|Rugrats / All Grown Up! character|
|First appearance||"Tommy Pickles and The Great White Thing" (1990; Rugrats)|
|Last appearance||"Golden Boy" (2008; All Grown Up!)|
|Created by||Arlene Klasky |
|Voiced by||Tami Holbrook (pilot) |
E. G. Daily
|Full name||Thomas Malcolm Pickles|
|Family||Stu Pickles (father) |
Didi Pickles (mother)
Dil Pickles (brother)
|Relatives||Lou Pickles (grandfather) |
Boris Kropotkin (grandfather)
Minka Kropotkin (grandmother)
Angelica Pickles (cousin)
Thomas Malcolm "Tommy" Pickles is a fictional character and the protagonist of the animated children's television series Rugrats and its spinoff series All Grown Up!. He is also the protagonist of The Rugrats Movie (1998), and a major character in the films Rugrats in Paris: The Movie (2000) and Rugrats Go Wild (2003), as well as other various Rugrats-related media.
In Rugrats, Tommy is a one-year-old baby and the leader of the show's other infant characters. He is inquisitive, wants to explore everything, and often breaks out of his crib and gets himself into unusual situations.
The character was voiced by E. G. Daily, who based her performance on a child character she had been developing since she her youth. Daily voiced Tommy for the entire 13-year run of the Rugrats series, as well as the films, and returned to voice the older version of the character in All Grown Up! Tommy Pickles has been very well received, and is considered by some to be one of the greatest cartoon characters of all time.
Tommy was born Thomas Malcolm Pickles, the eldest son of Stuart "Stu" Pickles, a self-taught inventor specializing in children's toys, and Didila "Didi" Pickles (nee Kropotkin), a schoolteacher. Though Stu works from home, out of the family's basement, Tommy and his younger brother, Dylan "Dil" Pickles, are primarily cared for by Didi, who devotes much of her free time reading books on the latest in child development, hoping to raise her sons to be emotionally and physically healthy as possible. As Stu is a Christian and Didi is Jewish, the family celebrates religious holidays affiliated with both Christianity and Judaism, such as Easter, Passover, Christmas, and Hanukkah. His paternal grandparents are Louis Kalhern "Lou" Pickles, and the late Beatrix "Trixie" Pickles, and his maternal grandparents are Boris Kropotkin and Minka Kropotkin. He has a paternal uncle, Andrew "Drew" Pickles, by whom he has a cousin, Angelica Pickles, and a maternal uncle, Benjamin "Ben" Kropotkin, who is rarely seen or mentioned.
In the original Rugrats series, Tommy is almost always depicted as speaking in a soft voice and wearing only a baby blue shirt and diaper, though he wore a red shirt and overalls in the aired television pilot "Tommy's First Birthday" He is one year old at the beginning of the series, and has only a few strands of hair, the color of which indeterminable. He is white and through his mother, Didi, Tommy is of European Jewish heritage, her parents born and raised in Russia and later immigrating to the United States. At his age, he can only be understood by other babies and younger children, such as his cousin Angelica and his neighbor Susie, who are both three years old, and isn't able to communicate with his newborn brother, Dil, which frustrates him at times. Though the youngest of the babies, Tommy is brave and adventurous and it comes natural for him to serve as their leader, and, in stark contrast to Angelica, who frequently serves as an antagonist, he has a strong sense of justice and is unafraid to stand up for what he believes is right.Template:Fact Tommy is highly inquisitive, wants to explore everything, and regularly breaks out of his crib. He often uses a plastic toy screwdriver as a tool for escaping his crib and getting into places. Because of his goodhearted nature, he is sometimes easily manipulated or lied to. He is closest to Chuckie, as Phil and Lil, being twins, spend most of their time with one another and a strong familial bond. His catchphrase is "A baby's gotta do what a baby's gotta do".
The series All Grown Up! depicts Tommy and the other Rugrats children as adolescents. Tommy, now 11 years old, bears resemblance to both his mother and father, with palatinate hair similar to Stu and a button nose similar to Didi. A nod to his childhood, Tommy still carries his toy screwdriver with him as part of his keychain. He has become less of a leader to his friends and more of an equal and while he still has a strong sense of right and wrong, he is sometimes hesitant to do the right thing for fear of being rejected or teased by peers, as is typical for an adolescent. He has remained best friends with Chuckie throughout the years, still encouraging him to step outside of his very small comfort zone, and somewhat critical of Dil, whose abnormal tendencies sometime embarrass or confuse him. He shows a strong interest in filmmaking. In the first season, Tommy wears a white shirt with yellow sleeves, but from the second season onward, Tommy and the other characters expanded their wardrobe and began wearing many different outfits.
