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Your Friend the Rat


The special starts in with Remy introducing himself and Emile to the audience and speaking on behalf of oppressed rats everywhere. Emile starts frowning about having to speak out, while Remy pulls a scroll and a two dimensional animation starts by presenting the relation between a human and a rat in contrast with human dog and human cat relationships.


Remy points out that humans regarded rats in former times as sacred and luck bringing. He says that during the Roman Empire if a white rat crosses your path, it brought good luck, while if a black rat crosses your path, it brought bad luck.


He moves on to discussing black rats (Rattus rattus) and their connection to the Black Death, pointing out that it was caused by fleas not rats, resulting in the death of one third of Europe's population. Remy further presents the brown rat's (Rattus norvegicus) history, mentioning their part in ending the Black Death, their honorable position in the Chinese zodiac and their sacredness in India for being the transport vehicle of the Hindu god Ganesh.

The symbiotic relationship between rats and humans is introduced before the second appearance of Remy and Emile in 3D animation. Emile pulls a scroll from the side and presents through 2D animation the benefits of rats for the human. He says that Jack Black was a rat catcher for Queen Victoria and that he kept the rats he captured as pets.


Their use for laboratory testing and as pets show that they can have a good relationship with humans. Concluding the presentation, Emile and Remy sing “Plan B” (a song about the relationship between rats and humans).


At the film's end, a long and drawn out (mostly satirical) disclaimer is shown asking children to stay away from rats, while Remy and Emile stand in front of it and try to remove it, urging the audience to ignore the warning and complaining about freedom of speech and lack of food, respectively.




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