Demelonzostrap + Orestes, translated by Anne Carson
Jellicle cats either have homes or are strays indicated by whether or not they have collars and also what the songs say about them. All cats who have lyrics implying they have owners also have collars, with the exception of Jennyanydots (as far as I could see anyway).
So lets talk about our boy Munkustrap.
Look at him. What a pretty collar! Even has a little ring on in from which you could attach a lead and walk your pussycat’s stress away.
Munkustrap’s collar indicates he has owners, but he is also the junkyards’ sworn protector. Why? If he has a home he wouldn’t be there all the time, why would they all rely on the protection from someone who may or may not be there? Why is this housecat the protector?
Because he was abandoned.
Munkustrap was left behind when his owners moved away (something that sadly happens A LOT in reality) and he took refuge in the junkyard as a young cat. Munkustrap seems to have a special bond with Jennyanydots from the fond way he sings about her and from the trust he seems to have in her charge. Perhaps Jenny helped him out as a stray and took him under her wing until Munkustrap grew up to now thrive as a stray. The Jellicles would only meet once a year before Munkustrap created a safe haven out of the junkyard that they used to meet and that he took refuge in and now he protects those who were also abandoned or lost, not wanting anyone to feel alone, unsafeand abandoned the way he did.
Alonzo was the first kitten he found and sheltered, they have a mix between a mentor, a brotherly and a parental relationship. After Alonzo the stray group grew with Coricopat and Tantomile, Gus jr and Jellylorum as well as their strayborn kittens Electra, Etcetera, Pouncival and Plato and their oldest brother George, all of them recognizing Munkustrap more and more as their protector and Munkustrap finding purpose in that role. Alonzo follows in his footsteps as his protegé. Soon the junkyard would become a place where those who live near would visit on the daily to spend time with their stray friends, like Victoria, Quaxo/Mr Mistoffelees, Cassandra, Demeter, Jemima, Bombalurina, Pounceval and Rum Tum Tugger who’d spent a lot of time at the junkyard keeping his brother company since the beginning anyway.
In conclusion; Munkustrap is a good boi.
eSo if you don’t know, the Kilworth 2019 production of cats was very ww2 based. The set an all the costumes reflected that. I strongly recommend looking the designs up because they’re really cool. (and they inspired theses soo)
-Jennyanydots was a teacher once upon a time. When the war started up she joined the army as a nurse. While on active duty she met Skimbleshanks who had left his job as a conductor to join the army as well. The two fell in love and when they left the army got married.
-Old Deuteronomy is a WW1 vet. He was drafted when his sons were very young (Tugger only two) and when he returned he discovered Grizabella had abandoned the boys. They were in the care of a young woman named Jellylorum and her father in law named Gus. The two had taken care of the kids in order to do their part, as Jellylorum’s husband had also went away to war. Later, when the Jellicle’s became a group who took shelter in the subways, Deuteronomy was chosen as the community leader thanks to his war expertise.
-Munkustrap joined the military in order to follow in his father’s footsteps but was unable to continue because of health reasons. He received an honorable discharge but was always ashamed of it.
-Demeter was a ‘lady of the night’ so to speak. She had to make money somehow, and incidentally got pregnant by Macavity. She told him but he completely rejected her at first. When Munkustrap arrived home from war he found out about what his brother did and invited Demeter and her sister to stay with his family so he could right his brother’s wrongs. Macavity found out and got extremely jealous.
-Admetus, Electra, and Carbucketty are all children of Jellylorum and Asparagus Jr. While Admetus aims to be a civilized gentlemen, his young siblings are feral children. This is because, after their home town was bombed everyone in the Jellicle tribe went to live in the underground train station. In those circumstances Jellylorum could barely manage to raise her young kids to be prim and proper.
-Mistofelees is a milkman, but also the person who gathers rations for the group. Rum Tum Tugger swears he’s magical, and tells stories about it to entertain the kids, but the adults have no idea if he’s just making them up or not.
Demeter: Jemima! Thats your third cookie! You can’t have anymore!
Jemima: But I want them!
Demeter: I’m your mother, you have to listen to me.
Jemima: But daddy already had five!
Munkustrap: Thats because my mother left when I was a baby. You still have one to set cookie limits.
A different take on this scene from Cats 2019 cos lets be real, stranger or not, it’s a LITTLE fucked up that literally no one ran to get victoria away from macavity, especially munkustrap lmaoooo
I’ll get the other half of this done tonight!
I didn’t wanna shove the whole thing into one giant post because I don’t hate ur guy’s dashboards adfasdfasfsdf
(also if ur wondering why victoria is sillabub instead, read why I do that here)
Whiteboard with “Macavity and Munkustrap are Brothers” written on it.
Me: *walks up and erases “Brothers*, writes “Ultimate Enimies to Lovers Ship”*
Me: *Turns to Cats Fandom and points at what i wrote* So I have this idea …
Back to my Munk and Jerrie are like Dan and Phil with this video that wont leave my head
Munkustrap: I convinced a human to adopt a fake Pekinese. ‘Twas a cat.
Demeter: You will not win me over with your use of 'twas.
Munkustrap: 'Twasn’t trying to.
Okay, but concept…
Alonzo used to be a bodyguard of sorts for Macavity—not because he agreed with any of the Mystery Cat’s deeds, but because it was a roof over his head he wouldn’t have otherwise. That’s how he met Demeter, and the two of them immediately saw a kindred spirit in another cat who had been treated extremely poorly, but either couldn’t or didn’t know how to leave. So Alonzo shifted his focus from protecting Macavity from potential threats to protecting Demeter (and later her kittens) from Macavity. She had already endured so much, and if she felt even the slightest bit safer from his efforts, that would make him happier than anything.
