Headscratchers / Lilo & Stitch

  • Stitch is said to be too dense to swim. But he's also able to lift and throw a car, wouldn't he be strong enough to pull himself underwater?
    • He's just too heavy; he'd sink like a rock.
      • But why? I'd understand if he was just too heavy but not super strong, so he wouldn't be able to propel himself upwards, but he is super strong. If he kick, won't he generate enough force downwards to kick him upwards?
      • Movement in a fluid is not just about the ability to exert force (kicking and pulling), it's about having the ability to exert force (kicking and pulling) efficiently enough to counteract the return movement (pulling one's legs up and pushing one's arms forward) quickly enough to counteract the resistance (Stitch's density pulling him down through the water).
      • Stronger things can't always swim better- chimpanzees can't swim, in fact, because they have too MUCH muscle and not enough body fat to float well.
      • He could (and I believe has) walked across the bottom, but it's a long ways to the nearest continent.
  • In the Dupe episode Lilo complains that Mertle and her posse are her only friends outside of Stitch. She has more than 4 experiment friends outside of Stitch and some of them showed up to the party her "friends" missed. I can see her not noticing but nobody ever calls her on this type of logic which she maintains throughout the series.
    • Maybe she meant her only "close" friend. She cares about the various experiments, but she isn't as close to most of them as she is with Stitch since most of their one true places aren't where she spends most of her time. She lives with Stitch and spends plenty of time in hula class with the others. Still, if she considers those girls as "close" friends, that is still kind of sad.
  • I don't get the whole, "convinced an alien race that mosquitos were an endangered species" thing. Do the aliens have a strange fondness for mosquitos, and so didn't want to destroy Earth? Then why did they make the big deal about them being endangered, when they would all get destroyed with Earth, endangered or not?
    • Perhaps mosquitos are actually an alien race, and destroying them would be an act of genocide?
      • One of the tie-in games has there be sentient alien mosquitos bigger than humans, so maybe they and Earth mosquitos come from a common ancestor.
    • My guess, Bubbles was finding any law that would spare the Earth and the human race. Might be that the only one that he could find in time to justify not attacking Earth.
    • Rule of Funny.
    • My guess was actually that if Cobra was gonna pick any species to call endangered, he might as well pick one that's considerably NOT endangered. The longer the species in question lasts, the longer Earth lasts.
    • Fridge Brilliance. Pleakly was afraid of harming Lilo because she was part of the mosquito food chain. On Earth, almost everything is food for mosquitos, so if he claimed mosquitoes as endangered species, then all of Earth is effectively protected.
    • Aliens seem to be willing to follow the rules - they probably have a rule stating that some planets should not be attacked or enslaved because it would cause extinction.
    • Which brings up another question: Cobra mentioned he saved our planet by doing this. What exactly is this saving our planet from? The United Galactic Federation doesn't seem like the kind to allow to genocide or enslavement. Even if Humans Are Bastards we can't make it very far off our planet, so it's not as if we're a threat.
    • This is answered early in the film. When Stitch is discovered to have landed on Hawaii, the Grand Councilwoman says "We will have to gas the planet" then suggests bombing the island until Pleakley tells her otherwise, informing her that Earth is a protected wildlife preserve for endangered mosquitos and their food of choice. It's not that they're a particularly violent alien federation... but these extreme policies do exist and presumably must have been necessary in the past.
  • At the part in the movie where Lilo's house catches fire, then Nani sees the fire engine heading toward their house and she says: "Don't turn left." Is her house the only one on the left of the grocery store?
    • It's Kauai, an extremely rural island-and she's clearly living in an extremely rural part of that. Could be.
    • And even if that wasn't the case, you have to take Adult Fear into account. Most parents/guardians who are just easing into the concept of leaving their children home alone will flip out over the smallest thing indicating something may have gone wrong. That, and/or Nani's just Genre Savvy enough to know that Murphy's Law - anything that can go wrong WILL go wrong - is in effect.
      • I can attest to this - even if you aren't in a rural place where there's the possibility that the fire engine is headed to an emergency somewhere else (even a car accident or a heart attack victim), you can't help but fear something may have happened.
      • The fire engine turns on to a dirt road. No evidence of nearby houses in shots of the outside. Probably a long driveway?
