Since the late 1920s, the Disney name has long been responsible for creating leagues of loveable characters and volumes upon volumes of wonderful stories, creating places, kingdoms, and entire universes that we long to visit and explore. We've flown on magic carpets with Aladdin and Jasmine, run through the Pridelands with Simba, surfed monster waves with Lilo and Stitch, and saved who knows how many worlds from the forces of evil. We've had heroes, villains, and adventurous journeys set to criminally catchy soundtracks for as long as we can remember. It's no wonder why we keep going back to these visual and fantastical comforts time and time again. But as we all get older, we can't help but notice more than we did with our wide, childish eyes.
Now that we've been on the planet a little longer, we start to see cracks in the magical exterior and we begin to wonder what happens after "happily ever after." Though we can accept things like Snow White and her prince riding off into the sunset or Simba taking his rightful place as king of Pride Rock, some of Disney's classic stories have us asking more than a few questions. Are the protagonists truly satisfied with their happy ending? How long will they be content after the credits roll? And how many threads did they leave untied as they charged towards their end? We will attempt to address these questions and more as we look at 25 Disney plots that don't make sense.
25 Roger And Anita Have To Care For 101 Dalmatians
On paper, having 101 adorable and well-behaved Dalmatians sounds like a cute idea, right? It certainly makes for a quirky and cutesy kids movie and Disney knew it. Pongo, Perdita, and all 99 of their puppies are so wide-eyed and precious that it's intoxicating. We get so sucked up in the aw-look-at-the-puppy motif of the film, we tend to gloss over the fact that the two human leads now have 101 extra mouths to feed.
Let's look at this logically for a moment. 101 dogs in a London apartment is absolutely insane, not to mention the fleas. Let's just hope the live-action version was faithful and these animated dogs did go on to live happy lives at a Dalmatian plantation in the country.
24 Why Did Cinderella's Glass Slippers Remain Transformed?
Cinderella, like Snow White and Sleeping Beauty, is a fairytale that runs on emotion more than logic. Things happen and we accept them, but that doesn't mean we're unable to ask questions. The idea of the glass slipper has been tossed around time and time again, but why were they even still around in the first place?
The Fairy Godmother warns "On the stroke of twelve the spell will be broken, and everything will be as it was before." If that were true, why did the slippers remain after midnight? We don't know, but because it furthers the story, we don't ask questions very long. Was it because they were separated from the rest of the ensemble, or simply the MacGuffin that is Disney Magic?
23 Hades Should Have Known Pain And Panic Failed
This is one we're facepalming over, and it definitely caught us off guard. When Hades sets his plan to rearrange the cosmos into action, he sends Pain and Panic to turn the infant godchild into a mortal. When they get their tails handed to them by Herc the super-baby, they start fretting what to do if Hades finds out. Though the real threat isn't IF Hades finds out, it's when.
If the plan had really worked, Hades would have known instantly. Why? Because the dude has beachfront property over a river of souls. If Pain and Panic had succeeded, Herc's soul would have been floating with the others. Hades must've been too busy celebrating his premature victory to check his minions' work.
22 Captain Hook Could've Had A Flying Ship At Any Time
After rewatching the film, we see a blatantly missed opportunity for Captain Hook. We see that it doesn't take a whole lot of Tinker belle's pixie dust to make you fly and she's even able to use it on the Jolly Roger at the end of the film. Why didn't that happen when hook had her captured?
Seriously, how big of a threat would the pirates be if they started cruising Neverland in a flying pirate ship? If Hook had just kept her on board a little longer, they'd be ready to take to the skies. Unfortunately, it took them until the sequel to figure it out.
21 Scar Could Have Dealt With Simba After The Stampede
If he wasn't such a diva, Scar could have been Disney's perfect villain. But he's also one of the few villains in the canon to come so close to victory. We're not talking about just sending Mufasa into a wildebeest stampede, we're talking about how in one move he could have won the film.
After the stampede when Simba weeps by Mufasa's body, Scar has the opportunity to just finish the job right then and there, but what does he do? He goes into a long manipulative spiel about how Simba should just "run away and never return." If he'd only taken out Simba when he had the chance, he'd still be king of Pride Rock.
