The Case of the Loose Change Plot

Having moved out of jail after Mayor Manx was put in, Dark Kat had finally gotten adjusted to moving into his new house and giving up the villain biz for good. No matter how hard he tried, he couldn't hatch another plot that might genuinely work, so he gave that up in order to play the drums full-time. Having experience with the ancient war drum of Megalith City, drumming was no problem for the purple overlord. He just had to be content with the fact that his purple skin would always be a reminder to all he was once the city's most hated villain. He taught himself the basics, and was currently trying to master five-stroke rolls and seven-stroke rolls. He also memorized typical drum solos drummers in Megakat City were expected to master: "Crazy Army" and "Connecticut half-time."

Dr. Viper, meanwhile, continued with plot after plot to take over Megakat City, and with Dark Kat out of the way, it would be slightly easier for him to succeed. Of course, what he didn't count on was that Commander Feral had a new policy that stated if necessary, Dark Kat would be brought into the fray.

Today, Dr. Viper had dispatched his goons to the outskirts of town, looking for loose change. "With all these mutants looking for loose change," he hissed to himself, "the metal from the change will work perfectly for my latest invention: the Dr. Viper metal-sucker-upper machine. Bad name, but it was the best I could do."

After rehearsing "Crazy Army" for the fifth time, Dark Kat put his drum down and sat down to rest for a minute. He turned on his television to find that Kat's Eye News was in the process of reporting breaking news (again).

"This is Ann Gora for Kat's Eye News," Ann began. "We interrupt this program to bring a special bulletin. Dr. Viper's goons are on the loose again, but they only seem to be going for loose change that nobody claims is theirs. Pennies are being found all over the streets just outside the outskirts of town. The public is buzzing over this, and chances are, so are the SWAT Kats. We'll bring you more on this groundbreaking story as the evening progresses. For right now, back to programming."

"Wonder if Feral knows about this?" Dark Kat said to himself. "Better call him just in case." He picked up his touch-tone telephone and dialed the number.

"Enforcer H.Q.," Commander Feral began on the other end. "Feral speaking."

"Ah, Commander," Dark Kat replied. "This is Dark Kat. I wasn't sure if you were aware or not, but Dr. Viper's goons are looking for loose change—pennies, nickels, dimes, and quarters—and are on the outskirts of town. According to the news media, the public is buzzing over why they are doing this, and what exactly Viper's intentions are. I felt it was my duty to inform you, but chances are you knew about this already."

"As it turns out," Feral replied, "we saw the same news update you did, but thank you for the call. I don't think we need your help for this one, but if we do, we'll call you back."

"Affirmative," said Dark Kat as he hung up the phone and began drumming again.

T-Bone and Razor had just finished washing the Turbokat when Callie gave them a call regarding Viper's goons. "All we are doing is investigating this at the moment," she said, "but now that I'm the mayor and not just the deputy mayor anymore, it's easier for me to call you on cases like this."

"Roger that, Miss Briggs," said T-Bone as he and his partner jumped in their jet and took off at top speed. "Have you gotten any word about Viper?"

"No, only the fact his goons are picking up loose change, or, as one citizen put it, stealing the change. I mean, it's only coins, so no one's going to say they lost a coin. A $1 bill perhaps, but not a coin. Commander Feral is on the case right now, and so is his posse, if you know what I mean."

"We know what you mean," said Razor. "We're switching to radar mode now." He pressed a button that turned on the radar system and located Viper's mutants all over the edges of the city limits. T-Bone flew the jet towards the borders as Razor began unleashing his spider missiles that would release nets to capture the goons in. Enforcers whom Feral had dispatched were rounding them up and shipping them to the lab, where Dr. Konway and Dr. N. Zyme were busy working on chemicals that would transform them back to normal creatures. Since these creatures were involved in a first-degree crime, however, they would be placed in the city's amphibian equivalent of a typical dog pound, so that they'd never get out.

Viper, meanwhile, tapped his foot impatiently. "What's taking those moron's so long?" he groaned. "I was supposed to have my machine up and running by now! Ah, they're no good. I'll just have to find another source of mutants to do my evil bidding! Once I am able to get this machine running, the Megakat Mint will be out of money, and I'll be able to put my face on the bills. That way, the citizens will see my potential and hail me as their ruler. Plus, in case the Pastmaster decides to come back, Miss Briggs will be ready for him." (Unbeknownst to Viper, during the incident with the ancient war drum, Queen Callista had somehow been transformed to the present and was forced to make a living there. The Pastmaster soon returned to his previous undead state and it was highly unlikely he'd come back to life again, unless Jack and Tom would be the ones to find him, of course.)

Hearing this over his spy system, Razor forwarded the recording to Commander Feral. "So that's Viper's plan!" Feral exclaimed. "He wants to put his face on all our money!"

"Original, isn't it?" Razor made the comment. "You'd think he would have better luck with the plot behind you winning the lottery."

"Well, that's been settled," said Feral. "Once your radar finds Viper's hideout, let me know where it is before you begin bombing it with whatever you use to bomb it, or however you are going to attack. I haven't been in your jet yet."

"You probably wouldn't be ready for it," T-Bone replied. "You have to be in excellent shape to drive this baby." He steered the jet towards where Razor's radar was locating Viper's hideout.

"Bombs away!" Razor shouted, dropping foam bombs on the hideout. The resulting explosions, leaving Viper's hideout pink, got Viper's attention, and he ran outside to see what was happening. He called for his goons, but no response occurred.

"Curses! Foiled again!" Viper snorted. "Don't you SWAT Kats ever mind your own business?"

Another missile from Razor promptly destroyed Viper's machine, thus, in Feral's words, "promptly stopped the crime right before it started." Feral, Felina, and the Sergeant pulled up in the commander's sedan as T-Bone flew the Turbokat back to the hangar, "We're letting you take it from here, sir."

"Much obliged, SWAT Kats," Feral radioed back. "I know Miss Briggs will be pleased. It's her first official thanks to you as mayor instead of deputy mayor. As for Manx, he's getting what he deserves, violating our Constitution." He turned to Viper. "What have you got to say for yourself?"

"I goofed!" Viper spit out.

"Confess now!" Felina added to the interrogation. "What's the big idea?"

"And what is that big hunk of junk that's now nothing but junk?" said the Sergeant sternly.

As Felina cuffed him, the frustrated half-cat, half-snake explained his whole plot and the reasons for the loose change. "I just wish there was some way to succeed," he concluded. "It's getting so a kat can't earn a dishonest living no more!"

Back at the hangar, T-Bone and Razor, now mild-mannered Chance and Jake, respectively, added another skull-and-crossbones to their victory count. "Chalk up another one for the SWAT Kats!" Chance smiled.

"You bet," said Jake. "As always, awesome flying on your part!"

"And your aim was perfect! Right on target!"

"We make a great team, don't we, buddy?"

"We sure do, Jake," said Chance as the duo donned their karate uniforms for practice. "We sure do."


SWAT Kats: The Radical Squadron © Hanna-Barbera, Warner Bros., Cartoon Network