The series features comic fights between two lifelong enemies, a cat (Tom) and a mouse (Jerry). The plots of each short usually center on Tom and Jerry's numerous attempts to have the best of each other and the mayhem and destruction that follows. Despite Tom's clever strategies (whether they work or not), determined and energetic mindset, large size, and exceptional overall intelligence, he rarely succeeds in getting the best of Jerry, mainly because of Jerry's cunning abilities, luck, and his lack of tendencies in being a bit too reckless. However, on several occasions, they have displayed genuine friendship and concern for each other's well-being. At other times, the pair set aside their rivalry in order to pursue a common goal, such as when a baby escapes the watch of a negligent babysitter, causing Tom and Jerry to pursue the baby and keep it away from danger, in the shorts Busy Buddies and Tot Watchers respectively. Despite their endless attacks on one another, they have saved each other's lives every time they were truly in danger, except in The Two Mouseketeers, which features an uncharacteristically morbid ending.