When they were eventually rescued and taken back to the Junkyard, it was like another planet for Alonzo. There’s always talk about how Munkustrap helps Demeter heal and becomes a grounding, comforting presence in her life after Macavity, but he does the same thing for Alonzo as well. And Alonzo is absolutely thrown—this is the first time a cat with any kind of authority (and one related by blood to the Mystery Cat no less) has treated him kindly and like a true equal. Munkustrap doesn’t expect anything of either of them, instead making sure they feel safe and loved in their new home…
And just like that, Alonzo’s found two cats in his life he would gladly die for. Or live nine hundred more lives for failing that.
Munk & Demeter’s first dance together, all alone in the moonlight
Old Deuteronomy: Munkustrap, stop taking selfies, your brother is going to jail.
*Macavity, leaving the tribe after being such an asshole to everyone, especially his dad and brothers*
Munkustrap: *dry, like that part in willy wonka* “No stop come back”
Mungojerrie: *Texting* I have a cold and would like French Fries.
Munkustrap: *texting back* Why don’t you ask Teazer? Isn’t she with you?
Mungojerrie: Skimble separated us for the sake of world peace. She has the flu and would like onion rings.
Ahhh yessss! Munkustrap is a wonderful father!! He has lots of experience kitten rearing, and it’s something he really enjoys. He’s learned all he knows from the older queens in the tribe, because they took on the role for him and Tugger after Grizabella left, and they taught him well. He knows when to be stern, when to let things slide, and can stay calm enough most of the time to sort problems out. He still defers to their wisdom on occasion when there’s something even he can’t figure out, but for the most part, Munkustrap is a tom you would have no problem leaving your children with for long lengths of time, which is such a blessing for Demeter.
Munk adores and cares for all the kittens in the Junkyard as often as he can, but even though he will deny it, Jemima is his favorite. She may not be his in blood, but she is in heart, and that’s a lot more important, he would say. Jemima was only about a week old when Demeter joined the Jellicles, and Demeter is the first to admit she’s not exactly sure what she’s doing most of the time. Jemima is her first kitten, and she didn’t have any siblings growing up, and her mother died years ago, so she didn’t have any guiding hands beyond instinct and intuition. And she does a good job, tries her best, asks for help when she needs it. She might ask too much, honestly, instead of trusting in herself. She worries often that she’s doing something wrong, that she’s not a good enough mother, but Munkustrap, and Jennyanydots and Jellylorum assure her she’s doing just fine.
Munk takes special joy in helping raise Jemima, especially since he and Demeter got together. It makes him happy to be able to help both of them, after hearing about what Demeter had been through, and he just, sort of fell in love with them both the moment he met them. Honestly, he took one look at the tiny kitten in her arms, said, “Is anyone going to father her?” and didn’t wait for an answer. He just felt this sense of responsibility different even from how he feels for the rest of the kittens and the tribe(because he does feel responsible for each and every one of them, and does everything he can to take care of them all.) And it’s great, because Jemima turns out to be a daddy’s girl too, 100% and always has been. They just have a really sweet and special connection, and spend lots of quality time together. Jemima loves her mother too, of course, but she’s undeniably closer to Munkustrap. Demeter points it out one day, and Munkustrap denies it at first, but in the end he admits it, and has a hard time hiding his proud smile. Demeter shakes her head fondly and rolls her eyes.
Munkustrap has taught several of the kittens in the yard important skills like pouncing and scenting for danger, what to eat and what not to eat, and the importance of communication. He’s an expert at breaking up squabbles too, whether it be with a simple phrase, or if he has to be a bit harsher, and raise his voice. Sometimes he’ll just pick up the arguing kitten closest to him and hold them up high, and refuse to put them down, and eventually the argument dissolves into giggles instead. He loves teaching them all little songs too, and encouraging creativity. He’s been there for first steps, first dances, and first songs. He beams with pride every time a new kitten decides to perform their first dance. It’s just entirely satisfying to him, seeing them achieve new things, watching them grow up. It makes him feel like he’s done something amazing, even though he’ll always downplay his involvement.
And the kittens love him too, obviously. They’re always clinging to him, playing with his tail or asking to be held, fighting over the most coveted spot in the junkyard, which is right between his legs when he stands, and he rarely denies them. Honestly he hardly notices them half of the time. He’s that used to it. Grizabella was never really affectionate towards him and Tugger, except on rare occasions, and it’s something that still sort of bothers Munkustrap. He would never think of denying a kitten the chance to cuddle, of making them all aware of his love for them.
Sometimes he gets exhausted dealing with them though, and needs to step away, take some time for himself. On the rare days Munkustrap is actually angry or in a bad mood, everyone knows to behave. Getting in serious trouble with Munkustrap is the last thing on anyone’s list. He’d never hurt anyone when angry, but he’s undeniably a little intimidating, thanks to his size, and it’s always startling to see someone who is often calm and affectionate feeling entirely the opposite. He retreats to his den or even his owner’s house in times like that, not wanting to put anyone off or scare them with his bad mood, but he always comes back recharged, in his usual demeanor, and things continue as normal.
In short, Munkustrap’s relationship with children is just one of the 90000 reasons he’s the world’s best man.
Munkustrap: Grizabella. My old arch enemy.
Macavity: I thought I was your arch enemy.
Munkustrap: I have a life outside of you, Macavity.
Tugger : We tried things your way
Munkustrap : No, we didn’t
Tugger : I did it in my head and it didn’t work
Munk: *holding bug spray* is this good for wasps?
Mungo: No, it kills them-
Mungo: coffee or tea?
Mungo: Wrong, coffee
Bustopher: Have you met my daughter beth?
Munk: And what’s beth short for?
Bustopher: because she’s a baby-