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WMG / Danny Phantom

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    Danny and his powers 

Danny is a Female to Male Transgender boy.
This is a popular theory on tumblr. Much due to him being the only boy with a tank top on in the Beach Episode, and quite often having seemingly the same chest as some of the female characters at times when none of the other guys do and more. More examples:
  • In the pool episode he mistakenly runs into the girl's restroom where Star pushes him out and Paulina says: "I'd tell you to go to the Men's Room, but I don't think you'd qualify." Danny is visibly bothered by this.
    • Then again what person wouldn't be bothered when their sexuality or gender is being questioned.
  • In one episode Dash calls Danny Twink, a normal misunderstanding is Trans Equals Gay.
  • Dash's refusal to call him Danny.
  • Danny doesn’t really seem to be much of a party person or really wanting to be popular, but it sounds more like a cry to be accepted.
  • Paulina liking his Phantom self shows that there’s not really anything wrong with his looks or personality, but they’re still overly pushing him away.
  • Was called mean things at school before the students found out that his parents was ghost hunters. One is made to think they’re the reason, but only later when his parents come to protect the school does it seem like they find out.
  • Jazz being so overprotective and wanting his development to go well.
  • Jack saying that he’s so much prouder of Jazz even though Danny has many good qualities even without his ghost powers, to the point of saying that she was always the favourite.
    • She's a straight A student who has a future in the medical field, whose parent wouldn't be proud of that?
  • Sam’s parents being untrusting of him from the second he walked in their door, believing him to be responsible for Sam's rebellious nature and dark outlook on life.
  • It seems like his parents has had the "It doesn't matter if you're a boy or a ghost, or something in-between. You are our child and we are proud of you."-talk before but something else than ghost in it before.
  • Desiree seemingly pointing on his chest while mentioning that everyone has a wish they wants to become true, which makes Danny really angry and hit her hand away.
    • She was actually reaching out to him, not pointing.
  • That the only successful clone was Dani.
    • Let's bring biology in this. If you were to look at at images of the XX and XY chromosomes, you'll see that the X (female) chromosome is much larger than the Y chromosome (male) it's quite possible the reason why the failed clones are the way they are because their DNA structure is unstable due to a faulty Y chromosome, so Vlad duplicated the X chromosome and thus was successful in making her more stable.
    • Let's bring biology into this further. A clone of a "biological female" would also result in a clone with two X chromosomes and female presentation. I don't think anything in the episode references a faulty Y chromosome, which would be enough to officially Joss the theory.

With all this it might be Canon but with the radar and the Think of the Children!-people might this have been left unsaid. This makes the series even darker in a way with all the mean things people say to him, and that Mr. Lancer allows Dash to bully him even worse. But if it's canon is it good for trans children as they won't feel alone and they might not get bullied by kids who has seen the show due to kid logic "You and Danny are transgender. Danny is cool, so that means... YOU ARE ALSO COOL!". Part of me really wants it to be true, but other part doesn't because of all the bad things both people in-series say and that some disgustingly mean people on this planet are gonna say.

  • As interesting as this theory is, I'd be more inclined to believe that he was simply an incredibly androgynous kid that was possibly suspected by his parents/classmates to not be entirely straight given their having the 'We love you for you' speech on hand and caught no end of shit for it. It fits with every point except for Dani being the only successful clone and, given that the show has been known to use lego genetics, that one can probably be hand waved. The fact that Danny is seen shirtless with no sign of developing breasts in 'Urban Jungle' and that his voice is distinctly male also seems to support this.
    • Then again, Danny was in ghost form when we saw him shirtless. Maybe his ghost form is truly male, as if it's what Danny wants to look like. As Danny Fenton, he's still transitioning, but as Danny Phantom, he's a full-on "natural" boy. It would further explain why Paulina is attracted to his ghost persona, and why he looks slightly bulkier when he's Danny Phantom. Broader shoulders, narrower hips, bigger biceps— everything Danny wants but can't quite have as a human.
    • Jossed. There are a couple of times in the show where Danny is shown as a little kid such as in Maternal Instincts where his mom is looking at old pictures of him and in the Christmas episode where we see a montage of of all the times his parents ruined Christmas. He's clearly male there.
    • Counterpoint: Trans people are allowed to transition early in life.
    • Counter-Counterpart: Transitioning at an early age is uncommon and not recommended.
  • Let me be the one to point out that Hartman is a very Conservative Christian, and voted for Trump. He'd be the last person to introduce an actual trans character in any of his creations.
    • A voice actress (former voice actor) who worked with Hartman recently came out as trans, so even with his political views, he may not be as close-minded as you think. Additionally, authorial intent isn't completely required for WMGs.
    • It is possible Hartman didn't know depending on how close they worked. So the jury is still out on that. Your right that authorial intent doesn't count here though.
    • I wasn't able to find any evidence of Hartman having voted for Trump. I'd need a link to that if you're going to include that in this theory-crafting.
    • Besides, haven't ya ever heard of Death of the Author?

Danny absorbs powers from other ghosts.
As the theme song states, Danny originally only had invisibility, intangibility and flight, which have been shown to be standard powers for all ghosts, but picks up a veritable kaleidoscope of powers over the course of the series. This is due to the Ghost Portal giving him the ghost equivalent of a blank slate, a form that has no preference for any particular ability or strengths, hence the simple black and white coloring. The result is that it's incredibly versatile, able to literally absorb a "blueprint" of any ghosts he comes into contact with and integrates it into its own, effectively copying an enemy's powers. Take particular note of how he acquired ice powers after encountering Frostbite, learned how to "overshadow" people in the same episode that a possession-happy Artifact of Doom appears, becomes more and more proficient with duplication the more times he fights Plasmius, and after his absurdly powerful future self wipes the floor with him he picks up the equally powerful Ghostly Wail. And don't forget the central plot of "Torrent of Terror" where he absorbs weather empathy powers after a battle with a weather controlling ghost; the lightning Vlad blames this on could have just accelerated the process.
  • so, he's basically Undead Mega Man
  • As much as I love this theory, there are a few problems with it. First, he didn't get ice powers after meeting Frostbite; as Frostbite pointed out, he'd had them the whole time (the Ghost Sense was a part of this), but he hadn't known how to use them. Second, the "getting more and more proficient with duplication" bit is just him practicing with it and getting better as time goes on; we see him training with it a few times throughout the series, since it's the one power he has the potential to use, but never gets the full grasp of. And while he does get atmokinesis after going against Vortex, he loses it in the same episode, if I recall, so it might be a lesser version of what Undergrowth can do, i.e. bestowing power upon people, albeit temporary and unconsciously.
Danny is immortal
Think about it. He's a living person who can turn into a ghost. When he dies he'll be a ghost... who can turn into a living person.
  • Maybe more of the fact that he's undead already, seeing how his human self in The Ultimate Enemy never became a ghost, maybe he's already dead, but his body's still partially alive, considering his skin color doesn't change from its normal pigmentation when he goes ghost, unlike Vlad, or maybe it's a case of being Only Mostly Dead, considering his DNA's been shown as turning into ghost DNA. Though it maybe isn't the case. Considering how, in his normal form, he can still be overshadowed by Poindexter and his clone, he's most likely still affected by ghosts, and other things, like any other living human, he's most likely still mortal, just with a higher invulnerability than everyone else. Considering his father couldn't handle the robot suit pants from 'Reign Storm' for more than a minute, but Danny could handle the entire suit itself for a lot longer by comparison, it stands to reason that he can exert himself longer than the average person when in ghost form.

Danny wants his secret identity to be discovered.
Come on, he even chooses a name for his secret identity that is phonetically nearly identical to his real name.
  • Coupled with the fact that his future self mocked everybody for not figuring it out.
    • As well as him sounding a mix of surprised and touched (while disguised as his past self) when Jazz reveals that she knows.
  • Pretty much confirmed in "Frightmare" in which Danny dreams of a perfect world where he's the star quarterback, smart enough to ace all his tests, Sam's boyfriend, and no longer has to hide his superhero status.

Danny gained Split Personality Disorder along with his ghost powers
I'm not talking about the "two different entities" kind of split personality many people believe. I'm talking about a mental change in his personality with the acquisition of his ghost status. Danny's base personality is that of a shy, laid back, and other-wise typical "under the radar" teen, but it seems that throughout the series, his personality makes a change in the transition into a ghost. As Phantom, Danny becomes bold and much more fearless than he was shown to be before the accident, as he was shown to actually be afraid of ghosts before (despite being the son of ghost hunters). Add the fact that is is willing to mock and exchange witty banter, something you wouldn't expect from the normally placid Fenton. This would explain why the Ghost Catcher just split his personality rather than expunging "Phantom"(it split his lax, fun-loving nature from his bold, heroic nature), because Danny is not two people, but rather just one person with two different complexes. This could be due to the fact that when Danny transforms, nobody knows who he is and essentially gives him a clear slate to work upon (along with the fact that being a ghost pretty much exempts him from mortal worries such as fitting in, or even many mortal laws). So essentially, donning his spectral looks allows him to put on a sort of social mask.
  • Could be a natural case of either Clark Kenting, or the fact that his powers allow him to become more extroverted than he's been. If you take the Clark Kenting into consideration, he needs to hide his powers from the world, which he does for several reasons. If you take the extra extroversion into account, it's revealed in the episode where Sam wishes she never met him or Tucker, that they'd really be doing nothing with their lives until college outside of school, then the confidence his powers give him allow him to break out of his shell a bit as his regular self. Well, that and Sam, but speaking as someone who was in a case similar to Danny's in high school, you're either at the bottom of the school social ladder either because you're very introverted, or you become that way as a result of being there, especially if you don't have many friends you hang out with outside of school. It's basically like Peter Parker. He puts on a facade as himself, but as Spider-Man, he can let his true self out. The confidence spills over into his normal personality a bit because he's becoming accustomed to having to draw the line between his two personas. It's a common trope amongst super heroes. Seeing as Danny's characterization seems to be primarily influenced by Spider-Man, as well as the entirety of the show itself seemingly being influenced by Spider-Man, this only makes sense. Just watch the 2012 Spider-Man film for a perfect example of this with Peter showing up Flash at Basketball.

Danny is a Space Ghost
It explains why he wants to be an astronaut. Also, he certainly isn't a Scary Ghost.
  • I'll take it further. Danny is Space Ghost's ancestor. Some of Danny's decendants will have the potential to develop ghost powers.

Danny is the guardian of the underworld.
Though he doesn't know it.

The first time the Ghost Portal worked, he was immediately zapped by it, turning him into a halfa. Since then, ghosts are appearing all over the place in Amity Park, and Danny has been capturing them and putting them in the Ghost Zone. These ghosts are ghosts that are escaped from the Ghost Zone, OR have died and haven't made their way to the afterlife yet.

When the Ghost Zone first became properly accessible to the mortal world, they took they closest person (who happened to be inside the portal at the time) and appointed them underworld guardian, with the task of keeping the dead in and the living out of the ghost zone, and shepherding deceased souls into the next life. He is straddling the line between the two worlds - half-dead, half-alive.

Vlad was a failed attempt to create a halfa guardian. And since the ghost portal that zapped him didn't work again anyway, they didn't need him to guard it, but he was left with his halfa powers.

Danny gains power directly through heroics.
In the series we have seen that ghosts can gain power by completing a personalized task or through their obsession. Ember through making others call out her name, Desiree through granting wishes, and those Spectra and her assistant through misery. Danny believes his ghost powers exist so he can be a superhero and thats how he uses his powers, therefore its only natural that heroics makes him stronger.

Danny is a massive comic book fan.
Slightly nerdy boy with family who is always called crazy suddenly gets super powers and wants to be a hero (with a cape at one point) without even the slightest thought of revealing it in order to help keep his parents' good name. Secondly, in "Secret Weapons", Danny knows how all his adventures go, including the moral.
  • May even lead to Contractual Genre Blindness since even after knowing this he never says "Desiree, I wish all ghosts were good."
  • Yeah, that's logical, but that is a pretty anti-climatic way to end the entire series-who would Danny fight then?
  • Sort of confirmed. In Attack of the Killer Garage Sale, Jack tells Danny he can earn money by selling all his old comic books.

