- Alternate Character Interpretation: Animus. Was he really a just Manipulative Bastard who only pretended to care for Sonya before finally showing his true colors near the end? Or did he genuinely start Becoming the Mask until an opportunity to regain his original form showed itself?
- Anti-Climax Boss: Zash. After being built up as the main villain (Animus notwitshtanding), he's ultimate defeated by a single kick from Lucy and Capricorn before he runs away. He's eventually disintegrated by the Dragon Cry without ever having a single proper fight.
- Author's Saving Throw:
- While Natsu's transformation into E.N.D. lasted for about as long as his dragonized form in the film, Animus's confirmation at the end that the two transformations are connected helped provide at least a little more satisfaction for those who wanted to see E.N.D. in action, especially since he utterly thrashes one of the very dragons Natsu could hardly hold a candle to before the second time skip.
- Hiro regretted not being able to show anything more than a short speech detailing Acnologia's past in the manga, so he used his original plans in The Stinger, painting Acnologia as more of a Fallen Anti-Hero than the shallow Generic Doomsday Villain he ultimately came across as in the manga.
- Complete Monster: Zash Caine was once a wizard of Fiore who fled to Stella after a failed coup. He went into the service of King Animus and then proceeded to kill his own allies to prove himself. In the present day, Zash uses mind control to force the White Tiger squadron to kill each other in order to steal the Dragon Cry. Zash shows no hesitation in trying to kill the Fairy Tail wizards, and is even willing to mind control others to do so. It is revealed that Zash keeps female prisoners to draw blood from to power his own magic, and takes Lucy captive in an attempt to draw blood from her. Towards the end, Zash betrays Animus and takes the Dragon Cry for himself. He proceeds to force Animus to go on a rampage and unseals the Quartum Army to eliminate the Fairy Tail wizards. He then activates the Dragon Cry in an attempt to destroy all of Fiore out of revenge for his exile, only failing when the power proves too much and incinerates him.
- Fridge Brilliance: Natsu surviving getting impaled through the chest might seem like a huge Ass Pull, but it actually seems to hold more water when Animus realizes he is E.N.D., since the Etherious tend to be quite tricky to kill. It also helps that Natsu has blatantly survived other fatal situations that have puzzled his friends and enemies, which include getting shot in the mouth in the Tower of Heaven arc.
- Jerkass Woobie: Animus. Sure, he didn't mind wiping out humanity and joined dragons like Zirconis to kill little girls like Sonya, but he genuinely seemed sad to part from her at the end, and like he really wanted to make a go at peace with humans before losing himself to hatred. However, given that his kindness was pretty much only mentioned by Sonya, we won't know just how much of this was genuine.
- Just Here for Godzilla: Most viewers watched this movie just for Natsu's and possibly other dragon slayers' dragon forms.
- Moral Event Horizon: Zash has pretty much no problems with crossing this in the first few minutes by forcing the White Tiger squadron to kill each other while he watches and seems to enjoy it.
- Narm: Fairy Tail has always had plenty of Fanservice, but its Up to Eleven here. The Gainaxing is especially ridiculous when Lucy's boobs bounce when she so much as moves a muscle, and bounces in directions not anatomically possible.
- One-Scene Wonder: Acnologia, Zeref, Invel, and Brandish all appear for about a minute of screentime in The Stinger, yet they own every single second. Helped by the fact that it's essentially a confirmation of the final season of the anime and the coming Alvarez Empire arc.
- Shocking Swerve: The Quartum Soldiers. They're not mentioned beyond a possible nebulous "dark magic" that Zash uses, and appear just in time to make the fight more dangerous for Fairy Tail. The twist? They're fourth-generation dragon slayers.
- Signature Scene:
- The shot of Natsu dragonizing from the trailers and mostly promoted concept image, even if the dragonized Natsu is only a One-Scene Wonder.
- Natsu sharing Stella's gorgeous starfield with Lucy, which was the film's other concept image.
- Woolseyism: While the concept of Juvia's "Gray Sensor" is funny enough, the English dub's decision to call it the "Gray-dar" just brings it to a whole new level.
YMMV / Fairy Tail: Dragon Cry