    • Even if it turns out that the truck could have been going to a different house and Nani's isn't the only one that could have caught fire, would you still assume that "oh it must be going somewhere else" since the fire could have spread?
    • I read this simply as Nani can see the truck from where she is, and it's coming to a fork in the road. If it goes right, she doesn't have to worry that it's her house. If it turns left, there is still a chance it's her house /and/ she won't be able to follow it because (I think, not sure) she's late for work.
    • Not the last one. As she's leaving the store, she says she'll be there first thing in the morning. As for the original question, yes she was panicking - her house was left. And she assumed the worst.
    • Living with Lilo leads one to assume that if a disaster is occurring, Lilo is responsible.
  • "Aliens are all about rules"? Really, Bubbles? Even disregarding that that's a very dangerous generalization to make, the whole plot of the movie exists because an alien broke the rules!
    • Maybe not rogues like Jumba, but it appears that the Galactic Council follows any rules to the letter. The head wanted to take Stitch away for no other reason than the Council decided it, and they wouldn't even break the most petty of laws like stealing a dog some kid bought from the pound for two bucks.
    • Sure, Cobra is generalizing. He knows Lilo's plan will work and is reassuring her in terms she'll understand. He could have said "These aliens represent the Galactic Federation, and are here as law enforcement officials, and will obey local laws and regulations in the absence of an emergency; therefore these specific aliens will follow this specific rule." But that would have flown over Lilo's head even if the audience could follow it.
  • Why were experiments like Hunkahunka and Morpholomew created? How can either making everyone fall in love or shapeshifting take over a planet at all?
    • Jumba was probably still figuring out how to get different abilities through genetic research. They are experiments, after all.
      • I meant that they're useless for what Jumba was intending for them to do, i.e. Take over planets.
      • You're missing what I'm saying. They were experiments, not successful experiments.
    • On top of that, falling in love and shapeshifting could actually be useful when it comes to taking over the world. If I'm remembering the episodes correctly Hunkahunka made the person who "Fell in love" follow the other person and do whatever they said in an attempt to please them, getting someone with a powerful position or a lot of money to do that for you could help. And morphing is obvious, you shape shift into someone in a powerful position (president, king, etc.) and use that power to take over.
      • Even assuming these experiments were released on their own, without Jumba or someone directing them, they could still cause untold damage. Hunkahunka can make people infatuated with each other... what happens when this infatuation isn't one-way, or mutual, but set up to be three-or-more way, and if it overrides normal morals and ethics? Bad things can happen. Now imagine this happening on a large scale, with seemingly no cause, and you have massive amounts of Paranoia Fuel. As for Mopholomew, shape-shifting gives him literally infinite applicability, especially if he decides to Kill and Replace or if it comes with a built-in Healing Factor.
  • More importantly (same poster as above), how come no-one knows about the damn things? Sparky's little rampage in Stitch!: The Movie was pretty public and some of the other experiments (Kixx, Yaarp, Richter) have caused some pretty conspicuous damage, and were seen by a great deal of people, some of whom would probably have video cameras. How come videos of them are not all over YouTube? Are people just that unobservant?
    • It's probably a Weirdness Censor at work - nobody looks twice at Jumba once he puts on a tourist outfit. As for YouTube, check the publication date of the movie again.
      • Well, these days, such creatures would be all over social media.
  • Why did Lilo have a fetish for taking pictures of fat people? It always struck me as kind of creepy.
    • I don't think it's a fetish, more like an obsession. She's a little girl and she probably thinks fat people are weird looking and wants to photograph them. Don't ask me why, because I don't know what goes on in the head of a little girl.
      • I think both 'fetish' and 'obsession' are mighty strong words. She's got a hobby. Some people build ships in bottles, some post on TV Tropes, and she takes snapshots of haole.
    • There is also the fact that most of the people she photographed were tourists - outsiders. Perhaps she relates to the fact that they are different?
    • They weren't all fat, they were all tourists. She found them strange and different, and thought they were beautiful in an exotic sort of way. Her sister thought it was weird because, obviously, fat, pale tourists aren't conventionally "beautiful"
    • Actually, I think that there is some form of subtle Fridge here, because before Stitch came along, Lilo spends her time taking pictures of tourists... and when Stitch is ready to leave Lilo, she tells him she remembers everyone who leaves. I think photography was just Lilo's way of coping with everything.