Danny is a Well-Intentioned Extremist, who prevents ghosts from settling their unfinished business on Earth.
Danny may believe that he is doing good by battling and returning ghosts to the Ghost Zone, but is he? Ember's essential "unfinished business" on Earth was a deep-seated dream of having everyone in the world say her name, as a rock star. Desiree's "unfinished business" was a desire to grant the wishes of anyone who asked. The Lunch Lady's "unfinished business" was a wish to keep the students at her school well-fed. Johnny 13 desperately yearned to be reunited on Earth with his beloved, Kitty. Danny fights ghosts out of a general notion that ghosts are evil, or that they do not belong on Earth; he fails to take into account that they all seemingly became ghosts as a result of powerful sentiments of earthly attachment and desire. None of their essential wishes that caused them to return to the earthly plane were particularly insidious or wrong: Danny may mean well, but he fundamentally thwarts the completion of his foes' unfinished business on Earth, and hence none of them are ever allowed to attain peace.

Danny can develop so many ghost powers because he isn't dead.
Okay, most ghosts seem to have a theme to their powers and an obsession. Ember has music, and an obsession with being remembered. Box Ghost is obssesed with boxes and has power over them. Now lets assume these come from something relating to their lives and how they died. But Danny isn't actually dead. Because of this his powers never set on to one theme, and he is able to develop them without limits.

Danny died when the portal electrocuted him and his ghost fused to his human body
The massive electric shock along with an ectoplasmic chemical reaction merged the two "bodies" (one of ectoplasm, one physical) together. His ghost form is basically his life support—the electric current carried in his core is what keeps his heart beating.
  • So he's a Sin-Eater, and he's his own Geist?
  • Might explain why his human self's ghost is nowhere to be seen in the bad future in 'The Ultimate Enemy,' he's already dead. Plus Vlad kept his body on life support when he ripped his ghost half from his body. Maybe it was a theory Vlad developed, but it was never revealed to the audience. It's possible Vlad didn't expect Danny to survive the process, which is why he said he was freeing Danny himself from the pain of human emotions rather than just separating his ghost half from his human half. Doesn't explain 'Identity Crisis,' or 'What You Want,' where he's fine when they're separated for periods of time.
    • But we also haven't seen the Fenton Family's ghosts nor Tucker and Sam's nor Lancer's. Ergo, you're evidence about Danny not having a human ghost self is faulty and does not play the part it was supposed to.

One of Danny's powers is making people not recognize him
Seriously guys, all that changes is the hair and eyes.
  • Or simply they don't want to believe it, it's weird how many things people can't see if they don't want to see it.

The Fenton Ghost Catcher didn't actually cleanly split Danny into two the second time...
Because it already split him the first time he flew through it. Danny's halves didn't fly back into the Catcher, his ghost half actually flew back into him, essentially possessing him. That's why his two personalities are much different. The Catcher just split the two more unequally, polarizing his personality traits into two different extremes.

Danny accidentally became omnipotent in 'Reality Trip' he just doesn't realize it
Obviously in Reality trip Danny encounters the Reality Gauntlet, an Expy of the Infinity Gauntlet, and destroys it at the end, or did he? While he clearly destroyed the gauntlet's physical form it is a relic that makes it's wielder a Reality Warper, can a simple ectoblast really destroy that energy? And with it's physical form it'd need something to host that power now and, with an ectoplasmic core, it is likely that the most compatible nearby source was Danny. If this is right then why did he never mention or use these powers in the rest of the series? He didn't realize he had them. Think about it, Urban Jungle revealed that from day one he had his ice powers and never even knew he had them, so the only clue to them was his Ghost Sense. It stands to reason that he simply never realized, at least during the show, how to access that power, nor did it occur to him that he may have had that power, particularly since the gauntlet required an activation sequence so he may have needed to do some kind of incantation or mental sequence to unlock those powers.

Danny isn't actually any less intelligent than the rest of his family
A fact Danny has struggled with in the past is being a C-Student in a family of geniuses. But he does get an A minus when Lancer forces him to just focus on his work. It's also implied in a few episodes that Danny spends a lot of his free time fighting minor ghosts, so it makes more sense that he is actually as smart as the rest of his family, he just doesn't have time for homework and his concentration is shot because he is perpetually exhausted.


Vlad is sterile.
When Danny goes into the alternate universe where Maddie and Vlad are married I realized something. It might be because it might make the episode too long or Danny would be immoral more or less at the end, but here it is. Vlad really seems to be the type to want many "mini Vlads" and "mini Maddies" to run around. And yet, this Maddie is not a mother. I also read around here (I haven't watched the whole series yet) that Vlad seed Danny as the son he never had, which makes one see he wants to become a father. As said if maybe it was for keeping the episode shorter or avoid Danny destroying the future of his more or less half-siblings by taking their mother away for making her go with Jack. But it seems even more likely that this strongly implies that Vlad is sterile, which makes his rivalry with Jack go up even more..!

If Vlad had been more patient about revealing his powers to Danny, he might have won him over.
Danny clearly really liked Vlad the first time they met, even letting him get away with the type of nicknames ("Little Badger") that would annoy any teenager. But it all went south when Vlad decided to capture him and reveal that they were both halfas during that same visit.

We also know that Danny is sometimes tempted to use his powers the wrong way, from the big obvious one of his evil future self, to petty spite in using them to get back at bullies, to really small things like going invisible to sneak into the movies.

If Vlad had just kept quiet about his ghost half, even though it would mean risking Danny ruining his plans for the reunion if he wasn't captive (a problem which could have been solved by sending him off on a task that didn't obviously scream "evil trap" once he walked into it, or by having a human-form duplicate stick to Danny's side like glue to "protect" him while he possessed Jack so Danny wouldn't have a chance to transform), and if he was careful to fly under Danny's radar during his ghostly misdeeds so he wouldn't build up any more dislike for "Plasmius", he could have nurtured that companionship with Danny and nudged him down the path of moral relativism as a friend, and with enough time put into it he could have eventually revealed his ghost half to Danny and have him be glad that the cool rich guy he's friends with is a half-ghost just like him and wants to team up with him.

Of course, this assumes that Vlad would either be just as bad at ever seriously injuring Jack without Danny actively keeping an eye out for him as he is when he is, or that he'd be able to remove Jack from the picture in a way Danny would never be able to trace back to him, because I don't think any amount of time would be enough to make Danny happily join up with someone who hurt his dad.

Vlad did not realize his ghost powers right away
The ecto-acne was shown to be detrimental to his powers and had to be cleared up before he could use them-hence, the time gap between 1982 (when the accident occurred) and 1986 (when he pulled his first bank heist) exists.

Vlad actually is Danny's father.
Obligatory theory in a story with this kind of relationship, but seriously... Vlad feels comfortable openly flirting with Maddie in "Bitter Reunions" and with inviting her and Danny to live with him in "Maternal Instinct." In an alternate timeline where Maddie didn't marry Jack, she married Vlad. It's revealed in "Prisoner of Love" that Jack and Maddie having fights that end with Maddie leaving the house for a few days has happened so frequently, Jazz has become completely jaded to it; indeed, she almost has a nervous breakdown when their dad doesn't take it all in stride this time. It's not out of the realm of possibility that Maddie stayed with Vlad, their third amigo from college, during one of these fights and something happened, but she convinced herself afterwards That Didn't Happen. Fortunately for her, Vlad, Jack, and Danny all have/had black hair and blue eyes. Vlad knows Danny is really his son, of course, which is the reason why he spared Danny Phantom after discovering his Secret Identity, why he often condescendingly calls Danny his son, and for the cryptic "You're more like me than you know" speeches. And who could forget his line in "Maternal Instincts": "Maddie, you must be exhausted — carrying the weight of that mistake you made all those years ago."
  • The last line of this paragraph. I never saw it that way before. Fridge Brilliance anyone?
  • That makes the entire series seem somehow darker. It makes a ton of sense though!
  • Take into account hair and eye color Jack has black hair and brown eyes, Maddie has brown hair and violet eyes, Jazz a green eyed redhead, and Danny black hair and blue eyes the same as Vlad before the accident.
    • Jack has dark blue eyes. But you have a point; the shade of blue in Danny's eyes is closer to Vlad's than to Jack's.
  • Adding to this theory: What if Danny is really Vlad's son—thus making Danny's powers genetic? Perhaps Danny had latent superpowers all along, and the potal accident only activated them, saving his life.
  • More power to this theory: Danny's Build. Compare Jack, Vlad, and Danny. Jack is a mountain of a man. He could make up most of a defensive line. Vlad is way smaller, lithe and whip-like. Danny shows zero signs of taking after Jack in the size department. He's built a lot like Vlad, longer arms and legs, along with general smallness, some of which can be chalked up to puberty.
    • However, his mom is also thin and lithe, and so it is likely he takes after her. Jack had thought Jazz was going to take after him in the build department, so it's not like it is totally unheard of.
  • Some more evidence for this theory is that Vlad only really started to go off the deep end when Danny started outright hating him.
  • Wow suddenly Future Vlad from the Ultimate Enemy seems even more tragic. If this theory is true not only did Vlad destroy his son's psyche, but he watched him die horribly, and he eventually came to the conclusion that it was probably a good thing that he didn't raise his own son.

Vlad's villian decay in season three is actually him giving up on the be choice part of his goals.
Vlad is a homosexual pedophile.
He seemed a little too obsessed with Danny and needed a "perfect son" and I mean REALLY obsessed. When a good enough one came along (Dani), he shooed her away and needed a "son" specifically. No doubt to play buttsex games with.
  • More likely Vlad is a hypocrite. In spite of his insistence that he wants love, he's only interested in those he deems worthy, regardless of whether or not they want anything to do with him.

Some time after Phantom Planet, Vlad will eventually end up with Desiree.


    Dani (and being female) 

Why Dani Phantom is a girl
~ Dani is female because when Vlad tried to clone Danny, part of their instability was due to a key factor of biology: the Y-chromosome.In genetics, all life forms have an x number of chromosome pairs. Each pair includes a DNA code: the first chromosome, X, contains the mother’s genes; the other chromosome, which may be X or Y, contains the father’s genetic traits. The key controlling variable involves incubation: cooler temperatures create Xs (females), and warmer temperatures create Ys (males).

Therefore: XX=female, XY=male.

Because the female sex has evolved to be more genetically balanced, females are more stable. Due to this, a being that was not only created from scratch (partially, anyway) through artificial means, but is supernatural as well, is bound to be biologically unstable. The Y-chromosome only increased instability. This is the main reason why Danielle was stronger and more human than the other clones.

  • Ranma, anyone??

  • Nitpick: XX and XY chromosomes are not sex determinants for all forms of life (although they are for all mammals, like humans). Incubation temperature has no effect on sex determination among genetically determined species (unless you count a possible, much-debated effect on sperm survivability), but is a determinant for reptiles.

  • Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't this the reason X-23 was female?

  • Nitpick: The Y chromosome which makes one male in mamilian species is tiny, and easily damaged or missing in the cloning process as shown with cloning tech in real life (which people and writers often forget we have). As Vlad only had apartial DNA samples, he could have used mirror propagation to repair damage to repair the missing DNA. Since DNA is made from pairs of chromosomes, it is sometimes possible to viably patch a clone by copying the mirror pair. If the Y of the XY pair was missing, mirror propagation would have resulted in an XX pair, or female. It would also explain other genetic differences that show up between them.

Dani has Complete Androgen Insensitivity Syndrome
Genetically, she's got the XY chromosome that makes a human male in theory; due to a problem in fetal development, she ended up female in practice. Postulated in this fanfiction by Nylah.

Dani has some of Vlad's DNA, or at least he contributed...*ahem* Gametes in the genderbending process.
For a zygote (fetus) to be female, they need to have two X chromosomes in their DNA. However, Dani is a clone of Danny, so unless someone contributed their Gametes, Dani would be a guy, and what else than Vlad?
  • I always assumed it happened like Wolverine's teenaged female clone: The Y chromosome in the sample was damaged and kept corrupting the clones, so he just doubled the X. The Y would be Jack's DNA anyhow, so Vlad wasn't too broken up to see it go.