20 How Is Remmy's Restaurant A Success With A Rat In The Kitchen?
Ratatoulie is a gem of a film. Though we can accept the happy ending as the after-dinner mint in this delectable film, we can't help but call shenanigans on the fact that people line up out the door to be served food prepared by a little blue rat. We know how Gusteau's ended up when there were rats in the kitchen.
Let's forget about Remmy for just a second and address the miniature restaurant populated by a colony of rats in the ceiling of the restaurant. Yes, it's adorable seeing the little guys sitting at tables and doing all the stuff humans do when they go out to eat, but they're still rats. There are so many health violations going on here.
19 Do Humans Know About The Monster World?
In Monster's Inc., we know two things by the time the credits roll. One, that monsters have been banished to the human world before, becoming cryptid creatures. Two, laughter is more powerful than screams, resulting in more monsters visiting the human world. Hearing your child scream at night is alarming, but hearing them burst out laughing? That'd be pretty strange to anyone.
Children talk, plain and simple. What if these kids started comparing monsters like Pokemon cards? Next thing you know, they're waiting at slumber parties like a night at the Improv. We're not unhappy with this idea, but it does raise a few more questions than it should.
18 Did The Beast Destroy His Servants In The West Wing?
When we're introduced to the Beast's lair in the West Wing of his castle, we're naturally unsettled. The room is adorned with dark decor, ruined by claw marks, and littered with the destroyed remains of various furnishings and works of art. It's spooky as a kid, but things take a darker turn when adults start to wonder "was that furniture always just furniture?"
We know that the castle staff are all enchanted objects and bits of decor, but does that apply to all furnishings or just a select few. Were the shattered remains in the West Wing all former servants? Did they meet a horrible demise at the hands of an angry Beast? We may never know, but we will still be asking.
17 How Does Time Work For The Hundred Acre Wood?
Now we move to something more existential and complex. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh tells a series of stories about Pooh and his friends over the course of what looks like a year. The story ends with Christopher Robin going off to school, but what we don't know is if he ever comes back.
Time passes as seasons in the Hundred Acre Wood, but that's the extent of it. For all we know, Pooh and company were just left there at the end of the book, still waiting for Christopher Robin to return. Seeing these characters in storybook Limbo is kind of chilling when you think about it.
16 Pleasure Island Still Turns Boys Into Donkeys
Pinocchio is one of Disney's darker outings when you get right down to it. Pleasure Island is a prankster's paradise where the boys can party and rough-house all they want to, that is, until it's too late. All the boys on Pleasure Island make literal donkeys of themselves eventually, and even in the Disney version, it's a permanent change.
If this movie were remade, Pinocchio and Jiminy would run back and free the donkeys from the coachman's goons. Unfortunately, that's not how things work out. Pinocchio might be a real boy, Jiminy might be an official conscience, but Pleasure Island still thrives, turns boys into donkeys, and the coachman still rakes in the profits from selling his beasts of burden, not exactly a happy ending.
15 How Is Elsa Able To Give Snowmen Life?
Elsa's ice powers are standard Disney fare at the center of her story. She's able to create castles, a dress, projectiles, and every sparkly thing a typical Disney princess could want. All seems like the standard fairytale formula until you realize she's responsible for creating two living beings through Olaf and Marshmallow.
A film adaptation around Hans Christian Anderson's The Snow Queen definitely needs some creative license, but how is Disney going to explain this one? Yes, these creatures are made of snow, but does Elsa actually have the power to bestow sentience to frosty beings? This seemingly harmless bonus power leaves a lot of ethical and existential questions unanswered.
14 Does Judy Hopps Have Mob Connections Now?
In the Oscar-winning Zootopia, Judy and Nick are able to escape the clutches of Mr. Big and his cronies thanks to a little act of kindness from Big's daughter Fru-Fru. After saving her life during a chase scene in Little Rodentia, Mr. Big starts to get pretty chummy with the bunny cop. We later see Judy using her influence with big to glean information from Duke Weasleton. Does this mean she has connections to Zootopia's mob?
Think about it, a member of the police with connections to an organized crime family, doesn't that sound a little sketchy? We're not saying Judy would use her connections for malintent, but we're not sure anyone could really stop her. We better not tell Bogo about this one.
