I must say, I was more than just a little disappointed with both these episodes. Neither 'Shrewzle Watch' nor 'The Life You Save' is very good in particular and I just did not enjoy my experience much with either episode.
'Shrewzle Watch'--After a rare tree Shrewzle is found on Dearly property, the Main Pups must expose Cruella's sanctuary scam to save the farm.
It's not a particularly deep episode; it doesn't truly add much to the characters and the plot is ultimately more than a little predictable. Scorch suddenly being the shrewzle in disguise was predictable but enjoyable; it's always fun to see Scorch agonizing the pups.
Well, it does add something: Rolly reveals that his sense of smell is very keen, to make up for his poor hearing.
Some sloppy animation moments occur, such as Roger pulling a toaster out of mid-air (I know it's a cartoon, so it's feasible, but wierd) and Lucky chuckling before saying 'Gotcha!' when his mouth doesn't move. It's possible to say 'gotcha' without moving lips, but no true explanation is provided.
It's not without its charm; Spot's enticing chicken dance is funny and we see Patch again (yes, that IS Patch, his depiction in this show is based on his description in the book). Patch, I believe has potential, he just needs a chance in the spotlight. These are the ultimate highlights in the episode.
It's not a bad episode just not very good...
'The Life You Save'--Much to Lucky's chagrin, Dumpling starts serving him left and right after he unintenionally saves her from injury.
This episode is pretty flawed; Dumpling has no true reason to see Lucky as a hero prior to the incident and it makes her seem like an inconsistent character. Lucky I don't think would turn down a chance to be a hero. It's his dream. Rolly would modestly decline, not Lucky. After all, Dumpling had reason to care about Rolly at the end of 'Swine Song'. Shouldn't this episode be about Rolly? I don't hate Dumpling, but she would need some stronger roles (such as in the aforementioned 'Swine Song' and also 'The Maltese Chicken') before they consider her becoming a secondary character.
There are pacing problems on top of Lucky's schemes to make Dumpling leave him alone just being uncreative. Lucky is much more clever than this and it's a poor vehicle for his character. If this was a half-hour episode it might be serviceable, but it just seemed rushed and poorly done.
Dumpling finally saving Lucky was dumb luck, much like he saved her earlier. The ending also could have been better; it ends with Rolly flicking a spider off her butt and Dumpling now thinks she's indebted to him. This makes Dumpling, as I said before, seem like she's supposed to be a weak-minded character who can't think for herself.
Cadpig and Spot might as well have not been there.
I honestly don't think I would recommend either 'Shrewzle Watch' or 'The Life You Save' as 'must-see' episodes; they are poor episodes in the series and I would not initate someone into the '101 Dalmatians: the Series' with them. They both rank as some of my personal 'Tier 4's. While 'Shrewzle Watch' was somewhat better than 'The Life You Save', there is much more could have been done with both of them.
'I should've let the wagon hit me.'
--Lucky agonizes over... 'The Life You Save'