Danielle left because she feels guilty about tricking Danny.
She tells Danny in D-Stabilized that "she's got places to go". This seems fairly unlikely, she has been alive for an extremely short time, and when we see her again, her shorts are dirty and she has no money whatsoever. Not to mention she's been on the run from Vlad the entire time. It's unlikely she's actually got somewhere to be. Danny seems to be the only person who cares for her, and he's the person she lied to and endangered. She doesn't want to be a burden to the only family she has, so she leaves Amity Park to not cause him any trouble.
    The Ultimate Enemy 

Danny would have done a Face–Heel Turn on his own, without the Nasty Burger explosion, if not for Clockwork's interference.
According to Clockwork, "[h]e turns evil because he's under pressure from some test"! Not the accidental deaths of his friends, not because he had his humanity ripped out, but because he was under pressure. If Clockwork had done nothing, the fight with Box Lunch would not have occurred, and thus Danny would not have the CAT answers in the first place (unless he took them himself, beginning his path of darkness). Because there was no fight, Danny would not have cheated (or would not have been caught, possibly), Mr. Lancer would not have called his parents, Sam and Tucker and Jazz would not have tried to stop them... and there would have been no explosion in the first place, since the accident was caused by Box Lunch and Danny's fight. Clockwork deliberately caused the most horrible future possible for Danny to scare him away from the Dark Side and manipulate him into making his promise to never turn evil, after he'd seen what his Face–Heel Turn could do. In the words of the Observants themselves, Clockwork "manipulated the boy [and] influenced his choice!"

In other words, there were three time lines we know had/could have happened: One—the original time line— in which Danny became evil on his own, one in which he became evil and lost his family because of the explosion at the Nasty Burger, and one in which Danny witnessed the second time line and was frightened away from becoming evil.

  • Or maybe just the second and third. Clockwork may have taken Dark Danny and Box Lunch from a parallel timeline just to teach Danny a lesson. He even calls time a parade, and who's to say that there can't be multiple parades occurring at once in separate locations? This would also explain why Dark Danny exists outside of time, since he's originally from outside the timeline we see on the show.
  • Are we sure this wasn't supposed to have "not" in the title? Anyways, since the episode's especially vague on how Danny's parents, Jazz, Sam, Tucker, and Mr. Lancer ended up at the nasty burger, that alone could've been a timeline set in stone by Clockwork after the Box Lunch fight. Some other ghost could've taken advantage of the situation and gotten their vengeance on Danny. Since we never saw this original timeline before the explosion, it's just guessing, but it seems this was the most likely option. Future Danny's logic also doesn't really hold up to any kind of logic either, at least from my perspective. Danny would be filled with grief, yes, but not enough to repeat the mistake Vlad described to him in the future from that timeline as far as I can see. He would've angrily entered the ghost zone and tracked down Clockwork to demand he take him back in time to undo what happened rather than become him after the shit he was just through. After all, why would Danny knowingly set forth horrible events he knows would happen if he could prevent it? If you take the theory from [1]'s episode 'Parallels,' his timeline was just one of many possible outcomes Danny could've faced. The fact that Dark Danny still exists in the Fenton Thermos pretty much confirms that, while probably unintentionally considering the dialogue at the end of the special, that his timeline was relegated to alternate timeline status rather than main timeline status as it became.
    • It's possible that there was originally a worse timeline, a Dark Danny or rather Evil Danny that was so horrifically malicious and powerful that he threatened a lot more than just the Earth and the attached Ghost Zone. Perhaps this "Truly Ultimate Enemy" was something so overwhelmingly powerful and dark that young Danny would never be able to defeat, no matter how many last minute powerups he pulled from the ether. So Clockwork first altered time to create a weaker alternate verison - the one we meet - a Dark Danny that 1) the younger version would have a chance at defeating and 2) that would frighten the crap out of the young Danny so he never ends up on the path that led to the original much more evil version. Then Clockwork simply altered time again to bring the two into contact.

Clockwork created Dark Danny, and we never saw an "original" timeline

We are invited to think that the future in which Danny becomes evil is the "organic" timeline — what would have happened if nothing interfered with the course of history. We are also invited to think, as Danny does, that Clockwork's intervention was for Danny's benefit.

This may be. But what if Clockwork didn't just want a timeline where Danny never turned evil at all, but a timeline where a good Danny had crossed paths with an evil Danny? Might that have required tampering with the timestream to create a specific Bad Future where Danny did go bad? What if Clockwork intentionally created Dark Danny's timeline — meaning the "original", unaltered timeline was something we never saw?

We don't have hard evidence for it, but there are some clues that could point to "Dark Danny's" future not being the original. For one, there's the Temporal Paradox with Box Lunch, who comes from a future that necessitated her interference in the past. If not for Box Lunch, Danny wouldn't have inadvertently acquired the test answers, and the Nasty Burger would not have blown up. This works if you're operating under a Stable Time Loop, but since we are emphatically not dealing with a future resistant to change, this means there is no natural confirmed sequence of events that leads to the rise of evil Danny. The other potential clue is Dark Danny's remark that Clockwork is "meddling again" - Dark Danny already knowing about Clockwork and thinking he's a meddler, hints that Clockwork has indeed "meddled" with Dark Danny's own timeline, which is very curious if his is supposed to be the original.

(Mind you I'm aware that both of these could be rationalized. Maybe Box Lunch just replaced the original sequence of events. Maybe Dark Danny had crossed paths with Clockwork elsewhere for some other unrelated issue. It's just something to consider.)

So why might Clockwork have done this? Well, Danny did learn a few lessons on his trip to the future. His encounter with a repentant Vlad, after having been confronted with the evil in his own soul, led him to conclude that maybe all anyone needs is a second chance. He learned... well, the anvilicious nature of the lesson about cheating has been mocked elsewhere, but obviously there was that too. He even physically picked up something in the form of his Ghostly Wail, something Dark Danny didn't pick up until he was 24. Without the Ghostly Wail, 14-year-old Danny may have died on occasion, and without Danny alive some other catastrophic event may have gone unchecked.

  • Another reason to consider. Perhaps the Dan/Dark Danny that we know of IS artifical, but there was, in the original timeline an inevidable Dark Danny that was even worse, something that the current Danny would have had absolutely no hope against, eleventh-hour superpower or no, something that perhaps was even a threat to clockwork or the continued stability of existence, not just the human race. So Clockwork altered time, first to create a either weakened alternative or severely weakened version of Dan that 1) Danny could be possiblely win against 2) that would scare him straight from the encounter, then he altered time yet again to bring the two into contact.

Most intriguingly, though, the result of "The Ultimate Enemy" is that a Dark Danny exists despite the evident nullification of his origin timeline, and he exists in Clockwork's custody. The Observants seem to think that's a punishment (for Clockwork). I'm not at all sure Clockwork's remark that "everything's the way it's supposed to be," means that HE sees it that way.

  • On the subject of Dark Danny, one possible interpretation of him being in Clockwork's custody is that CW now has an extremely powerful ghost at his beck and call as seen in Grim Tales from Down Below. Now wonder he's content with the way things have turned out.

Clockwork is a villain.
He didn't change things in "The Ultimate Enemy" to stop Danny from becoming evil; he ensured he would. Like Dark Danny said, "I'm still here! I still exist! That means you still turn into me!" Albeit under different circumstances. Somewhere down the road of the surviving timeline, Danny still turns evil thanks to Clockwork meddling with the timestream: "His future is sealed."
  • He ensured all that would happen because he knew of the need of Justice paladin to fight where he wouldn't be able to meddle, and showed Danny the darkest future possible to keep him from turning evil and keep him in a more good way, as said lower on the page.
  • Dark Danny still existed because before that timeline was erased one of Clockworks medallions was phased into Young Danny permanently putting him and ALL of his possible future selves outside of time so as long as they aren't there when a timeline is destroy they can still exist. (They wouldn't exist in a timeline that was erased because there would be nothing there so by default they are destroyed.
    • I'm more inclined to believe he still exists because of a mix of Clockwork transporting him to a place that exists outside of the space-time continuum, his lair, an the fact that we never saw Dark Danny get rid of his medallion. Think about it. He needs it to be rooted to the past, so he's obviously hanging on to it n his person. We just never see it past the scene where he uses it. It's possible it's under his suit in his regular form. The medallion keeps you from being affected by any timeline changes, or time effects of any kind, hence why they could move when Clockwork paused time while wearing them, so why would he get rid of it when he needs it? You either need to be in contact with one, or in indirect contact with someone who is to maintain your presence along the space-time continuum, or you either get sent back to Clockwork's lair, your origin point you left, or possibly get erased from existence if your timeline's erased, or your past self dies in any way (though that last one's speculation).

Clockwork caused Vlad's accident to balance out Danny.
Danny's struggle with darkness is one of his major arcs, and Vlad is usually there to not just egg him on, but to show a visual example of the type of person he can become. Vlad is there so Danny has something to look at and remind himself he's on the good side so in return he doesn't go around destroying the world; without Vlad, there's a good chance there won't be anyone powerful enough to stop him.
  • Or, because of Vlad's constant scheming (theft, overshadowing blue chip company owners, etc.) and his plans to kill Jack, perhaps it was the other way around and Clockwork caused Danny to get his powers to have someone to oppose Vlad.

Clockwork altered events at the point in time of the Freak Lab Accident that gave Vlad his powers and erased a timeline where Danny never got his powers.
Clockwork admits in "The Ultimate Enemy" that he has no qualms about violating "the protocol of temporal displacement" (only with affecting free will). In the Flashback in "Bitter Reunions," Maddie says before the malfunction with the portal that "These calculations aren't right," implying these incorrect calculations were the cause of it. But in the timeline Danny tries to alter in "Masters of All Time," the accident was caused by Jack accidentally pouring Cola into the filter. But Jack and Maddie didn't know about this, so even if their calculations were correct in that scenario, they would have assumed they weren't because of the malfunction. Clearly, Cola wasn't involved in Danny's accident, and Danny never suffered from ecto-acne before his powers manifested. It can be assumed that Clockwork changed the circumstances of Vlad's accident after it happened once so that Jack and Maddie would get their calculations incorrect when they rebuilt the portal that gave Danny his powers. Somehow, creating a hero strong enough to protect the world from Plasmius was more stable for the timeline than stopping Plasmius from ever existing.
  • Or, the reason the Proto Portal malfunctioned was both because of the calculation errors and the Cola. Maddie does tell Jack that the calculations are wrong in both "Bitter Reunions" and "Masters of All Time", so the accident is most likely caused by the incorrect calculations and the ecto-acne is caused by the Diet Coke. When Maddie and Jack created the current Ghost Portal they must have done recalculations, if only because the Ghost Portal is much bigger than the Proto Portal, so the incorrect calculations from the Proto Portal that caused it to blow up in Vlads Face is clearly not in the calculations for the current Ghost Portal. They obviously didn't make the Diet Coke/Ecto-purifyer swich either with the Ghost Portal.

Dark Danny is Danny's Heartless.
In essentials. Bad Future Vlad did say he "removed all those painful human emotions." That's just what he did: he removed all the hate, pain and anguish from Danny. The result was Ghost!Danny with all of Danny's negative emotions, hence why Dark Danny is Axe-Crazy.

Dark Danny was created by accident.
When Vlad removed Danny's ghost self from his human self, the ghost self (which may be the overly heroic version from "Splitting Images") decided (or had already planned before coming to Vlad) to stop the Big Bad by separating him from his ghost half. Danny believed that he could merge with and overpower Vlad's ghost half (much like how Neo destroyed Agent Smith's body in The Matrix) butVlad's ghost half overpowered him, creating Dark Danny. So Danny's ghost half was never the painful emotions Vlad said he'd take away but a separate, noncorporeal conciousness.

Dark Danny is still Danny's future.
Let's take a look at this scene near the end of An Eye For An Eye, where Danny ruins Plasmius' latest scheme. Yay, the villain's defeated - mostly - everything is awe- Wait a second, did he just overshadow Plasmius?! Really, Danny? Yeah, because that worked out so well for you last time...
Dark Danny: But me, my future? I'm inevitable...
Dark Danny: You don't get it, do you? I'm still here. I still exist. That means you still turn into me.

Dark Danny was a success.
Vlad said that he removed future Danny's "painful, human emotions". It's assumed the ghost half got the negative emotions, but what if it was the human half? Painful emotions like guilt, sadness and anguish were removed. Problem is those emotions were Danny's humanity. Notably empathy-the fact he cared for other people is what filled him with despair when his friends and family died, and since this was a painful emotion it left the result without empathy, humanity or a connection to other people. It was a Danny without vulnerability or the ability to feel pain, which is also why it's the ghost half that turned evil-it would lack the human mortality.

