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Western Animation / Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius

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All spoilers below are unmarked. You Have Been Warned.
"Brain Blast!"

Cindy: What if it doesn't work?
Jimmy: It will work! ...I'm ninety-five percent sure it will.
Cindy: Ninety-five?
Jimmy: Yeah?
Cindy: Yeah, and the other five percent?
Jimmy: ...We blow up.

The predecessor to Nickelodeon CGI series The Adventures of Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius, this 2001 movie was originally going to be simply a pilot episode for the series. Instead, the Nickelodeon executives were so impressed they gave it funding for cinematic release. The film was a box-office success, and it even earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Animated Feature.

Eleven-year-old boy genius Jimmy Neutron has an IQ of 210. He's capable of inventing just about whatever he wants in his spare time, even rockets that can be used for launching satellites to communicate with alien races. (Of course.) Jimmy also has a robotic dog called Goddard that can do pretty much anything, a disproportionately large head and a strange hairdo - a fact constantly brought to the surface by his rival, Cindy Vortex. He's just living a relatively ordinary life (and by ordinary, we mean waking up and getting a robotic barber to do his hair, traveling to school via gum that turns into a transportation bubble, showing off his shrink ray in Show And Tell, etc.) until the first communication satellite he launched is intercepted by a race of amorphous aliens named the Yolkians, who arrive at Earth and abduct every adult in his hometown. When the gravity of the situation settles in, Jimmy and all the kids in town have to do whatever it takes to get their parents back, even if it means traveling into the farthest reaches of space.

Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius provides examples of:

  • 555: Blink and you'll miss it, but the number Jimmy calls to reach Goddard on Libby's cell phone starts with 555.
  • Academic Alpha Bitch: Cindy's goal is to stay at the top of the class and be admired by everyone, so she doesn't conceal her resentment whenever Jimmy steals her spotlight.
  • Actually Pretty Funny: When Judy accidentally drinks a beverage that causes her to belch endlessly, she at first is angry at Jimmy, but soon after finds herself laughing at the situation.
  • Adaptation Expansion: The novelization by Marc Cerasini adds several scenes focused on King Goobot and Yokians, including one where he kills Captain Spoor's first officer with a "doomstick" after Hugh’s Hat of Obedience malfunctions.
  • Adults Are Useless: Miss Fowl, Jimmy's homeroom teacher, doesn't have any way to control the rivalry between Jimmy and Cindy. There also isn't any response from the government or anyone outside Retroville when an alien fleet comes and abducts all the grownups, leaving the kids to mount the rescue of their parents. Downplayed in how the kids initially celebrate that there are no adults to tell them what to do, but then they realize that they can't take proper care of themselves or function emotionally without their moms and dads.
  • All Girls Want Bad Boys: A lot of girls, especially Cindy, have a crush on Nick for this reason.
  • Aliens Are Bastards: You could say that they're bad eggs.
  • Aliens Speaking English: The Yolkians speak English.
  • All-CGI Cartoon: Notable for being the first film and series animated entirely with over-the-counter programs.
  • Anime Hair: Jimmy's. This is lampshaded pretty regularly.
  • And I Must Scream: The adults are completely aware of what is going on while under mind control as seen when Hugh is just barely able to speak only for the helmet forcibly activate on him and they all seemingly know what was going on after the helmets are taken off.
  • Apple for Teacher: Miss Fowl has an apple on her desk. When she gets shrunk down, she does battle with the worm living inside it.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: "You steal my parents, you threaten my dog, you attack my friends, and you make fun of my size!"
  • Artistic License – Paleontology: Cindy calls a dinosaur skeleton a Plesiosaurus. A Plesiosaurus is not a dinosaur, it's a marine reptile. And furthermore, the dinosaur skeleton Cindy shows appears to be standing on two legs with short arms, indicating it could be a theropod. A Plesiosaurus lived in the seas and had flippers rather than legs or arms. Jimmy calls her out on it.
  • Artistic License – Space:
    • Oddly, everyone who enters space does not require helmets, and thus cannot suffocate from lack of oxygen whatsoever.
    • The kids traveling through space in the park-ride rockets are dizzy, but humans on earth experience dizziness because of gravity interacting with our vestibular systems. Astronauts who spin in space don't get dizzy.
  • Ascended Glitch: An In-Universe example. Goddard's way of "playing dead" is to blow up into bits and pieces before reassembling himself. This was used against the Yolkian trying to dissect Goddard with Jimmy remotely talking through Goddard.
  • Ascended to Carnivorism: The caterpillar living in the apple on Ms. Fowl's desk, apparently. The first thing it does is try to eat her when she's shrunk.
  • Attack! Attack... Retreat! Retreat!: Nick Dean when he sees Poultra for the first time. It causes those who were following him to lose respect for him.
  • Attack of the 50-Foot Whatever: Poultra, the Yolkian god, is a 50-foot, three-eyed, carnivorous chicken. Also, near the end, Jimmy and Goddard grow to planet size to defeat King Goobot.
  • Bad Boss: Goobot. In his introductory scene, he has another alien ejected into space for approaching his throne unannounced, though he does refuse to let Ooblar do it.
  • Bait-and-Switch Comment: Carl's father has this to say at the end: "Let me tell you, as soon as we get home... we're going out dancing!"
