A secret society of high-tech heroes that take down an evil organization to save the world might sound like something you'd expect from Marvel Comics. But The Mouse Watch by J.J. Gilbert from Disney Hyperion actually has more in common with Chip & Dale. That's because it's set in the expanded Rescue Rangers universe within a new organization founded by Gadget Hackwrench.
Bernadette is an adventurous young mouse who goes by the nickname Bernie and idolizes inventor Gadget Hackwrench. Her biggest dream is to be invited to join Gadget's secret organization, the Mouse Watch, a dream that comes true one day. But when the entire organization is mousnapped during her initial training by the nefarious R.A.T.S., she and her new partner are the only two who can save them.
Set in modern times, The Mouse Watch takes place years after the events of the popular Disney Afternoon animated series that inspired it. Gadget has left the Rescue Rangers to found her own organization, but Chip & Dale are still doing what they do best. But fans looking for an adventure with Gadget should note that she's a small character in the story. It's really about Bernie proving herself and learning to trust her partner.
One of the story's biggest themes is overcoming stereotypes. The evil organization is called R.A.T.S., composed entirely of rats and led by a powerful cyborg rat. A rat was responsible for the death of Bernie's older brother as well, so she has a hard time when she is paired with a rat named Jarvis, whose name seems to be one of several Marvel nods.
Being an inventor, Gadget has created some very modern tech for Bernie and the Mouse Watch to use. This includes drones and smartphones, but there’s also some legacy spy gear. Communicator watches and James Bond-style motorcycle chases are all part of this exciting adventure.
The Mouse Watch is a fun adventure story about believing in yourself, widening your world view, and good triumphing over evil. Kids will love it for the relatable characters, cool gadgets, and cyborg villain. Parents who grew up on Chip & Dale Rescue Rangers will have a good time reading this story with their kids and showing them the series that inspired it on Disney+.
Alex has been blogging about Disney films since 2009 after a lifetime of fandom. He joined the Laughing Place team in 2014 and covers films across all of Disney’s brands, including Star Wars, Marvel, and Fox, in addition to books, music, toys, consumer products, and food. You can hear his voice as a member of the Laughing Place Podcast and his face can be seen on Laughing Place’s YouTube channel where he unboxes stuff.