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Fridge / Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

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Fridge Brilliance

  • During the journey to the Fountain, in one particular scene Blackbeard orders Quartermaster to bring him six pistols, so he could play a game of improvised Russian roulette with his daughter - just to show Jack (and us) how ruthless he is in his quest of immortality, ruthless enough to risk his own daughter's life. A couple minutes later when said daughter asks if he knew which gun is loaded, he answers "yes" in a manner that (once again) is meant to show us his ruthlessness and egoism. It is implied that he truly didn't care about said daughter - that's the impression we should have. But, as you can remember, those pistols were brought to him by the Quartermaster, and Quartermaster was gifted with a second sight, having the ability to see things before they happen, so he probably was able to see which pistols Blackbeard takes - and leave them unloaded. So, while Blackbeard couldn't know which pistol is loaded, he knew Quartermaster left right pistols unloaded, and acted without doubt because of that, not because his apparent lack of fatherly love.
  • The Spanish in On Stranger Tides invest a lot in sending an expedition (compared to the others) and making to the Fountain of Youth, which would have potentially given them the sort of power associated with immortal life, practically in one piece, what do they actually do? Destroy the damn thing for the "pagan temple" that it is. For all their zeal, the Spanish basically made their last hurrah as a great power with that act.
    • The Spanish hardly interact with supernatural phenomena as well. They never get to see mermaids themselves, and while they effectively share a room with zombies, a voodoo powered pirate and a magic fountain that grants (additional) life by the end of the movie, they never get to see evidence of their powers, so to speak. The only time this is vulnerated is when the 200+ conquistador is fished off by two superstitious fishermen, but he quickly dies when presented to the more "rational" king and his minion. So we have two additional examples of fridge brilliance here:
      • Magic needs to be believed first to exist in the POTC world. The Spanish don't believe in magic, so it vanishes before them.
      • Or he could've run out of time (at a suspiciously dramatic moment) just then.
      • The Spanish did have two encounters with magic. The Spanish fishermen pulled a man out of the water in the ocean who had been there for too long not to drown. Second, the Spaniard and his men would've had to use the magic portal of gravity-defying water to reach the Fountain in the first place.
      • Historically, the Spanish and Catholics in general were far less inclined to believe in and persecute witchcraft than Protestants. In fact in the 1600s the Spanish Inquisition declared that witchcraft was impossible, and that people claiming themselves or others to be witches were lying either out of ignorance or of malice.
      • Bear in mind that there is no moral way to use the Fountain of Youth. It requires you to murder or duel someone, and at most it'll buy you 120 years before you have to do it again. Avoiding death won't be so cool come Judgment Day when Christ judges the living and the dead, consigning unrepentant murderers to a fiery Hell for all eternity.
      • Indeed, even using it to give up your own life to save a loved one wouldn't be acceptable to the Spanish, because it would most likely rate as suicide, hence forbidden under Catholic doctrine.
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  • In On Stranger Tides, Jack asks Angelica if he can use her trick of lying by telling the truth. Then you realize that he already has, when telling Murtogg and Mullroy why he's in Port Royal.
    Jack: Alright, I confess. It is my intention to commandeer one of these ships, pick up a crew in Tortuga, then raid, pillage, plunder and otherwise pilfer my weaselly black guts out.
    Murtog: I just said no lies!
    Mulroy: I think he's telling the truth...
    Murtog: If he were telling the truth, he wouldn't have told us!
    Jack: Unless he knew you wouldn't believe the truth, even if he told it to you.
  • In On Stranger Tides, Jack leaves Angelica in the exact same situation he was in before The Curse Of The Black Pearl. On an island, her ship stolen by Barbossa and with a pistol that has one shot.
    • Made more poignant since she used that one shot against the fellow who marooned her on the island. Unfortunately for her, her aim's not as good as Jack's.
  • The mermaids in On Stranger Tides have horizontal fins, which are characteristics of aquatic mammals, while actual fish have vertical fins.