As the main protagonist of Rugrats, Tommy Pickles appears in the majority of episodes across the show's 13-year run, with many of the storylines centering around him and his family, and with the Pickles household often serving as the primary setting. The original unaired pilot for the series, "Tommy Pickles and the Great White Thing", revolved around Tommy breaking out of his crib to travel to the bathroom and investigate the "great white thing," which is actually a toilet. The first aired episode of Rugrats was "Tommy's First Birthday", which was broadcast on Nickelodeon on August 11, 1991. It centered around Tommy first birthday and his birthday party, during which he and the other children believe that eating hot dogs will turn them into dogs. Some of the first season episodes featured such plotlines as Tommy journeying into a neighbor's house to retrieve a lost ball, Tommy making a mess at a fancy restaurant at his dad's work function, Tommy getting lost at the school where his mother teaches, and Tommy wandering around the stadium during a baseball game, in which he ultimately ends up playing. In the episode "Weening Tommy", his mother transition Tommy away from using a baby bottle, which he resists. Other episodes involved Tommy trying to escape from the doctor's office to avoid a shot, Tommy becoming fearful after Angelica tells him his parents will give him away at a family reunion, and Tommy developing a fear of getting sucked down the bathtub drain. One of the most notable episodes was "A Rugrats Passover", in which Tommy's Grandpa Boris tells the children the Jewish story of the Exodus on Passover. This leads the children to imagining themselves as part of the story, with Tommy playing the part of Moses.
Tommy Pickles has been featured in several other Rugrats-related works outside of the main series. He is the protagonist of The Rugrats Movie (1998), the story of which is centered around the birth of Tommy's brother, Dil. Throughout the film, Tommy struggles with the sudden change in his family's dynamic and with accepting Dil, who, being a newborn, does not understand the concept of sharing, cooperating, or being nice as Tommy does, which Tommy finds to be incredibly difficult to deal with. Ultimately, Tommy comes to accept Dil at the end of the film. Tommy Pickles is also featured in Rugrats in Paris: The Movie (2000), which is set in Paris and focuses primarily on the wedding of Chuckie's father, as well as Tommy's father Stu being summoned to the amusement part Reptarland to fix a malfunctioning Reptar robot. Tommy appeared in the film Rugrats Go Wild (2003), a crossover of Rugrats and the Nickelodeon animated series The Wild Thornberrys, in which Tommy and his family and friends become shipwrecked on a deserted island, where they meet the Thornberry family. Tommy made additional appearances in the straight-to-DVD films Rugrats Tales from the Crib, which were released between 2005 and 2006. In July 2018, it was announced that Tommy would appear in newly-planned Rugrats television series and a live-action film featuring characters rendered with computer-generated imagery. However, those plans were shelved in November 2019 and no updates have been provided since.
All Grown Up!
In addition to Rugrats and its related films and media, Tommy Pickles was the protagonist of All Grown Up!, which depicts him and the children from the original series as adolescents. The concept for the series derived from "All Growed Up", a special episode of Rugrats that aired on July 21, 2001, to celebrate the series' 10th anniversary, which portrayed the original characters 10 years into the future. Tommy remains the ringleader of his group of friends, though he has now developed a strong interest in filmmaking and makes movies with a camcorder, partially inspired by his encounter with Nigel Thornberry in Rugrats Go Wild. A few episodes have been made around this fact; "Truth or Consequences" revealed he made his first film at the age of 37 months, then making a negative film about his friends. The main storyline of "Brother, Can You Spare The Time?" opened with him mentioning recently winning a young filmmaker's award; and one storyline in the episode "Bad Aptitude" was about Tommy's sudden early retirement from filmmaking after making a flop and receiving an unfavorable (for his filmmaking aspirations) result on his career aptitude exam. However, he has not been seen with his camcorder since "The Big Score", when he was filming Lil at the soccer field.
In the episode "River Rats", Tommy was shown to be afraid of water, stemming from an experience during a fishing outing with his grandpa. Up until early Season 2, Tommy was also either shown or mentioned as being part of the school soccer team, even trying to teach Dil how to play in the episode "Fools Rush In". Tommy had his first kiss with Olivia in the episode "Fear of Falling". He also develops a romantic relationship with a character named Rachel, who he meets in the episode "Rachel, Rachel" after they met each other at Hebrew school. It is also implied in the episode "TP + KF" that Tommy and Kimi Finster may have feelings for each other. All Grown Up! featured Tommy Pickles' final appearance, in the episode "Golden Boy".
Tommy Pickles was voiced by actress E. G. Daily. The voice Daily conceived for Tommy was one of a child character she had been developing since she her youth, and regularly performed to amuse her friends throughout her life. Cheryl Case had also auditioned for the part of Tommy Pickles and did not get it, but later became the voice actress for the character Angelica Pickles.
Rugrats was one of the first voice-over auditions in which Daily participated. She replaced a different actress used in the pilot episode, and re-dubbed the first few episodes her own performance. Daily was pregnant and went into labor during the recording of one of her Rugrats episodes. She was having contractions between takes of dialogue, and delivered the baby not long afterward. Daily voiced Tommy for the entire 13-year run of the Rugrats television show, and returned to portray the character in the Rugrats films and the All Grown Up! series.