  • Balloon Belly: After the parents are gone, a group of kids had a cotton candy-eating contest. The winner is shown to have become morbidly obese and crying for his mother.
  • Batman Can Breathe in Space: Played straight in the movie, Lampshaded in the series.
  • Batman Gambit: During the escape from Yolkus, Jimmy flies through its sun with the expectation that Goobot's ships wouldn't be able to avoid the solar flares. It works, as only Goobot's ship avoids getting fried by sheer luck.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For: The wish to get rid of all parents comes back to bite the kids after one day.
  • Big Damn Heroes: Sheen arrives in time with the ship and knocks out Poultra when the latter successfully stopped Jimmy and the gang from leaving with their parents.
  • Big, Thin, Short Trio: Carl (big), Sheen (thin), and Jimmy (short) in that order, though Jimmy compensates for his short stature with a combination of both his big skull and his tall, swirly hairdo.
  • Big "NO!":
    • Jimmy yells "No!" when the first rocket's pulse rockets fail and the engine malfunctions.
    • Sheen during his show-and-tell when he realizes Cindy tricked him into removing the Ultra Lord figure from its unopened box, meaning it's not as valuable any more.
  • Big "YES!": Jimmy yells "Yeah!" when his spaceship launches out of Retroland.
  • Bizarre Alien Biology: To start with, they're composed mainly of a viscous liquid, and rely on cybernetic pods to do pretty much anything.
  • Book Ends: The film starts and ends with a character having eggs for or with breakfast: Hugh at the beginning, and Jimmy and Carl at the end.
    • Also, Judy saying "James Isaac Neutron!", first after Jimmy crashes his rocket at the beginning, and again at the end, only the second time, thanks to the Burping Soda she had been drinking, she gets interrupted by another burp.
  • Brainy Brunette: Jimmy is a male example, and quite possibly the smartest kid in Retroville.
  • Break the Cutie: It happens when everybody realizes that everything is Jimmy's fault and Goddard is taken from him. Later, Jimmy starts crying and feeling useless.
  • Brick Joke:
    • Burping Soda. In the beginning of the film, it's part of Jimmy's invention displays. It comes back in the last scene.
    • Blink and you'll miss the payoff of this one. At the beginning, Jimmy uses the toaster as a satellite to send a transmission to the Yolkians. When he later compares the note the Yolkians left to past notes his parents wrote, the first note says his mother went shopping for a new toaster. As part of a Freeze-Frame Bonus, the first thing on Judy’s to-do list (as seen when the alien plants the fake note on the fridge) is to buy a new toaster.
  • Bring My Brown Pants: An offscreen example implied by Carl when he, Jimmy and Sheen on on their way back from Retroland, with this quote: "Hey, my pants are almost dry."
  • Buffy Speak: Jimmy and Judy after Judy sends Jimmy to his room for setting the curtains on fire.
    Judy: OK, Jimmy. That's the last straw. We have told you time and time again about playing with rockets!
    Jimmy: But Mom, it's technically not a rocket. It's more of a jetpack-type thing!
    Judy: I don't care what type thing it is! You just climb those stair-type things, right now!
  • Captain Obvious:
    • When Hugh investigates the green light in the kitchen, expecting Jimmy to be the cause of it, and discovers an alien in there, what does he say? "You're not Jimmy."
    • After running his parents' alleged note through a handwriting analyzer, Jimmy concludes that the clearly printed block lettering doesn't match their handwriting.
  • Central Theme: Your parents may get on your nerves but they really are looking after you because they love you.
  • Chekhov's Boomerang: The Shrink Ray. First shown by Jimmy during show and tell, then Jimmy uses it to shrink himself so he can sneak out and go to Retroland, then he uses it again at the end to make himself the size of a planet and defeat Goobot.
  • Chekhov's Gag: Carl's gaffe during show and tell comes back as significant in the Yolkus arena when Carl blinds one of the aliens with his inhaler and the alien crashes into a wall.
  • Chekhov's Gun: When the children fight back against the aliens, they easily triumph with the appliances they were seen using earlier in the movie, which helps describe their personality.
    • Jimmy's blast gun, used in one of the early scenes by Jimmy to fire at an invention that makes his bed for him, is later used by one of the kids in the climax to take out one of the aliens.
    • Libby's Walkman. She is seen using it when she's first seen on the school bus, then, immediately after the above example with the blast gun, she takes out another alien with it.
    • Purple Flurp. Cindy drinks it during a tai chi session, Jimmy hopes there's some in the fridge the following morning, then Cindy drinks some in the climax before taking out one of the aliens with a martial arts move.
    • During Cindy's tai chi scene, Libby is trying to find a good ringtone for her cellphone. Jimmy later uses that same cellphone to call Goddard, as part of his escape plan.
    • Many of the rides at Retroland are used as spaceships by the kids.
    • As described above, Carl's inhaler.
    • The toaster.
    • While Goddard hides under Jimmy's blankets he records Jimmy's parents trying to comfort him when they won't let him go to Retroland, as they close the door they said they'll see him tomorrow. The aliens left a message on each house saying the parents are going to Florida for "an extended vacation". When Goddard played the message to Jimmy, he realizes something's off.