In short the ghost half is what Vlad wanted Danny to be, completely lacking vulnerability. Unfortunately this vulnerability was also his humanity, leading to the ghost half stealing Vlad's own ghost aspect and going on a ten year rampage. Since he's the finished product, it's why Dark Danny still considers himself Danny Fenton. The human half was his first victim to ensure he'd Never Be Hurt Again. Said human half would be as bad due to being in a constant Despair Event Horizon and unable to feel happiness, but would also have morality. Dark Danny retained the happiness and joy of his former self, which is a bad thing in this case.

    Other Ghosts 
Clockwork was one of the ghosts that sealed Pariah Dark the first time.
He's certainly been around for a while and is quite powerful. Several fans noted the similarities between Clockwork's hooded robe, and the hooded robes worn by the five [Was it five? it's been a while] ghosts in the flashback to the initial sealing of Pariah.

Skulker's suit is partly organic
Remember in Life Lessons when Skulker got shot by all those darts? Even though his suit is supposedly just a shell, he still became paralyzed. It could be that he built the suit so he could fuse with it organically, so he could continue to have his senses in his bigger form. That would also explain how he could "feast upon" another ghost, as he claimed he would that same episode. This could also explain how he gets Ember as a girlfriend. She strikes me as the kind of girl who wouldn't stick around if a relationship wasn't physical, and this is accomplished because even those parts of him are enhanced by the suit.
  • That or his suit is just one giant, anatomically correct sex toy for Ember.
  • Maybe he's overshadowing his suit? It's strongly suggested that Technus does this, considering how the Fenton ghostcatcher can stop him from using part of a machine.
  • It's possible his suit is organic, but if you listened to Ember, it didn't seem like she cared much for their relationship in the first place. And judging by how well her normal life's relationship went, I don't think she'd care for a sexual relationship. No, I think his suit is organic for the dart reason, plus Skulker actually seems to feel the pain when he gets hit...unless he just gets knocked around in that suit of his.

Spectra was a witch (and alive) in her debut
Something that always bugged me was that she resembles a witch in her first appearance more than she does a ghost; she has a familiar, and has to drain lifeforce to keep herself young (which would make no sense if she was already dead.) Her ghost form also does not resemble the others.In the end of the episode, she is reduced to an old hag. Yet, in later episodes, she resembles the other ghosts. In other words, she died off-screen, and became a ghost.
  • Maybe she’s a witch with ghost-based powers.

Ghost-Ember isn't the real Ember.
A Stalker with a Crush killed the real Ember and then herself. The song isn't being sung by Ember to the crowd, it's being sung by the stalker to Ember, perhaps in remorse.

Watch the following video (with annotations on) while thinking about it from this perspective and see what you think:

  • Oh… wow. Just… eeeeeeek…

When Walker was alive, he was one of (perhaps the first of) the Guys in White.

Johnny 13 and Kitty are bonded together for eternity.
It's a ghost thing—maybe they died together, maybe one died and waited a while for the other to join them as a ghost in the afterlife, who knows? But the two of them never are able to break up for long—their ghostly obsession is each other.A couple of Johnny's lines from "13" made me suspect this:
Johnny:I'm trying to find the right girl for [Kitty] to take over. I mean, if I've gotta look at her face for all eternity, I wanna make sure I like it, dig?
Johnny: What can I say, doll? No matter how hard I try, I can't stay away.
  • Also, look closely at Johnny's hands in "Girls' Night Out"—a gold ring on his left ring finger!

Sydney Poindexter wasn't the only one who died within the school.
Seeing as Sydney was pretty much stuck inside of 1950's Casper High (despite in later episodes, where he's made minor appearances), every one of his peers had joined him. The story hints that Poindexter might have died in his locker, which makes sense. However, what about the other students? I highly doubt they were shoved into lockers as well. The only explanation could be is that they died around the same time as him. An accident might have occurred at the school, say, a noxious gas, fire, or an internal explosion that caused the entire student body to die, and therefore, a replica of the structure was formed inside of the Ghost Zone, and the soul of every student went along with it (via Sydney's locker mirror). Poor teens, they probably never knew what hit them.

Sydney Poindexter either committed suicide or was killed by a dangerous prank.
Think about it. His ghost self is still 14, possibly 15. It was the 50s, so it wasn't as socially accepted to be outwardly nerdy or geeky back then amongst the teenage crowd. He wasn't shown to have friends, confirmed by him saying as much after he took over Danny's body by replacing Danny's spirit with his, or seeking counseling to help deal with his situation, if he even could back then. If he committed suicide, then that would explain why his corner of the Ghost Zone is as it is. It's his personal purgatory for atoning for one of the greatest sins in most religions. It explains why, in his part of the Ghost Zone, he has no powers, but in the real world, he does. With teen bullying causing a lot of reported suicides today, it could've affected just as many teens back then to be driven to the same result, it's just that it wasn't as widely reported because people didn't take it as a serious cause of teen suicide. Thus when he died, he remained as he was physically and was forced to repent by having to deal with the constant frustration and humiliation of being around those douche bags from his life in high school as a result.

If he was killed by a harsh prank, the pranksters could've stuffed his dead body in his locker to hide the evidence, thus tying his spirit to the locker and, possibly, explaining why his locker hasn't been touched in so long to the point of not being repainted and rusting. Which also explains why they never removed the mirror from the locker. It was obviously something Poindexter added to the locker himself, seeing as normal high school lockers are bare at the beginning of the school year to be filled by the student that the locker's been assigned. Being attached to objects is common in hauntings which, whether you believe in real ghosts or not, is a real world correlation of hauntings whether it's something as small as a hammer, or something as big as a house, most hauntings are said to be caused by the spirit(s) being attached to something in the vicinity of the place or people being haunted. Thus explains the attachment Poindexter has to the locker, as it was his in addition to being shoved in it constantly. Doesn't explain the black-and-white Ghost Zone version of the school, but it could be his mind interpreting what's going on in the spirit realm. Plus, most hauntings don't begin until the spirit is awoken by something they perceive as a disturbance to the status quo of where they are, which would explain why the excess bullying is what finally allowed him to break out of the Ghost Zone.

A bit grim, and even I prefer the first explanation because it's a bit more plausible, or good because it's about how teen bullying needs to stop, but it still makes sense nonetheless.

Could they be Gods?
Around Season Three (with some exception in other seasons), the ghostly villains arguably got bigger and grander in terms of power and scope. Danny now battles ghosts that represent something or another: Ghosts of weather, plants, time, nightmare, dreams, etc. Their level of powers seem to exceed somewhere beyond what most of the ghosts of Season One and Two possess. Could they actually be Gods? Could they be deities that were told in forms of legends and myths over time? Or could they be the Ancients that defeated Pariah Dark in Skulker's tale in "Reign Storm"?
  • If that's the case, then Nocturne had gone by many names, including the Sandman and Morpheus (the Greek God of Sleep).
    • Could he be that Sandman?
  • Alternate: In-show, the gods of various folklore were actually ghosts that escaped the Ghost Zone (through natural portals). We've already seen Medusa, Pandora, a Cyclops, a Centaur... need I go on? As Vlad said, "Funny, all I had to do was float a little bit and these Romans hailed me as a deity."
    • Maybe Gods were just inspired by extremely strong ghosts. The example with Vlad is great, not to mention he is of at least mid-range power level among the ghosts, the 'god-like' ones are just further up ghosts, like say Vortex, Clockwork, Undergrowth, etc. They are all ghosts of exceptional power, and all had potential to or did step up to 'Godhood'.
  • Clock Work is the god of time.
  • I would go more along the lines of different kinds of ghosts. The majority came into being through the death of a person or animal. Others like Pandora and Nocturne are basically tulapa, and came into being because people believed in them. And a very few are what could very well be gods, that came into being with a certain concept or natural law. The main example here would be Clookwork who is the personification of time and thus most likely as old as time itself.

Nocturn is a incubus/succubus
  • Notice how both the dreams we saw had romantic implications.

Ember is a Banshee
And furthermore, she became one because she had Irish ancestry. Let's count the reasons, shall we?
  • She sings a wailing lament
  • Her last name is Mc Clain, indicating Gaelic descent.
  • Danny and Vlad have ghost form hair colors that are the opposite of their colors in their human forms. Ember is blue-haired, implying her human form was a redhead.
  • Her skin is very pale.

    The Nature of Ghosts and Half-Ghosts 
The relationship between our world and the Ghost Zone.
Our world and the Ghost Zone are two different sides of a coin, or, more accurately, two different sides of a magnet, with our world being positive and the Ghost Zone being negative.

'Ghosts' are impressions left by people. How deep the impression is, and how powerful the ghost will be, depends on emotional trauma. A fully fledged ghost can only exist once the person on the other side has deceased, removing their positive charge and allowing the slightly weaker negative half to form. Most ghosts form due to some traumatic experience resulting in death, like Ember, who committed suicide, but some, like Frostbite, who most likely died defending something valuable, can form for some other reason, though it must be as equally deep-rooted. Trauma, however, is the most common reason, hence why so many ghosts are malevolent.

Rather than being solid like a magnet, the two halves are fluid, though remain separate due to their charge. The portals made between the two are not where the halves mix, that being impossible, but holes in a layer much like the tension on the surface of water. When Danny stepped inside the portal and then turned it on, he superimposed the negatively charged ectoplasmic particles over his own positively charged ones, forcing two repelling forces together. The positive and negative halves could not mix, and so separated to form two separate entities operated by one conciousness in one body, resulting in Danny possessing his ghost half at the same time as his human half.

Danny, it has been noted, grows stronger with each ghost he fights, seeming to take on their powers (i.e.: Danny obtaining the Ghostly Wail after meeting his future self with the same power). Danny is fairly unstable, hence Vlad's difficulty cloning him, only the correct settings on the portal allowing him to survive, and his ghost half is actually capable of absorbing new skills. These became easier to assimilate as Danny's forms settled.

How they became ghosts, and why they are ghosts
Related to the theories on what the ghosts were and how they died, the reason most of the ghosts are villains are because something in the process of dying and turning into ghosts caused them to go insane, wrapping their whole personality around some aspect of their lives before they died. Maybe the people who became ghost are those who couldn't accept their fate. I mean, not every person who dies turns into a ghost. Possibly, their refusal to accept that they are dead has manifested partially in a rage against the human world. And most of the "good" ghosts don't seem like they ever lived in the human world.
  • Or the Ghost Zone is actually Purgatory. And the ghosts?
    • The Box Ghost was a simple menial worker who no-one cared about. He's pissed that his life meant nothing, and wants to make meaning as a ghost criminal. He died in a box-related incident.
    • The Lunch Lady used to be, well, a lunch lady. However, her food ended up being tainted. Dedicated to her work, she refused to believe this, and tried to prove them otherwise. It didn't work out.
    • Skulker was a bounty hunter wanted by countless governments. The reason why he's a puny little ghost was because he was an Evil Cripple.
    • Technus was just like what we was in life. He died in some crazy experiment.
    • Walker was a corrupt chief during the 1920s, shot down by the mob.
    • Penelope Spectra was in charge of age-reducing cream, and other cosmetics. She died at the grand old age of 100.
    • Ember Mc Clain was a popular singer, however suffered from depression. Unknown to anybody, she killed herself.
    • Youngblood was the son of a pirate.
    • Johnny 13 and Kitten were a teenage couple who died in a drunk car crash
    • Pariah Dark is Genghis Khan.

What Being Half-Ghost Really Means
Throughout the series, it is repeatedly mentioned that Vlad, Danny, and Dani are half-human, half-ghost. Episode 5, “Splitting Images” even coined a term for this: halfa (as in “half-a human, half-a ghost”). Although the term itself is only mentioned in one episode, the rest of the series often refers to it, using terms like “half-ghost”, “part-ghost”, and even “half-ghost hybrid”.

When Danny went inside the portal to the Ghost Zone, he accidentally activated it while inside. This caused him to be electrocuted and mutated with ectoplasm(1). While enduring said shock, he was caught between two worlds…and two different states of being.

One factor that makes a half-ghost is mutation. A halfa's body is altered to have the potential to use ghost powers, but it also needs fuel. What makes Danny half-ghost is the fact that when he activated the portal, ecto-energy(2) directly from the Ghost Zone fused with his molecules… and his DNA, changing him permanently. As long as the ectoplasm in his blood is active, he’ll always have his powers. The various times Danny temporally lost his powers caused the ectoplasm to retreat, going dormant. This mutes his ecto-signature(3), and blocks off his ghost half. Without the ecto-energy in his ghost half, his body was like a car without gas: it had the potential ability, but no fuel.(4) When Danny manages to split his human and ghost halves apart, they become separate entities but are part of the same persona. If one ceased to exist, the other would die as well.