  • The romance between Phillip and Syrena is poignant because they're both the same. Phillip is a preacher among pirates, struggling to keep his faith and kindness intact while being surrounded by scoundrels. Syrena is a mermaid who doesn't share her kin's bloodlust, and she tries to save Phillip while the other mermaids are slaughtering the rest of the crew. They're both kind souls among unkind souls; they're great for each other.
    • While that's a romantic notion, the other end of the idea is that "How do merpeople reproduce?" See Futurama's Atlanta episode for a "logical" answer. BUT: What if a mermaid's kiss makes a human man immune to drowning and either they do it on land as humans or if they do it as fish, he can survive underwater to do the dirty deed? The film never answers the question directly because of squick and sometimes imagination is better. Notice how there were NO mer men. If they do hatch from eggs like fish, maybe the majority are born female (like alligators and crocs needing a certain temperature range to make males) and logically, they capture human males to provide what they need. Mermaids be pirates of a kind, slavers too.
    • Well, she does have legs when she's not in water. Also if they're mammal based... maybe it's like whales?
    • Syrena needs air to breathe, so mermaids in this Verse are like Real Life marine mammals in that respect. If Phillip does remain with Syrena, he wouldn't necessarily have to sprout gills or whatever: she and her sisters have to stay near the surface just as much as human swimmers do, although they can probably hold their breaths longer.
  • As Chester A. Bum pointed out, why does Blackbeard need to gain immortality if he's got the ability to create Zombies?
    • Because that doesn't help him unless he wants to be a zombie himself?
    • It's mentioned that being "zombified" makes the person more compliant, so it's very likely that Blackbeard couldn't turn himself into a zombie and, if he got somebody else to, he'd be under their command.
    • He makes Voodoo zombies. They're not immortal so much as drugged slaves who don't feel pain. That's definitely not something Blackbeard would want for himself.
      • Right. On a related note, I can't remember if the one we saw stabbed in the chest who pulled the sword out was in any other scenes or not. If he wasn't, then he presumably died not too long after, because that looked fatal. Like the falsehood of the Instant Death Bullet, most wounds don't kill instantly so he could have fought on for a small period. Of course, if he was seen later on, then either they have really good medical services (doubtful unless Blackbeard uses some sort of other magic) or they're not true Voodoo zombies and just a new variation of the same ones we've seen throughout the films.
      • There was a zombie who was stabbed in the chest, pulled it out and did not die. He was seen in other scenes; he's the one who threw the voodoo doll of Jack off the cliff and he's one of the two remaining zombie officers when the Spanish arrive at the Fountain.
      • Jack calls Blackbeard "ressurrector of the dead" after learning about the zombies, implying they are actual reanimated corpses. At the same time, though, they're pretty clearly slaves to Blackbeard's will, so again, not something he'd willingly do or allow done to himself.
      • Also, think about that line a bit more. "Resurrector of the dead". Dead being the key word. The cook who Blackbeard kills after the mutiny is later seen among the zombies. By the looks of it, Blackbeard can only make someone a zombie AFTER they're already dead. Quite the problem if you're trying to AVOID death.
  • While it appears to be a beginning to a new trilogy with little connection to the previous three films, On Stranger Tides continues the themes of the third film, that is the "shrinking" of the world through the loss of its supernatural elements, in this case the Fountain of Youth and Blackbeard.
  • When Jack tosses his compass to Gibbs, he says "This will lead you to freedom." Now, that makes a bit of sense, because it would point him to a way away from White Cap Bay as opposed to wandering around in the jungle. Of course, when Gibbs shows up at the end with the Black Pearl in hand, he mentions the compass led him right to it. Now, that raises the question; why was he looking for the Pearl if he wasn't aware of it's actual fate? Then, as you're dozing off that night thinking of the movie, it hits you in the face- remember what Jack told Elizabeth when they were marooned in Curse of the Black Pearl about what freedom is?
    • For those who don't remember, the answer is The Pearl.
    • I believe it's actually because the compass doesn't point to where you want it to, it points to the location of what your heart desires the most. Gibbs simply really wanted the Pearl.