    • The designs for the prototype fly cycle for Goddard Jimmy shows to Carl at school. Jimmy first tests the fly cycle during the climatic battle between Jimmy and King Goobot.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Goddard playing dead. Boom.
  • Child Prodigy: Jimmy, being about eleven years old and probably the smartest kid in Retroville. He even calls himself a genius.
  • Church Militant: The aliens are religious fanatics.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Jimmy, when trying to come up with a plan that will enable him, Carl, and Sheen to go to Retroland that evening, cites the influence of positive reinforcement as an idea, using feeding bananas to monkeys as an example. He says the same principle should work on their parents, but Carl remarks that his dad is allergic to bananas.
  • Contrived Coincidence: The tree that Jimmy crashed into on the way to school turns out to be the same one that Carl landed in after being ejected from Jimmy's rocket.
    • Jimmy, Sheen, and Carl wish on a shooting star (actually a departing alien spaceship) for no more parents on the very night the parents are abducted. The next morning, they realize their wish came true.
    • Carl lampshades this when it appears that all the other kids got the same note, being rather bewildered by it.
      Carl: (stammering) Wh-, d-did they all go to Florida?
  • Cover Innocent Eyes and Ears: Just eyes in this case. When Carl reunites with his parents on the ship back to Earth and his father starts dancing, Carl's mother puts her hand over his eyes.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Carl. He's a bit dim and quite the Cowardly Sidekick to Jimmy, but he manages to hold his own in the Yolkus arena when he fends some of the aliens off with his inhaler (thanks to Jimmy giving him the idea).
  • Death Glare: Jimmy to Goobot after Goobot mocks Jimmy's size. Happens twice. The second time it happens, Jimmy's the size of a planet and Goobot's ship nearly crashes into him.
  • Department of Redundancy Department: "As the King's royal assistant, I am the official checker of the official things to be checked!"
  • Didn't Think This Through: Jimmy's transmission to the aliens was a bad idea because he had no idea of the nature of the aliens who would pick it up. The other kids call him out on it by asking if his parents warned him about talking to strangers.
    • Crossing over with Be Careful What You Wish For (though they weren't prepared for what happened anyway), as the kids have a lot of fun without their parents, but come the next day, it's pretty clear their wish for freedom has backfired on them.
  • Disappeared Dad: Nick. When the kids are reunited with their parents at the end, only Nick's mother is present.
  • The Ditz: Ooblar, very much so. In his first scene he attempts to talk to a piece of toast, asking where its leader is. Even when he's told he's talking to a piece of toast, he continues doing it, due to not knowing what toast is.
    • Due to his being a Bumbling Dad, Hugh has traces of this too.
    • Sheen also counts as this.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Jimmy waking up on the front steps of the school and saying "Oh, my head, what a night" and his later queasiness sounds and looks very reminiscent of an adult waking up with a hangover after a night of heavy drinking.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • In the animation department: Cindy's hair; pigtails in the movie, ponytail in the series that came after. All the kids had different character designs. Jimmy wore shorts and loafers instead of sneakers and jeans, Carl wore suspenders, and Sheen had collars on the end of his sleeves.
    • Goddard also talks while giving Jimmy options, though his abilities do depend on the writer.
    • Jimmy seems to be closer friends with Carl than Sheen, as he frequently excludes Sheen from activities like sending the toaster into space or going to the Yolkians' planet.
    • Several characters have significantly different personalities than what they have in the TV series:
      • Cindy (and, by extension, Libby) is way nicer and more supportive to Jimmy than she ever is in the show.
      • Hugh has quite a few mature moments in which he acts more like a caring father and husband than the bumbling comic relief known from the TV series.
      • Nick is pretty much just a Jerkass whose solution to all problems involves punching the crap out of whoever's in the way, as opposed to him from the show, where he is just a harmless self-obsessed "cool kid" that's difficult to be taken seriously and a Big Brother Mentor to Jimmy.
      • Sheen is smarter and less hyperactive than he is in the TV series and his own (which is saying a lot).
      • Jimmy, Carl, Sheen, Cindy, Libby and Nick are all True Companions in the movie, but in the show, it takes them time to revert back to this.
    • Jimmy's Brain Blasts are done slightly differently in the movie than in the series; he says "Think... THINK..." and "Brain blast!" in his mind instead of out loud, and when we see inside Jimmy's brain the thoughts all quickly float past at once instead of showing one thought at a time.
  • Elaborate Underground Base: Jimmy has his lab underneath the house, accessed through a tube in the clubhouse in the back yard, and apparently can also be accessed through the living room's fireplace. Whether his parents know about it or not is unclear.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Jimmy has three moments early on that establish him: he is introduced referring to the fighter jets sent up to approach his rocket as "nice antiques", straight up revealing his high intelligence, confidence and a hint of his arrogance. A little later he is shown arguing with Cindy about her school report and pointing out flaws with it, and then compliments Carl's childish drawing of a frog and being somewhat modest about his blueprints for Goddard's second fly-cycle prototype.
    • Cindy's first line has her calling Jimmy "Nerdtron" and disparaging his bubblegum invention he used to catch up to the school bus, immediately revealing her dislike of him and his inventions.
    • Sheen is introduced showing an Ultra Lord figure in show-and-tell for the seventh week in a row, straight up revealing his obsession with the character.
