#38. WALL-E Killed the Other Robots and Doomed the Earth
The WALL-E we know tells the heartwarming story of the destruction of Earth. When mankind goes off to travel the universe and get fat, they leave a bunch of robots behind to clean up the mountains of garbage that now cover the planet. Seven hundred years later, only one of those trash-compacting robots is left: the adorable WALL-E. He (it?) falls in love with a space-traveling robot called EVE, and together they bring the humans back home.
And then presumably have robo-children that look like dongs with wheels.
But wait, back up: What happened to all the other WALL-E-type robots that were left on Earth? We see their broken bodies scattered here and there -- why is WALL-E still functional when all of his brethren are broken down robo-corpses?
Easy: According to this theory from Reddit, WALL-E freaking destroyed them over a 700-year-long murder spree. That's why there's still so much garbage covering the planet after so long -- there was just one robot to clean it, and he's a psychopath.
Why It's Totally Possible:
First of all, just look at how casually WALL-E cannibalizes the parts of the deactivated units at the beginning of the movie -- he remorselessly rips the treads off of another robot to replace his own and hoards other spare parts in his trailer.
He totally poached that head from Johnny 5.
WALL-E is clearly a sentient being, capable of pain and emotion. He recognizes fellow robots as living beings (and of course falls in love with one). And yet, he doesn't appear to give the slightest fuck about desecrating the scattered corpses of his robotic kin. He's playing music from Hello, Dolly! as he tears their parts off. Apply the same thinking to human beings and picture a man who collects human body parts to wear and dance around in. Congratulations, you just imagined Buffalo Bill from The Silence of the Lambs.
"This'll really take my 'Goodbye Horses' routine to the next level."
So WALL-E is a disturbed individual. But why would he kill the other robots? Maybe, as the fan theory points out, it's because his objective and their objective weren't compatible. The entire purpose of these robots was to gather the trash and compact it -- and yet WALL-E, no doubt as a result of some fatal flaw in his programming, actually takes some of those worthless artifacts he's supposed to be destroying and keeps them to himself, just to stare at them.
They're basically his robot serial killing trophies.
Or, hell, maybe he just wanted to be able to use their parts to live forever. Either way, at the end of the movie, the humans don't even suspect that they're now stuck on a planet with a remorseless mass-murdering machine, surrounded by the grim evidence of his madness.
This is all robo-corpses.
#37. In Inception, Cobb's Totem Is His Wedding Ring
Inception is known for having a soundtrack that went BWONG every three minutes and accompanied an infuriatingly open-ended final scene designed to make you argue with your date as you left the cinema. Leonardo DiCaprio plays Cobb, a widower who invades people's dreams to plant ideas in their subconscious. Each dream-planter has a personal object, or totem, to let them know if they're in a dream or in the real world, because getting lost in someone's head without realizing it is a legitimate concern in this line of work.
Cobb's totem was a spinning top: If it kept spinning forever it meant he was dreaming, and if it fell down he was not. In the last scene, Cobb makes the top spin on a table ... and then the movie cuts to black. So did it keep spinning or not? The Internet has been furiously debating this for years and we are no closer to an answer ...
For our money, Cobb was definitely a replicant.
... and that's because we've been looking in the wrong direction. The top was never Cobb's totem -- it was his wedding ring all along. This is based on the fact that, every time we see Cobb's hand in the dream world, he happens to have the ring on it; you can see it in the opening scene, and again in that crazy dream in the cafe.
In fact he keeps flashing it to the chick from Juno, because he knows she's into married dudes.
Meanwhile, every time we see Cobb's hand in the real world, he doesn't have it. It's not there on any of the present-day, non-dream scenes at the beginning, and it's not there in the last few scenes ... meaning that the ending wasn't a dream. Check it out, this is right before he makes the top spin and the director pulls a The Sopranos on us:
Close the Internet, we're done.
Keep in mind, Cobb never said the top was his totem. Seriously, go back and rewatch the movie: He doesn't. We see him clutching the top in his hand when Juno asks about totems, but there's a good reason for him to do that: The top belonged to his dead wife, and, as the movie doesn't hesitate to show us, Cobb is still slightly hung up on her.
To the point where every time he goes to sleep, she chases him like a freaking Terminator.
In the movie we're told that totems must be something unique that only the owner knows well. Since the top was previously his wife's, that means Cobb must have had another totem before, right? The ring seems like a perfect choice. He stopped wearing it when she died, but was too cheap to buy a new totem.
