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As a Fridge subpage, all spoilers are unmarked as per policy. You Have Been Warned.

Fridge Brilliance
  • Why does Frank West have a strange disconcerting limp? He fell out of a helicopter. Note the leg he limps on, compared to the leg he fell on.
    • This was actually supposed to be a plot point, but Capcom never made a new animation, hoping nobody would notice. They did.
    • His 'limp' could also simply be a staggered walk, because that camera is hanging from his neck by a strap. If he ran normally, it'd flail about and might get damaged, or even clock Frank in the face. His walk keeps his center of balance on the camera, so it doesn't swing wildly. His priority is to keep his camera safe at all times (without any record of what happens at the Mall, the infiltration is pointless), as you'll notice when he jumped from the helicopter, he landed in a painful way because he only used one hand to catch his fall, using the other to protect his camera.
  • Carlito reveals that his entire motivation revolved around the fact that Santa Cabeza was destroyed in a cover up just because of an experiment to accelerate cow breeding in order to make more meat products. The person who captures him late in the game is a butcher.
  • The leader of the cultists, Sean, dies by getting stabbed in the eye. The cult Sean leads is called True Eye, making this a Karmic Death.
  • In Dead Rising 2, the in-mall gun store has military grade sniper rifles, body armor, and grenades in stock. How could they possibly ever sell these things, in a very public setting no less, without getting shut down? Because this is a world where not only do zombies exist, they occasionally destroy entire cities. Of course weapon restriction laws are going to be lightened, if not abolished in full.
  • In Off The Record, Chuck Greene replaces Leon as the slicecycle riding Psychopath. At first you may be wondering, where'd Leon go? But right before the fight, Chuck tells you that he's been dealing with "nutbars" all day... so it's likely that Chuck killed him.
    • According to the loading screens, Leon is still alive. He was in hospital after an accident, Chuck stole the limelight however.
  • A bizarre, certainly unintentional one... the lyrics to the end credits song of Dead Rising, "Justified", probably meant to talk about Carlito, also fit surprisingly well for the character of Stacey / Agent S in Off the Record, especially if you find a (completely cracked) way to composite the two different versions of the character from both games so that she's both sidekick and villain.
  • As people have pointed out, the Dead Rising games have made a point of being Anvilicious about mass consumption in the United States, and how some of the Survivors are just as mindless as the zombies. But when you consider the original Dead Rising to be Dawn of the Dead (1978), The Video Game, it's less preachy than it is another Shout-Out to the message of its inspiration—after all, it was George Romero's idea to make a not-so-subtle analogy between zombies and mall walkers in the first place.
  • Carlito and Isabela being the faces for the 3 Day Survivor and 5 Day Survivor achievements respectively. On the surface it's just putting two vital characters' faces on to represent two hard-to-get accomplishments. But thinking about it, the Keyes siblings are survivors, specifically of the Santa Cabeza incident. Furthermore, Isabela outlasts Carlito — while he dies in the process of the first game, she survives and even ends up becoming a lead scientist into cures for zombification as revealed by future installments—so it makes sense that she has the longer trophy.
  • Ending S being the "best" ending vs. Ending A being the canon ending in the main Dead Rising 2. The game is played from Chuck Greene's POV, what with him being the main character, and ending S is the only ending in which he, Stacey, and Katey all get to go home together. So it only makes sense that this would be the best ending. However, in the process of making this happen he is forced to grab and retrieve a bunch of Phenotrans items lying around, which could mean the amount of evidence against them is reduced by some significant amount, in order to save them from the massively Ungrateful Bastard he saved from turning into a zombie. Ending S essentially requires that you bury a vital plot point for future installments of the series to expand on by letting Phenotrans get away with their crimes in order to give Chuck Greene his happy ending. Ending A, on the other hand, doesn't give Chuck his happy ending with Katey and Stacey. However, it's still a good ending, as the two girls escape safely. Furthermore, it becomes the lead-up to Case West, where Chuck ends up teaming with Frank West to gather significant evidence against Phenotrans, in the process discovering very real possibility of a lifelong/permanent cure for zombification as well as its link to the high heel face turned Spicy Latina from the first Dead Rising. Not to mention Marian Mallon's threat of another harvest, which ranks under possible foreshadowing for Dead Rising 3. In essence, Ending S may be the ideal outcome for Chuck on a personal level, but it quietly lets the story recede, whereas Ending A plus Case West fundamentally continues the story.
  • Carlito has the lowest health of any Psychopath in the first game. Considering his penchant for Villain: Exit, Stage Left, it does make a lot of sense. He isn't seriously damaged when his life meter is empty, that's just when he decides that he should escape before you can do that to him.
  • The most well known piece of Gameplay and Story Segregation in this game is the fact that even if you theoretically manage to go the entire game without being bitten by a zombie, Frank still ends up infected at the end of the game. However, there’s one spot in the story where he could still get infected without being bitten: Carlito’s bombs, which are carrying the zombie larvae and explode five feet away from him. The explosion may not have been strong enough to blow up the mall thanks to Frank getting them out of the tunnels, but if the explosion is still strong enough to send him flying it could definitely still infect him. Not only that, but there’s less than a day between the bombs and the end of the game, so the virus would spend that time incubating before Frank finally passes out from it on the helipad.
    • An alternative theory is that Frank got infected when Carlito shot that zombie in the head during his second boss battle. If inspected closely, the zombie blood appears to have gotten all over Frank's mouth, which could've theoretically infected him assuming the parasite can travel through blood contact.