    • King Goobot is introduced devouring his pet alien while Ooblar is introduced being overly excited about wanting to see a crew member get spaced and having no idea what toast is.
  • Extremely Protective Child: All the kids in Retroville when they find out that their parents had been abducted by aliens. They built rockets to travel across the galaxy to confront a society of advanced aliens to save their parents from being sacrificed to a giant chicken.
  • "Eureka!" Moment:
    • Jimmy has two, where the camera zooms through his ear into his brain as he tries to think of an idea, and goes "Brain blast!" when he gets one of these.
    • He gets another one in the cell thanks to Nick, which gives him the idea to free Goddard and use him to get out of the cell.
  • "Everybody Laughs" Ending: Jimmy, Carl, Hugh and Judy all laugh after Jimmy's parents drink the burping soda.
  • Exact Words: Jimmy tries to invoke this with his mother when she scolds him for playing with rockets (after one of the ones in his rucksack set fire to the curtains), saying that it's not a rocket, it's more of a jetpack-type thing. It doesn't work.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: Jimmy realises mid-sentence that Judy won't let him go to Retroland.
  • Fainting: Sheen at Retroland after Ultra Lord gives him the Ultra Mask.
  • Faint in Shock: Carl faints at a Jump Scare in Nick's campfire story.
  • Fat and Skinny: Carl is the Fat to both Sheen and Jimmy's Skinny. He is indubitably the fattest kid in Retroville.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Goobot pauses Jimmy's satellite transmission on an image of Judy and Hugh and saying, "They look delicious" sets up how the parents are going to be abducted and then uses as sacrifices for Poultra.
    • A poster in Cindy's room for the Space Girls subtly sets up the kids going into space to rescue their parents.
    • As the kids in their rockets see the sun before the meteor shower, Jimmy and Cindy briefly share a smile before each of them turn away.
  • For Want of a Nail: The main plot of the film basically happens because of Jimmy wanting to make contact with aliens.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus: Looking carefully when Jimmy is in the bubble bouncing over the school bus will reveal the driver has a shaved head and wearing an eye patch.
    • Judy's to-do list can be seen on the fridge when the alien plants the fake note on it, and it reads "Things To Do: Buy new toaster, fix car, hair apt., pick up dry cleaning".
  • Full-Name Ultimatum: Two of them, both from Judy to Jimmy, one at the beginning and one at the end, each with Judy exclaiming, "James Isaac Neutron!", only the second is interrupted by a burp.
  • Funny Background Event: While watching Jimmy's message, Ooblar absentmindedly munches on the piece of toast he had enthusiastically greeted earlier in the scene, getting a rather disturbed look from King Goobot in the process.
  • Girls Have Cooties: Jimmy, Sheen, and Carl all exhibit this sentiment from time to time. Especially Jimmy, who engineers a man-eating plant to target girls with pigtails (Well, mainly Cindy, anyway).
  • Gone Horribly Right: All Jimmy wanted to do at the start of the film was to make contact with an advanced alien civilization. He succeeded, all right. Turns out the aliens picked up the satellite and abducted every parent in Retroville to use them as sacrifices for Poultra. Oops.
  • Good Bad Bugs: In-Universe example. Goddard's "Play Dead" mode, which is a Self-Destruct Mechanism. Although fixing that was on Jimmy's to-do list, he decided to "make that bug a feature" after it helped bust the kids out of the dungeon.
  • Good Thing You Can Heal: Downplayed: When told to play dead, Goddard blows up. Luckily, he reforms immediately after.
  • Good-Times Montage: One when Jimmy, Carl and Sheen are having fun at Retroland, and again when everyone enjoys a day without parents.
  • Gosh Darn It to Heck!:
    • Ooblar has a moment of this after his shell breaks.
    Ooblar: Oh, poo!
    • One of the rides at Retroland is called "Bat Out of Heck".
  • Go to Your Room!: Judy invokes the trope after Jimmy inadvertently sets fire to the living room curtains with the jetpack rocket in his school bag.
  • He's Back!: When everyone is locked in the dungeon, Jimmy is kicking himself over causing this whole ordeal, to the point where he's crying. It takes a pep talk from Cindy and Nick mentioning not getting their One Phone Call to make Jimmy formulate their escape.
  • Heroes Gone Fishing: Cindy's t'ai chi session, on the same night as Jimmy, Carl, Sheen and Nick going to Retroland.
  • Hidden Heart of Gold: After Goddard busts down the dungeon door and Jimmy frees the others, Cindy tells Jimmy it won't be pretty if he tells anyone she was nice to him.
    Cindy: If you ever tell anyone I was nice to you... (points to the guard Goddard exploded) you'll wind up looking like that guy.
  • Hollywood Genetics: Cindy has blonde hair, yet her mother has black hair and her father has brown hair.
  • Human Shield: Well, Alien Shield. Goobot uses Ooblar to protect himself when Poultra topples towards them.
  • "I Can't Look!" Gesture: When Jimmy gets an Oh, Crap! when he shrinks himself and sees the Shrink Ray is going to land on him, Goddard covers his eyes with his ears.
  • Inelegant Blubbering: During the kids' news report about the aftermath of the shenanigans the kids had without their parents around, Courtney cracks and says she misses her mother too, before dissolving into this.