    • The creators address this in a deleted scene; she takes pictures of them because the tourists treat her like she's some sort of attraction that's there for their amusement. But taking the photos she turns it around of them and makes these intruders her source of amusement. See here.
    • In Hawaii, the tourists and the white people are called Haole and they are usually not well liked as native Hawaiians consider them invaders. However, most Hawaiians make their money off the tourism and therefore have to put up with them even though they don't want to. For Lilo to be obsessed with the Haole shows her inability to fit in with the society she lives in. In a way she identifies with them because she almost feels like a tourist or invader in the society she lives in. She is different.
  • What is it called when the viewer is wrenched by the helplessness of the character? The more minor example from the movie is when Jumba's ship is following Gantu's and he says "We stay close, hope for a miracle. That's all we can do."
    • ...That feels less like a question about this movie and more like something you'd ask in the trope forums.
  • Why would you put a "dog" you think is dead in a pound with live dogs? Seriously...
    • Possibly they knew it wasn't technically dead at that moment, but figured he was almost dead and likely to reach that state at any moment. He was run over by multiple trucks, after all. Someone just felt that it would be kinder to let him get euthanized inside the shelter and not to be exposed to the elements during his final moments. The person probably thought it was better to put it in one of the cages and, if it somehow miraculously clung onto life, it would be somewhere safe. They didn't expect the dying or dead "dog" to wander into the front room with the kid as if nothing happened.
      • You still wouldn't put a dog that you believed was dying with the other dogs that are live and apparently healthy. He would've either been in an isolated cage, or simply euthanized to be put out of his misery.
    • I think the pound worker only says "it was dead this morning" - which could mean Stitch only appeared dead when they found him. He might have shown signs of life when they started to move him. It's a fairly small town and maybe they just wanted to put him somewhere before they figured out what to do with him.
  • Minor one, but during the movie's opening sequence, Lilo is tying her Hula skirt on top of her bathing suit. But she'd have had to take it off to put her Hula top on, so tying the skirt on top of it only served to delay her even more.
    • Maybe it was so she could pull off the bathing suit from under her, while the skirt would keep her from being naked in the process.
  • Here is one that been bothering me. Stitch is obviously super-strong, considering he can lift trucks and spaceships with ease. But it's shown throughout the movies and TV series that he can be contained... by some sort of glass container Gantu has...Seriously? How strong are those glass containers? They are more effective at containing Stitch than any other prison.
    • The fact that they can hold Stitch should make it pretty obvious that they aren't glass.
    • Transparisteel?
    • If it helps, assume the 'glass' containers are force fields (or force fields between two layers of glass). Experiment 626 was, very clearly, not their first experience with Nigh-Unstoppable Abominations of Science.
  • The reason Stitch is afraid of water is because he can't swim... yet in one episode of the series it was shown that he can survive in the vacuum of space... which means he doesn't need to breathe...so why is he afraid of water?
    • Phobias aren't always rational.
      • It's not a random phobia, it's explicitly stated in the movie that he can't survive in water, and the reason he's afraid of water is implied to be because of that.
    • Here are three possible explanations: 1. Stitch needs to absorb radiation if he's not using normal respiration - tons of free radiation in space, surprisingly little under the sea. 2. Stitch can handle zero pressure, but extremely high pressures might either do real damage or just hurt fantastically. 3. Immersion in water opens pores that would be sealed tight against vacuum, so he's airtight in space but not watertight in water.
  • Why did the Council give Jumba and Pleakly such a big ship? They were there on a stealth based search-and-retrieve type mission and they give them such a huge ass spaceship that's sure to draw human eyes. Why?
    • It might have just been Jumba's ship before he was arrested, so they weren't giving him anything from their own navy with the risk he might steal it. Plus, it may have had cloaking abilities. They seemed to have arrived shortly after Stitch and there wasn't any hubbub about a second "falling star".
    • Well, it worked. They got onto the planet without arousing too much attention. They only attracted attention when chasing Gantu when all pretense of stealth was abandoned. Plus, I think Pleakley cares about stealth more than anyone else. Gantu clearly didn't care about being spotted despite working for the council, and the councilwoman landed in clear view on a beach in Hawaii.
