Once upon a time, near the ruins of an old castle, there lived the King of Cats. He was famous for his violent temper and now he is lashing out at his three gunmen, who had been ordered to bring back Pero, but had returned empty-handed. Pero, a former subject of the angry King, had lived in Cat Country once but he had dared to save a mouse from death. Now, as everyone knows, the mouse is the mortal enemy of all cats, so the King orders his three gunmen to go to the ends of the earth, if necessary, to find Pero. Pero is a happy-go-lucky sort of feline and very hip for a cat.
Fleeing from the wrath of the King, he decides to seek his fortune in the wild and wooly west. On the way, he encounters the King’s gunmen hot on his trail but he foils them and blithely goes on his way. On the stagecoach to Go Go Town, he meets Annie, a pretty girl who is returning after finishing her education in the East, and Jimmy, a boy with sleepy eyes and slow movements.
They are attacked suddenly by holdups who are after the new sheriff but since he does not seem to be on the coach, they ride off. Sad news awaits Annie in town. Her father had been killed by the Big Bad Boss for finding out about the bogus money he was making to get rich fast. The Big Bad Boss also kills each new sheriff who arrives to keep law and order in town. He is determined to keep the whole place under his thumb. The Big Bad Boss tries to scare Annie into leaving town but she is her father’s daughter and cannot be frightened away by threats. With the help of Pero and Jimmy, she opens a restaurant in the building her father owned. Once again, Pero happens to save a little Indian mouse caught in a trap.
The little mouse’s father, the Chieftain of the Indian mice, promises to help Pero and Annie. The sleepy-eyed Jimmy is really the new sheriff. They all join forces and expose the Big Boss’ villainy and his secret bogus money factory. The Big Bad Boss gets his comeuppance and all ends well.
Following the success of the first Puss in Boots movie three years earlier, Toei Animation pinned their hopes an this sequel, "The Return of Pero". In fact, the studio was so infatuated by the character, that they made Pero their mascot, which has endured for almost five decades.
This time, Pero finds himself in the Wild West of the 1880's, stuck in the middle of a fairly paint-by-numbers story that could have been the plot of any of the scores of Westerns that Hollywood churned out in the fifties and sixties.
Young Anna is returning home
by stagecoach from back east, only to find her father has been murdered and the town is in disarray after some undesirables have moved in. Intent on keeping their counterfeiting ring secret, the gang has murdered several sheriffs, and tries to drive away Anna as well, who is on the verge of uncovering their scheme. It is up to a mysterious outsider to save the day!
Now, you would expect that 'mysterious outsider' to be Pero, right? Well, actually, in this movie he sort of ends up just being along for the ride. Pero, the titular character and the Pride of Toei, ends up being nothing more than an incidental character added in mostly for comic relief and foil, from beginning to end. If you were to take him out of the movie completely, it would not greatly affect the overall plot.
Like Animal Treasure Island from Toei the year before, this movie contains a mix of humans and anthropomorphic characters. All the serious actors being human, all of the more comical characters (aimed to keep the younger kids involved) are animals, such as Pero and a band of "Indian" mice, and three bumbling cats chasing after Pero. The animation style is also largely the same as Animal Treasure Island (no surprise), with a heavy Disney influence, only this time lacking the magical Miyazaki touch that make Animal Treasure Island a more enjoyable feast for the eyes.
The basic Western plot is a straight-up serious Western, even if it is aimed at a pre-teen audience. Which only makes the cartoony antics of Pero and the little Indians that much more jarring to watch when they are shoehorned in to the story. They should have gone either way: Either a non-humorous drama, or a full-out slapstick comedy. By mixing the two, it just detracts from the overall finished product.
And in the end, we are left with a sequel that is a lesser compared to the original, where the character in the name of the movie itself is largely unnecessary.