  • Innocently Insensitive: Carl tries to reassure Jimmy as they head out of class about his malfunctioning Shrink Ray by telling him, "I like your useless Shrink Ray, Jimmy" and then this on the way home from school, "You know, some of the greatest inventors of all time started as complete hopeless failures too."
  • Internal Reveal: The audience sees firsthand the parents of Retroville being abducted by the aliens. Jimmy (and by extension, everyone else) doesn't find out until he sees Goddard's recorded message two days later.
  • Is This Thing Still On?: The nerdy girl reporting the sick and injured kids in town was picking her nose when she realize the camera is back on her.
  • I Want My Mommy!: The reactions to all the kids in the news report.
  • Jerkass: Nick, though he does improve following the kidnapping of the children's parents.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Lampshaded by Jimmy when Nick points out that there's only one opening night at Retroland and that every kid who cared would be there.
    Jimmy: "Nick has a point. There is only one opening night."
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Cindy. Turns out her utter dislike of Jimmy was because, until he showed up in school, she was the smartest student in the class.
  • Jump Scare: An In-Universe one as Nick is telling the campfire story on the asteroid. As Nick builds up the story, another boy suddenly jumps up with a scary face and making a monster noise, freaking everyone out.
  • Kick the Dog:
    • In his opening scene, King Goobot devours an adorable alien. In his second scene, he gets a Bad Boss moment. Then there are the times he mocks Jimmy's size and keeps rubbing in how Jimmy inadvertantly helped the Yolkians find the Earth.
    • Ooblar later tries to do the same to Goddard. He fails miserably.
  • The Lancer: Carl is this to Jimmy, being more dopey and cowardly than him.
  • Large Ham: Both King Goobot and Ooblar have their moments. "HELLO, TOAST!"
  • Let Me Get This Straight...: Carl's thoughts on Jimmy's plan to save the parents:
    Carl: Okay, so, uh, me, you and a dog are gonna battle an alien civilization, right, by ourselves?
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: Jimmy tells Sheen, as part of the escape from Yolkus, that he (Sheen) has to commandeer an airship and get it to the arena as fast as possible. Sheen starts protesting, but Jimmy says to him, "Sheen, ask yourself, what would Ultra Lord do?" Sheen immediately pulls one of these, and not only manages to commandeer the ship, but when he arrives in the arena, he whacks Poultra on the head with it.
  • Like Father, Like Son:
    • Hugh remarks to Judy that when he was a kid, he was grounded for a week and wasn't allowed to attend his best friend's bachelor party, so he sneaked out so he could attend anyway. At that moment, Jimmy is grounded and in the process of sneaking out so he can go to Retroland despite having been told not to. Judy even asks Hugh if he thinks Jimmy will get the same idea.
    Hugh: Oh, no, no, no, no. Besides, how's he gonna sneak out? It's not like he can just walk right out the front door! (unknowingly kicks the shrunken Jimmy across the room and right through the mail slot)
    Judy: That's true.
    • As we see at the end, Carl bears more than a passing resemblance to his father, right down to the round glasses and red hair.
    • Sheen and his dad also turn out to be this when they reunite on the way back to Earth (they even have the same Ultra Lord mask).
    Sheen: Ultra Dad!
    Sheen's Dad: Ultra Son!
  • Limited Wardrobe: As seen when Jimmy is getting dressed in his room, his wardrobe consists entirely of the same red shirts and blue pants.
  • Logo Joke: When the Nickelodeon Movies logo appears at the beginning, the two orange "Nickelodeon" parts of the logo bounce into frame, then Goddard appears, and when the blue "Movies" part of the logo doesn't appear, Goddard creates one with a device from his back before turning to face the camera.
  • Malicious Misnaming: Cindy sarcastically calls Jimmy "Nerdtron" the first time she appears, as part of her Establishing Character Moment.
  • Meaningful Name:
    • James Isaac "Jimmy" Neutron is not surprisingly, interested in science. His name is derived from two famous scientists Isaac Newton, and perhaps more importantly James Chadwick, who discovered neutron atoms.
    • Sheen Estevez; a Shout-Out to Martin/Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez.
    • Not to mention Retroville. Even the science fiction aspects of the movie have a Raygun Gothic feel.
  • Metaphorgotten: When Hugh tries to dissuade Jimmy from going to the Retroland grand opening on a school night, we get this exchange:
    Jimmy: But Dad, all my friends are gonna be there!
    Hugh: I know, son, but if all your friends were named Cliff, would you jump off them?
  • Missing Mom: Sheen. Word of God says his mother died when he was young - they don't say her cause of death, however. Fits also with Early-Installment Weirdness: Sheen's mom is clearly present in the end scene with Sheen's dad. His dad also displays a very different attitude from his few appearances later in the series (he's much... more fatherly than he later was shown to be.) She just suffered Chuck Cunningham Syndrome that was retroactively remade into her having died when Sheen was little.
  • Mood Whiplash: The transition from the scene where the parents are abducted by the Yolkians to Jimmy, Carl and Sheen laughing as they make their way home from Retroland.
  • Nepotism: Though it's not often stated, it's likely the only reason Ooblar got a job as Goobot's assistant is because he's his brother. Of course, since the Yolkian society is a monarchy it is somewhat justified. Still it is somewhat strange to give him such a high position considering Goobot seems to not have very much affection for his bumbling sibling.