    • A more meta reasoning, in the original storyline, Stitch and crew hijacked a jet from the local airport to go after Gantu, but after 9/11, they changed it to the spaceship. The size might be so they wouldn't have to edit too much on the frames.
    • Stitch seems to recognize the ship when they're uncovering it to go and rescue Lilo, so I'm assuming it was probably Jumba's.
  • In Lilo and Stitch 2: Stitch has a Glitch, it seems that a lot of the problems are caused by everybody not knowing what is wrong with Stitch. Except Pleakly and Jumba know about the whole "molecules aren't charged" thing. So why didn't either of them tell Lilo or Nani about Stitch's issue? Seems like a plot hole to me.
    • Because they didn't want to worry them with how serious the situation was, especially since they intended to fix it quick as possible. Besides, when one of the people is a Mad Scientist who probably spent a lot of time prior to the movies on his own and the other is... Pleakley, rational plans built on common sense sometimes don't come up.
  • In the first movie, when Nani gets an interview for the store, why doesn't she take Lilo with her? Especially since she's on thin ice already?
    • The last few job interviews she brought Lilo (and Stitch) along for ended in pure and utter chaos. She needs this job if she's going to have a chance of convincing Cobra to let her keep her sister and she was just going down the street. She made the best decision she could manage at the time.
    • All in all, bringing Lilo with her wouldn't have accomplished much, of anything at all, because Lilo wasn't the major problem. Stitch was. Even if she'd taken Lilo with her, Stitch still would've led Jumba to the house, which would've probably still resulted in it blowing up, which would've probably resulted in Bubbles taking Lilo away anyway after assuming that Nani left the stove on again and knowing that they wouldn't have a place to live.
  • If they thought Stitch was dead, why'd the truck drivers bring him to a dog pound?
    • Probably so a record of the 'killed' 'dog' could be created, so that the pound can inform the owner if he/she contacts them. Drivers should do this but rarely do - so chalk it up to unusually neighborly truck drivers.
  • In the movie, why is it the beach scene that makes Cobra Bubbles decide to take Lilo away from Nani? Yeah, she fell off a surfboard and got dragged off because her foot got caught, but she was retrieved before any serious damage was done and among coastal communities, it's understood that while there is occasionally accidents, but adventures like that is mostly ok.
    • Because instead of getting a job, he sees her seemingly procrastinating and not putting in real effort in providing for her sister.
    • Because Cobra isn't a member of the coastal community: Child Services unquestionably has a much stricter view of... 'adventures.'
    • He's clearly regretful over what he has to say...In short, it's not really because Nani's gone too far without success - it's that he was watching her at every interview she went to, each one ended fruitlessly, and now, even when she and her sister have almost managed to bond with each other as a family, the moment ends abruptly with Lilo almost drowning. He wants to put a stop to it now before the two sister have to go through even more disappointment before facing the inevitable end that he thinks it's all leading to.
  • I can understand Nani being upset at Lilo's kidnapping, but why would Jumba and Pleakly give her the impression that there's no hope and that she's never going to see her again? Surely, the Grand Councilwoman wouldn't do anything to seriously hurt Lilo when she found out that Gantu nabbed her as well - couldn't she just as easily be sent back to Earth?
    • Well, there are a few different reasons: first, Nani is talking to a known criminal (who has no reason to trust the Grand Council) and near the beginning of the movie, the grand council woman threatens to gas Earth in order to eliminate Stitch, so I doubt they would be much more merciful to Lilo. Secondly, the problem isn't that Lilo wont be safe, its that Jumba and Pleakley would have to chase down Gantu in order to rescue Lilo (which is at best being shot down from the sky by Gantu and at worst being arrested and jailed or executed).
    • What I'm asking is, what was going to happen to Lilo after Gantu returned to base? The councilwoman realizes Stitch escaped from him, sees that Lilo was brought along...and what would she do about her? Gassing a planet to kill a condemned Living Weapon is one thing, but killing a single child just because she got roped in by accident? I can't see even the councilwoman being so cruel.
