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  • Accidental Innuendo: The teaser trailer included the scene where Mary looks at her reflection in the mirror, where she walks off but her reflection stays in the mirror and watches Mary walk off. Quite a few people noted the reflection appeared to be checking out Mary's bum.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • Emily Blunt knew she could never live up to Julie Andrews' Mary, so rather than try to emulate that Mary, she based her interpretation of Mary off Rosalind Russell's sharp-witted journalist character from His Girl Friday and the more stern and vain nanny found in P.L. Travers' original book.
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    • Is Michael a father trying to do his best fallen on hard times, or a useless nincompoop who's responsible for all his own suffering?
      • He is a failed artist who is a part-time teller at his father's bank. Despite his debts and lack of sufficient funds even for groceries, he does not attempt to get more money through normal means.
      • He took out a loan just to pay the bills. Everyone knows this is a vicious cycle. George Banks would certainly have passed such basic financial information on to his son.
      • He DREW a family portrait on his father's stock certificates. After converting for inflation, those £20,000 of shares would be worth ~£1.2 million today. He should have been collecting dividends if nothing else.
      • He was holding the certificate in his hands in one of the early scenes, but didn't check on the back of the paper, despite knowing his habit of drawing on the back of papers.
      • To be fair to Michael, this was in the midst of the Great Depression, when money wasn't exactly easy to come by. His taking out a loan may have been simply out of desperation. Still no excuse for not keeping track of making payments, or for drawing on important financial papers.
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    • When Michael was yelling at his kids to hush up at the bank because he didn't believe them or was he doing that to prevent another incident like what happened when he complained that the bank was committing robbery?
    • Was Admiral Boom actually falling out of sync with his cannon timing? Or did Big Ben's maintenance crew slowly but surely speed up the clock through compounded human error?
    • Was mere money the only motivation for Wilkins hoping to seize the Banks house? Or did he have a more personal motivation, such as retribution for the "tuppence" incident that sent the whole bank in hot water decades ago?
  • Awesome Art:
    • The hand-drawn animated sequence by Duncan Studios has the same appealing style as the animated scene in the original film, which has gotten many animation fans excited.
    • During the opening credits, there is a montage of matte paintings very reminiscent of the sets from the original painted by Disney Legend Peter Ellenshaw. The closing credits even acknowledge it as such.
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  • Anvilicious: About how banks are good and how bad apples (supposedly) do not represent true bank interests at all. Ironically too, since banks are evil in the original.
  • Award Snub:
    • The film won none of its Golden Globe nominations - Blunt lost to Olivia Colman from The Favourite, and the film itself lost Best Musical or Comedy to Green Book.
    • Blunt was not nominated at the Oscars, continuing an unfortunate trend of her constantly getting snubbed by the Academy.note  The film itself missed out on Best Picture and Best Visual Effects nominations. It didn't win the awards it was nominated for either, losing Best Original Score, Costume Design, and Production Design to Black Panther (2018) and Best Original Song to A Star Is Born
  • "Common Knowledge": No, the hand-drawn animation segments were not animated by Disney themselves as their PR would lead you to believe. They were outsourced to Ken Duncan's animation studio (which to be fair is made up of many ex-Disney alumni).
  • Family-Unfriendly Aesop:
    • In a complete 180 degree from the original film’s message on giving to charity (“Feed the Birds”), it’s shown here that Michael giving the tuppence to his father, who later invested it, led to the tuppence being placed in a high-interest account which later grew enough to pay for the Banks’ home. Had he been charitable and given the tuppence to the bird lady, he wouldn’t have had an investment, and that investment wouldn’t be there to save his home and they would have to have used the shares.
    • The lesson the Banks children learn can be read as follows: you will sometimes encounter problems which are beyond your control or ability to solve, and any attempt to solve them will either do nothing or make the situation worse. The best you can do is try to stay positive and smile through it, and try to value the things you do have.
  • Franchise Original Sin: One frequent criticism at this movie is that it retreads too much of the first one. The Mary Poppins book series also tended to reuse old stories with new twists; for instance, every book except Mary Poppins From A to Z has the Banks children either meet a new quirky relative of Mary Poppins, or go on another misadventure with one they met before. Unlike the movies, the books never changed writers (or cast members, per the medium).
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Not so surprisingly given the setting and actors, the country where the film was the most successful outside the USA is the UK, where it managed to outgross Aquaman by a few dozen millions. Might cross a bit into Mexicans Love Speedy Gonzales.
  • Harsher in Hindsight: The sight of the shattered snowglobe in the trailer could have some unintentional Reality Subtext for viewers who know the story of when Disney almost lost the original snowglobe.note 
  • Heartwarming in Hindsight: Emily Blunt was afflicted with a stutter in her childhood, until a beloved teacher helped her overcome it by getting her into acting. Her playing Mary Poppins feels very much like paying that kindness forward by helping other children deal with their troubles.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight:
    • Unofficial theories about Mary Poppins as a Time Lady got more fuel with a former time-traveler playing her, and a woman now playing the Thirteenth Doctor.
