SWAT Kats

Backstory

Cut to the SWAT Kats’ hangar. Razor is fiddling with some gizmo or other, while T-Bone complains that “Dark Kat has never brought us anything but bad luck.”

Razor tells him it could’ve been worse, since the Green Laser of Doom almost hit the Turbokat’s fuel tanks. The alarm sounds, and T-Bone (missing his tail due to an animation blooper) answers the phone on the nearby wall. It’s Callie, of course, and we see her driving to, um, somewhere. Anyway she quickly fills them in on Feral’s situation.

Cut to the Doomsday Express approaching some pointy-looking volcanic mountains. Feral, hiding behind some crates in what appears to be the cargo bay, is now on a walkie-talkie (!) with Steel, asking if he’s following the signal. Steel however tells him that they haven’t been able to scramble any jets just yet, attributing the delay to “mechanical problems.” We then see that Steel is actually in Feral’s office now at Enforcer Headquarters, kicking back with his feet up on Feral’s desk. After telling Feral to “be patient,” he hangs up on him, and his dastardly intentions are made clear when he casually flicks Feral’s nameplate off the desk in an admittedly nice bit.

Before you go thinking that Steel is a traitor to the Enforcers and really working for Dark Kat, he isn’t. He just wants Feral’s job badly enough to sit back and let him be killed so he can get promoted, the greedy little bastard.

Backstory

He hung up on me,” Feral says, stunned. “The little creep hung up on me!”

Pulling out a laser pistol, the Commander decides to make his move anyway, and after going through a nifty door that opens via three sliding sections he finds himself in the control room. Dark Kat is seated in a high-back “throne,” facing away from Feral as he sneaks towards the villain. Suddenly two creeplings appear and pounce Feral, taking the gun away.

Dark Kat spins around in his chair and greets Feral: “It’s about time you said hello, Commander. I imagine it was getting rather chilly in the cargo bay.” Feral tries to bluff, saying that “the Enforcers are right behind me!” The bluff works, but Dark Kat is unconcerned. “Let your men come!” he sneers. “By the time they arrive, Megakat City will be in ruins!” The Doomsday Express (boy, is that a dumb name for a villain vehicle or what?) reaches the volcano, which we see has a “waterfall of lava.” In what is only the second nice bit in this episode so far, the airship uses its forcefield to fly through the lava and into a tunnel concealed behind it.

Forget? How could I ever remember?

"Remember? How could I ever forget!"

"Remember? How could I ever forget!"

Back to the SWAT Kats hangar! T-Bone and Razor are repairing the Turbokat, and have this stupid little exchange:

“This is all too weird, Chance. I mean, Dark Kat, Feral, it’s like deja-vu.” “Deja-who? Whaddaya mean?” Bright T-Bone ain’t. Razor says that not only are they going after Dark Kat, but they also have to rescue Feral (although for all THEY know, Feral could’ve already saved the day by now). As we’ll soon see, Razor calling this situation “deja-vu” is somewhat dubious.

Razor then asks if T-Bone remembers “what he did to us that day,” meaning Feral I guess, to which T-Bone replies, “Remember? How could I ever forget!” The picture gets all wavy and, ooh, it’s flashback time! An unknown number of tears ago, Chance Furlong and Jake Clawson are Enforcer pilots chasing after Dark Kat, who is flying a purple jet that looks similar to the Doomsday Express. After some drivel about them being the only pilots brave enough to take Dark Kat out, they manage to hit his jet with a missile before he can attack the newly-constructed Enforcer Headquarters (which has a runway built about thirty-some stories off the ground!!! That building’s one big sitting target!).

However, this does not cripple Dark Kat’s jet, but merely messes up the weapons system (what IS it with this universe and tough planes?), and Jake, in the gunner’s seat, is about to finish Dark Kat off when none other than Commander Feral pulls up behind them in his own jet. He orders them to back off and let him shoot Dark Kat down. He and Chance then get into a heated arguement about whose “tag” it is, with Chance ignoring his commanding officer’s orders since they “have a lock,” and then, uh, something happens. Somehow or another, Feral clips the wing of Chance and Jake’s jet as he passes them, causing them to spiral out of control. Whether he did this on purpose or accidentally is a question for the ages, but going by Feral’s behavior in later episodes where the writers became more sympathetic to his character (particularly in episodes like “Metal Urgency” and the series finale, “Unlikely Alloys”), I tend to assume he didn’t mean to hit them.

Regardless, Chance and Jake are forced to eject as their jet smashes into Enforcer Headquarters, completely destroying the top few floors (bad animation makes it look realy lame). Feral is so distracted by this that Dark Kat manages to escape, much to the Commander’s fury. Later, with the building still burning and no sign of any fire fighters, Chance and Jake are down on the street looking up at the absolutely gigantic flames, and comment that it’s “monumental disaster” and a “heckuva loss.”

"It was our tag!"

"It was our tag!"