  • Angelica might remind one of Elizabeth Swan or Anamaria, both physically and in her personality. She is dark, with an accent and a temper similar to Anamaria's, and she looks a little bit like Elizabeth. With Angelica being the one woman Jack ever loved, this may be why he found Elizabeth and Anamaria a bit attractive later in his adventures; they both reminded him of Angelica. It's also possible that those three women have the traits that Jack likes in women.
  • Angelica also provides Fridge Brilliance for Will Turner, and Jack's insistence that "pirate is in your blood." In Curse of the Black Pearl why is Jack so certain that Will will turn out to be a "pirate" (metaphorically or literally) like his father? He probably witnessed Angelica go through a similar identity crisis. Angelica clearly tried to fight the pirate in her by becoming a nun, but after being seduced by Jack, accepted that she had too much of her father in her for that life. Granted, Jack had no idea her father was Blackbeard until On Stranger Tides, but he still may have known her father was a pirate.
  • Though not outright said, a bit of thought reveals why the mermaids are so hostile to humans in general and sailors in particular: Humans were kidnapping, torturing, and murdering mermaids for their tears in order to use the Fountain. If anything is going to inspire a people to Disproportionate Retribution, it would be that.
    • The reason Syrena gives for saving Philip was that he was "different" from the rest of the crew in that he was a protector which would indicate that the previous humans she encountered were less than friendly. Its possible the mermaids have an ability to sense the intentions and goals of individuals and that they're helpful and friendly to those who are nonselfish and antagonistic to those with less altruistic goals. This can be supported by Syrena delivering the silver chalices to Jack when he was seeking them out to heal Angelica who'd been poisoned even though she had no way of knowing that he wasnt seeking to use them for himself.
  • The voodoo doll into the river scene. Wood as we know, floats. So as long as the doll didn't hit the rocks but instead landed in the water, its light weight would insure it bobbed to the surface. Thus as we've already seen how the doll can control what happens to Jack if it is bobbing along the surface of the water than he must also, even if the water shouldn't be deep enough to keep him from sinking to the bottom of it hard enough to die in the fall. Thus why he could only have survived the jump after the doll was thrown in!
  • The fountain of youth is an upright rock formation shaped like a circle (with its waters dripping down). An unbroken circle to represent eternal life.

Fridge Horror

  • In On Stranger Tides, Angelica takes all the years that Blackbeard would have had left, but Blackbeard had very little time left, since he was poisoned. And even if he wasn't, he was 70 years old at the time, and definitely didn't have many years left. So, Angelica must have died shortly after the movie ended.
    • Nope. She gets all the lives he had lived as well. It's said in the movie.
    • And the years he would have lived if "fate had been kinder".
      • Drinking from the fountain doesn't shorten your remaining lifespan just because you drank with someone else who doesn't have long to live. Doing it to a two yearold mouse instead of blackbeard wouldn't mean that you only had one year or so left to live. You'd just have three extra years from the mouse.
  • When Barbossa tells the story of how Blackbeard sank the Black Pearl in On Stranger Tides, the emphasis is on him and his escape, which distracts the viewer from realizing until later that Pintel, Ragetti, Mulroy, Murtog, Marty, Cotton and Cotton's parrot are all dead.
    • And the parrot's alive. First time Jack looks into it you see Cotton's parrot fly by Jack the Monkey.
    • Is that really better though? Being trapped in a bottle for God-knows-how-long?
    • Yes, because it means they might be able to get out eventually.
      • There's still some Fridge Horror even if they are alive in the bottle; who gets eaten first, Cotton's parrot, or the monkey?
      • Parrot. Monkey's undead- you're probably not going to get any nourishment from him.
      • But the Monkey provides an infinite amount of food due to the immortality.
      • Assuming, again, that you can get any nutritional value from something that's been cursed and undead for several years. Methinks that more likely you'd get very, very sick. I wouldn't chance it.