In The Ultimate Enemy, when Phantom and Fenton were split apart, they still shared a deep connection. This is why, after Phantom split Vlad apart and merged with Plasmius, thus creating Dark Phantom(5). Before Phantom attacked Fenton, he hesitated for a brief moment as they made eye contact. Then, by killing his last link to humanity, he broke free of morality.

The other, much darker factor of being half-ghost is this: being half-dead.

As Danny's biological make-up was being altered, he had already begun to die. But halfway through the process, there was enough ecto-energy in him that it froze him in a state between life and death. In order to balance out, he was given two forms: one that was more human and one that was more ghost. He keeps most of his powers as a human, but can use them more easily in his ghost form.

If an attempt to fully remove his ghost half was made, he would die. Permanently.

In the finale, Danny reenacted the accident in his ghost form, reversing the effect and draining all of his ecto-energy. This, as is aforementioned above, forced his ghost half to be blocked off. However, he was still biologically half-ghost. A side-effect of getting rid of his powers was receiving a white streak in his hair, proof that he was still a halfa, but without his powers. Instead of enabling his powers, his ghost half ends up contributing to his outward appearance (his hair).

The Ghosts are dead demi-gods.
It would make sence going by the ghosts individual powers, why there are so few ghosts in the Ghost zone, and why characters from greek mythology show up (Pandora, Madusa, Argus)• Ember Mclain, daughter of Apollo• Teachnus, son of Hephestus• Undergrowth, son of Demeter• Clockwork, son of Kronos

Ghosts are the manifestation of a person's darkest thoughts and feeling when they were alive.
Which is why so many of them are antagonistic. Ember might have been a pop star who feels bitter that she didn't become very famous in life ("Ember, you will remember my name."). Box Ghost was a downtrodden, lower middle class worker who felt he was wasting his life in his mediocre job, and felt like he meant nothing to society.

Some of these ghosts managed to hold onto their nicer thoughts and feeling, such as the Dairy King, which is why they're at least decent people. Some of the ghosts were never living at all - e.g. Clockwork, Pariah Dark, Nocturne, etc. - which is why they are physically different, have different powers, and act differently.

Danny Phantom is more confrontational than Fenton, and when Danny is angry his eyes flash green.

Vlad and Danny had different side effects from the ghost portals because of the power difference.
The supposed incompleteness of the original, miniature portal wasn't an issue; the portals had the same sort of radiation. The difference is that Vlad got spillover radiation to the face, burning his skin with ecto-energy that slowly changed his body over the next few years, and Danny was standing inside a portal, which infused his body immediately (and may have semi-killed him in the process). If half-ghosts half-died to get their ghost powers, as has been postulated before, Vlad may have "died" a slow death of ghost-radiation poisoning (the ecto-acne) while Danny "died" almost instantly.

  • This makes so much sense. I salute you, fellow troper.

Ghosts are ideas.
You'd likely get this theory best if you read Discworld but the basic concept is ghosts are manafestations of peoples beliefs.
  • Ghosts of dead people are a combination of how they saw themselves and how everybody else sees them but not the actual person.
  • Nature spirit type ghosts are the result of people personifying nature.
  • Jhonny's shadow is the result of people thinking bad luck follows him.

Half-ghosts don't age after their transformation is complete.
Danny's future self(ves) had extenuating circumstances (such as being fused with Plasmius), and the Future Vlad I vaguely recall had been mostly (if not completely) de-powered for years. As for Vlad's present self, we don't know what he looked like when he first "got over" the ecto-acne, and both the style of the show and the type of person Vlad seems to be make it difficult to guess how old a person is through most of middle age. Assuming my "half-ghosts are sort of really 'dead', but Vlad 'died' slowly and Danny 'died' instantly" guess above is correct, it's quite possible that Vlad and Danny are going to stay thirty-something and 14...ish, respectively, for the rest of their "lives", and that the assumptions some (most?) fans took from the relevant episode and movie (namely, that half-ghosts age and mature) is incorrect.

(If they canonically do physically age, sorry, it's been a long time since I've seen the show).

Half-ghosts (along with full ghosts) can reproduce with humans.
We all know by now that ghosts can reproduce with one another, (when we see the Box Ghost's and the Lunch Lady's kid, Box Lunch in The Ultimate Enemy) but what about half ghosts, with humans, full ghosts with humans, or even half ghosts with half ghosts? (for fan characters' sakes. I don't support Dannyx Vlad, Dannyx Dani or Danix Vlad) The ghosts we see in the series behave as they would in the human world. Not only can they reproduce, they even age! I thought is that the human ghosts can most likely have offspring with humans, or half ghosts even. We see in Danny how easily ghost energy fused with his DNA, so ghost DNA is most likely compatible with a human's, in more ways than one.
  • I also like to think that is how "natural" halfas can be created. Quarter and 3/4th ghosts too, depending on what the parents are.

Red eyed ghosts can't see the color red.
Most red eyed ghosts are some shade of green or blue even if they otherwise look normal, and this would explain how Vlad gets away with the subilty of having a giant purple football on the inside of his ghost zone.

Most of the "ghosts" we see on the show are actually demons, created from the darkest parts of a person's nature.
The ghosts on the show don't really seem to be dead, as they can reproduce and even age. They are also antagonistic, despite some of them seeming to have been fairly nice when they were alive. Perhaps, in this universe, a person's soul is split when they die. The "good" parts go on to the afterlife, and the "bad" parts - bitterness, anger, cruelty - form into a new creature and are sent to the ghost zone, where they are trapped and can't hurt anyone - or would be, if not for things like portal accidents.

There is no such thing as a "half-ghost".
Danny and Vlad are both dead. Danny died in the original Ghost Zone Portal accident (note how in the opening, Danny wakes up in ghost form after the accident), and Vlad died because of his Ecto-Acne (which is implied to be fatal). They aren't humans who change into ghosts, they're ghosts that can turn into a form that convincingly mimics the properties of humans (like not setting off ghost-detectors and ghost-shields). As to why they have this power, there are two theories;

1: They simply haven't realized they're dead yet, and simply think of themselves as "human/ghost hybrids". Should either Danny Fenton or Vlad Masters realize the truth, it's probable that they will lose this power, becoming Danny Phantom/Vlad Plasmius full-time.

2: Their deaths are both connected to the Ghost Zone Portal (Vlad having gained his Ecto-Acne from the original prototype), a device designed to act as a link between the realm of the living and the realm of the dead. If ghosts gain powers and properties based on how they died, someone being killed by such a device would naturally become a ghost that can mimic a human, a walking talking link between the two realms.

When Danny removed his powers during "Phantom Planet", the Ghost Zone Portal didn't resurrect him, it just drained enough of his Ecto-Energy to render him powerless (the white streak in his hair shows that he is still a ghost, just a powerless one.) Something similar on both occasions when Danny split himself into two. It didn't create a Ghost Danny and a Human Danny, it created one Ghost Danny with all the Ecto-Energy (and thus the ghostly appearance and all the powers) and one Ghost Danny with none of the Ecto-Energy (and thus the "human" appearance and none of the powers).

There are three types of ghosts.

Rather than being the souls of the dead (which doesn't make sense for some of the less humanoid specters), I have a different explanation for their origins. One definition used in the show to describe them was an "odd manifestation of ectoplasmic energy and post-human consciousness," but that doesn't mean they are definitely dead people or that even all of them come from the death of someone. Judging by the ghosts observed in the show, there seems to be three different types of ghosts.

The first are those that just sponaneously form out of ectoplasm in the Ghost Zone. Those would be the stranger, dumber, or blobbier ghosts that Danny encounters. Like the Ecto-puses (the green octopus things he fought in an early episode) or the giant Iguana ghost that showed up in the "King Tucker" episode. Or even Skulker, based upon his small and simplistic real body. These ghosts are basically random creatures that form in the chaos of the place. Lots of them only have basic thought processes, through some can have reasonable intelligence and motives if given enough time to develop.

The second type are closer to traditional ghosts and are based off of real people who die. The Ghost Zone has a symbolic connection to the human world; what threatens or affects one will also influence the other. The second type of ghosts are echoes of humans that die. Specifically, the death of a particularly strong-willed person or one with strong emotions connected to the event would leave an echo of that person to form in the Ghost Zone, providing a template for their appearance, personality, and even occasionally memories. This is what happened to Sydney Poindexter, Ember, and the Lunch-Lady. They aren't technically the souls of the dead; merely a reflection of the person. Still, it is generally close enough to count.

The third type of ghosts was also spontaneous creatures that form from the ectoplasm of the Ghost Zone, but are the result of human belief rather than by mere chance. Belief, like strong emotions and will can leave echoes behind that are felt though the same bond that connects the Human Realm and Ghost Zone. Myths, legends, and folk stories that are told enough generate belief and can cause ghosts to take those forms. This can range from the creation of werewolf ghosts (Wulf) to Pandora of Greek mythology to anthromorphic personifications of complex subjects such as time, nature, and sleep (Clockwork, Undergrowth, and Nocturn).

Ghosts are Nightmares, not Souls

Ghosts represent fears, possibly fears of the deceased. (If the latter part is true, it would be much like one of the above theories, only more specific - fears are an earthly bind which souls must release to pass on, so they're "caught" or left behind in the Ghost Zone.) There's only one (coherent) ghost per fear/general category of fears, not one ghost for each specific fear or deceased that feared something (if that part is true). Half-ghosts (as well as The Ultimate Enemy) aren't included below since they didn't come about the usual way, while the formless ghosts and other ghostly beings probably represent specific fears that weren't strong enough (or didn't last long enough, if ghosts aren't specifically the fears of the dead, or if past fears that are still remembered and hold some emotional weight can also become weak ghosts) to become coherent ghosts.

Lunch Lady Ghost: Matriarchal authority. Kids fearing women of authority in their lives, either because they were strict and cranky, or because they were nice but the kids feared doing something wrong and upsetting them, or because the kids feared them having a darker side to their personality. This explains her rapidly alternating personality.

The Box Ghost: Despite his silliness and weakness, probably represents claustrophobia. To a kid, a (large) box could easily represent fear of being trapped, the dark, and the unknown.

Skulker: Fear of being helpless (hence his true form) and of being hunted, with a side of fear of persecution since he goes after "rare specimens".

Technus: Technology/technophobia.

Desiree: Fears related to wishes/dreams - that you'll never get them, that you'll get them and they won't be all you thought they were, that you'll get them and they'll go wrong, that you'll get them and find out that Victory Is Boring or that you were having more fun pursuing them...

Walker: Fear of the law and injust persecution by the "system"/"man". Wonder why he's the only white ghost?

Spectra: Therapists (or medical professionals in general, since there's no other "doctor ghost" and she takes over a hospital in her second appearance), and what they might really be doing with what you're telling them (or your body, in the latter case...).

Bertrand: Servants, as well as pets (especially the more unusual types) judging by his Voluntary Shapeshifting.

Sidney: Either bullies... or bullying victims standing back up to the bullies/eventually becoming more powerful than them. Or both.

Aragon: Evil rulers, and/or the past coming back to haunt us.

Ember: Being/dying alone and/or forgotten.

Youngblood: Growing up. Or never getting to do so.

Johnny 13: Him and his shadow are actually separate but related fears - Johnny represents outlaws and thugs, his shadow represents bad luck and misfortune (with it certainly being the latter to encounter the former, hence their connection and merger), or more broadly anxiety and fear of things going wrong in unlikely but possible ways.

Kitty: Tyrannical partners, and/or how things might go wrong with your significant other.

Fright Knight: Fictional characters. Every terrifying villain of a story that's ever gotten under a kid's (or even an adult's) skin.

Pariah Dark: Tyranny. Evil, unbridled authority. His power level makes sense given how much of that is going on - and has gone on - in the world...

Amorpho: Never being known for or liked as yourself, only for acts/personas you put on or things you do.

Nocturne: Nightmares, other sleep-related fears (never waking up, night terrors, oversleeping and what you might miss out on...).

Undergrowth: Nature/"the jungle" - he's too powerful to simply represent plants, so he probably represents fear of (modern society being lost to, or even just individuals becoming lost in) the jungle, and all the various threats within it. Look at what happens when he wins for a while...

Clockwork: Time and related fears - the passage of it, there being not enough of it...

Frostbite: Likely the cold and dying of it. Could also represent various cryptids and monsters, but that title could also go to...

