphne from some of the cartoon “Scooby-Doo” show and movies.
Getting into watching the very first episode, I thought it was really weird coming back to it after so long. The familiar yet distant feeling (since the last time I watched it was about five years ago) is a little different and weird to me. The theme song caught me off guard because I thought I had completely forgotten about it, but I guess it was still stuck in my brain.
The episode starts with a tour group looking at a very important rat-related artifact, which just happens to be the target of a suite of kooky scoundrels. However, the dastardly plans of this roguish bunch are belaid by the tour guide, an undercover special agent. Elsewhere, happenstance leads our main character Dudley to the scene of the crime. By dumb luck, he happens to be the perfect mix of animal breeds for crime-solving and avoids arrest by joining the Turbo Undercover Fighting Force (T.U.F.F.). Unfortunately, he is still unable to apprehend the despicable Verminius Snaptrap. Kitty is then assigned to train Dudley, much to her chagrin.
You should be able to tell by now that this is a show about animals with human characteristics. There are characters like Dudley (dog) Kitty (cat) and Snaptrap (rat), so why are there also just regular rats? I guess at the end, one of the rats says, “I feel funky,” so they talk, but they act like regular rats. I’m thinking about this way too much, but I need answers; why are they on different levels if they are the same animal?
Anyway, back to the story: Our dynamic duo investigate around some warehouses, and fall into a cheesy trap. Snaptrap uses the powers of the rat artifact to control all the rats, putting the heroes into an even worse position– or so we think. Dudley uses his bloodhound super-smell and beat back the horde of vermin.
We return to the museum from the start of the episode, and a celebration is in order. The agents receive congratulation and drive majestically around town. In a comic mishap, Dudley is ejected out of the car and Kitty is given the time to finally accept him as her partner. Dudley falls back down, the pair make up, and the episode ends.
I know it might not make sense, but some of the awkward smiles and actions that Dudley does, and some of the other characters do, reminds me of Chowder. The reason it might not make so much sense is because “T.U.F.F. Puppy” is Nickelodeon, whereas “Chowder” is Cartoon Network. To be fair, Butch Hartman is prone to stealing from artists, so maybe that’s why. I know it’s a stretch because I don’t know for sure, but I just like making fun of him for it. Still might be true, though.
This nostalgic show brought me back to my childhood, and still has the charm from before. Despite Hartman being a part of it, the show was incredible. The villains and heroes brought good fights and even better humor. I think the Chameleon is my favorite villain. I know he wasn’t in this particular episode, but technically, there are two stories in each block of runtime and he was in the story right after this one. “T.U.F.F Puppy” is a show I urge everyone to watch in their free time.
If any of this interests you, I definitely recommend watching it. This is most likely my last article in the Spartan Scroll, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to stop watching shows from my childhood. I think everyone should watch what they want (if they want to watch anything,) whether it’s a new show, a movie, plays, musicals, and/or shows with nostalgia attached. It’s good to revisit things you used to love.