  • Nerds Are Naïve: Jimmy is a child prodigy who loves and excels at science... and still believes in cooties. Carl, a Sickly Neurotic Geek, is just as clueless and also believes in cooties.
  • Never Trust a Trailer:
    • How the Yolkians got the idea to abduct the parents was entirely different in the trailer. Not only did it show the Yolkians hatching the idea from spying on Hugh and Judy, instead of Jimmy's satellite message, another Yolkian shouts "The search is over!", instead of King Goobot.
    • In the trailer, when Jimmy unveils his Shrink Ray during show and tell, Cindy asks, “Will it work on your big head?”, whereas in the film, she says instead, “What’s the matter, Neutron? Aren’t you short enough already?”
    • The teaser trailer contains many scenes not in the final movie, including a couple of clips from the Runaway Rocketboy pilot and some scenes that would later be remade as part of "Jimmy Neutron" shorts airing on Nickelodeon to promote the movie (most notably Jimmy showing Goddard to Cindy at the park with Goddard "playing dead," and a bit where squirrels attack Jimmy.)
  • Newscaster Cameo: A variant: Entertainment Tonight hosts Bob Goen and Mary Hart voice "Yolkian Tonight" anchors, commenting on the sacrifices to Poultra.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Jimmy sending the aliens information about Earth against his parents' orders is a very bad idea.
  • Oh, Crap!: A fair bit of it.
    • Jimmy at the start when his ship's pulse rockets fail and the engine stops working.
    • Miss Fowl after being shrunk and seeing the worm emerge from the apple on her desk.
    • Jimmy gets one after his rocket sets the curtains on fire.
    • Jimmy when, after he shrinks himself, sees the Shrink Ray is going to land on him.
    • Jimmy, Carl and Sheen get one on the Bat Outta Heck! ride at Retroland before plummeting into darkness.
    • Jimmy and Carl when confronted about the missing parents (with flaming torches, for Pete's sake!). Carl's reaction is very funny.
    • Jimmy after his satellite is picked up and the aliens reveal he is the reason the parents were located and are going to be sacrificed. Oops.
    • Ooblar has one after Jimmy, through Goddard's speaker, tricks him into thinking Goddard is going to explode.
    • Nick gets quite a funny one in the arena after Poultra's eyes hatch out of the egg.
    • Goobot gets one after Jimmy uses The Shrink Ray on himself to make himself the size of a planet.
  • One Phone Call: Referenced by Nick when everyone is in the dungeon, which gives Jimmy an idea.
  • Parental Abandonment: Discussed. Sheen says on the way home from Retroland it would be great if their parents all disappeared for a while. Later, Jimmy wonders aloud what type of parents would just abandon their children, without even saying goodbye. A few minutes later, he learns the parents didn't abandon them at all, they were abducted by the Yolkians.
  • Parents as People: Jimmy's parents don't really know how to discipline a child that's basically a Mad Scientist in elementary school, but Judy reading a book titled Unwrapping Your Gifted Child shows that they're at least trying to do it right.
    Judy: It says here we should encourage Jimmy without...overindulging him.
    Hugh: OK...what does it say about rockets?
  • Parents in Distress: The children of Retroville stage a rescue attempt by traveling into space.
  • Percussive Maintenance: Jimmy's Shrink Ray fails to work the first time Jimmy tries to use it during show-and-tell. As he and Carl leave class, Carl pats Jimmy's bag (right where the Shrink Ray is) while reassuring him, then Jimmy jostles his bag on his shoulder. Only then does the Shrink Ray work... on the unsuspecting Miss Fowl.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • Rather than being condescending, Jimmy is very nice to the rather dopey Carl and nerdy Sheen, not being a wet blanket when Carl shows him a picture of a frog or talks about wishing on a star.
    • Also, Cindy comforting Jimmy after all the kids blame him because he caused their parents to get kidnapped.
    • Nick at the end gives Jimmy a genuine congratulations for rescuing the parents and he's more than happy to be reunited with his mother.
  • Pie in the Face: First Carl, then Jimmy and Sheen, receive one each at the Candy Bar.
  • Poke the Poodle: How some of the kids take advantage of there being no parents around. Examples:
    • One boy wears mismatched clothing and gleefully sings about it.
    • A girl opens her kitchen fridge to let out the cold.
    • A boy tries running up the down escalator in the shopping mall.
    • Sheen urinates in the shower.
  • Plot Hole:
    • Towards the end, King Goobot complains to Ooblar that the humans don't look very appetizing. But wasn't it Goobot's idea to use the humans as a food supply for their chicken god Poultra? Goobot even said "They look delicious!" when glaring at Jimmy's parents in a very good close-up pic.
    • At the beginning, Jimmy and Carl (who has asthma) are breathing just fine in outer space on Jimmy's made-from-scratch prototype rocket. But the U.S. Air Force jets who are policing the atmosphere need oxygen suppliers, and in real life USAF pilots complain of short to long-term hypoxia even with these technologies that help them breathe.note 
  • Pre-Asskicking One-Liner: Jimmy gets one when he's about to fly through the Yolkian sun, with the Yolkians right behind him.
    Jimmy: OK, who wants fried chicken?!
