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Fridge Brilliance:

  • The game's Genre Shift from an action-heavy shooter to a decision-based point-and-click adventure game is quite appropriate, considering the protagonists are normal people, and not Vault Hunters like in the previous games. Likewise, the two player characters aren't just "normal people" compared to Vault Hunters, but are basically a Salaryman (Rhys) and a Con Artist (Fiona) - both of these professions rely on making plans, negotiating deals, making the right friends, and sometimes making tough choices between what's profitable, and what's right. Compared to other "normal" professions (which could just as easily be as rank-and-file soldiers/security/bandits/etc.), both Rhys and Fiona don't have ANY official combat training in the slightest, asides from what they do to become ActionSurvivors on Pandora
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  • Why does Vaughn think Vault Hunters are "worse than bandits"? He's a Hyperion employee, and Vault Hunters have definitely caused more trouble to Hyperion than bandits ever did.
  • TT games have had a tendency to make certain aspects of a character's personality sort of set in stone, with player choices being what determines what particular side of them they should act out on. If you tell Vaugh to not be such a wuss after he expresses concern for carrying ten million dollars around (and Rhys bumps Vaughn with his mechanical arm, no less,) Vaughn will say something quite interesting: "You know, when you say things like that, I sometimes forget you're pretending to be the guy who would say things like that". Commenting on how Rhys, as word of god stated, is just a guy who is in a place where he has to act more like a jerkass than he usually would to survive such an environment, making these kind of statements a facade. Vaughn, being his best friend, would of course see right through him and his fake bravado. Rhys is actually more than a bit of a coward.
  • Everything that happens during the fight between Zer0 and Bossanova at the abandoned Atlas warehouse is pretty much straight out of a typical Borderlands boss battle:
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    • The fight takes place in the middle of the stadium, which looks just like a boss arena.
    • Bossanova orders the bandits to attack Zer0, just like how minions will appear to attack the player in a boss battle.
    • After the battle,Zer0 is awarded a weapon by the mission-giver (in this case, Moxxi).
    • And Zer0's last three lines are broken up by Moxxi's innuendo, but put them together and count the syllables and it's yet another haiku!
  • By the end of episode one, we get a team of four people hunting a Vault. And like all 4-man Vault Hunter teams, there's at least one pet class among them: in this case Rhys and his Loader Bot, as well as allowing Jack control his cybernetics. Indeed, by the finale, we have not one, but two Vault Hunter teams of four, given what they are up against. And the new Vault Hunters would be reasonably similar to what we are familiar with from past games:
    • Rhys would be good for crowd control thanks to his hacking abilities and other related skills.
    • Fiona would be a good support unit, given her leadership and analytical powers that puts her on par with the likes of Roland.
    • Sasha and her skillset with guns make her an excellent ranged DPS character.
    • Given her kicking abilities and having learned how to survive in the wild on the moon, Janey would actually make for a good close-quarter DPS character not unlike Krieg or Anarchy!Gaige.
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    • Cassius would turn out to be a very good support unit with healing abilities like Maya.
    • August and Loader Bot, even in his new body as the tanks of the group, yet still different enough in combat style like Brick and Salvador, respectively.
    • Gortys who functions similarly to Claptrap's Jack-of-all-trades status, albeit without the randomness.
    • Even Felix can be counted as a non-playable Vault Hunter like Hammerlock.
  • The Vault Key:
    • An in-universe one comes with the fact the Vault Key, an artifact of rarity and importance on par with the One Ring of Sauron, is on sale from a couple of nobodies for a measly ten million dollars. Which, while not chump change, is nowhere near the value of the item since Jack spent probable trillions constructing Helios to get at the Vaults. So, of course, the Vault Key is a fake.
    • There still is an in-universe explanation. August knows the value of the Vault Key, and even rebukes Fiona when he's negotiating with Vasquez. It's just that everyone knows the value of the Vault Key so he'd want to get rid of it ASAP, large profits be dammed. However, he'd still be pissed if Fiona and Sasha asked him outright to help them fence a fake Vault Key since Hyperion would try and kill him if they still operated like Jack or if they scanned the key and realized it was fake, sending assassins after him in revenge. That's why he's so pissed at Fiona and Sasha when the Vault Key breaks.
    • Atlas Mugged adds another layer to this, August tried to cut this deal with Vasquez without his boss, Vallory, being informed. Finding out that the Vault Key was fake meant he'd tried to undercut his boss for something not worth it all and his ass is now on the line.
    • Catch A Ride, has Vallory leaving it at ripping off his nose ring and telling him to stand in a corner. Possibly by virtue of him being her son, seeing as Vasquez, on the other hand, gets shot for his involvement.