#36. Dexter in Dexter's Laboratory Has Asperger's Syndrome
Cartoon Network Studios
Dexter from Dexter's Laboratory was the envy of every science-minded kid who had to make do with an incomplete junior chemistry set and some hand-me-down LEGO Technics. He had a huge secret lab under his house and seemingly unlimited resources to build anything he imagined -- for instance, his own Dexo-Transformer, which he used to terrorize his bullies in dodgeball.
Cartoon Network Studios
"T-Bag Mode: Engaged."
According to this theory from TV Tropes, Dexter's life isn't as cool as it looks, since he suffers from Asperger's syndrome ... but, you know, so do half the My Little Ponies, probably. If there's one thing the Internet loves more than fake diagnosing itself with Asperger's, it's fake diagnosing its favorite characters with it.
Why It's Not That Crazy:
A strong case can be made for Dexter, though. Look at his personality: He struggles to interact with others socially, has repetitive patterns he adheres to, and has very unique interests -- if Dexter could, he wouldn't leave his lab. These are all signs of Asperger's, as is his baffling pseudo-Austrian accent: A lot of people with this condition sound like foreigners to their own families because they mimic words the way they were pronounced when they first heard them (in many cases, on TV).
Cartoon Network Studios
"The Schwarzenegger marathon ends when I say it ends."
OK, so the kid might be an Aspie, but does that change anything in the show? Actually, it changes everything, because we view all the other characters through Dexter's lens, and people with Asperger's have trouble empathizing with others. He views his sister Dee Dee as a huge dolt, but what if he just doesn't understand girls? His mom appears to have constant mood swings, but could it be that Dexter doesn't know when he's making her angry? Meanwhile, his dad is always a bumbling incompetent, but maybe Dexter is simply disappointed that he isn't a world-class genius.
Cartoon Network Studios
He has all that food because it usually takes him three days to remember how to get out of the recline setting.
Then there's Dexter's rival, Mandark, who is practically a supervillain when we first meet him, but becomes a much more sympathetic character when we're not looking at him from the Asperger's-having protagonist's point of view. At any rate, this makes way more sense than the "Dexter becomes a serial killer on Showtime" theory.
#35. Donald Duck Suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
That's right, more Donald Duck! Hey, the guy helped invent the modern world. We've got to talk about him. Donald Duck started out as a generic cartoon duck, but became more and more prone to fits of pantsless rage as Disney animators realized that cartoons are lame if everyone has the same personality (it's also the reason Goofy became dumber and Mickey developed his crippling fear of intimacy). Today Donald is the fifth most published comic book character in the world, right after Wolverine, with whom he shares certain psychopathic tendencies.
And, occasionally, a hairdo.
The Journal of Cartoon Overanalyzations provides an alternate, yet perfectly reasonable explanation for Donald's escalating anger issues: He's suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Specifically, he came down with it after the series of shorts in which he fought the Japanese in World War II. A reasonable Donald got drafted and shipped to the Big War -- an angry shell of a duck returned.
Why It's Totally Possible:
Well, there's the fact that Donald totally has war flashbacks from time to time (seriously -- we'll get to that in a second), but let's look at his change in personality. Donald was a temperamental character from as early as his second cartoon, but at first he was only reacting to provocations and rarely tried to hurt anyone. After the war, however, he became a lot more violent and unstable. He went from just comically moving his fists when he got angry to trying to cut Chip and Dale in half with a saw.
Check out how Donald reacts to the exact same situation before and after the war: In this strip from 1938, he wakes up to find his icebox empty. His response is to set up a camera to catch the thief.
"My God, it's ... literally any duck in the city, since we're all drawn the same."
The same premise is recycled in a 1945 comic called The Icebox Robber, but this time Donald immediately flips out on his nephews.
We have no idea what that means, but it can't be good.
In order to prove that Donald is sleepwalking and stealing his own food, his terrified nephews decide to wake him up with some firecrackers. Big, big mistake. This is what happens:
Basically the same thing that happens to your grandfather after his third drink.
Holy shit, Donald is having a freaking World War II flashback, which, as the fan theory points out, is one of the symptoms of PSTD, along with anger, sleeping troubles, and pretty much every other part of his personality. We can hardly blame Donald for then trying to stab the kids, thinking they're Japanese soldiers, because he's just blinded by the rage.
Also because they are fucking annoying. Stop that "unca" shit.
Man, the war really did a number on the poor guy. But, by all means, continue pointing and laughing at this brave duck who gave his sanity for our freedom.