A Better Mousetrap
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) episode
Season Code: S01E02
Episode: 2
Original airdate February 15, 2003
Written by Marty Isenberg
Supervising Producer Lloyd Goldfine
Producers: Gary Richardson
Frederick U. Fierst
Al Kahn
Norman Grossfeld
Thomas Kenney
Directed by Chuck Patton
Story Editor: Lloyd Goldfine
Episode chronology
← Previous Next →
"Things Change" "Attack of the Mousers"

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Season 1
February 8, 2003 - November 1, 2003
List of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles episodes


  1. Things Change
  2. A Better Mousetrap
  3. Attack of the Mousers
  4. Meet Casey Jones
  5. Nano
  6. Darkness on the Edge of Town
  7. The Way of Invisibility
  8. Fallen Angel
  9. Garbageman
  10. The Shredder Strikes, Part 1
  11. The Shredder Strikes, Part 2
  12. The Unconvincing Turtle Titan
  13. Notes from the Underground, Part 1
  14. Notes from the Underground, Part 2
  15. Notes from the Underground, Part 3
  16. The King
  17. The Shredder Strikes Back, Part 1
  18. The Shredder Strikes Back, Part 2
  19. Tales of Leo
  20. The Monster Hunter
  21. Return to New York, Part 1
  22. Return to New York, Part 2
  23. Return to New York, Part 3
  24. Lone Raph and Cub
  25. The Search for Splinter, Part 1
  26. The Search for Splinter, Part 2

Season 1Season 2Season 3Season 4Ninja TribunalFast Forward - Back to the Sewer

"A Better Mousetrap" is the second episode of the 2003 TV series. It first aired on February 15th, 2003. It had 1.76 million views on the 4kids website as of 2007.


Major characters

Minor characters

  • News anchor (Veronica Taylor) (debut)

Main Locations, Vehicles and Accessories


Voice-over introduction

Don trying to work out what makes the Mouser tick

Donatello: May not look like much, but this tin toy can chomp his way through steel and concrete like Michelangelo through a pizza. A bunch of these Mouser robots saw fit to trash our old lair and nearly turned our sensei into robo chow.

(April screams in the distance)

Donatello: I look at these incredible machines and the techno geek in me can't help thinking 'awesome.' But the ninja in me can't help thinking 'payback'.

Plot synopsis

As the Turtles settle into their new lair, Donatello works on some welding while Michelangelo sets up the entertainment center. To Mikey's dismay, there isn't enough power to get the televisions running in what he dubs the "Turtle Cave." This strikes up a conversation with Don as to what they'll call their new lair. After a few names are suggested, Splinter interrupts and says, "We will call this place home." Splinter then asks the about the whereabouts of their brothers, who are apparently still salvaging items from the old lair.

Leonardo and Raphael are finished gathering the items from the old lair, among them a broken canister with the letters TCRI and custom sign that says "Sewer Sweet Sewer." Leo expresses sorrow over losing their home of 15 years while Raphael desires vengeance against whoever sent the Mousers. With everything packed, the two brothers return to the new lair in a vehicle designed by Don, the Sewer Slider.

Upon returning to the new lair, Mikey wishes to test out the entertainment center with his salvaged DVD collection, but as he turns on the televisions, he is interrupted by Don, who wants to watch the News TV broadcast about the press conference held at New York's new and leading technology company, Stocktronics. Founder and CEO, Dr. Baxter Stockman gives a short speech before unveiling his invention to deal with the city's rat problem, the Stocktronics Mouser. To everyone's surprise, the robot is the same as the cadre of robots that destroyed their lair. Raphael begins to leave the lair wanting to go after Stockman, but Splinter stops him citing the near disaster in their last incursion to the surface world. Watching the rest of the press conference, the Turtles look on as the Mouser prototype eats several rats in a maze.

April as Stockman's assistant.

At Stocktronics, April O'Neil watches a video of the news broadcast and expresses the joy of being able to work with the famous engineer. She then brings attention to a routine diagnostic check on the Mouser robots as half of the robots are no longer transmitting. Stockman then hurries April out, feeling she may be digging too deep. Stockman then excuses himself for a meeting with a financial backer of the company, however, April realizes something is suspicious about Stockman.

Back in the lair, the Turtles train with their sensei, but their minds are still preoccupied with the Stocktronics press conference. Seeing the lack of focus, Splinter retires for the night and wishes to resume training in the morning. Mikey decides to watch TV while Don continues to work on rebuilding the Mouser robot, thinking once it has rebuilt, it will lead them to its source. Raph decides to turn in early, which makes Leo's suspicious of his brother. As it turns out, Raph attempts to sneak out later only to find Leo standing in his way. As the two begin to fight, the Mouser robot that Don was repairing runs past them. As Don and Mikey chase the robot, the two stop fighting and give chase as well.

Stockman negotiates with Oroku Saki.