  • A bit of Fridge Funny is the realization that Rhys hurts his hand punching someone and has a comic failure trying to strangle someone. Both times, of which, he's using his flesh hand rather than his cybernetic one. One of the choices also illustrates that Rhys' cybernetic arm has super-strength.
  • Mirroring Handsome Jack:
    • Rhys' visual similarity to Handsome Jack and character tics is due to his Hero Worship of him. Jack was also a low level worker like him before becoming CEO, so it's not surprising he's an inspiration to him in that sense. Even better when you compare Jack and Rhys' intros in both TPS and Tales - they're both smashed across the face by assailants!
    • Vasquez is a darker take on the same concept. He's an evil, brutal boss, obsessed with toying with his victims, who rose to his position by killing his boss (and throwing him out an airlock) and was a lowly Hyperion employee who was verbally and physically abused by Handsome Jack. Oddly enough, Jack's abuse did not make him upset—rather, it influenced him and made him look up to the CEO of Hyperion. This might be because that Jack regularly verbally and physically abuses his own employees, and has them strangled to death in his own board room. Jack also built up a very strong personality cult around him, and workers are reminded of his "programmer to CEO" story daily.
    • Rhys and Vasquez together mirror the relationship Jack had with Harold Tassiter; Jack and Rhys were both subordinate, respectively, to Tassiter and Vasquez while also hating their guts. Rhys and Jack would also eventually gain the confidence to stand up to them and eventually take them out of the picture. Even the outfits mirror each other: Rhys and Jack wear mostly business casual/casual clothing, while Harold and Hugo both wear high-end suits.
  • Sure, the SMG Sasha finds, the Silver, manufactured by Atlas, seems to be rare and valuable on its own, possibly somewhere inbetween Blue and Purple, but two other factors make it even more rare and valuable:
    • By this point, all Atlas weapons have either been scrapped or stripped for parts into Bandit/Scav weaponry, hence their absence past the first game.
    • Atlas NEVER made submachine guns other than this one, making the gun truly one of a kind.
    • Another note is that in the first game Atlas's "manufacturer quirk" was that their guns were the best of the best with no downsides. Just having an Atlas weapon gives Sasha an incredible edge.
  • Why does Fiona only need one shot for her derringer considering how beefy the thugs on Pandora could be? If you listen well enough to its distinct gunshot, it's a Jakobs. And why is it accurate and powerful enough to kill Felix if you choose to shoot him? Jakobs guns are loved by most players for accuracy, reliability and most important of all, ridiculously high damage multipliers.
    Marcus: If it took more than one shot, you weren't using a Jakobs!
  • Why do the Loaders, including Rhys' Loader Bot in particular, have more personality and seem smarter after Jack's death? For those who have played Borderlands 2, one could notice that the Loaders free of Jack's full control, such as #1340, C3n50r 807, and Innuendobot 5000, appear to have their own characteristics that go beyond what they were programmed for (except Innuendobot, who is a slave to his new programming and absolutely hates it). Then in the Pre-Sequel!, we find out the origins of the combat Loaders and the AI they were based from. It could be safe to assume that without Jack's complete control over the Loaders Felicity's spirit is now free to spread in her descendants.
  • A little Hilarious in Hindsight, but usually in Telltale Games, the character you play as stuff things in their "back pocket" via Hammerspace, even if they shouldn't possibly fit such as a plank of wood. It's justified now thanks to the in-universe Storage Decks pretty much everyone has. Ironic however in that in the first episode you don't really use it other than for stuff that actually CAN fit in a pocket.
  • Why exactly is August missing when he tries to shoot the protagonists, but not with the Psychos? His revolver is a Jakobs Widow Maker, with a Tediore Scope. The Tediore Scope is perfectly fine as it narrows down your view to a target, even though it looks horrendous. However, the Torgue barrel is known to give revolvers bigger damage at the cost of a lot of accuracy.
  • "Righteous Father, I have returned!" A funny intro to the Loader Bot if you told him to evacuate... but remember, Rhys did say he'd name his first child "Loader Bot"...
  • What's up with Athena's Glowing Eyes of Doom and Voice of the Legion? Simple. Fiona's embellishing to emphasize how terrifying it is to have a freaking Vault Hunter trying to kill her.
  • Fiona can steal money from Scooter and even call him an idiot for leaving it out in the open. Seriously, how often did you guys raid his garage in Sanctuary?
  • 'Sasha will remember that', showing up at the end of chapter 1 when Felix betrays you and the money explodes. It isn't referring to your choice, it's referring to Felix' betrayal. She took it much harder than her sister.