    • The climax also revolves around Mary explicitly messing with time itself to save the day, albeit through relatively mundane means.
    • Mary Poppins' cousin from the book Mary Poppins Comes Back, Arthur Turvy, becomes forced to do the opposite of what he wants (eg, standing on his head when he wants to stand normally) from 3:00 to 6:00 PM on the second Monday of every month, because he was born (on the second Monday of an unspecified month) to a woman who wanted a daughter instead of a son. The writers of Mary Poppins Returns turned him female, by combining him with his wife, Topsy.
    • The appearance of Julie Andrews, the original Mary Poppins herself, as a sea creature in Aquaman became this since the two films opened two days apart domestically. Andrews refused a cameo in Mary Poppins Returns to not overshadow Emily Blunt... then Aquaman overshadowed Mary Poppins Returns at the box office.
    • The 54-year gap in between the premieres of Mary Poppins and Mary Poppins Returns matches that separating the first movie's debut (1964) and its setting (1910), and that separating the publications of PL Travers' first (1934's Mary Poppins) and last (1988's Mary Poppins and the House Next Door) Mary Poppins books.
    • Once again, a younger brother named Georgie goes chasing a runaway childhood toy, only to encounter a seemingly ordinary person in a seemingly impossible location who proves to be quite supernatural. Things turn out a bit better for this Georgie, thankfully.
    • Many jokes have been made regarding the fact that this is the second 2018 film to feature a prominent scene of Emily Blunt in a bathtub. It's much more pleasant in this film.
  • Idiot Plot: OK, it's perhaps understandable that Michael would forget about his loan payments in the wake of his wife's death, but there really isn't any good reason for using a stock certificate as drawing paper then forgetting about it — even more egregiously Michael was looking right at it, but put it down again without realizing what he was looking for was staring him right in the face.
  • It's the Same, Now It Sucks!: A lot of critical reviewers pointed out how much déjà vu the film suffers from, because the high number of similarities between the two films, right down to the similar sequence of events: first the kids clean up or get cleaned, then they enter an animated world, they sing a song with big words in it, Mary and the male friend sing and dance with animated characters, Mary sings to the children at night when the children are in bed, they meet an eccentric relative of Mary Poppins' while hanging out on the ceiling, the kids run away from the bank, get lost in the night, and run into the male friend, they have a rousing dance number with the male friend's mates, they sing a song about something being airborne, and Mary flies away.
  • Just Here for Godzilla:
    • Many Hamilton fans are excited for the film mainly because it features Lin Manuel Miranda.
    • A lot of animation fans are also excited for the film simply for featuring a sequence done in old school-style hand drawn animation.
    • Many also attended just to see Dick Van Dyke's cameo. Audiences have been known to applaud when he makes his long-awaited entrance.
  • Memetic Mutation:
  • Older Than They Think:
    • By the time Mary Poppins premiered in movie theaters, there already existed two book sequels to Mary Poppins, as well as two mid-quels.note  Walt Disney himself wanted to adapt the second book, as implied by the movie's final piece of spoken dialogue:
      Bert: Goodbye, Mary Poppins. Don't stay away too long.
    • Lin-Manuel Miranda replied to the thought of people asking how a rapper ended up in a Mary Poppins movie by reminding one reporter that Dick Van Dyke performed some rap in the first movie, when Bert rapidly rattled a roster of women he likes less than he does Mary Poppins.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Meryl Streep as Topsy, Dick Van Dyke as Mr. Dawes, Jr., and Angela Lansbury as the Balloon Lady.
  • Tough Act to Follow:
    • It's a sequel coming half a century after one of Disney's most beloved films, so comparisons are inevitable.
    • Averting this was the main reason Julie Andrews turned down a cameo; she didn't want to overshadow Emily Blunt.
  • Visual Effects of Awesome: The groundbreaking integration of live action and animation from the first film gets an upgrade allowing for the cartoon characters to move in three-dimensional space. Special attention should also go to Jack knocking over a stack of penguins and using them as a bridge.
  • Unfortunate Implications. Quite a lot of reviewers (examples) see the movie as pro-capitalist to a massive fault, downplaying systemic problems by rendering the main villain a rogue who works against the interests of the bank, whose eccentric CEO goes out of his way to explain why banks would never harm their clients.
  • The Woobie: Michael Banks. As a recently widowed father, with three young children, a day job clashing with his dreams and soon to lose his home, he looks perpetually lost. But he still manages to greet Mary Poppins cordially and remember her.

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