Fridge Horror

  • If the Credits are any consideration, the zombies marching means that they're going on to the rest of the world, all because one guy beat a general and his soldiers.
    • Looking back after having played DR2 and Case West, this seems even more disturbing. With Phenotrans's plan to continue causing outbreaks in order to allow more Zombrex production "for the sake of the important Infected people of the world," this looks more like the inevitability of the future, with the zombies continuing to thrive, continuing to "live" in this world as Phenotrans' personal army and meal ticket.
  • The music in the game often relates to the boss in subtle ways, most obvious in the End Credits, "Justified", if one is to look at it, everyone in the game thought their actions were justified, Psychopath or not, even the Complete Monsters think they have some justification for their actions.
  • The opening movie and conversations with several survivors (Cliff and Leah) and psychopaths (Adam) about losing children ultimately mean that the Hide Your Children element isn't because there are no children, but because they're all already dead.
    • You see about 20 zombies trying to get into a schoolbus in the beginning helicopter flyover. What exactly is in that bus that the zombies want so badly?
    • Adam only attacks you for trying to turn off the ride. He's gone insane from watching children get eaten and is doing what he can to protect the only other survivors he knows of. Whether he believes the dolls are zombies are up to debate, but in his mind you were likely to get Greg killed if you pulled him off the ride and lead him deeper into the infested mall.
    • Katey can only turn into a zombie if you fail to give her Zombrex. In Off the Record, you can find Katey's personal belongings next to a puddle of blood. In the original Dead Rising, Cliff's granddaughter was eaten right in front of his eyes. It's pretty obvious that children are either too weak to repel or cannot outrun the zombies, and don't turn fast enough to stop the zombies from devouring them whole.
  • Larry Chiang. It's highly probable that he is or was a resident of Willamette along with the other victims and Psychopaths. He's an Ax-Crazy butcher with a penchant for human meat. Considering this, for how long was he providing "fresh meat" to the inhabitants?
  • Adam MacIntyre, "I won't let you stop the ride gramps! If the ride stops, then the zombies come back, and that won't be any fun at all!" Adam is arguably the most benevolent Psychopath in the game. Not only was his job to entertain children in Wonderland Plaza, the playground of the mall, but he snapped after watching his audience get EATEN. When Frank meets him, there are no zombies around the ride and it's arguably one of the safer places in the mall (if there was any food), but Adam only attacks Frank to stop him from disabling the ride and attracting Zombies to Greg, who the demented clown was actually trying to protect. From Adam's point of view, you are the psychopath needlessly putting people in danger by trying to take them deeper into the mall. Sure enough, after Adam dies and the coaster is shut off, the ride gets just as covered in zombies as the rest of the Mall.
    • Also notable during the fight is that Adam only targets Frank and the Zombies he encounters during the fight. He will never directly target a Survivor even if they are shooting at him. However, most of his attacks can wound or kill a Survivor if they get his Adam's way. It's likely that if Adam did kill Frank, he'd keep the others hostage on the ride or in the loading area away from the Zombies.
    • Bonus points if Adam was aware you were trying to take the Survivors to the Security Room, which not only had its only door welded shut, but the Mall Entrance is also where all the zombies are entering the Mall from, not counting those stung inside the mall. To anyone who doesn't know everything that Frank does, attempting to reach the Security Room looks like a suicidal Psychopath-caliber plan.
  • In Dead Rising, you learn at the end of the game that you're infected, and that no matter what you will do, you will become a zombie eventually. No one knows when. At the beginning of Dead Rising 2, you learn that Las Vegas was destroyed and that Fortune City was the pre-planned remake of it. I wonder how Las Vegas was infected....
    • It's even worse, but not for that reason. Frank West (the infected player character from the first game) is still alive and kicking thanks to a drug called Zombrex. The problem is, to make the drug requires wasp queens that spread the virus initially. But they can't be made without zombies, and with so many infected people in all manner of positions and places, a constant supply is needed. So the Las Vegas and Fortune City outbreak is caused to help keep supplies up by the government, who willingly sacrifice entire cities to help make the drug. However, in Case West, it is revealed the company making Zombrex already have a complete cure. However, the owner of the company is content with keeping people desperate enough to buy Zombrex at bank-breaking prices to increase stock prices. Even worse, thanks to your work at the facility when you investigate the Fortune City outbreak, it hasn't been harvested properly, so not only is another harvest due and every life lost there for nothing, but the two protagonists both need Zombrex. One has a daughter who is infected, the other is Frank...
  • Fortune City itself, it is an adult playground without any children, red light district in plain sight and the mall's newstands sells porn magazines and even Frank West outright says "Who would bring a kid here?". Hint; the toy stores are not for children.
    • If you look around the map, you will find that TIR has kids seating, and the city has 6 toy stores, three kids' clothing stores, and Off the Record gives it a theme park. The Silver Strip (which has the strip club, bars, and fetish shop) and the casinos are the only kid unfriendly areas. Besides the toys could be souvenirs.
  • When making the first formula for the Zombie Parasite-retardant, Isabella mentions offhand that the last time she did it was with synthesized Queen Bee Hormones. In Dead Rising 3 the exhibit on Zombie Outbreaks show that the #4 Orphan, the one to cause the first outbreak after Willamette, was a young adult. Since there's no way the orphan would have known he was a Zombie Infectee (and thus wouldn't have taken any other drugs to prevent zombism since then), this means that Isabella's synthesized Hormones could actually suppress the zombie parasite for years as opposed to a mere few hours that the actual Zombrex did. Either she never put two and two together, or Zombrex was intentionally neutered by her as her own form of revenge. Given that Mallon doesn't seem to be aware of zombrex that can last longer than 24 hours, it's likely that the decision was fully Isabella's.
  • Steven Chapman has been held up in his store for God knows how long and has clearly developed paranoia. Steven is encountered on Day 2 and appears to be suffering from isolation and sleep deprivation as he's been defending his stock from other survivors and has gotten so paranoid that he shot David Bailey under the belief that he was a vandal. While vandalism appears to be an odd choice of words, it makes sense considering that the doors are made of glass, food can be destroyed, and medicine is scarce and can be destroyed with either bats or guns. To Steven, his supplies are essential and if someone breaks the door, the zombies will get in.

