The name “Jerry” was chosen by MGM animator John Carr, who submitted “Tom and Jerry” as potential names for the duo after an important Loews Inc. distributor in Texas asked for follow-ups to Puss Gets the Boot. While the idea of a cat-and-mouse duo was considered shopworn by the 1940s, Hanna and Barbera decided to expand upon the standard expected hunter/prey relationship. Their Jerry Mouse, an “incurable scene stealer”, served more or less as the protagonist of most of the films; instead of being a “cowering victim” of his pursuer, Tom, he took delight in besting, and often torturing, his antagonist. Though, sometimes, Tom is just following orders or is even just minding his own business and is antagonized by Jerry. Hanna and Barbera considered Tom and Jerry “the best of enemies”, whose rivalry hid an unspoken amount of mutual respect. Jerry is also mute like Tom as well.

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