|The Guinea Pigs|
|Season 3, Episode 07|
A shot from the episode's ending
|Air date||October 24, 1992|
OK at the Gunfight Corral
The Guinea Pigs is the seventh episode in the third season of Captain Planet and the Planeteers.
Doctor Blight sends burglars to steal animals from the State Zoo, Doctor Rice's Research Lab and other places, including Ma-Ti's monkey friend, Suchi, and is using them for her experiments to make beauty products for make-up queen Lori Saunders, who is actually against the animal testing process. It's up to Captain Planet, the Planeteers and their new friends to stop her.
The story begins with burglars riding in a pink hovercraft and stealing animals from the zoo, the animal shelter and a research lab owned by Doctor Rice. Among the animals stolen is Dr. Rice's dog named Chester.
Meanwhile, on Hope Island, Linka and Gi are watching a how-to program about applying make-up hosted by cosmetics maven Lori Saunders as well as using her products. Wheeler enters, hoping to see that the girls did apply the make-up but soon realizes that the make-up was wearing is unnoticeable. When the program ended, the call goes out from Gaia and she sends the team to investigate the stolen animal case. Initially, Ma-Ti wants his pal Suchi to stay behind, but Suchi still wants to come along.
They visit Dr. Rice at his lab, the last place where the animals were stolen. When they enter his laboratory, the team learn that the animals in the testing were used to try to combat cancer. Rice also uses science and computer technology to conduct the tests. He shows the team how he conducted his tests using his rabbits and monkeys but on a friendly level. As the tour and demonstration continue, the crooks come back to steal the rest of the animals and also steal Suchi who by that point was left behind.
Next, it's revealed that the burglars are working for somebody. That somebody is Doctor Blight; she wants to use the animals for her evil and illegal testing. Her computerized assistant, MAL, is controlling the machinery she uses. The first act ends with Blight using Suchi for an experiment.
Back at the lab, the Planeteers and the good doctor notice glow-in-the-dark footprints created by pink powder. Upon further analysis, the girls realize that it is remnants of a perfume called "Le Scent", one of the many cosmetic products invented by Lori Saunders. Thinking she may be the culprit, Dr. Rice, Wheeler and the girls visited Lori at her office and explain the animal stealing crime. Lori tells the group that her glow-in-the-dark cosmetics are yet to be out on the market but was confirmed safe by a private lab which (little did the group know) turns out to be Dr. Blight's. This leads the group to believe that the people from that lab were the ones that stole the animals and are not cruelty-free. Outraged by the possibility, Lori joins the group and they drive to the lab in her limousine.
Meanwhile, the other two Planeteers, Kwame and Ma-Ti, check out what they would soon learn is Dr. Blight's laboratory. They come in through a ceiling window and find Chester and Suchi, who by that point had his head shaved bald. They save Suchi, but before they can save Chester, MAL detects Kwame and Ma-Ti and tries to capture them with little success. Still, he does cut off their exit when they try to escape. Dr. Blight has MAL take the boys to the beds for human testing while she re-cages Suchi, not noticing that he took her hairpin.
Seconds later, Blight sees Lori, Dr. Rice and the other Planeteers arrive at her lab. Blight lets them in and shows the group how she used the animals for her testing to make Lori's Glow cosmetics. Needless to say, the group is horrified and disgusted by the testing with Linka even vowing to never wear make-up again. Lori tells the Planeteers she had no idea about this and agrees that this is awful. Agreeing with her, Dr. Rice also states that it's totally unnecessary. He asks Blight if she ever heard of in-vitro testing. Blight tells him she has but doesn't use it as it's too expensive. Rice tells her it's much more humane only for Blight to dismiss him. She then shows that she uses rabbits for the eye damage test. Horrified and disgusted, Gi tells her that doesn't prove anything as rabbit eyes aren't like human eyes. Agreeing with her, Rice angrily tells Blight that she's lost her humanity. He also notes that these are the rabbits that were stolen from him and asks where Chester is. Furious by Blight's actions, Lori fires her, only to be ambushed, along with the others, by MAL who then takes them to the same beds as Kwame and Ma-Ti. And they are all used for illegal testing.
Suchi uses Dr. Blight's hairpin to escape and free Chester. They later free the others by unplugging the machinery binding the heroes and their new friends. Just after that, the Planeteers summon Captain Planet who with his usual heroics, wraps up the illegal animal testing scheme and they all rescue the animals. Dr. Blight herself is entrapped in the bed and Suchi shaves off most of her hair.
The story ends with Lori doing a brand new commercial, telling her viewers that her cosmetics are 100% cruelty free.
Linka: ”I said I would never again use makeup, but makeup is okay as long as it is cruelty-free.”
Wheeler: “You can help by purchasing only cruelty-free makeup and household products.”
Kwame: “How do you know which is which? Some products say ‘cruelty-free’ right on the label.”
Gi: “There are animal help groups that will be happy to send you a free list of companies that do not use animal testing.”
Captain Planet: “Be careful what you buy. The power is yours.”
Significant Moments and Facts
Legendary singer Lou Rawls and Wheel of Fortune hostess Vanna White guest-starred as Dr. Rice & Lori Saunders respectively.
- Kwame: Dr. Blight! You heartless butcher!
- Lori: This is inexcusable! YOU'RE FIRED!
Blight: You can't fire me, I quit! Now I can go on to more important testing; like my new nerve gas. And guess what? You're all going to help me. Do your thing, MAL!