  • If Rhys and Vaughn choose to go to Hollow Point, Fiona narrates that Loader Boat tossed Athena like a far distance away. Present day Rhys and the Stranger both express disbelief that this actually happened, but Fiona insists that it did. Why did it happen? Because Athena was never hunting them in the first place. She was making a scene to chase off other bounty hunters. After all, who would want to get between a freaking Vault Hunter - literally a One Woman Army - and her mark? Especially one as destructive and dangerous as an ex-Atlas Assassin.
  • Why are Brick and Mordecai, 2 of the 4 heroes from the very first game, more brutal here? Well, Fiona's clearly very fond of Athena, and she's telling her story here. No wonder she would see the 2 Vault Hunters as the bad guys!
  • Why are Brick and Mordecai so exhausted and wounded at the intro of The Pre-Sequel? Because Fiona and Athena put up one helluva fight.
  • The Hyperion employees pay absolutely no attention to the fact that an Atlas robot is walking around Helios. But why? Well, in the Pre-Sequel, Jack turned out to be both a code monkey and the head of R&D, which he's implied to have put a lot of funding into. And Hyperion, despite heavily promoting their guns, arms most of their private army and military loaders with assault rifles from other manufacturers. So everyone could have assumed that R&D got hold of some obsolete Atlas tech and rewired it up for a short test run. Along with that, Gortys, despite her physical differences, resembles a female Claptrap, and everyone knows how annoying they all were. For the employees, simply ignoring the weird Atlas Claptrap would ensure that the robot would leave them alone. Plus, there were a lot of witnesses to Gortys's coffee spill. Claptraps were despised for being extremely incompetent, so the accident would persuade everyone that this new Claptrap-esque robot R&D made was just as stupid and not worth their time at all. In addition, this episode reveals that Jack owns Atlas. So seeing an Atlas robot walking around wouldn't be too weird.
  • Why does Yvette accept your Comically Small Bribe? She says it herself, she figured you'd die on Pandora anyway, so she decided to make herself a better offer.
  • August's attitude undergoes a major shift from a somewhat blunt Affably Evil in Episode 1 to Tales's answer to Grendel in Episode 4. The change makes sense if you attribute it to Vallory getting involved as an active presence in things and giving him what-for for going behind her back in Episode 3. The (relatively) classy and likable August who Fiona met in the Purple Skag felt totally competent and thought he was in control; the curt, extremely grumpy August accompanying the team in Episode 4 has been uncomfortably reminded that he's a Momma's Boy, and is bitterly lashing out like the immature, snotty teenager Vallory seems to see him as.
  • "No!"
    • Scooter randomly screaming "No!" before explaining to Fiona she's got to be quick. Could just be a character quirk... until we discover Scooter's own hand was trapped, possibly warning Fiona about what just happened to him without worrying her unnecessarily so she didn't mess up and get stuck too.
    • Alternatively, the moment he said no could be the exact moment his hand got stuck and when Fiona reacted, he tried to play it off like he was warning her so she wouldn't worry
  • Lilith's anger at Athena in The Pre-Sequel! could have been exacerbated by the fact that very, very recently, Scooter, who was a friend of her, just died. It could also be why they're in front of Scooter's Sanctuary shop, and why it's closed up. Furthermore, the same group that Athena was with was the group that lead to Scooter's death. It wouldn't be hard to then to have Athena as a scapegoat in Lilith's mind as the ones who got Scooter killed.
    • Helios is still in the sky during the Pre-Sequel framing device (seen at the closing narration of Claptastic Voyage), Scooter's shop was closed up likely because he was helping build the spaceship out of the caravan at the time, which would take some time even with the technology they have available - Athena's interrogation just happened in the interim (she would've been in Sanctuary within a day of getting captured due to Brick and Mordecai having access to the fast travel system, whilst retrofitting the caravan into a spaceship would have taken a few days at minimum, not including the days it would take to get back to Hollow Point).
  • Why does Vasquez have a cybernetic pinky finger? His rise to power within Hyperion was due to being cozy with the Pandoran Underworld, so he may have pissed off the Yakuza equivalent and was forced to commit Yubitsume on his hand.
  • You are assisted by a holographic being speaking in your head that only you can hear and can only hack into Hyperion tech, but apparently can hack anything related to Hyperion and is the product of a crazy codemonkey's insane experiments. Is it Angel or AI Handsome Jack?
  • Felix's gifts to the girls. He gave Fiona an upgrade to her gun because she's not as much of an Action Girl as Sasha—he wanted to make sure that when she does shoot, she can make it count. He gave Sasha a healing device because she's not as careful as Fiona—so if she gets herself almost killed, it can fix her.
  • The Stranger being skeptical that Loader Bot defeated Athena in one blow makes sense now that we know Loader Bot is the Stranger. Meaning that Fiona was lying about that. Which makes it even funnier, considering that means that he's letting her showboat for him.