Wulf: Who may also represent dangerous beasts in general.

Vortex: Natural disasters.

The Ghostwriter: The nature of reality - fear that it may be a story, or a simulation... or simply have it out for someone.

    Other Unsorted 

Butch Hartman is a Harry Potter fan.

The most obvious hint is Vlad, who seems to be an Expy of both Voldemort in his mannerisms and lust for power, and Snape in his love for Danny's mother and his hatred of his father. Further, Danny's superficial crush on Paulina is like Harry's time with Cho Chang; Doomed. Also, the entire plot of one episode revolved around Tucker's jealousy driving him to an antagonistic role for a while before seeing sense, much like the Locket's possession of Ron in Deathly Hallows. Finally, Danny and Sam's relationship can be compared to that of Harry and Ginny at times. There are also hints of this in his other works.

  • A lot of this makes sense; however, the episode What You Want (where Tucker gets ghost powers) came out in 2004, whereas Deathly Hallows wasn't published until 2007.
    • J.K. Rowling is a Butch Hartman fan
  • Harry Potter himself (or, at least, someone dressed as him) made a cameo appearance in the crowd of comic book nerds in "Reality Trip".

Poindexter thought Danny was Vlad when he first met him
Vlad's also a "halfa" and probably had more impact on the Ghost Zone then Danny did at the time. Poindexter hadn't seen either of them before and only heard stories about how he's half human-half ghost. Danny fit that definition. note 
  • WHOA. That actually explains a LOT. Cool.
    • Poindexter says that the ghosts spread rumors of someone who was "half a boy, half a ghost". I can't see anyone referring to Vlad as a boy, rather than a man.
    • Perhaps there are separate rumors about Danny and rumors about Vlad that were conflated together? The particular rumor about the halfa being half boy comes from Danny's side. There's not much contradiction from Vlad's side, because mentioning that he's evil or powerful is more important than being an adult.

D-Stabilized chronologically takes place a lot earlier than when it aired in relation to other episodes.
Aside from being the only episode in Season 3 that's any good, Vlad is his old characteristic manipulative, pre-Villain Decay self still obsessed with Danny. Not as much time as the entirety of Season 3 could have passed after Valerie upgraded her suit and gear if she works for Vlad so often he has a button in his office to summon her but he hasn't seen it yet. This would also explain Valerie's absence in the rest of Season 3, since she quit working for Vlad after discovering his Secret Identity.

Tucker, Paulina, and Dash all have ghosts (of themselves) in the Ghost Zone.
In "What You Want," Desiree blasts them with "ecto-energy." This ectoplasm binds to the kids and takes on their characteristics and personalities, multiplying it in the typical manner of ghostly obsessions. Danny eventually removes the kids' ghosts in the same way he does for overshadowing ghosts: he blasts them out, then throws them in the Ghost Zone.Presumably, they're still there.Somewhere, Tucker Phantom is wandering the Ghost Zone, having become the embodiment of Tucker's jealousy; somewhere, a Sayonara-Paulina is jumping around with the joy of (after)living; and somewhere, there's still a Dash monster terrorizing the Zone.
  • If the series had continued they would have joined together under Desiree to form a team of ghostly opponents for Team Phantom. Danny and Sam would have loved trashing the Dash and Paulina ghosts respectively.

Sam is Danny's real sister, Jazz is the real cellophane-deli-toothpick-twirling-heiress, and no one knows, knew, or ever will know about it.
  • Yeah, I know, totally insane and makes the end of PP somewhat unnerving, but hear me out. Look at Sam's eyes. Look at her parents'. Now look at MADDIE'S eyes. Now look at Jazz's. Now Jack's.
    • Sam: Lavender/Purple, no irises.
    • Maddie: Purple, irises.
    • Sam's parents: Green(Mom) and Blue(Dad) both have irises.
    • Jazz's: Same green shade as Sam's mom, and irises.
    • Jack's: Blue, no irises.
  • I, the original poster, don't know about you, but from that and hair colors, I can draw a pretty good Ass Pull of a defense for this. With these details, I submit to you, Tropers of the world and Phantom Phans alike, that Jazz and Sam were swapped at birth. Sam seems to be more intelligent than anyone else in that grade, so maybe she and Jazz were born on nearby dates, and someone in the hospital fucked up and switched their nametags (or whatever is used to ID newborns). Sam's lighter, lavender shade of purple could be a diluted form of Maddie's deep purple via Jack's icy-blue, and Sam also get's Jack's lack of irises. Both Sam's parents have irises, and Jazz has the exact same eye color as Sam's mom with irises. Sam's mom also is a vibrant-colored redhead, like Jazz. Maddie's a brunette, which thanks to Jack's black hair let's her have Danny and Sam who both have black hair. To make this work with Sam being in Danny's and Tucker's grade, Sam gets held back 2 years in Preschool, K, or 1st grade because of her independence and violent tendencies, and meets Danny and Tucker in 2nd grade before the Ricky Marsh incident. This also explains Jazz being as peppy as Sam's parents early-on, while Sam went Goth because on some subconscious level, she knows but doesn't know she knows that these crazy people she's grown up with are not really her parents.
    • Keep in mind that red hair and violet eyes are recessive. If you assume that Maddie and Jack each have a red hair gene that's overridden by their brown and black hair genes, then every child they have has a 25% chance of getting two red hair genes, resulting in Jazz's hair color. Likewise, Sam's parents could have recessive violet eye genes. The only anomaly here is Sam's black hair, as the black hair gene would have overridden the blond and red hair of her parents, but it's not unlikely that she dyed it to match her Goth appearance (One of her parents could have dyed their hair as well, but that's less likely as they have less visible reason to do so).
    • ...Sam's age is never stated in canon, is it?
      • I have all 53 episodes (26 1/2 hours) downloaded. I watched them all over the weekend back-to-back. I never heard any ages stated, even relatively to another, besides Danny (14) and Jazz (2 + Danny = 16). Inference from the timeline can tell us that the College Trio are all at least 40. But no mention on Sam. This is getting way too plausible for comfort...
      • In "Masters of All Time", Sam mentioned something about not being able to have a 15th birthday. She might have referred to Tucker, though.
      • Semi-OT: Paulina turned 15 in Memory Blank.
    • In response to the genetics, purple eyes are a mutation, meaning the fact that both Maddie and Sam have purple eyes is pretty incriminating...until you realize that Sam is a goth and is probably wearing contacts and has dyed her hair. Also, Jazz looks a lot like her mom, save for eye-color. Jack directly mentions this in an episode where she joins him in ghost hunting. Besides, despite her maturity and her attempts to be different, Jazz is very much like her family. Sam also takes the same classes as Danny, while being very smart. This puts her within at least a year of Danny's age.

Where is Amity Park?
Let's hear some guesses!

  • Michigan. The town is near the water and about a day's drive from Wisconsin and Lake Erie, which is spelled with two e's in the Danny Phantom-universe. Makes sense to me (might not even be a Wild Mass Guess). However, "Gregor" the Euro-Goth, aka Elliott, stated he was from Michigan, indicating that it's probably. located elsewhere.
  • California. The vast majority of the evidence supports this, with a few exceptions. There's a visible palm tree at the end of "Identity Crisis" and they cross a desert to get to Vlad's in "Bitter Reunions". The body of water that Danny saved the bus from falling into in "Forever Phantom" is referred to as "the ocean" - never as a lake. The private jet containing Maddie and Danny also passes through the Colorado Rockies on the way to Florida. Thus, California would make the most sense scenery-wise (probably close to Dimmsdale, too), however Tucker mentioned going to San Diego on the cross-country vacation in "Reality Trip", and I wouldn't consider a place in the same state as "cross country". Not to mention, California is a helluva long drive from Wisconsin. Remember, however, that the show is produced in California with mostly Californian animators and voice actors. Chances are it's in California.
  • Massachusetts. Infinite Realms shows that John Fenton Nightengale lived in Salem, and thus the Fenton family had history there. Of course, that would insist that the Fentons have had a family line in Massachusetts since the 1600's, which might be a long shot.
  • Indiana. In Phantom Planet, there is a scene where Amity Park is continuously zoomed out until we see the entire Earth. For a few seconds it shows a tri-state area showing Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio with the corners of the Great Lakes visible in the background. Judging from the area, Amity Park seemed to be located in the northeast corner, close to where OP originally thought.
  • A slightly more extreme guess is right on the United States-Canada border, like Sault Ste. Marie in Michigan and Ontario. It could even be near the infamous Northeast Angle of Minnesota. David Kaufman himself actually estimates the town to be in Minnesota - in this case, it crosses the border with Manitoba. This would mean that whichever side it's on could easily be accessed by people from the other country - however, it's obvious that most of the main principal locations in Amity Park are on the American side and not on the Canadian one. Even more extreme - some of the characters could even be Canadian-born and going to the American side for school and work. The Box Ghost has a Canadian accent. Amity Park is also next to the city of Elmerton. It is possible that Amity Park is the American side of the metropolitan area, while Elmerton is the Canadian side.

Clockwork is preventing Danny's enemies from revealing his identity.
If the ghosts had really wanted to make Danny's life hell, they could have revealed his Secret Identity early when the entire town hated him ("Public Enemies," for example). Why didn't they? Clockwork. The Ghost Master of Time made it clear that blowing Danny's cover would be... unwise. If a guy who can wipe you from the timeline tells you not to do something, you can bet even the surliest ghost won't try it. He did, however, encourage them to challenge Danny to increase his skills and moral fortitude for whatever plans he has for Danny.

If Jack DID have a "clever quip" in Boxed Up Fury, it would've been...

Sam's parents do support her views and pay the school to do what she likes.
Remember "Mystery Meat" most if not all schools by law must have a vegetarian alternative what other school would change the school lunch menu entirely to, well dirt on bread. Also, in "Idenity Crisis" Sam steals all the frogs from the science lab and get away with it by making some popular freshmen agree with her. No schoolboard would let a child act like that normally but if that very board is being paid off.
  • They might support her extreme activist but they clearly don't support her being a goth. They could either genuinely support her activist views or see it as the lesser of two evils and support it hoping it will distract her from being a goth.

There is a gene for somebody's ghost eyes being semi visable as a human which may only express itself in girls.
Here's how the idea works.
  • Maddie has the gene for ghost eye expression blue eyes and red ghost eyes making purple.
  • Jazz has her mothers gene for ghost eyes expression blue eyes and green ghost eyes. Green and blue make turquoise.
    • I can't tell Jack Plasmius' eye color but if its red I'm claiming red is dominant.
  • Pamela has the gene for ghost eye expression blue eyes and green ghost eyes making turquoise.
  • Sam has her mothers Gene for ghost eye expression blue eyes and red ghost eyes making purple.

Jacks inventing skills work more like magic than science.
Jack is not a genious but ghost hunting is in his blood and he has an instinctive understanding about how to make ghost weapons and tools. This means he thinks about making something ghost related and manages to make it while having no understanding how it actually works. This is why he and Maddie were able to make a ghost portal without knowing they put the on switch inside.

The ghost portals Jack helped design need to create half-ghosts to work.
The theory is portals open for newly killed ghosts and both of the portals Jack created exploit that fact but by some loophole create portals by only half killing a person. Since if Jack did this consciously he should know this idea works with the theory that Jacks inventing skills act more like magic than science. The reason on button was inside was because that would be the best place to put the human sacrifice.
  • That... is horrifyingly dark.

Lancer is a Camper
Danny mentioned that without his ghost powers it would take him "forever to reach Level 13"; how would Lancer have been able to get there between the time Danny finished the test and Technus being defeated? Simple. Lancer had his character wait fairly far in (let's assume that Danny was stuck in the original level after getting dusted by Sam again), then when someone started gathering the keys he would wait until they were victorious, shoot them from behind, and win the game. Note that he doesn't say "I've claimed all the silver keys!", he just said that he claimed the seventh one (again).
The Full Season 3.

So, wall of text and lots of spoilers incoming. You have been warned.

It's been frequently noted that while Phatom Planet is a very good finale there's several things which are never resolved (Vlad's deal with the Fright Knight being perhaps the most noted upon) and Valerie's appearence there seems like a very sudden change in character from her prior appearences only partially resolvable by setting aside differences due to the impending disaster.

