I learned today that I have to show more respect to my family. Now you need to learn it! All you do is fight each other! Is that respect? Heroes, villains, it doesn't matter. We're a family and families stick together.
— Manny to the Rivera Family

The Grave Escape
Season 1, Episode 14
Air date Flag of the United States.svg October 19, 2007
Written by Scott Kreamer
Doug Langdale
Jorge R. Gutierrez
Directed by Dave Thomas
Episode Guide
Clash of the Titan
Burrito's Little Helper

The Grave Escape is the 14th episode of El Tigre: The Adventures of Manny Rivera. It is the first half hour episode in the series.


When Sartana summons a powerful army of forgotten dead on Dia de los Muertos, it looks like she may finally destroy Miracle City forever. In the midst of an epic battle, El Tigre and Frida find themselves in the Land of the Dead. They enlist the help of Tigre's powerful deceased ancestors, both heroes and villains, including the most powerful of them all: the Original El Tigre. But, can they escape the Land before they turn into skeletons and defeat Sartana before she finishes off Rodolfo and Grandpapi for good?

Episode Summary

Part 1

It is Dia de Los Muertos, and Granpapi is setting up the decorations and laying out the food. Rodolfo is feeling stressed, as he is making sure that everything looks perfect for this occasion. Manny and Frida arrive home from the arcade, to which Rodolfo and Granpapi are unhappy that Manny snuck out to avoid setting up for Dia de Los Muertos. Manny and Rodolfo go on to say that it is an exciting occasion. Granpapi then leaves on an unsteady bull to take him for a run, while Rodolfo leaves to repair the newly-made hole in the wall. Manny then reveals that he thinks everything about Dia de Los Muertos is a joke. He and Frida then give in to eating the sacred offerings.

During the night, Sartana of the Dead is outside of her home with her Calavera bandito army. She has found the seventh string for her mystic guitar, which will allow her to bring the forgotten dead to life and destroy Miracle City for good. After some attempts of playing the guitar fail, she smashes it down in frustration. This finally allows the forgotten dead to rise up out of their graves and form a giant monster.

When Rodolfo and Granpapi return, they are shocked and disappointed that Manny and Frida have devoured all the offerings. In doing so, they had disrespected the Rivera spirits. Frida lets it slip about what Manny thought of the occasion, leaving him to tell Rodolfo and Granpapi about his beliefs that those who are dead are just gone. They are interrupted by the monster Sartana created, and they evacuate their home. When they witness the monster attacking Miracle City, Rodolfo, Granpapi and Manny transform into their respective personas. The Rivera Men engage in battle with the Forgotten Dead Monster, but it continues to reform itself. When they dodge a giant punch hurling toward them, Frida is stuck in place, but Manny protects both of them with a novelty item coffin as they are smashed into a hole. Saddened and angered by the fact that they just witnessed what they believed to be Manny's death, Rodolfo and Granpapi charge at the beast, but end up caught in its clutches.

Meanwhile, Manny and Frida are heading down an underground cavern (still in their coffin). They eventually stop in a town filled with dead townspeople and Dia de Los Muertos decorations. Frida is amazed at all the dead stuff, while Manny realizes they are in the Land of the Dead, shocked that his family were right. When a portal opens, he notices his family in trouble, he asks the people for help. Frida notes that the Riveras living here could help. Upon hearing the name 'Rivera', everyone goes into hiding.

The two friends hear a commotion going on in the saloon. They enter, and Manny's ancestors appear before them: Dark Leopard (the first Rivera supervillain). Golden Leon (the first Rivera superhero), Mighty Cheetar (dubbed Scourge of the Seven Seas) and Justice Jaguar (Manny's great-granpapi). The Riveras realize that he ate their offerings and disrespected them, as they move to destroy him and Frida.

Part 2

Manny then engages his ancestors in battle, as the Riveras continue to quarrel, a trio of banditos appear, labeling the family as cowards who are too afraid to fight others. In response, the Rivera family immediately stop fighting each other and angrily beat the scared bandits up for their words. Though the Riveras compliment well on El Tigre's skills, they refuse to help him and Frida return to Miracle City as they have disrespected them even deeming Manny unworthy of carrying their name. When they witness the destruction, Manny tries to persuade them but they refuse by stating the dead can't interfere. However, they think otherwise when Frida brings up the lack of people remembering them if the city is destroyed by the villain. It is revealed by Justice Jaguar that the original El Tigre has the power to reach the living world, so they go and seek him for help.

When they arrive at his home, El Tigre I is shown having his DID. The present El Tigre convinces him to send the Riveras and Frida back to Miracle City, and he uses the Ancient Tigre Spirit to transport everyone home, where Sartana is just about to crush White Pantera and Puma Loco. After the other Riveras reach the living world, The Forgotten Dead Monster is knock back and White Pantera and Puma loco are freed from the creature. Happy to see his father and Granpapi, Manny runs over to them and all three of them hug. After the Riveras have a very brief reunion, the giant monster rises and Sartana orders it to attack the Riveras. Since they are no longer skeletons (for the time being), the Rivera heroes and villains engage in battle against the Forgotten Dead Monster, but are not working together. It eventually defeats them and heads for the volcano. The family starts squabbling amongst each other, but Manny gives them a touching speech about respect. He then concocts a plan to defeat Sartana: using the Rivera Super Macho Blitz.

The Riveras are initially against this, as no Rivera hero/villain had ever survived it, but come to agree it is the only chance of saving Miracle City. Now working together, the heroes and villains finally perform the blitz. Manny has difficulty holding it together, but with encouragement from El Tigre I, uses the Tiger Spirit learned earlier to defeat Sartana and the beast.

The late Riveras congratulate Manny on his victory taking back their insults and Leon deems him worthy of their name though he warns Manny if he ever eats their offering again he's toast. They then return to the Land of the Dead as Manny tries to get them to stay out of worry for his own future as either a villain or hero and even undecided. El Tigre I consoles him and says it is all up to him to decide on his own path.


Characters Introduced

Minor Characters

  • Esquelita
  • Deaduardo
  • Dead Bandito
  • Snarky Skeleton


The gallery for this episode can be found here.


The transcript for this episode can be found here.

Montage Scene



Rivera Family vs. Sartana of the Dead and Forgotten Dead Monster

Running Gags

  • Frida admiring everyone and herself being skeletons in the Land of the Dead.
  • The Rivera Family fighting either physically or arguing.
  • El Tigre I's shift between good and evil.


  • We learn that the super hero/super villain split did not begin with Grandpapi, Rodolfo and Manny.
  • Manny learns the Ancient Tiger Spirit, but never attempts it again after this episode.
  • Manny mentions France as a made-up place, when it is actually real.
  • This is the frist episode where all the Rivera superheroes/supervillians appear.

Episode connections

  • This marked the second time a member of the Rivera Family got angry at being called coward like in Yellow Pantera.
  • The lesson learned in this special episode would later be used in the finale episode, No Boots, No Belt, No Brero.


  • When the villagers of the Land of the Dead scream apon realizing/seeing El Tigre and during the awkward silence, Manny's eyebrows appear to be black.