Feral appears with a piece of paper (the repair bill?) and tells them, “This is the last act of vandalism you will ever perform on this city!”

Whoa, boy, is HE ever wrong. Chance, proving to be something of an idiot, gets in Feral’s face and drags out the “it was OUR tag” arguement again, yelling that “none of this would’ve happened if you hadn’t interfered, sir!” Boy, how’d he even make it through basic training with such an attitude and a problem with authority? Just when it looks like he and Feral are going to get into a pissing contest, the Commander loses his temper and declares both Chance and Jake “off the force!” Although what Jake did to deserve being fire is beyond me; it was all Chance!

In unison, they say it suits them, then take off and throw down their crash helmets and walk away. Feral stops them. “I said you’re off the force, but not off the hook! There’s still the matter of paying for this building, and that’s what you two are going to be doing for a long, long time!”

Cut to the familiar Megakat City Salvage Yard as Chance and Jake pull up in a green car. As they get out, they’re met by Burke and Murray from the previous episode. The brothers have a hearty laugh at our heroes’ expense (“Look, Burke, it’s those two hotshots who wrecked the new Enforcer building!” “Don’t look so hot now, do they?”) before explaining how it’s gonna work to their new wards. “Feral says you guys gotta run the salvage yard, ’till you pay back every penny it costs to rebuild the Enforcer building,” says Burke, handing Chance a set of keys that, I assume, go to the salvage yard’s tow truck.

After Murray comments that it’ll take them “a thousand years,” he and his sibling drive off in their dump truck, thankfully depriving us of their presence (until they reappear one last time in “Metal Urgency”). Chance starts angrily kicking random junk around, complaining, “We’re pilots, not junkmen!” Jake however has a solution, noting that “there’s enough military salvage here to build our own jet.” Uh-huh. So they built the Turbokat FROM SCRATCH?!!??

Chance, being sensible for once, asks what they would do if they had their own jet. “Get back in the air and get back at Dark Kat, and all the other ugly criminal scum who rear their heads in Megakat City,” replies Jake. “Only this time… we do it our way!” Boy, I miss heroes who did heroic deeds because of a sense of duty, not because they’re out for personal revenge. Anyway, Chance and Jake high-five one another as the flashback finally ends, and we return to the present to see that T-Bone Razor have also high-fived one another. T-Bone says, “Time to take care of Dark Kat! But this time, we do it our way!” Funny, I thought they’ve BEEN doing it their way for the past three episodes…

Back at the volcano

Cut to the interior of Dark Kat’s secret volcano lair, which is appropriately dark and spooky with lava flowing everywhere, and the Doomsday Express sits parked in front of a tunnel whose opening is a big demonic mouth with fangs and such. A portion of the floor pulls away as what looks like a big bomb rises up into view on a wheeled platform.

Dark Kat approaches it, talking an offscreen Commander Feral, identifying the weapon as the “Doomsday Device.” Boy, this guy sure likes the word “doomsday.” We now see that Feral is bound and gagged nearby, looking really worried for a change as Dark Kat rants, “In less than one hour, I will destroy Megakat City. From its ashes I will create a new city, where lawlessness is the law of the land: Dark Kat City!”

Okay, I have to admit, as far as evil schemes go, I rather like the idea of a megalomaniacal supervillain being so in love with himself that he wants to build his own city and name it after himself, crafting it in his own image. And Dark Kat is certainly in love with himself, if the big, monogrammed “D” on his metal shoulder guard is any indication. Still, as I said, a bomb plot is rather passe once we’ve already had stuff like dinosaurs and mutant bacteria monsters.

Outside, the SWAT Kats approach the volcano in the Turbokat. Razor mentions that Feral’s signal is coming from inside, although how they knew he had a signal device is never explained. Razor uses the X-ray Beam to look for a hidden entrance (and although the beam was red in “The Giant Bacteria”, it’s]blue here. Continuity!), but although the volcano is “honeycombed with passages,” it has “no real entrance.” Yeah, and even if they did check the lavafall (as opposed to waterfall) they couldn’t get in that way.

Backstory

Instead, T-Bone suggests that they make their own door. Razor agrees, and launches a “Mole Missile.”

Like all their other stupid missiles, it looks like an ordinary missile until the tip pops off, and a big serrated propeller pops out and begins to spin around. This then drills into the side of the volcano. Uh-huh. Yeah. Anyway, Razor then gives us his first utterance of his little catchphrase, which is “Bingo!”, and T-Bone lands the Turbokat.

The SWAT Kats put on their Glovatrixes, which are little gauntlet thingies they wear on their forearms and carry more miniature missiles and gadgets than the Turbokat itself it seems. They then hop onto the Cyclotron (which is now a two-seater rather than the one-seater seen previously) and drive out through the Turbokat’s bomb-bay doors, and drive up into the tunnel created by the Mole Missile.

This despite the fact that we’d clearly seen lava pouring out along with the expected rocks and debris a few moments ago. Shouldn’t they be flame-broiled? Wishful thinking…