Fridge Logic

  • If Carlito called Frank there to get the truth out about the zombie outbreak, why doesn't he just give him a disc with information from his computers, instead of trying to kill him multiple times and being all mysterious and secretive?
    • Carlito didn't call Frank there, just Dr. Barnaby.
      • Carlito called a lot of media there, Frank was just the only one to make it through the military barricade (or possibly Kent Swanson as well). Carlito initially doesn't try to kill Frank directly, only Brad, and won't attack Frank unless he intervenes in those fights.
      • Evidently that includes helping to kill Brad so you can have some sandbox time.
      • Carlito was trying to ensure the media would see the horror of the Zombie Apocalypse up close, the way he experienced it in Santa Cabeza. Since the Strawman News Media was evidently keeping mum on the outbreak at the behest of the government, Carlito had to rely on "freelance" journalists like Frank, who he hoped weren't tainted with the corruption as their Big Media counterparts. Carlito turns on Frank after he finds him helping Brad, as he is convinced Frank is lost to the same lies and deceit as the rest of the media - which only gets worse during his Villainous Breakdown, when Frank keeps foiling him at every turn.
  • Willamette Parkview Mall is built around a small public park, but only has three ports of entry; the Entrance Plaza, maintenance room, and the hidden underground path to the army base next door where experimental tanks are tested out on massive numbers of zombies.
    • How ARE those convicts getting a new jeep into the park every night in the middle of a zombie apocalypse with the mall's architecture being how it is? For that matter, why can't Frank get their resurrection spell and give it to everyone he doesn't choose to disembowel barehanded?