  • I'm still a little confused as to why any of the three truckers or the people at the pound would've thought Stitch was a dog. When they pulled him out from under the truck, he should've still been wearing his alien-suit, had six arms, antenna, and those spike-things protruding from his back - he didn't conceal the added appendages and extremeties until he decided to start faking it so Lilo would adopt him. I know it's still a leap to go from "weird, blue, dog-looking thing" to "deadly alien bioweapon", but still.
    • If you watch the scene where he's being run over, you don't actually see him in his clothes when the truckers find him under the truck, just a silhouette of his arm dangling out and twitching. My conclusion? His space clothes were shredded when he was pulled under the wheels. What was left is a strange, dog-like/koala-like creature. It's established that the Hawaiians in the Lilo and Stitch series have a strong Weirdness Censor, and the truckers who brought Stitch in were probably tired and were probably more concerned about rushing him to the nearest veterinarian they could think of to save his life than trying to figure out what he was.
    • See an above discussion for more.
  • How come the Grand Councilwoman doesn't know anything about Earth or the creatures that live there when the ending reveals she met Cobra Bubbles during the Roswell incident?
    • She probably wasn't on Earth for very long. She only stayed for like 5 minutes when they were picking up Stitch after all.
  • Why does the Hyperdrive of Stitch's police cruiser require the user to punch through glass to pull it like a fire alarm? It would seem like you would want the ability to jump into hyperspace at a moment's notice more readily available if you were pursuing fleeing suspects.
    • It may not actually require the glass to break, just be a safety cover like over important buttons that you can open with a key. Stitch just smashed through it.
    • I always read the scene as Stitch smashing the glass to skip a step (opening the panel) which may actually require external clearance from the designated carrier vessel or even just may require that the nav system be fully engaged (it says it isn't and warns against engaging the drive).
  • The romance between Angel and Stitch. All the experiments are related, if not by DNA then just by being created by the same person, and call each other cousins so would Angel and Stitch call each other cousins? Wouldn't it be weird that they call each other cousins but also have a relationship-type thing?
    • I doubt that Jumba created all 626 experiments using the same batch of DNA, and if the "Ugly Duckling" scene from the first film is any indication, while he may know that Jumba created him, neither of the two seem to consider the other as his "father" or "son", necessarily. It's something like with the demigods in the Percy Jackson series - they're all related to each other technically, but it's in some convoluted way - and the gods don't have DNA, anyway - so when they do refer to this relation, they just call each other cousins while still having relationships.
  • In the first film, the record gets knocked and starts playing Elvis Presley's "Hound Dog." Jumba then says, "I love this song." Jumba is an alien. On Earth, that would mean that you know the song and you love it, but that wouldn't make sense in this case. By alien slang does it mean that Jumba has experienced similar music in his own society in the past or something else?
    • It's possible that sometime off-screen during his stakeout, Jumba happened upon the song and took a shine to it.
      • Or, since Jumba had to get the genetic material for his experiments pre-movie, he spent a lot of time visiting different planets and Earth was one of them?
    • Wasn't Jumba there throughout most of the montage of Lilo trying to teach Stitch to be a "model citizen", during which she played a whole bunch of Elvis's songs? Maybe he heard it then.
  • During the scene after Bubbles leaves and Nani is chasing Lilo throughout the house, at one point she loses her, is shown frowning and leaning against the doorframe, and then the screen fades to black. When it comes back, Nani has inexplicably bundled Lilo in a blanket, leading to their argument. Why was there a cut there? Why didn't the movie show where Lilo was hiding?
    • You've probably watched a made-for-TV cut of the film, most likely one made for the UK. In the original release of the film, after Nani leaned against the doorframe, she heard a metallic sound, and Nani knew exactly where Lilo was hiding. She went into the laundry room, spread out a blanket in front of the dryer, climbed on top of the appliance, and then opened and closed the door to make Lilo think that her older sister was starting to look for her outside. Lilo came out of the dryer and looked side-to-side to see if the coast was clear. Once Lilo got out of the dryer and stood on the blanket, Nani sneaked off the dryer and wrapped Lilo with the blanket. The BBFC didn't like that scene as they believed that this would lead to children trying to hide in dryers, and demanded that the scene be changed for the U rating. The dryer was changed to an odd cupboard with a pizza box for a door for the UK version. TV edits for the film would later remove the scene outright, hence why the odd transition in the edit you saw.
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