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Cartoon History Lesson #53: American Maid/ Captain Liberty (“The Tick”)

36-American-Maid-I

Wikipedia says:

American Maid is a fictional superhero from the animated series, The Tick. Voiced by Kay Lenz, she is largely a parody of both Captain America and Wonder Woman.

American Maid is quite noble in character, and unlike most of the “good” characters featured in the series, she is actually relatively effective as a superhero. Having no superpowers, she relies on her Olympic-level trained acrobatic skills. Her only weapons are her stiletto high-heels and her tiara, both of which she can fling with great accuracy and effectiveness and which can boomerang back to her. But she is also adept at improvising everyday items such as chairs and plates in taking down enemies. American Maid has made many more appearances on the series than any other female character. She is often heard yelling the recurring line, “You’ll never get away with this, [current villain]!”

Saving Batmanuel.

Saving Batmanuel.

At first, she saw The Tick and his sidekick, Arthur, as little more than a bungling impediment to her crime-fighting crusade, but she reluctantly teamed up with the pair to take down the super-villain and magnate, Chairface Chippendale. She eventually came to trust them and would team up with them again. In contrast to The Tick’s rather direct way of dealing with evil, American Maid prefers a clandestine approach, at least at first, and has been known to go undercover as a caterer and a tourist to get close to rival super-villains and their schemes. She was romantically involved with another recurring character, Die Fledermaus, at some point before the series storyline began which ended badly (apparently she disliked his fear of commitment and lack of courage and he couldn’t handle her quirks – he even point blankly called her a “jingoist” and a “clean freak”). She has also been revealed to be an operative (at least part-time) for the US government and had the former alias of Jeanine Smith during a mission with the Tick and Arthur to rescue Yank, a monkey made temporarily smart by cosmic rays, and subsequently kidnapped by the evil ruler Pineapple Pokopo.

The character Captain Liberty, from the live-action version of The Tick, was loosely based on American Maid.

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Liz Vassey as Captain Liberty

Liz Vassey as Captain Liberty

Captain Liberty is one of the main characters in The Tick live action show, played by Liz Vassey. She is apparently a parody of mainstream superheroes like Captain America and Wonder Woman, much like American Maid from the animated series. However, unlike American Maid, Captain Liberty is just as incompetent as the other heroes in The City. She’s much more shallow, arrogant, and self-absorbed compared to her animated counterpart. She is employed by the CIA and frequently teams up with The Tick, Batmanuel, and Arthur to fight crime. Due to the show’s budget constraints, she is rarely seen actually fighting crime, much more frequently seen after the fight is over or in the super hero bar the four spend much of their time together in.

Liberty & Batmanuel

Liberty & Batmanuel

She is also in an on again off again relationship with Batmanuel whom she disdains but can’t seem to stop having sex with; Batmanuel often addresses her as “Janet”. She describes her relationship with him as being “only a physical thing”, and that the relationship “wasn’t gonna go anywhere” because all they do is have sex. Her attempt to date a non-super man failed once he discovered her super hero identity. Her brief affair with a celebrity hero called the Immortal resulted in his untimely and ironic death, after which she found out she was not his first conquest.

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