13 The Fire In Big Hero 6 Is Still Unexplained
As the catalyst for the events of Big Hero 6, the explosion at the university's science fair is responsible for the demise of Hiro's brother, Tadashi. Originally believed to be sabotage by Alistair Krei, the real villain of the film is later revealed to be Professor Callahan, Tadashi's mentor. Though Callahan survived by stealing Hiro's Microbots, one thing remains unanswered. What caused the fire?
Considering the fire took place at a science demonstration, we can assume it was a controlled environment. Could there really have been sabotage at the showcase? It may or may not have been from Krei, but someone, maybe even Callahan, caused the fire. Either way, we're in no way ready to admit it was just an accident.
12 How Is Charles Muntz Still Alive?
Once the world's greatest explorer, Charles Muntz spent decades in search of the Monster of Paradise Falls. He's been at the adventure game for a very long time, at least fifty years. We see his rise and fall through the eyes of a young Carl Fredricksen, so we're pretty surprised to see him still alive when Carl lands in Paradise Falls.
In the film reels, we assume he might be in his 3os, but when Carl and Russell arrive, the two look relatively the same age. Shouldn't he be ridiculously older... or deceased? Maybe he discovered a magic herb, a fountain of youth, or ambition alone kept him alive so long, maybe adventuring is the ultimate CrossFit? We don't know, but we noticed.
11 How Is Simba So Healthy After Eating A Diet Of Bugs?
The Lion King is Disney perfection, no doubt. But even this master of the traditionally animated films isn't immune to an occasional plothole. For instance, when Simba is banished from the Pridelands and goes to live with Timon and Pumbaa, he has to give up his carnivorous habits. Though he takes a liking to the colorful bug buffet, could he really survive as an insectivore for that long?
As we see Simba walk along the log and age into a handsome lion, we can't help but wonder how a meat-eater like him could live off of bugs and grubs. Those bugs must be a powerhouse of protein if Simba looks like that after eating them. Maybe they're the lion equivalent of Wheaties?
10 Mulan Defeats Almost An Entire Army
How could we forget about Mulan, the only Disney princess with a body count? In one of the most epic scenes in a Disney flick, Mulan is able to literally bury the Hun army with a mountainside and a canon. This is quite possibly the biggest achievement ever held by a Disney leading lady. Though we all revel in Mulan's victory, we tend to forget she nearly wipes out an entire tribe of people.
With one smart battle tactic, Mulan ends the lives of hundreds of soldiers coming down the mountainside. With the exception of Shan-Yu and a handful of his cronies, these guys fall and stay down. That's a pretty powerful move on Mulan's part. Let's see Elsa try to top that.
9 Genie Still Owes Aladdin A Wish
This is one of those plot points that still divides fans to this day. When Aladdin is thrown into the ocean by Jafar's guards after the romantic evening with Princess Jasmine, he's able to rub the lamp to release the Genie before he goes unconscious. The Genie says he can't give him another free wish, so it's implied Aladdin uses a wish for him to save his life. We assume the second wish is used but is that really the case?
Though he says no more freebies, we think that matters of life and demise should override genie protocol. If that's the case, then Genie still owes Aladdin one wish. We're not saying Genie's any less loved, but we just can't overlook this issue.
8 Ichabod Wants Katarina's Inheritance
Disney's The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is the epitome of a gothic cartoon. Its mix of humor and horror inspired many fans and filmmakers alike. We love the catchy tunes and the imposing Headless Horseman, but something darker lurks in the hollow other than a galloping ghost.
We often think of Ichabod Crane as a goofy but innocent protagonist who gets spirited away, but his intentions for Katrina Van Tassel aren't exactly the purest. He's mainly interested in Katrina for her looks and her money, even going as far as imagining her father out of the picture. "When he cut's out, that's when I cut in." Not such a nice guy are ya, Crane? Perhaps Brom Bones wasn't such a bad guy after all.
7 Hades And Ursula Actually Keep Their Word
We know the Disney Villains are the best at what they do, sometimes it's just good to be bad, right? But despite being forces of evil calling on the powers of darkness, Hades and Ursula are two antagonists that don't rely on cheap tricks to try to mislead their opponents. In fact, they're a bit more honest than they may seem.