  • The Stranger's line from Episode 4, "I know what it is like to lose someone you care about." makes way more sense when you discover he's Loader Bot and he witnessed Gortys die in front of him.
  • If the Stranger was actually Loader Bot, why would the Stranger make Rhys and Fiona tell their whole story from the beginning to the present instead of just asking them about the Gortys project? Because he is trying to reunite the team and he can tell that Rhys and Fiona are still mad at each other. By having them retell their story, they'll remember all the good times they had making them lose their hostility for each other.
  • During Episode 5, Jack is able to take command of the entire Helios network and weapons, but is unable to control Loader Bot (despite being able to take over an entire enemy base remotely when controlling Rhys). This makes sense when you remember that Vaughn destroyed Loader Bot's universal override antenna, so he was tamper proof.
  • Looking back on the series, as Fiona and Rhys keep telling their story, the Stranger gets more conversational and open while treating them less severely as time goes on. Why? Because Loader Bot was starting to understand their feelings and the context behind the events he witnessed, while at the start he was still bitter about their supposed betrayal. He was realizing the circumstances of the event were not an outright betrayal as he may have initially thought.
  • It's more like Fridge Humor, but towards the end of episode 5, it's revealed that Helios, one of Jack's pride and joys, has become a bandit camp. This space station was originally built with the intent of wiping out any 'bandit encampments' (read: anywhere someone Jack doesn't like lives) and now it's home to a colony of ex-Hyperion who worship Rhys, the man who destroyed the station.
  • Vasquez was right. Rhys literally makes his own destiny by rebuilding Atlas back from the brink. Vasquez and Jack both stand in his way, but bad things can happen to those who swim against fate...
  • The Stranger is carrying a Conference Call, a Legendary level Hyperion shotgun. It is an extremely rare weapon, but after the reveal that the Stranger is Loader Bot in a new body, it's likely that he pilfered the shotgun from Handsome Jack's trophy case on Helios, which prominently displayed such a gun and was in the same office as the body he took.
  • Why was the accountant with an imaginary rocket launcher called a Badass Accountant (besides the obvious)? Well, all the Elite Mooks in the original games had the title of Badass.

Fridge Horror:

  • General Pollux was still alive when Fiona carved his eyes out. He was also left hanging out of his suspended animation chamber, and if the moonshots or being left there didn't kill him, when the suspended animation wears off he's going to find himself a lot blinder than he was before.
  • At the end of chapter 2, if you choose to trust Jack, he possesses Rhys almost completely. The possession is signaled by Rhys' robotic eye turning yellow. The same yellow his eye is in the present day.
  • When Jack possessed Rhys during 'Catch a Ride', he is more than happy to reveal to Athena that Dr. Cassius is an Atlas employee, and directly encourages her to kill him. Now while this is Jack trying to satisfy his bloodlust, it's also noted in the episode that his extent of memories from the 'real' Jack extend to at least past the Pre-Sequel — so he remembers her disgust with him over venting three Hyperion scientists over the possibility that just one of them was a mole.
  • Why is Jack rooting for Athena's search for the last members of the Atlas foundation on Pandora? Because of the same treatment that Jack has been going through in his life that led him to become the villain from the first place such as having Athena's sister killed via orders of her own teammates by her own hands.
    • It should be clarified that this is only Jack's perception of himself, Jack himself is not Not So Different to Athena, most of what happens to Jack is what he brought on himself through his heinous actions that started long before the series began, regardless of his claims to the contrary.
  • As soon as Jack is in complete control of Rhys' body, he does something to piss nearly everyone in the group off, calling Vaughn a dweeb, Fiona 'sweetie', getting chummy with Athena and slapping Sasha's butt - it's almost like he's trying to isolate Rhys from the rest of the group. In Sasha's case could double as Fridge Brilliance. Jack sees a lot of himself in Rhys [no pun intended] and Sasha being a possible romance could be interpreted as him trying to jump start the relationship. Keep in mind when Angel first told him about Nisha, his opinion was "A bandit that killed other bandits" but as shown in Episode 4, he still has her Pre-Sequel hat and misses her terribly. Nisha being close in name to Sasha and being a "bandit" (aka anyone from Pandora) who kills other "bandits" (actual bandits), he might see her as Rhys' Nisha.
  • When trying to convince Scooter to make you a rocket, one of the dialogue options is to say you need a hero. Well... we've known for a while what Pandora thinks of heroes.
  • When Jack can't remember if he had punched Vasquez, he justifies it by saying he's punched so many that it's hard to keep track and says (likely in a hyperbolic sense) "I've punched my mom." This is just another example that shows that Jack is not a good person, but his statement taken seriously makes a lot more sense when one remembers that his mother abandoned him to live with his grandmother who murdered his pet and abused him physically.
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