In this troper's opinion, therefore, Phantom Planet was concieved as the Grand Finale from the beginning of season 3, but was inteded to be the last two episodes of a 20 episode season, based on:

  • Both the first two seasons were 20 episodes long, it's pretty reasonable to assume that Season 3 was going to be as well.
  • However, the Danny-Sam romance, while suggested for a long time and starting to be realised at the end of season 2, actually gets a lot of development in Season 3. Given how abruptly some of the plot points drop off its clear that the majority of the first 11 episodes of Season 3 were written and started production before the decision to cancel it was made, so it seems likely that it was intended to wrap it up this season.
  • Season 3 as existant already begins to adress a lot of the potential conflicts of going public on the secret identity before the finale, again this would make sense if it was always intended to be a longer final season.

As it is, the three main things which never get fully resolved are Val's arc (which gets to the Heel Realisation but not further), Vlad's deal with the Fright Knight and the Fenton Probe in the ghost zone. As suggested above D-Stabilized may well be misplaced due to the production team deciding to focus on finishing the episodes devloping the Sam/Danny relationship and so pushing that one to the end of the queue. In general though I think the first 11 basically represent the general plan to build up to a roughly midseason 2 part episode which became replaced with the Grand Finale, with a significant exception.

Assuming this, we can presume that the rough order would have followed thusly:

  • Eye to Eye remains the season opening- while heralding Vlad's villain decay, it also serves as a gamechanger, bringing Vlad into close proximity and a better position to meddle if matters had been developed better.
  • Infinite Realms follows next- again it sets out a lot of elements that would be paid off later in the series.
  • Forever Phantom is shifted to this earlier position to better establish the issues with fame and so forth earlier. It also explains why Val hasn't attacked Danny for a while- he's too popular for the moment.
  • D-Stabilized- moved much earlier, establishes reasons for Val to doubt more than just Vlad and just generally brings character development in much earlier, as well as severely delaying Vlad's villain decay from these early episodes.
  • Girl's Night Out-moving D-Stabilised to before this one explains why Val isn't doing anything, having to rethink matters, as well as moving to a new home as Vlad has no reason to suspect her yet.
  • Torrent of Terror-No real reason to move it from too early on in the series.
  • Urban Jungle-Slightly bumped up from what happened, but still getting some more romantic development in early.
  • Livin' Large-which established the start of the idea that Danny might be able to get some allies in the Ghost Zone beyond the Christmas Truce and Wulf.
  • First completely new episode- essentially Val Centric, this one would have dealt with Val dealing with the aftermath of D-Stabilized, including some series of events caused from watching Danny and/or Vlad. It ends with the start of her character development with her putting Vlad above Danny on her motivational chart of targets (probably moving him from the No. 2 spot to th No. 1 spot). As of yet Danny remains the number 2 target. Val is probably established here as deciding to protect her father by just confronting Vlad if she see's him as Plasmius.
  • Boxed-up Fury- A more general episode, further developing the theme of allies in the Ghost Zone.
  • Frightmare- More development of the Sam/Danny relationship, but this marks the first point of somewhat open and mutual acknowledgement. This is really the point where Vlad looks most ineffectual in Season 3 until the finale, but dosen't come off quite as bad following D-Stabilised and possible events of the Val episode.
  • The midseason two-parter. Dani is doing 'something' in the Ghost Zone which leads to her finding out what the Fright Knight has been doing, this almost certainly involves the Crown of Fire as Vlad was holding that at the end of Reign Storm. She rushes to tell Danny, there's some very minor relationship stuff with Sam (pretty much just a 'keep safe' or something) and Danny confronts Vlad. At this point we find out the plot which is probably some way to steal/replicate the powers of the Ring of Rage which Vlad has come up with and enlisted the Fright Knight's help for, perhaps in return for being given rule over the Ghost Zone or something. Danny gets knocked out by a souped up Vlad, and Danni sees, we can assume that essentially our entire cast of good guys is tied up at this point in time attempting (or failing) to stop Amity Park from being overwealmed by the effects of Vlad's partially enacted scheme. The second part woud deal with Danni attempting to get help, and eventually being forced to go to Val as the only person with any hope of doing something left as an option. Key notion here is that Val is already essentially in the position of viewing Danni as a good person so will listen to her. She then decides to put aside her grudge temporarily in order to help Danny and stop the more dangerous foe. Episode possibly involves finding out Danny's Secret identity, but more likely simply has her altering her perception of Danny Phantom (perhaps something as simple as adding a question mark to the entry on her target list?)
  • A villan of the week breather episode without much character development to follow on from the midseason double.
  • An episode which deals with the Fenton Probe returning with information that leads to some plan that would cause big damage to the Ghost Zone being devised. Maddie and Jack are able to be convinced not to do it with the linked dimensions information, but the Men in White attack and force Danny to have to deal with it from the Ghost Zone. Frostbite, Youngblood, Johnny 13 and others established as being much less antagonistic by this point (perhaps including a Box Ghost on probation?) in episodes like Livin Large are all roped together by Danny to counter the threat. Note that at this point we're probably looking at a force composed of ghosts who are already allies or who have stopped attacking since basically the end of Season 2.
  • The effective conlcusion of Val's Heel Face Turn. Val confronts Vlad as Mayor Masters, but he's been expecting such a situation due to Val going after him more than Danny and thus kidnaps her father while she's gone. She then goes to find Danny (as Danny Phantom) to ask for his help in getting her dad back. He does, and at some point she ends up seeing him transforming without his knowledge (this last point I am unsure about, it may be that she doesn't find out until Phantom Planet)
  • Claw of the Wild finally occurs for the almost concluding romantic plot points.
  • An episode which deals with Val telling Danny she knows, convincing Sam and Tucker she's not going to try and kill Danny, and Val realising that the ship has sailed on her relationship with Danny when she tries to restart it. (If she hasn't found out, it'll probably be a Ghost of the Week episode).
  • Phantom Planet, pretty much as it occurred anyway.

One or two (as another twoparter) of the generic villain of the week ones in the block of 5 might see the return of Dark Danny, but if so, I can't help but think it'll see major villain decay.

Tucker's PDA is a Decepticon
  • Either technology in the Ghost Zone, or in the world of Danny Phantom in general, isn't as advanced as it looks, considering a 14 year old's PDA can override security systems of a high tech laboratory, electric collars from the Ghost Zone and even an antennae that absorbs dream energy. Frankly my belief is that Tucker's PDA is either magic or it's a Decepticon from Transformers, using it's advanced technology, to aid Tucker because it's gathering intel for Megatron on anti-ghost technology to turn ghosts into a source of energy.

Desiree and Norm the Genie are cousins (or a couple)
  • They both grant wishes, they're both Literal/ Jerkass Genies, and they're both supernatural beings.

Clockwork subtly manipulated events so Dani would be created
  • There is still the possibility that if Danny ever crosses the Despair Event Horizon Dark Danny could be created. Danny originally crossed the despair event horizon when all his friends and family were killed. Dani not only not only adds another person to serve as a morality pet to Danny, but with her ghost powers she would presumebly be harder to kill. Clockwork has also been manipulating events so Dani wouldn't die from her clone degeneration, and would eventually be cured.

Danny wants Danielle to stay in Amity Park so that he can have a younger sibling

Nocturne won in "Frightmare"
In the beginning of that episode, Danny is in a dream world where his ghost-side is accepted, he has the love of Sam, he's chipper as a whistle. But then, through coincidental circumstances he awakens to find that it was simply a dream. I postulate that from Frightmare until the end of the series, Danny was still asleep, and his victory of Nocturne was merely a facade put on by Nocturne in order to trick Danny into thinking that he was victorious.

Consider the coincidental nature of him waking up, and that nobody else, ghost or human, woke up in a similar manner, something probably unlikely. Furthermore, at the end of the series, Danny's perfect situation (the one reflected in his dream in Frightmare) comes to fruition through most unbelievable. A relatively small number of ghosts who were not fond of Danny help him save the world, then he is hailed as a hero worldwide? Wrap the planet in metal tubes? How preposterous, every for this animated work of fiction.

The final episode was merely a dream gifted to Danny by Nocturne so that he can be contented in his defeat.

Danny and Sam's relationship lasts... a week at best
Reality Ensues occurs with them. Differing interests and ideologies, realization that Sam is more into Danny Phantom than Danny Fenton and Danny secretly hating Sam's taste in music. If Danny ends up liking a really popular show Sam would consider too mainstream like a variation of Doctor Who, that'd be the part where Sam breaks up with him.

The show could still be brought back even with Butch Hartman leaving Nick.
Since Nick may not do anything with the franchise anymore, they may feel some slight pity for the fanbase and let Hartman/someone close to the series make a new season like Adult Swim was allowed to do with Samurai Jack. If this happened, it'd be a 10 episode new season continuing where the last season left off.
  • Typically, each season of a Nick series is 26 episodes and lately they've renewed shows for a second season very early. If a renewal does well enough, it may yield more episodes. Also, much like Samurai Jack, Danny Phantom's return should also embrace older viewers by allowing the show to follow Steve Marmel's ideas for its path.

If the show continues after season 3, it will start with a Happy Ending Override for "Phantom Planet".

The Disasteroid is the largest fragment of Phaeton or Astra.
Most astronomers agree that the Asteroid Belt in real life is the remains of the Protoplanetary Disk from which the Solar System came that never stuck together to form a planet due to the gravity of Jupiter. However, others and works of fictions say that the Asteroid Belt represents the fragments of a planet that somehow exploded. Scientists call this planet "Phaeton" while the fringe geologist Donald W. Patten calls it "Astra" (a name I personally am in favor with).So, what if Phaeton/Astra really existed within the Danny Phantom universe?

  • Phaeton/Astra fragmented to form the Asteroid Belt (including 1 Ceres and 10 Hygeia despite their round shapes).
  • Phaeton/Astra fragmented to form the Centaurs (including 2060 Chiron) and Comets (shortly after Mars appears in the Phantom Planet intro, a comet whizzes by the screen; that's probably Comet Encke whose orbit is entirely within the Asteroid Belt).
  • Some of Phaeton/Astra's fragments became the minor moons of the outer planets (Leda, Himalia, Amalthea, Thebe (Jupiter), Prometheus, Epimethius, Janus (Saturn), Cupid (Uranus), and Proteus, Nereid, and Hippocamp of Neptune)
  • Other fragments of Phaeton/Astra hit Mars and possibly Earth and the Moon.

The Disasteroid is actually not an asteroid. In the episode, it is depicted as abnormally large, on the order of 900 kilometers in diameter (as large as 1 Ceres). It is also irregular, like the other moons of Saturn.

Perhaps the Disasteroid is a fragment of Phaeton/Astra, which did exist in the Danny Phantom universe. There are many theories in real life on why the planet blew up, but perhaps in the Danny Phantom universe the reason was an artificial one. Perhaps Vlad or Danny himself could even be behind it.

Alternatively, Phantom Planet could be inspired by the works of Zecharia Sitchin, which spawned a massive pseudoscientific theory (Nibiru) that many people still believe today - Nibiru hits Phaeton (which he calls Tiamat), smashing it into pieces. The largest pieces become Earth and the Moon themselves.

I've also made crossovers between Danny Phantom and James P. Hogan's novel Inherit the Stars, in which the Earth's moon originally orbited the planet Minerva (also the origin of the human race), which exploded to form the asteroid belt - but the largest fragment becomes Pluto...

If the show continued, Phantom Planet will be made undone similarly to Days of Future's Past
Potentially, Phantom Planet might have led to something worse happening. From a powerful monster, to something akin to Marvel's Apocalypse would have been set free from being buried in the Earth. Regardless, Danny would have to prevent the Disasteroid from ever coming to Earth, or Clockwork simply rewinds time and Danny experiences a form of Deja Vu, and facing this evil becomes a major story arc.