  • Product Placement: One of the channels Hugh Neutron flips through while conferring with Judy on Jimmy's grounding is Viacom-owned TV Land, complete with the network's iconic three-note jingle.
  • Pulling the Thread: Jimmy's suspicions about the notes supposedly left by the parents are first raised when Goddard's record of his parents has Judy promising to 'see [him] in the morning'. Why would she say that if they weren't going to even be there?
  • Punny Name: Ms. Fowl has a few bird-like attributes, particularly her beak-like nose and random squawking sounds in her speech.
  • Red Is Heroic: Jimmy wears a red shirt and is the film's protagonist, as well as the leader of the kids when they head to Yolkus to rescue their parents.
  • Rummage Fail: Judy refuses to let Jimmy go to Retroland on account of it being a school night, so Jimmy tries rummaging in his bag for someone else that could change her mind, only to accidentally pull out one of his jetpack rockets and cause himself to go flying around the living room.
  • Schmuck Bait: "Hmm, I don't remember buying this brand of soda..."
  • Science Hero: Jimmy, who solves the problems his inventions create.
  • Sci-Fi Writers Have No Sense of Scale: More than one instance.
    • The toaster Jimmy sends into space to contact alien life forms is just barely given enough oomph not to fall back to Earth. This should put it in a low Earth orbit or, at best, send it out on a long slow trajectory into interplanetary (but not interstellar) space. Maybe in a few months it might get as far away as Mars. Yet it's discovered by an alien deep space fleet that was so far away from Earth they had no way to detect Earth on their own.
    • Jimmy cobbles together a fleet of spacecraft using "fusion engines" and "pulse rockets" with which to fly to the alien homeworld. The alien homeworld is three million light-years away. Yet they're able to make the trip in a couple of days.
    • Jimmy uses his machine to grow "Planet Sized" in the end of the movie, but in fact he becomes only a few times larger than the alien spaceship.
  • Screams Like a Little Girl:
    • Nick after seeing Poultra.
    • Carl when he learns there is an angry mob coming at him and Jimmy.
  • Science Is Good: The show is about Jimmy, a genius who uses science, his brain and all of his inventions to solve everyday problems. While he does sometimes make a few mistakes, overall science is portrayed positively.
  • Self-Destruct Mechanism: Goddard has one, though he can reassemble himself. Jimmy also pretends that Goddard is about to self-destruct in a "50 megaton blast" in order to scare away Goddard's captor.
  • Sequel Hook: Odd version used in one of the audio tracks. Leave it Up to Me includes half a verse about it, complete with the rather blatant lyrics:
    Aaron Carter: "Big people listen up, relax now, we're equal; and if the money's right then we might make a sequel."
  • Shout-Out:
    • Nick describes The Blair Witch Project to the rest of the kids at the camp on the asteroid.
    • The first thing Jimmy does in his alien transmission is the Vulcan salute.
    • The first few seconds of the official trailer are a huge one to Top Gun, down to using "Danger Zone".
    • In the summer of 2007, Nickelodeon aired a special version of the movie, with Jimmy, Sheen, and Carl riffing on the movie as an extended reference to MST3K, complete with "Shadowrama" versions of the characters.
  • Show-and-Tell Antics: The first scene at Jimmy's school takes place on show-and-tell day. Sheen shows off one of his Ultra Lord figures, Carl shows his inhaler, and Jimmy his shrink ray.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: "Well, I may be small, but I've got a big brain!" He then makes himself the size of a planet with the Shrink Ray and blows Goobot's ship into an asteroid.
  • Smart Animal, Average Human: Jimmy Neutron and his robotic dog, Goddard. Played With because although Jimmy himself built Goddard, Jimmy is only a kid and can make foolish decisions sometimes. Goddard is wise and is usually the voice of reason to Jimmy by giving him suggestions on what he should do and feels ashamed when Jimmy makes bad decisions.
  • The Smart Guy: Jimmy is very much this, having created everything in his own underground lab under his house, probably having built the lab himself in the first place, and comes up with many plans in the film himself. However, despite his intelligence, he is still eleven years old and sometimes makes bad decisions.
  • Smart People Wear Glasses: Inverted. Hugh and Carl wear glasses, but both are a bit dimwitted. Carl does at least get a Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass moment later.
  • Sneaking Out at Night: Jimmy, Carl, Nick and Sheen sneak out of their houses during the nighttime to go to the opening night of the Retroland theme park.
  • So Proud of You: At the end, Judy and Hugh tell Jimmy that having a genius for a son isn't always easy, but it's always interesting, and it makes them both very proud of him.
  • Stag Party: Hugh tells Judy how he wasn't allowed to go to one for his best friend when he was younger because he was grounded for a week. He snuck out and attended anyway, much like Jimmy not being allowed to go to Retroland on account of it being a school night.
  • Steam Never Dies: To make a diamond for his mother, Jimmy Neutron takes a lump of coal from a train conveniently powered by an old-style steam locomotive (despite many late 90s-early 2000s technologies being omnipresent), and we see he's even friends with Gus, the train engineer.
  • Suddenly Shouting: Nick does this twice in the cell when talking to Sheen regarding Ultra Lord.
    Nick: "Maybe sit on a shelf, because he's a DOLL!"
    Nick: "That's pretty much the STUPIDEST THING I EVER HEARD!"
