Weekly Muppet Wednesdays: Mew


Today’s article was written by our frequent contributor Kyle Mahoney.


Performed by…Mew
Steve Whitmire (1986)
Nigel Plaskitt (1994)

First Appearance…
The Christmas Toy (1986)

Last Appearance…
The Secret Life of Toys (1994)

Best Known Role…
Cat toy; Old friend, dear friend, friend who has gone away

Mew is a simple cat toy made to look like a mouse who appeared in the 1986 TV special The Christmas Toy and the subsequent series The Secret Life of Toys. His owner is Wee-Gee the Cat and he resides in the playroom with the rest of the children’s toys. He is small and has no arms or legs, just wheels which he uses to somehow propel himself. Mew isn’t hated among the kids’ toys, but in a way is treated as a lower class citizen for being a cat toy. Upon arrival to any gathering, all toys will say “Pew it’s Mew!” in unison, in reference to the scent of cat nip that he emits (being a cat toy and all).

Mew’s best friend in the playroom is Rugby Tiger, even though he will make fun of Mew and the scent of catnip causes him to sneeze. But it’s because of Mew that the rest of the toys go out to save Rugby after he leaves in the playroom. While trying to help Rugby, Mew discovers Meteora: Queen of the Asteroids and develops a crush on her.  He also has the ability to mimic Wee-Gee which saves the rescue team from being discovered after Meteora begins knocking things down.

While returning to the playroom, Mew is discovered out of his spot by Mr. and Mrs. Jones and is therefore frozen forever. Instead of the Joneses bringing him to the playroom, they put him in the cat’s bed near the Christmas tree. Rugby leaves the playroom and goes to say a final goodbye to his friend who has stood by his side no matter how much of an abusive, one-sided relationship they shared. According to Mew being frozen was very dark and cold, but after Rugby showed his true feelings for Mew and admitting that he was beginning to like the scent of Cat Nip, it got brighter and warmer, and then he woke up. On Christmas morning, we see the Wee-Gee got a new cat toy, whose name also happens to be Mew.

Mew appeared in the series The Secret Life of Toys which featured some of the characters from the special, but also added new ones. Mew had changed in design and in performance. Instead of his wheels he was given arms and legs and he was now performed by Nigel Plaskitt instead of Steve Whitmire. Although Mew was not as criticized for his smell and his social status among the toys, the others would still comment on his stench and refer to him as a cat toy.

Without Mew, Rugby would have successfully gotten into Meteora’s box under the Christmas Tree and the entire Toy Community’s cover would have been revealed leading to every toy becoming frozen forever. He acts as Rugby’s sense of reason, and maybe because he leads a much harder life as a cat toy, he has just about the same wisdom as Balthazar the Teddy Bear.

The Muppet Mindset by Ryan Dosier, muppetmindset@gmail.com

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