      • Actually, none of these options would occur. Remember how the Black Pearl crew's immortality worked? They don't regrow parts, and they can be easily disassembled...but the various pieces violently try to reattach themselves. Furthermore, if they took the monkey inside before eating it, it would be all fleshified and perfectly healthy to eat (well, as healthy as a normal monkey, anyway). So here's how I see this playing out. The crew, starving to death, decides to bite the bullet and carve up the monkey. They carve it, still fully alive and conscious, into multiple pieces, then presumably fry said pieces or boil them or something to kill all of the mites and fleas and bacteria and stuff (which I'm assuming are not undead). Bear in mind that these pieces are still alive and vaguely conscious, a la the arm that Governor Swan chops off in Black Pearl. After being bisected and boiled alive, the monkey's still-wriggling parts are devoured by starving pirates, at which point they're dissolved by stomach acid...or are they? The undead pirates can recover from stab wounds, so their cells must knit their way back together like the larger limbs. So after eating the monkey's still-living, boiled appendages, each pirate now has an acid-resistant chunk of food thrashing its way out of his intestines, tearing through the stomach lining, and trying to reunite itself with the rest of its body...which is doing the same thing, in someone else's stomach.
      • None of which matters, as the crew would surely run out of fresh water sooner or later, no matter how much food they might hypothetically obtain from a regenerating undead monkey.
      • Perhaps, while in the bottle, it puts them into a "replay mode" where they repeatedly go through the final battle before the ship was sunk.
      • This troper simply assumed that the ships were in a time bubble of sorts when inside Blackbeard's bottles. Otherwise, his precious trophies would rot away eventually.
      • The parrot and monkey were both unharmed in that scene, and it's definitely been a while since Blackbeard took out the Pearl. It's vaguely possible that the crew just haven't eaten through their stores of food, and thus haven't resorted to carving up a parrot and undead monkey for one last morsel before they starve, but this troper thinks it's more likely that the ship-in-a-bottle spell sustains the crew indefinitely. Think about it. If this is the case, and Blackbeard ever needs to open up one of those bottles (say, if he needed a replacement for the Queen Anne's Revenge), then he'll have a serviceable crew and the ship will still have food and water supplies. On the other hand, if the crew's bodily functions weren't put on hold, Blackbeard would have a ship with no crew, no food, and no water. Even if he could animate the dead crew as zombies without a need for sustenance, he still needs to eat. And Blackbeard seems like the kind of guy who'd plan ahead like this, so this troper says the crew are alive and well. If bored out of their skulls...
      • Moreover, if the bottled ships weren't time-looped, they'd likely be rendered useless after only a few weeks of battering by the constant storms inside the bottles. Blackbeard wants trophies he can be proud of, not gale-demolished piles of flotsam.
      • For the love of Mother and Child, let's just handle this question the way the series itself would. When Barbossa's crew is eventually freed from the bottle (as they will be, given the fact that some of their actors are returning for movie #5), if anyone asks what they ate in the bottle all that time, someone will answer, "Sea turtles."
  • In On Stranger Tides, the fountain of youth's ritual steals the potential life of one person, and gives it to another, and while Blackbeard never said exactly whose life he was going to use, there just so happened to be a 14 year old boy that they had happened to kidnap.
    • It steals the years they lived, not their potential years.
      • It steals potential years too. Angelica clearly said(paraphrased) "years they have lived or would have lived."
  • Back when Phillip was talking about the mermaid, he mentions there were monsters that were not let in the Ark. Now considering the existence of the monsters like the Kraken and the dark magicla arts like voodoo and even questionable forces like the Fountain, what were some of the monsters he spoke of that were forbidden of the Ark?
    • Especially when you factor in everything the novels build upon when talking about Jack's youth.
    • While there might be some pretty nasty things out there, Phillip bringing up mermaids and other 'monsters' not being allowed on the ark seems a bit odd. Both the mermaid and the kraken were aquatic. They don't need to be on the ark; they can swim. Sea dwellers weren't to be on the ark because they wouldn't be in danger of drowning.
    • Philip is encountering supernatural creatures and phenomena that aren't accounted for in his Bible, so he's rationalizing them as best he can. Possibly he's explained away the existence of sea monsters by assuming they became aquatic because their ancestors were deemed too evil to be brought on board the Ark, so Satan granted them gills and fins to preserve their villainy.


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