The Origins of Peter Puppy is the fourteenth episode of Earthworm Jim.
It was originally broadcasted on September 7, 1996 as the season two premiere.
The episode begins rather pleasantly- Earthworm Jim and Peter Puppy are meeting with the President of the United States himself! Unfortunately, Peter gets hurt, triggering his rage-induced transformation and resulting in carnage, destruction and all-around general mayhem. Jim tries to turn things around with a quiet dinner date with Princess Whats-Her-Name, but Peter hurts himself again, leading to another transformation and another violent freak out. Jim then heads out to a fine china to purchase some fine dishware... it doesn't take a genius to guess what happens next.
This proves to be the final straw. Jim can't live knowing that his dear sidekick will turn into a monster at the slightest injury or insult, so he tries to fix his canine companion. Jim actually has a good idea for how to cure it- find the cause of these monster transformations and the cure can be found, too! Sadly, Peter doesn't remember how it happened, so Jim seeks professional aid (two good ideas in one day; not bad, worm boy!). They try therapists, psychics and (unfortunately) very dangerous and untested brain surgery techniques. None of these work very well (and, likewise, aren't very cost-effective), so Jim takes a truly interesting turn- the Earthworm Mind Meld! Peter is skeptical, but what choice does he have? The process works, but the meld does have some... skin-crawling inducing side effects.
Peter remembers how his form became a humanoid one. Peter had been born a puppy on Earth, but was a little bit goofy when he played. The older neighborhood dogs laughed at this (and his small size), so Peter did the ultimate dog taboo- he engaged an active vacuum cleaner! However, Peter learned of the horror behind this simple device- it was a "canine-specific, trans-dimensional portal!", meaning that the poor pup was going for a ride. He ended up on Planet Heck, home to Evil the Cat. Delighted that someone finally broke the great taboo of the dogs, Evil unleashed a vile spirit upon Peter, which possessed him. Peter became an anthropomorphic dog with human intellect and a brilliant mind... but this gift came at a heavy price; whenever he is frightened or harmed, a horrific transformation occurs! The only cure is a tickle (evil spirits can't handle tickles- who knew?).
Humanity was cruel to Peter's new form; no matter where he went, he was treated as a freak. At his lowest, Peter ran away to Paris to become a poet (and hopefully, become accepted by society). This didn't work out at all and led to Peter's first freak-out. The destruction was legendary. Utterly alone, Peter stalked the earth without end, stopping only to investigate the city of Terlawk. That's when he met Earthworm Jim and everything changed. For the first time, Peter had a friend- someone who understood what it was to be different. The peculiar two formed a partnership and have been friends ever since.
Over the course of several days, the newly-minted super duo assembled a secret headquarters, acquired typical superhero equipment (i.e. weapons, transportation, etc.) and even arranged to encounter their very first super-villain! Via an ad in the paper, a villain comes calling... and it's Evil the Cat! Oh, the irony. Though the battle goes well at first, Evil's ship has enough firepower to wreck our heroes... though, apparently, origami is capable of beating it. Who knew?
With the answer made clear, it's obvious what the next course of action is- remove the spirit! Through a bit of reverse psychology, Jim is able to get Evil to purge the spirit from Peter. Unfortunately, there is an unexpected setback for this- no more spirit means that Peter is just a regular dog now. With the odds stacked against him, Jim falls back on a golden plan- run for it! Along the way, he encounters one horror after another- rock slides, sharp caverns, an unhelpful DMV line that literally goes on forever and- perhaps the second greatest horror of this world (apart from Evil) -a greedy television network!
All too quickly, Evil finds our heroes and decides to pepper Jim with the mother of all acidic furballs! Thankfully, Peter makes a bold sacrifice- his purity of his own soul in exchange for his anthropomorphic (and possessed) form. Evil is beaten, the day is saved... and cows are falling again. All in a day's work...
For a transcript of "The Origins of Peter Puppy", click here.