Western Animation: The Legend of the Titanic
The Legend of the Titanic
is a full-length animation based
on the infamous Titanic
disaster, specifically the recent hit Titanic
. It was released in 1999. Not to be confused with that other Titanic
cartoon called Titanic: The Legend Goes On
The plot is set on a voyage of the RMS Titanic
, and concerns the romance between a rich man's daughter Elizabeth, and a gypsy who calls himself Don Juan. Maltravers (called Baron Vandertilt in the dub of the sequel) is the unscrupulous owner of a whale hunting company, who wishes to own whaling rights of all seas owned by Elizabeth's father. He intends to marry Elizabeth, and then make her father to sign over all whaling rights to him. Oh, and then he intends to cover his tracks by sinking
ship afterwards. You know, because it wasn't depressing enough that it was an iceberg that did it. Talking mice, dogs and undersea animals make an appearance.
Unlike that other Titanic
cartoon though, this one has actually a sequel called In Search of the Titanic
, also titled Tentacolino
, which takes place three years after the first installment. In Search of the Titanic
has little screen time for the actual Titanic
ship and most of it takes place in Atlantis. It also features some musical numbers which compete with those in Titanic: The Legend Goes On
The movie was produced by Mondo TV, who prior to making this helped co-produce the anime Cinderella Monogatari
with Tatsunoko (a series viewed much more favorably than The Legend of the Titanic
). Later they would go on to produce the cartoon Angels Friends
(also more well-received than this movie).
Both films provide examples of the following tropes:
- Accidental Pun/Stealth Pun: Smiley belongs to an Andalusian prince, and is therefore an Andalusian dog.
- Artistic License – Biology: Tentacles' dog nose.
- The sharks being able to overpower a killer whale. In real life, killer whales will occasionally prey on sharks.
- Artistic License – History: Oh so very much. In fact, it is an even WORSE offender than Titanic: The Legend Goes On, and considering how bad that movie is in that regard....
- Beta Couple: Mice in the first film, dogs in the second film.
- Big Bad: Maltravers in the first film.
- In the second film, there's a whole menagerie of villains, so it's kind of hard to tell. But the most vocal and ambitious one is The (self-proclaimed) Emperor.
- Conspicuous CG: Looks like the makers tried to show off their CG and it's most commonly seen during long-distance shots of the Titanic, but also elsewhere in the first film and ocean in the second.
- Disneyfication: A grossly extreme example. In the first film, the ship is rescued from sinking by a giant octopus atoning for having chucked the iceberg in the ship's way in the first place. And in this one, everyone survives, even the captain and the band. The only possible saving throw is the ending, which implies that the narrator of the story, as a sailor, exaggerates and makes up stuff. This does absolutely nothing to excuse the sequel, which involves mermaids, Atlantis, talking toys, and evil mice.
- Everything's Even Worse with Sharks: Evil jailbird Sharks prevented the Titanic from swerving around the iceberg. Even though it was completely pointless because the ship had too much momentum to turn in time. Sharks were also the reason the damned iceberg was there to begin with. It involves tricking a very strong but naive octopus. Yes, really. Can't make this stuff up.
- Everything's Squishier with Cephalopods
- Eyepatch of Power
- Baron Maltravers, the primary antagonist of the first film.
- Also, one of the Emperor's rebel mice in the second film.
- Hair of Gold, Heart of Gold: Elizabeth.
- Happily Ever After: One of the most insulting uses of this trope ever.
- Heroic Dolphin: The talking dolphins that are trying to stop the evil whalers and sharks.
- Makes Just as Much Sense in Context
- Mouse World
- Obviously Evil: Maltravers and the sharks take this Up to Eleven. In fact, practically every villain in the movies counts.
- Recurring Riff: The main theme in both movies.
- Simpleton Voice: Jeffrey, Maltravers' assistant.
- Spoiled Sweet: Elizabeth definitely qualifies.
- Talking Animal: Unlike that other Titanic cartoon, humans and animals have no problem communicating with each other. At first, it appears that the heroine Elizabeth has been given a special magical gift due to being in the right place at the right time doing the right thing by accident (namely, shedding a tear at night over the rail of the ship causing it touch a dolphin), but soon afterwards, we see that other human characters have no problems speaking with animals either. In the case of Elizabeth's gypsy love interest, Don Juan, he was supposed to be able to understand the animals because his soul was in tune with Elizabeth's (or something like that).
- Vague Age: Top Connors and Ronnie. That they sound even younger in the second movie makes it all the more confusing.
- What Measure Is a Non-Cute?: Dolphins and whales = good. Sharks = bad. Tentacles and Oddy are also given a head that resembles Casper the Friendly Ghost because the idea of a hideous or bizarre-looking good guy is unthinkable. In the sequel, clams are also evil - they serve as back up singers for and congratulate the shark -, even though they look like generic cartoony bivalves.
The Legend of the Titanic provides examples of the following tropes:
In Search of the Titanic provides examples of the following tropes:
- Ambiguously Gay: Pingo, the toy fish adviser to the King of Atlantis, talks in a stereotypical gay lisp. He also has long eyelashes and is constantly smiling.
- Animate Inanimate Object: Besides Living Toys, there's also a throne for Re, the king of Atlantis.
- Anachronism Stew: Plenty. For example, the submarine looks more modern than the one in 1915. Also, some of the toys in Atlantis look more like modern toys (especially the Barbie look-alikes - one of them is even wearing Barbie's original 1950s swimsuit) than toys that existed at the time.