Both make deals with their respected heroes and both keep their end of the bargain. Ursula might try to shift the odds in her favor, but Hades outright tells Hercules people are going to get hurt in his deal, and both heroes still agree. And even when their deal falls through, they still keep their word. Not a complete plothole, but something worth noticing.
6 Ariel Could Have Used Written Communication At Any Time
Ursula did have a point when giving her performance of "Poor Unfortunate Souls." Despite Ariel giving her voice away in exchange for a pair of human legs, she still has ways of communication. Never underestimate the powers of body language, right? Still, there's a big flaw in Ursula's plot that fortunately for her, Ariel is horrendously ignorant of.
We see Ariel has the ability to write, she literally signs her life away for a pair of legs. So knowing that why on earth doesn't she just write to Eric telling him everything? She could have asked Eric to kiss her at any time but did absolutely nothing.
5 Mother Gothel Could Have Eaten The Golden Flower Herself
Disney's take on Rapunzel has become one of the most well-received adaptations of the story ever created. It gives an explanation for the heroine's long hair, provides character-driven comedy, and a soundtrack that oozes Disney magic. There's only one question we have about the backstory, why didn't Gothel consume the flower herself?
If she was the only one who knew the healing secrets of the plant, why didn't she just turn it into a potion and ingest it herself, thereby imbuing herself with the flower's abilities? It feels like she could have thought of that on her own instead of just keeping the location to herself. Maybe we're just nitpicking, but it's something worth discussion.
4 Maleficent's Wrath Could Have Been Easily Avoided
How can we talk about Disney plotlines without mentioning Sleeping Beauty? This film was one of those movies that liked its supporting characters way more than its leads. Perhaps the most memorable character is the Mistress of All Evil herself, Maleficent. Obviously, she lives up to the title. But upon further watching, we noticed something about the curse she puts on Aurora. It could have been avoided.
The reason she curses the royal newborn is that she wasn't invited to the banquet. It goes without saying to never insult someone with that much power. If they'd simply sent her an invite, the curse would have been avoided, and there was no guarantee she would show up in the first place, food for thought.
3 The White Rabbit Has Left Underland Before
Tim Burton's weird and whimsical take on Alice in Wonderland was hit and miss. It did some things right, but its storyline was hardly what it should have been. Several questions arose with its twisted plot, but the biggest one we noticed involves a certain time-obsessed rabbit. In his quest to find Alice, the white rabbit journeys out of Underland to our world several times in hopes of finding her. What if he was seen?
There's a big possibility that Alice isn't the first gal to fall down the rabbit hole, and that could have some serious consequences. She might not be the first "wrong Alice" the Underlanders have met. Burton might be a mad genius, but this film asks more questions than it answers.
2 Phineas And Ferb Are Never Caught Despite Community Involvement
Not that we're trying to sound like Candace here, but we can't deny the boys get off the hook one time too many. It's great that they want to include everybody in their treehouse-robot-fights, backyard beaches, and citywide rollercoasters, but if everybody's included, why don't they talk about it later? Did everybody suddenly forget the giant bowling ball, or the haunted house, or the gnome-ageddon? They invite almost all their friends, and yet nobody says anything.
Perhaps it's an unspoken rule, maybe they're sworn to secrecy, but whatever it is, you'd think someone would mention it in passing. Who's to say someone didn't ask their mom why they weren't at the beach party/concert/giant amusement ride? It certainly sounds like a conspiracy to us.
1 The Hunchback Of Notre Dame Should Not Have A G Rating
Our number one might not sound like a plothole, but it's definitely a plot that doesn't make sense, at least for Disney. HoND was without a doubt ahead of its time. Not because it was a trendsetter, but because its plot dealt with mature things like religion, prejudice, and even longing situations, and it's all under the mark of the mouse.
It's incredible, nay ludicrous, how much this film got away with. It's not a bad film in the least, but it's certainly not something in Disney's comfort zone. The plot has the most grown-up content ever seen in an animated Disney film that by today's standards, it would warrant a PG or even PG-13 rating. We doubt Disney could ever pull this off again.