The Ren & Stimpy Show aired on Nickelodeon for five glorious seasons, and in all that time we learned very little by way of useful information. That was hardly the point. What we did learn (and by “we” I mean the collective millions of viewers who turned Ren Höek, a high-strung Chihuahua and Stimpson J. Cat, a warm-hearted naïve cat into cult heroes), was that the the show was frequently controversial, always off-color, and arguably some of the grossest fare on television.

Gross in the same sentence as Ren & Stimpy is redundant, but for some readers it might have been a while since you’ve taken a look at an episode or two of, arguably, the greatest cat and dog show to ever air, ever! That said, here’s a look at the top five grossest moments in Ren & Stimpy history, and that’s saying a lot.


1. Stimpy’s Magic Nose Goblins


In the inaugural season of this classic show, there was a segment at the end of a few episodes called “What’ll We Do Till Then?” which featured Ren saying ‘goodbye’ to the audience and Stimpy worried about what they’ll do in the meantime.

Episode two titled “Nurse Stimpy” ended with Ren telling Stimpy he can go play with his “magic nose goblins.” Stimpy, delighted with glee, kisses Ren on the head and dashes off to retrieve his “goblins.” We discover in short order that his “magic nose gobins” are in fact a collection of disgusting boogers that he picked himself and wiped off his finger on the underside of an end table. Classic R&S humor!


2. Ren’s Toothache


In Episode 7 of the first season, Ren is told repeatedly by Stimpy that he needs to brush his teeth. Of course Ren ignores him and goes to bed without brushing. That night Ren gets a horrible toothache. The next night Ren is again told to brush his teeth or else by Stimpy, but to no avail. That night in bed Ren grinds out all his teeth and is left with nothing but gaping sockets and frayed nerves hanging out of his mouth! When he opens his mouth we’re shown—with black stink lines — accentuating how bad his rotten mouth stinks and in just that moment it’s almost possible to smell the funk through your television speakers. Smell-o-vision would die a quick death if they chose this episode to demonstrate its power.


3. Ice Cream Bar


In the same episode, Ren is kept awake by Stimpy’s maniacal brushing, which is accompanied by the sounds of jackhammers and other industrial equipment in use. Ren ventures into the bathroom to see what all the ruckus is and is told by Stimpy that if he wants a classic good smile he’d better start brushing his teeth. We then get a close-up of Stimpy’s perfect chickletts.

Ren informs Stimpy he’s never brushed his teeth a day in his life and steps up to the mirror to crack a smile. We get a close-up of disgusting, green, cracked, and grit-covered teeth, complete with ominous green stink lines.


Ren and Stimpy Space Madness


4. Ren Eats Kitty Litter


Kitty litter, and in particular Gritty Kitty, is a mainstay feature throughout the series. In the very first episode, Stimpy hears an ad on the radio for a writing contest asking for a poem in 47 million words or less. The winner will receive $47 million. Of course Stimpy wins the contest and is ferried off to Hollywood, leaving Ren at home feeling lonely and dejected. At the end of the episode we see Ren sitting in a box of Gritty Kitty kitty litter eating it by the handful. He’s grinding up huge round balls of litter with grit and debris falling from his mouth, filling the gaps between his teeth, and even sticking to the fronts of them! Disgusting, truly. We love it!


5. Golden Hairballs


In Episode 16b in Season Two, titled “The Cat That Laid the Golden Hairball,” Ren discovers that cat hairballs are worth more than gold. Do you already see where this is going? Ren forces Stimpy to cough up hairballs on an assembly line, in what is arguably some of the grossest scenes in the entire series. The episode features Stimpy licking all manner of gross and hairy things to continue producing hairballs for Ren.

Finally, when his hairball gland turns to dust and he’s unable to produce any more, they both realize the episode is over they all start dancing in celebration.

Episodes of The Ren & Stimpy Show are available in a variety of media, including DVDs from Amazon and streaming video. If it’s been a while—or ever—since you’ve seen and episode or five, do yourself a favor and queue them up. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.

Did we miss any? Have any gross memories of your own from the show that you’d like to share? Leave us a comment.

  • Severian2k2

    “Ren and Stimpy”  is also one of the finest examples of television animation, period.  The hilarious stretch-and-squash element to the animation, the backgrounds, music, sound effects, everything about it is just a joy to behold for animation fans. 

  • scooter98

    The R&S Episode “HERMIT REN” Where Stimpy makes a Earwax Sculpture of His dear friend Ren,By Scooping His Earwax out With A Spoon!!! Sound Effects Also Included!!! GROSS!!!

  • George

    My favorite episode ever – R&S become pro wrestlers. Flying Butt-Pliers. “I wanna holler the loud funny words!” Probably not one of the grossest episodes, but I was actually rolling on the floor AND crying. One of the best ‘toons on tv.

  • ren and stimpy was such a great show that my parents wouldnt let me watch

  • I CANT BELIEVE THIS WAS RATED TVY7 ON NICKLODEON BUT HOWEVER IT IS ONE OF THE ONLY SHOWS ON NICKLODEON TO COME ON MTV MTV2 VH1 AND SPIKE TV WITH A TVPG RATING AND IN CANADA IT WAS RATED 14+ ON TELETOONS DETOURE BLOCK ON MUCH MUSIC IT WAS RATED PG ON YTV IT WAS RATED PG POSSIBLY AND NOW CURRENTLY ON NICKLODEON CANADA ITS RATED PG THE BOXSETS SAY PARENTAL ADVISORY EXPLICT CONTENT WARNING THIS PROGRAM IS RECOMMENDED FOR MATURE ADUIENCES ONLY IT CONTAINS ADULT LANGUAGE AND SITUATIONS AND EVEN ON THE DVD BEFORE THE MAIN MENU APPEARS THE SAME WARNING SIGN IS THEIR FOR PARENTS SO REN AND STIMPY WAS OBIUOSLY NOT A KIDS SHOW