Headscratchers / Happy Feet

  • Since, in Real Life, penguins are known for their funny, almost dance-y walk, wouldn't it make more sense to make a movie about penguins who dance in the first place, and not ones who sing and think the dancing one is weird?
    • Not really. One the things I loved about this movie was the semi-realistic movements of the penguins and the nods to their mating rituals. It was a nice break the whacky adventures usually seen in this sort of film. Penguins in real life (emperor penguins anyway) do sing to attract a mate, they don't dance. That's why they thought dancing was weird. Also, while penguins may waddle when they walk, I've never seen a tap/break dancing penguin.
      • Really, aside from the dancing - and, wasn't that kind of the point? - the movements and behaviors of the penguins were entirely naturalistic, as was the intention. The only way I can think of that they could've made them more realistic would've been if they were squirting out droppings every five minutes while they walked.
  • What bugs me is that the Elders go from the whole aliens-are-made-up to dancing with everyone in five minutes flat. In real life (let me state an example) religious/scientific don't change that fast from polar opposites. Like the debate over evolution. It took decades to go from "God created man, and the evolutionists claiming everyone came from monkeys" to now, which is "There was an intelligent force that guided evolution along." Even with so much proof supporting evolution, there are people who don't accept it. This is the point that I'm trying to drive home. Even though there is proof right there that there are "aliens," it would take years for the Elders to change their viewpoint.
    • They saw the "aliens" right by them and freaked out, doing the only thing that could maybe help them.
    • It's different. Seeing the "aliens" isn't seeing the proof for evolution. Seeing the proof for for evolution would be like seeing the boats and random machinery as they did, which didn't sway them, which it shouldn't. Seeing the "aliens" first hand would be like a YEC jumping on a time machine and jumping through various years and seeing first hand that evolution is true.
      • It's very different, indeed - contextually, subtextually, and etc. And, we're never really told of the attitudes of the Elders or results of the encounter after the story's end, even after that.
      • Facepalm. I used the wrong analogy. Sorry. But it does seem that they are dancing and singing with the rest of the others
      • Out of necessity, certainly. Well, that's how I always saw it, anyhow. How did that one reviewer put it? - 'And any leader who refuses to change through evolution, will face revolution,' which was one of the themes running throughout the film, but was most evident in those scenes.
  • What exactly were those whales trying to accomplish? One of them had Mumble right in his mouth, and all he did was spit him back out and throw him at the other whale.
    • Something tells me that if they had made everything bloodthirsty (wasn't the sea leopard Nightmare Fuel enough??), there'd be people whining about 'Oh, it's too violent for kids' and such. Even though whales do eat penguins, who's to say the whales wouldn't have started chowing down once they tired of their little black and white football?
    • People tend to forget that whales and dolphins are a major case of Beware the Nice Ones. One case I remember was seeing a pod of Killer Whales live up to their name by isolating a gray whale calf from it's mother then proceeding to headbutt and drown it to death simply to eat it's lips and left the rest of the body to waste, basically the equivalent of killing a baby for its candy. People (idiots) see Free Willy or Whale Wars and think All Whales are aquatic fish-eating puppies and forget that teeth are meant for more than just gulping down fish.
      • Whales play with their food before they eat it - sometimes quite voraciously, as in the film. What was more interesting was the fact that they, out of all of the other species in the film, didn't speak. And, it's all the more intriguing when you read why that was - the production team realized that whales actually have their own formalized language and dialects, and because of that, they appear with a type of speech all their own.
      • Whales actually bat their prey around like a hackey sack sometimes. It breaks the bones to make it easier to chew.
  • They made the female penguins busty. I can understand why, but I think it's totally bizarre.
    • Female penguins are kind of busty, actually. The movie just adds a little more. Just so you know who's who.
      • Well, really - both male and females are pretty 'busty;' they simply placed less emphasis on the male penguins and more on the females, while still not stretching too far out of the penguin's physical boundaries. Now I feel all creepy.
    • I think it's cute and adorable.
  • What the hell was with the premise of this movie? Singing is the center of their culture, but dancing is alien and forbidden? Wouldn't these things tend to evolve together? Even if dancing isn't their way to attract a mate, it shouldn't be so completely unknown and frowned upon if they're such a musical society.
    • Dancing isn't necessarily forbidden, it's only if you're unable to sing. Apparently singing is a mandatory duty of every emperor penguin citizen.
    • Many penguins comment about dancing as a weirdness, and something to be shamed out. So while is not forbidden, is still like courting a girl while wearing only a condom and socks.
    • But that doesn't explain how there's dancing at the Graduation ceremony. They're all dancing, albeit not like Mumble.
    • They're dancing, but not to the beat of their own heartsong. That's why Mumble was shunned, at first. It was because his heartsong came from his dancing feet rather than him vocally singing his own song.
    • Because the movie wasn't really about how "penguins are normal if they sing, but abnormal if they dance", the whole thing is meant to be a Does This Remind You of Anything? film about how people born different gets alienated by others and to top it, often has to deal with their own parents shunning them (apart from when it turns into an enviromental message that is), autism in particular being the implied case for Mumble.
  • It's not that Mumble still has his baby down — it's the argument that it's needed to tell him apart from all the other penguins. It obviously isn't an issue with the other adults, and Mumble has bright, vibrant blue Elijah Wood eyes to make him distinct. So why not let the poor guy grow up?
    • Because the producers are idiots who think that ViewersAreMorons and they think that the audience can't tell Mumble apart from the others if he looked completely grown-up (in their opinion). I bet they didn't even trial the film with test audiences.
    • Because merchandising needed something cute and cuddly to put in the kids' meals. Photorealistic emperor penguins just don't fly in that case.
      • Uh... photorealistic adult-looking Emperor Penguins can be cute. Just check out these pics: [1] [2]
    • In canon, I'd chalk that up as a side-effect to Mumble's egg being dropped.
      • But even at the end of the first film, Mumble was moulting. [3] [4]
    • But why would he suddenly go from more adult plumage to less? Shouldn't he eventually be completely covered in chick down feathers eventually?
    • It's another clever little link back to the Accept Autism thing the writers have going with their aesop. A LOT of adults on the Autistic Spectrum never seem to fully mature physically. Mumble being half-covered in chick-down is a shout to him still looking in his mid/late-teens, even when all his friends have moved on to mid-twenties. This is Truth in Television for real Aspergers people, who on average rarely look much older than 20.
      • Let's face it: the producers think ViewersAreMorons.
      • You... You didn't read the post above you, did you?
  • I never understood why Mumble was still gray as an adult. Do they explain why? Is it because he was dropped as an egg?
    • It's implied that the exposure to the cold as an egg affected Mumble's development (since the reason his father was sitting on it in the first place was to incubate it), causing him to molt late and giving him his titular feet.
    • Word of God is they killed two birds in one stone with his design as it's both meant to show how he's different and a slow developer, but it also served to give him a unique look as the main character instead of being identical to and hard to distinguish from the rest.
  • Is Gloria a pedophile since adult Mumble looks so much like a baby penguin?
    • Unfortunate Implications aside, there's no reason to conclude this, given that Mumble has changed significantly in size, if not plumage, and that Gloria grew up around Mumble; she would have reasons beyond him looking like a baby penguin to be attracted to him.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Headscratchers/HappyFeet