At Stocktronics, Baxter Stockman is having a video conference with Oroku Saki, the benefactor financing Stocktronics. Saki is furious that Mouser prototypes in Things Change were destroyed and considers the field test a failure, something he does not tolerate. Stockman dismisses these comments citing, "And that's why you'd make a lousy scientist." He goes onto explain that the test was designed to expose any flaws in the Mouser's construction, which he is using to upgrade the newer models for the next phase of their plan. Saki replies that the Mousers better perform flawlessly else he put himself at risk. It is at this time that we see April listening at the door of Stockman's office and she begins to realize that her boss is possibly working with criminal elements.

After Stockman's meeting, he emerges from his office and bids April farewell. April then sneaks into Stockman's office to see what Stockman really intends to use the Mousers for. As she goes through his computer files, she comes across an icon, which is the shape of the Foot Clan's emblem. Once she clicks on the icon, a hidden elevator opens up. April boards the elevator, which takes her deep beneath the Stocktronics building. She finds herself in a facility where hundreds of Mousers are being produced, much more than needed to deal with the city's rat problem. It is at this point that April realizes that Stockman has a more devious plan. As she explores the facility further, April trips a silent motion sensor as she searches for a computer console to find more information about Stockman's plan.

April is saved by the TMNT!

No sooner, Stockman arrives and confronts April. As April questions her boss about his motives, Stockman uses a remote device to grab April with a mechanized arm. Believing she that seen and knows too much about his Mouser production, Stockman arranges for April's termination, literally. He then programs a set of Mousers after April.

April escapes the Mousers and finds herself being chased in the sewers. Concurrently, the Turtles continue to track the Mouser Don repaired. As they follow the Mouser, they cross paths with the Mousers that are searching for April. The Turtles begin to fight the Mousers and realize that they are much tougher than the ones they initially encountered in their lair. They make short work of the Mousers; unfortunately, Raphael destroys the last of the Mousers, thus preventing the Turtles from tracing them to their source. Through a fortuitous sequence of events, the Turtles come to the aid of a screaming April who is cornered by four Mousers, which they easily destroy. As they approach April who faints at the sight of the four reptiles. Michelangelo then picks her up and asks his brothers, "Hey, so can I keep her?".


Donatello: "Turtle Cave"? That is so lame.
Michelangelo: What would you call our new digs? The Shell-ter?
Donatello: about "The Sewer of Solitude"?
Michelangelo: "Terrapin Station"?
Donatello: "The School for Gifted Reptiles"?
Michelangelo: "The Hall of Nin-Justice"?
Splinter: Ahem. We will call this place...home.
Michelangelo: Hm, catchy.

Leonardo: Master Splinter said we stay put.
Raphael: Look, I'll go through you if I have to.
Leonardo: I'd like to see you try, hothead!
Raphael: Careful what you wish for, Splinter Jr!

Leonardo: Like Master Splinter says, "A ninja is always prepared."
Michelangelo: I thought that was the boy scouts.

Michelangelo: Next time, let's leave the wall crawling to the dude in the red tights.
Leonardo: You read way too many comic books.

Baxter Stockman: Ah, Miss O'Neil, so brilliant, yet so naive. I will truly miss working with you.
April O'Neil: What?! You mean I'm fired?
Baxter Stockman: In a manner of speaking.

Donatello: These mousers are incredible. The servo-mechanics, the circuitry, the articulation!
Raphael: Jeez Donny. Why don't you just marry one already?

(April is saved by the Turtles from the mousers)
April O'Neil: Oh, oh thank you, thank you so much. You saved my, my-
Michelangelo: Hey! How ya doin'?
(April passes out)
Michelangelo: (picks up April) Hey, so can I keep her?


  • First time April is captured in the 2003 series.
  • The plot of this episode follows the one of the issue of Mirage comics where April and Stockman were introduced. The main points in common are:
    • April working on the Mousers without knowing they were to be used for evil.
    • April discovering the truth when she finds hundreds of Mousers being manufactured secretly underground and being used to rob banks.
    • Stockman trying to kill April using the Mousers when she finds out the truth.
    • April escaping into the sewers, where she meets the Turtles. In the live action movie Raph meets April and Casey first and later the other turtles meet them. In the comics, Stockman showed April what he was doing, but in this series she finds out by being sneaky when Stockman is not around.
  • Leonardo was holding a TCRI canister.
  • First time Leo and Raph physically fight against each other in the 2003 series.
  • When the Turtles are climbing a wall, Mikey mentions "the dude in the blue and red tights", referring to Spider-Man.
    • In the Latin American Spanish and Russian dubs of this episode, Mikey mentions Spider-Man by name.
  • When Donnie and Mikey are deciding on what to call their new lair, some of the name suggestions are references to superhero hideouts from various comic books:
  • There is a reference to the first TMNT movie in this episode when Mikey asks "Can we keep her?" while holding April O'Neil.
  • This episode is featured on the Game Boy Advance Video alongside "Things Change".