Maternal Combat

Maternal Combat

Episode #
Storyboard by
Rob Renzetti
Background Design
Todd Fredericksen
Andrew Bialk
Background Color Stylist
Martin Ansolabehere
Directed by
Rob Renzetti
Genndy Tartakovsky

Maternal Combat is the third part of the first episode of season 1 in Dexter's Laboratory. It is the sixth episode overall.

In this episode, Mom falls ill and Dexter builds a robot to take her place. Dee Dee gets ahold of the first Mom-Droid, forcing Dexter to build a backup.


Dexter is in Mom and Dad's room waking up Mom to let her know she's late for breakfast. Mom falls back asleep and Dee Dee tells her little brother that Mom is sick. Dexter starts worrying while Dee Dee drags him out of the room. Downstairs, Dee Dee orders Dexter to clean while she cooks. As Dexter dusts the furniture, a cloud of dust flies inside his mouth, causing him to choke. He kicks the duster away and goes to the kitchen to find Dee Dee making a pie.

Later, Dee Dee serves Dexter the pie, only for Dee Dee to tell him that she added mud to her recipe. Dexter spits the pie out and heads to his laboratory to build a robotic mother. Later, Dexter heads to the kitchen with Mom-Droid behind him. There, he tests her functions out and then tells her to make him a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Mom-Droid refuses, and Dexter fixes her up.

Dexter is in the armchair enjoying his sandwich while Mom-Droid races around the house getting it cleaned up. Dee Dee slips her arm over Dexter's head and grabs Mom-Droid's controller. Mom-Droid then dumps the laundry on Dexter's head and dresses him up. The siblings then fight over the controller, causing Mom-Droid to act erratically. The house is nearly destroyed while Dexter and Dee Dee continue to fight over the controller.

Dexter heads to his lab to build Mom-Droid 1000, who introduces herself by firing a laser at the original Mom-Droid. Dexter and Dee Dee use their controllers to make the Mom-Droids fight. The fight ends up getting worse, leaving a lot of destruction around the place. Mom-Droid 1000 throws the family couch out the window, and Dexter and Dee Dee see Dad driving up to the house. They both head back inside the house and clean it up as quick as they can. Dad says hello to everyone, and Dee Dee hits Dexter's chin, causing his head to extend.



  • It is revealed that Dexter has asthma, or some other type of respiratory ailment, as he took out an inhaler when a ball of dust was neared him.
  • This is the first episode where Mom and Dad appeared outside of the pilot episodes.
  • This may be the only episode that Dexter is displayed as having asthma or some other breathing ailments...other episodes have not openly explained this.

Cultural References

  • The title of this episode is a pun on Mortal Kombat which is a fighting video game.
  • The uppercuts done by the Mom-robots are a reference to Mortal Kombat 2's famous uppercuts. The uppercuts extend the robots' necks. Towards the end of the show Dee Dee uppercuts Dexter extending his neck in a robotic manner, much like the game Rock 'Em, Sock 'Em Robots.

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