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome:
    • Jimmy, Carl and Sheen suspect that their parents won't allow them to go to Retroland because it's a school night (and probably also because they'll be three preteen boys on their own at night). They turn out to be right.
    • At first, all the kids of Retroville are thrilled that there are no parents around to enforce the rules and party like there was no tomorrow, but by the following day, everyone soon starts to realize just how much they need their parents to support their lives and care for them, when injuries, stomachaches and other problems start to arise, with kids starting to run around crying for their parents.
    Kid: I don't know how to make lunch!
  • Take Off Every Zig: When the kids take off in their space ships crafted from amusement park rides.
  • Tap on the Head: Sheen uses the escape ship to whack Poultra on the head before landing the ship in the arena.
  • Tempting Fate: As Jimmy is in the bubblegum bubble bouncing next to the school bus, he tells his classmates that "Bubble travel is the way of the future!", only to immediately hit a tree, burst the bubble and land in a trash can.
  • This Is Gonna Suck:
    • Jimmy in the beginning warns Goddard to fasten his seat belt because they'll be making a crash landing.
    • And again by Jimmy when, after crashing into the chimney (again), most of it falls over on to the car in the driveway.
  • Thrown Out the Airlock: Goobot has one of his Mooks "spaced" out of the ship for showing up in his throne unannounced, despite the fact that he was just showing the King the toaster satellite he found.
  • Tied-Together-Shoelace Trip: Jimmy's Shoe-Bot ties Jimmy's shoelaces together instead of tying them properly, so that when Jimmy gets up after seeing the bus pull up outside, he falls over, sees his laces have been tied together, and glares at the Shoe-Bot, which shrugs.
  • To Serve Man: The Yolkians kidnap the parents and plan to feed them to their god, Poultra.
  • Tsundere: Cindy. In the original movie she explains that she only became one to Jimmy, because she was jealous of his better grades and hated his tendency to show off his intelligence on every given occasion.
  • Underwear Flag: After all of the adults have been kidnapped by the Yolkians, the kids have fun for the entire day, including hanging up a pair of briefs on the flagpole and saluting it.
  • Unusually Uninteresting Sight: Hugh has one after Jimmy crashes on the roof at the start.
    Hugh: Well, what do you know? The chimney fell off again.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: While Jimmy wasn't exactly unwitting (he knew he had received a transmission from space and was trying to respond), he had no idea that the simple picture of his parents he displayed in his response video would look to the Yolkians like the perfect living sacrifices to their chicken god.
  • Villain Reveals the Secret: King Goobot shows Jimmy and his friends that they knew about Earth by showing them Jimmy's recorded message broadcast on an alien news program, surprising the kids and especially Jimmy himself, who never knew said message got picked up somewhere.
  • Visual Pun: Jimmy tells his classmates on the way to school (while bouncing inside his bubblegum bubble) that he's sure people will be travelling in bubbles in the future, only for it to go wrong when he hits a tree and the bubble bursts. In other words, it literally burst his bubble.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: During the montage of Jimmy, Carl and Sheen visiting Retroland on opening night, Carl vomits while riding the aptly-named Octo-Puke.
  • We Will Meet Again: After giant Jimmy blows Goobot's ship into an asteroid, Goobot says, "You've not seen the last of us, Jimmy Neutron!" Jimmy then rides Goddard over Goobot, roasting his edges and turning him sunny-side up, as Ooblar points out.
  • Wham Line: In-Universe, due to Internal Reveal. "Good night, Jimmy. Sweet dreams. We'll see you in the morning." This is when Jimmy realizes everyone's parents didn't actually go to Florida.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: How the other kids reacted when Jimmy's role in the Yokians helping make contact with Earth is exposed.
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: Averted. Retroville is located in Texas, where director and co-writer John A. Davis resides.
  • Worm in an Apple: An apparently carnivorous worm lives in the apple on Mrs. Fowl's desk, which becomes a bit of a problem when she accidentally gets hit by Jimmy's shrink ray. The Post-Credits Scene shows that she managed to tame it, named it "Mr. Wiggles", and now uses it as her fearless steed.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: After Jimmy and the kids get captured, Jimmy suffers a Heroic BSoD upon realizing it's his fault the Yolkians made contact with Earth. To get him to help them escape, Cindy tries to cheer him up in her own way and spills some of her own insecurities in the process.
    Cindy: Don't be so hard on yourself. We'll get out of this. [Jimmy sniffles] O-okay, so you made a mistake. Beating yourself up isn't going to fix anything. You know, I was the smartest kid in school until you came along. And, I admit you know more about some things than I do. But, I know one thing that you don't seem to get, and that's that we're never getting out of here without you! So why don't you buck up, mister, and put that big brain of yours back to work. Nick can handle the fighting stuff, but first we have to get out of this cell!
    Jimmy: Cindy? Why... why are you being so nice to me?
    Cindy: Because there's a bunch of kids in here that need you. And... I do too.

Nick: Yeah, I can deal with that. I never got a ninety-five in my life.


Video Example(s):


Sea Minus

Jimmy teleports the house under the ocean so he can do research for an oceanography report. Hilarity ensues.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (6 votes)

Example of:

Main / OpeningTheFloodGates

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