    Crossover Theories 

The Ghost Zone was created from a wish made to Fairy Godparents (or perhaps a Genie).
According to Da Rules, which all Fairies are subject to, it is impossible for a child to wish for anyone to be killed or maimed. However, there is no rule against the creation of ghosts, or the undead (and Timmy Turner has done so several times, albeit seemingly indirectly). The apparent nonexistence of fairies in the world of Danny Phantom (Danny is 14, ergo he should have fairy godparents, until the age of 18) could also theoretically be the result of a wish; or, alternatively, the creation of the Ghost Zone and the powerful ghosts that inhabit it could have driven Fairies and Fairy World to extinction, or at least extreme obscurity.
  • It is also possible that the Ghost Zone is essentially a dark counterpart to Fairy World: the Ghost Zone is like Hell, or the underworld, governed by Walker (who possesses his own book of rules), while Fairy World is like Heaven, governed by Jorgen von Strangle (who wrote and enforced Da Rules).
    • It is also interesting to speculate as to whether or not ghosts would be immune to magic: magic cannot bring the dead back to life (except theoretically in ghost form, as was demonstrated when Timmy wished for the ghost of a pirate to tell him ghost stories), nor can it cause death (except perhaps indirectly). Therefore, it is quite possible that ghosts exist in a halfway state which grants them imperviousness to fairy magic, and thus the fairies were perhaps overrun by ghosts, and Fairy World was encroached by the Ghost Zone, never to return.
  • Desiree possesses very similar powers to Norm the Genie: could the genies have, rather than be destroyed by the ghosts, assimilated themselves with them?
    • So Danny Fenton lives in future of Timmy Turner's world, but where fairies no longer exist?
  • It almost makes more sense if it was a wish made to a genie: there would be no rule restrictions, and the Ghost Zone seems much more like the sort of twisted wish that a genie would grant, rather than a fairy godparent.
  • Or, the Ghost Zone could be the result of the same sort of nightmarish "dream wishing" that Timmy subconsciously did when he was guilt-ridden after framing Vicky for Chompy's disappearance.
  • Ghost King Pariah Dark's Crown of Fire does look an awful lot like the crown of a fairy... albeit all ghostly, with the green fire and such.

The show occurs in the future of Ghostbusters.
Ghosts have changed over time as their presence waxes and wanes, causing disbelief to rise again before the start of the series. The Fentons are old fans of the Ghostbusters and have improved their technology. It would have been awesome to see the old Ghostbusters crew as a team of Retired Badasses anyway.
  • Perhaps on the future of Filmation's Ghostbusters, even. Ghost catching rope, ectoplasm gum, it makes sense.
  • Ghostbusters The Game makes this even more plausible, with a short romp into an unnamed ghost dimension in 1991, possibly the first human contact with the Ghost Zone. Ghostbusters' ghost dimension is a parallel of the human geography, however, this doesn't make it incompatible- Note how easily Ember, Skulker, The Box Ghost, and others find new homes in Reign Storm, perhaps these are the places exaggerated into their lairs in the Ghost Zone?
  • The Ghost Portal is so temperamental and unpredictable, especially in the early seasons, because Jack deployed it too early (just like several other inventions that he attempted to use while they were still being built). It opened a path into the nearest "ghost-type universe" — which was the inside of the Ghostbusters' containment unit. From what we've seen of the inside of the containment unit in The Real Ghostbusters, it looks very similar to the Ghost Zone, only tinted red instead of green.

Skulker is the ghost of a Predator.
Probably the one in either of the movies. Predator ghosts are different.

The entire show is a hallucination made up by Shinji from Neon Genesis Evangelion.
The show takes place in the same universe as Teen Titans.
Slade and Vlad Masters use the same technology, namely nanotechnology designed to kill someone from within their bloodstream, in "Apprentice" and "Secret Weapons." Slade probably stole it from Axion Labs or worked for them at some point.
  • Strange theory considering that one of the voice actors, Ron Perlman, plays Slade who is the sadistic villain of Teen Titans while also playing Mr. Lancer in Danny Phantom who... well, reminds this troper of her Biology teacher.
  • Also, Raven’s voice actor, Tara Strong, plays both Ember McLain and Star.
  • OR they are set in different dimensions, and the Ghost Zone and Human Zone (??? whatever they call it) aren't the only zones out there. Somewhere, there are natural portals between the TT and DP world.
    • ...You mean Earth?

The Soul Society and Hueco Mundo are sub-sections of the Ghost Zone.
Just ones that focus more on Japan then the rest of the world, the gates that the Soul Reapers and Arrancars use to travel to the world of the living are really ghost portals.
  • To continue that theory...

The Ghost zone is a part of the Nevernever.
Considering that most of the afterlives are said to be somewhere in the Nevernever, it makes sense that it would be possible that the ghost zone is just a part of it.

Dr Rockso is Ember's father.
Dash Baxter has a job as an actor on his weekends.
The actual character , face and voice, showed up on The Fairly OddParents as an actor in a movie relating to flys. The movie was a spoof on teen wolf.

Ember McLain is a Vocaloid.
Specifically, she is the future of Hatsune Miku. Occured to me after watching this video - I just kept thinking about how the way she looks here reminds me of Ember.

Miku will eventually become self-aware enough to be rebellious and break away from her creators, becoming angry in the process (and getting a bunch of tattoos). Unfortunately, spending years as pretty much the face of Vocaloid and under a huge spotlight turned her into a major attention whore - so much so that it's embedded into her programming that she is dependant upon popularity. She will now do anything to be popular, including mind control.

  • This. Is. Awesome.
  • Note how she bursts into blue flames in this video to transition to different outfits between songs.

Ember McLain is Azula.
1. They have a "blue fire" motif.2. They have the same hairstyle. (Well, Ember has a ponytail and Azula has the Fire Nation topknot. But they have the same bangs.)3. They both want to rule the world.4. They both receive a Significant Haircut. (Ember gets hers at the end of "Fanning the Flames", and Azula gets hers during the finale when she experiences a Villainous Breakdown.)5. They are both good at manipulating people.(Now, this troper hasn't seen all of Danny Phantom, so if there are any details that Joss this, she doesn't know about them yet.)

Ember McLain is related to Chris McLain from Total Drama.
Ember used to be known as Amber McLain and was a shy girl who was in the corner of the classroom writing down songs based on her life experiences. She dated Johnny 13 and then saw Johnny with Kitty. When Ember confronted him, he denied knowing her. When she was writing a song about the experience, Kitty and Johnny set Ember's family's house on fire. Chris heard his sister scream and almost make it out before burning and dying. This is why Chris hates teenagers, they killed his sister.When Kitty and Johnny were on the run from the cops, they accidentally cravats into a wall

The Ghost Zone is Makai.
Most of the ghosts don't really seem to be dead and gone.

Jack and Maddie Fenton are Sparks or Geniuses.
I mean, look at all those gadgets! Technus was most likely one in life as well.

Ghosts are Shadows.
In Persona 4, shadows of the game's party members are shown as over-the-too exaggeration a of a singular dark aspect of their personality. The ghosts in Danny Phantom seem goofy and singular because its a kid's show - but the truth is that they are the shadows of the people they came from, meaning their existence is defined by that aspect of their progenitors. It's also explained throughout the series of games that Shadows are shaped and given form by people's thoughts. Because most of Amity Park believes them to be ghosts, they act as ghosts. This also explains why the Ghost Zone appears as it does - much like the Midnight Channel in Persona 4 appeared as a TV studio because everyone believed it was projecting a TV show, the Ghost Zone appears as it does because people imagine it that way. Jack and Co might have stumbled upon theories or half-leaked information from the Kirijo Group and used it as the basis for their experiments, allowing the shadows to pass into the real world. Vlad and Danny are able to channel their shadow's powers (as Persona) because they accepted that part of them - Danny was able to embrace the more assertive part of himself he'd been surpressing, and Vlad was finally able to have a form to openly revel in his darker feelings. The reason Tucker nearly went berserk is that unlike Danny and Vlad, he was still rejecting the darker feelings he had towards Danny, until his Shadow began to manifest from being surpressed now that it was awakened by Desiree. Clockwork, like Igor, is an agent of Philemon, attempting to show Danny how to use his powers for good and avoid his self-destructive potential as part of Philemon's game with Nyarlathotep.
  • Allow me to add to this theory. Clockwork and Igor are working together to stop major catastrophes from happening to the world (such as Dark Danny's rampage or the Fall), but they can't interfere with it directly so they rely on third parties (Danny and the P4/P3 protagonists) while aiding them however they can (turning back time or fusing Personas). Also, the reason the P4 protagonist ends up going back a week when he fails to save someone is because Clockwork did it on behalf of Igor.
  • While admittedly fanfiction, this seems to be the direction that "Phantom Persona" is taking, what with the author having Igor and Clockwork working as 'Associates'. They haven't deeply explained the similarities between ghosts and shadows yet, but it does seem like the shadows are generally stronger and more direct manifestations of human emotions than most ghosts. There have also been a few comparisons between the Ghost Zone and the Shadow World, one of them actually incredibly direct. Personally I really hope that the author is going for this rather than them being separate entities. Of course if Clockwork and Igor are the same kind of entity then it does raise some curious questions, as Clockwork himself admits his own apparent mortality at the hands of Dan.
The show takes place in the same universe as The Dresden Files.
  • The Ghost Zone is just a portion of the Nevernever tied to the Demesne of every ghost, who aren't the actual souls of the dead people but "shades" (echoes imprinted onto the world at the moment of death).

Undergrowth is the same plant ghost that once possessed a geranium in New York City.
And no doubt he's now sick of heroes beating him using a horticultural tip their love interest casually mentioned a few days ago.

Dark Pariah is Malacath.
He is literally King Pariah. Lord of the Outcast.

Paulina Sanchez is related somehow to Rick Sanchez.

Martha Speaks takes place in the future of Danny Phantom, where Danny and Sam (disguised as Paulina) have children, while he and the rest of his family decide to protect their original identities and Fenton Works and change them.
I've noticed a lot of striking similarities between this show and Danny Phantom. For example:
  • Helen's father has the same first names as Danny Phantom, while his father (Helen's grandfather) is overweight like Jack Fenton, while Helen's mother resembles Paulina. The series's antagonist, Otis Weaselgraft, also resembles Jack and Vlad Plasmius.
  • Ronald, Alice's older brother, is similar to Jazz Fenton in that they are both stereotypical older siblings and enjoy psychology.
  • The episode Helen's All Thumbs has a plotline similar to Teacher of the Year.
  • In "Martha Treads the Boards", Helen's dad (named Danny) has to play a meat-eater while her mother plays a vegetarian, parallel of Danny's relationship with Sam and her vegetarian beliefs.
  • Haunted houses and ghosts mentioned in multiple episodes could allude to Fenton Works and the Ghost Zone.
  • Mrs. Bumblecrumb from "Martha's Life in Crime" resembles Penelope Spectra.
  • The Martha Speaks episode "Maestro Martha" has an almost identical plotline to Fanning The Flames, with both featuring music being used to put spells on people, as well as "Myth Me?" and Boxed Up Fury both referencing Greek mythology.
  • The antagonists' clothes during the PBS Kids outro of "The Penguin Always Rings Twice" resemble Jack Fenton's usual clothing.
  • Both Martha Speaks and Danny Phantom have burger restaurants that become core settings in some episodes (Burger Boy and Nasty Burger).

Here's a possible plotline to construct:

Danny Phantom grew up and married Sam. However, Sam (originally jealous of Paulina in Danny Phantom's episodes) decided to take on Paulina's appearance for some reason. Danny, however, to protect his identity (ignoring the events of Phantom Planet) had to take on a different appearance and look, and so did his parents. Maddie changed her name to Lucy and Jack changed his name to Bernie. Danny, however, did not change his first name and instead changed his surname from Fenton to Lorraine. His parents did the same thing; his entire family decided to shun off the past about Fenton Works. Danny and the former Fentons also secretly dealt with the Canadian government and they obtained Canadian citizenship. Danny was still close to Tucker Foley (though he changed his surname to Oatley). Then Danny and Sam had children - Helen and Jake Lorraine, while Tucker had a son - Truman Oatley. Helen is aware of her father's secret and does not tell it to anyone. Truman is rebellious towards his computer-addicted father and prefers reading books and encyclopedias instead. Despite all this identity-changing, Vlad Plasmius (assuming he survived the Disasteroid hit) and Penelope Spectra secretly knew about what they had done. Thus, they decided to get married and had two children - Otis Weaselgraft, whom was purposely made obese to resemble Jack Fenton, and Mrs. Bumblecrumb - who took on her mother's appearance. Otis, who was told about Daniel's powers, was also surprised when he heard that his daughter's dog was miraculously able to speak one day, and so he now has two targets - Danny Lorraine, his father's old archnemesis, and Martha Lorraine - the talking dog.

    The Elsewhereness, the Unworld, and Sojourn 
Wild Mass Guessings regarding the Heaven and Hell equivalents of the DP-verse and the ghost chronicling the Ghost Zone.

There is something in the Unworld, something evil and powerful...
If the Unworld is Danny Phantom's equivalent of Hell, it may very well have a Satan-equivalent.


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