- Apparently Human Merfolk/Fish People: A large part of the population of Atlantis.
- Arbitrary Skepticism: Baron Maltravers regularly does business with talking, gangster sharks, but finds the idea of them fighting fish-people from Atlantis to be "ridiculous".
- Atlantis: Where most of the events take place in the sequel.
- Atlantis Is Boring: And so is this movie!
- Bag Ofholding: Pingo and his box.
- Black Comedy: Supposedly the scene where the rats are in the insane asylum.
- Black Comedy Rape: The sumo rat grabs one of the nurses and forcefully kisses her. Really, not as funny as it might sound.
- Boastful Rap: Mr. Ice, the shark leader from the first movie, raps about himself being the terror of the sea. About halfway, the genre of the song changes.
- Canon Discontinuity: This film directly contradicts the first film in many ways, and the ending is such that conflicts with the entirety of it.
- Cool Chair: The walking throne which the king (Re) has.
- Crapsaccharine World: Atlantis is (unintentionally) portrayed as this. It's a utopia where its inhabitants - human or otherwise - are rescued, nurtured, and imprisoned for eternity.
- The Dandy: Pingo.
- Demoted to Extra: Both Maltravers and the Duke of Camden; the former only appears in three scenes, never interacts with the main characters, and has little purpose in the movie; while the latter only gets to appear in one scene and doesn't even get any dialogue.
- Elizabeth herself counts too. She mainly just appears in the background, has maybe 5 lines, and is only really featured in the beginning and at the end. And she was practically the main character in the first movie!
- Dude Looks Like a Lady: One of the soldier toys, in a really odd scene.
- Electric Jellyfish: A rather interesting example. Jellyfish in here are used by Mr. Ice to send telegraphed messages to Baron Maltravers.
- Everyone Loves Blondes: The male characters seem romantically interested in Elizabeth, despite her being married to Don Juan.
- The Faceless: Re, the king, which just makes him even more suspicious.
- Face Palm: A "facetentacle" happens when the shark finishes his musical number.
- Fate Worse Than Death: The rats are committed to an insane asylum and the head doctor announces that they'll stay there forever, with a menacing voice and pointy teeth no less. Oh, and the protagonists aren't feeling the slightest bit of guilt or sympathy either.
- Flying Dutchman: The Titanic becomes this when you think about it. She can never return to her home port of Liverpool, or any human port, since the now-immortal Don Juan and Elizabeth are her captains and can never go to the human world again.
- Gender Equals Breed: Guess what kind of breed the female dog is.
- Happily Married: Don Juan and Elizabeth.
- Connor's wife, Stella, is mysteriously absent. In fact, Connors doesn't sound old enough in this movie to be married.
- Heart Symbol: Smiley gets one when he sees the female dog.
- Hook Hand: One of the villainous mice has one.
- Improbable Age: Top Connors and Ronny were originally in their teens or twenties, but they somehow de-age in the sequel. Either that or they were gender bent.
- Living Toys
- Love at First Sight: How could they have resisted?
- The Masquerade: Inhabitants of Atlantis don't want their city to be revealed.
- Obviously Evil: Re, despite being supposedly on the side of the good. He chuckles maniacally, keeps his face hidden, holds two people and their animal friends hostage in his city, and maroons said people on an island with no one else around for miles. Yeah, this is the kind of guy who should be in charge of a city.
- Only Sane Man: The mouse points out the clear flaws of the kingdom, the King seeming more like a Big Bad for starters.
- Our Mermaids Are Different: For one thing, their king, Re is completely hidden in his robed outfit.
- Plot Hole: Quite a few, even compared to the first movie, though poor dubbing could be a cause for some.
- Put on a Bus: Stella and Rachel.
- Scenery Porn: Surprisingly, a lot of shots at Atlantis are very well-drawn.
- Small Annoying Creature: Pingo, hands down. Ask anyone who's seen the movie.
- Spring Coil: Pingo has one.
- Stockholm Syndrome: The only possible explanation for the protagonists having no resentment at all towards the people of Atlantis, after the latter tricked the former into drinking the Elixir of Life, which forces them to stay in Atlantis for the rest of their lives. Throughout the rest of the movie, they continue to worry about a plot to overthrow Atlantis, but apparently have forgotten their friends and family (even weirder when you consider that Top Connors should be married).
- Suspiciously Similar Song: The melody of the song that Pingo sings in Atlantis is vaguely similar to the melody of Northern Irish band Divine Comedy's cover of Noel Coward's "Marvelous Party".
- Technical Pacifist: Atlanteans.
- Tempting Fate: "Honestly, there really isn't anything to worry about." Then sharks arrive.
- Took A Level In Dumb Ass: Don Juan, who advocates in favor of drinking strange liquids as long as they have pretty colors. He also never once questions The King or any of the other dubious events that happen.
- Took A Level In Jerk Ass: Don Juan, once again, is rather unkind to Smiley in this movie.
- Trap Door: Connors and Ronnie fall into one.
- Villain Decay: In the first film, Maltravers and the sharks were portrayed as sinister, genuinely threatening villains, capable of planning the Titanic's demise. However, in this film, they are portrayed in a more foolish, light-hearted way (the shark's leader even getting a rap).
- Villain Song: In this case, it is a shark in the second film who gets to sing.
- Villain with Good Publicity: Re might as well be this.
- What The Hell, Heroes?: Laughing and smiling at the fact that the mouse rebels have been locked up in a horrible insane asylum forever.