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  • Why is Jake afraid of that bird? The guy's got a friggin machine gun.
    • Hawks are a natural predator of snakes, and are extremely fast. Even if Jake managed to shoot Metalbeak, that doesn't mean she wouldn't have been able to get in a fatal stab with her beak or talons. It's also implied that this is just a very deeply ingrained phobia for him, since as soon as he thought a hawk was coming, he bolted for his life without even checking to make sure what it was first. Natural panic reflexes and all that.
    • Also, there are reports of bears surviving gunshot wounds. A bird is basically a flying bear to Jake.
    • Yet, judging by everyones actions, jake could have been killed by a freakin peashooter of a gun (rangos guns barrel fits inside jakes guns barrel) with single bullet apparently? And jake's about the same size as the hawk. Now that dont hold water. By all accounts a snake with reflexes as fast as lightning and gatling gun should have been able to turn that hawk into KFC with ease. I'm guessing reason lies somewhere in the fact that the Hawk acted like an animal (screeching, never speaking and apparently hunting others for food) and this natural behavior provoked primal fear in all of the "unnatural" cast.
    • On the couple of occasions Rango had the opportunity to shoot Jake, Rango had his revolver point-blank against Jake's head. That would have most certainly been fatal.
    • It doesn't matter: Rango can't bring himself to kill (at first). It's well foreshadowed: he has a clean shot at Metalbeak but changes his mind and shoots the licorice rope instead.
    • Phobias don't have to make sense anyway. Why do you think so many people are afraid of things like non-venomous spiders?
  • Why does Rango have a belly button? Chameleons are born from eggs and don't have an umbilical cord.
    • Some species of chameleons actually DO give birth live, although not the kind Rango appears to be.
    • He shows the villagers the bellybutton and treats it like a scar with a heroic story behind it. Probably a good example of Fridge Logic.
    • Maybe it really is a scar of a wound from a past (though probably not-so-heroic) incident. It just looks like a navel due to its position and appearance.
    • Worse than that is the fact that all adult females have breasts, despite some of them not even being mammals.
  • What was up with the walking trees? This troper understands that the other weird images Rango had were hallucinations, but in the end what they did was very real.
    • Just some fantasy tossed into the mix. Considering these animals wear clothes, walk around, and are pretty intelligent, that shouldn't be too far-fetched.
      • I could accept walking cacti. IJBM that they suddenly move when, per Beans, they'd never so much as twitched before. The Funny Animals were consistent throughout the movie.
    • I too can accept that the cacti can travel. What I cannot comprehend is how they were turning the valve to the water pipe during the climax. The only reason I can think of as to why they'd do such a thing is because they followed the instructions of Rango and/or the Armadillo, and that seems quite farfetched.
    • The entire scene after he crosses the highway is weird. Not to mention Roadkill someone surviving what happened to him. I don't think it's all that big an issue. No offense.
    • Perhaps it was the Spirit of the West bringing them to life.
  • What could have happened between Beans and Angelique? That would have been interesting to know.
    • Ex-lovers?
      • And now I want fanfic. Maybe that's how Angelique knows about Beans' rash] birthmark. Though, according to the official website, their feud is because of "an awkward love pentagon with three of the Jenkins Brothers".
    • It's a fairly common joke that the less female characters there are in a cast, the less they'll get along, their hackles thrown up at not being the only girl anymore. (See Family Guy's depiction of Princess Leia and Mon Motha's meeting: "Finally another woman. I don't like her."
  • How does Jake's weapon actually work? Does it fit over his actual rattle, or was it attached to his tail a la the hawk's metal beak?
    • I was under the impression that he's a cyborg.
    • Extremely precise muscle control?
      • Steampunk cyborgs actually wouldn't fit all that badly with the setting. This troper figured the rattle was severed and the gun attached in its place, hooked up to the muscles and tendons in his tail in the same way as the fingers of artificial hands are hooked up in order to allow him to fire it. Still no idea how he loads it, though ...
  • Why does Jake only utilise his venom once, just as a threat? It's established that he has it, but afterwards he just constricts everything. Rattlesnakes aren't even constrictors!
    • Well as for constricting, a sentient snake might come up with the idea even if he has poison, also can't see how else he can grab someone.
    • Not to mention that his venom would most likley be fatal. Not so good when you're just trying to force a person to do something.
    • It could also be a form of Fridge Brilliance. Rattlesnakes can only produce so much venom. And, in Real Life, rattlesnakes would (mostly) rather avoid wasting their venom on everything that bothers them (Venomous snakes primarily use their venom on their food). Jake, like real rattlesnakes, relies on his size and intimidating personality to strike fear into his enemies.
    • And some venomous snakes do constrict their prey to hold them in place while they bite them.
  • The moviemakers capture the movement of Rattlesnake Jake beautifully, but at the epilogue where light is reflected off of the single bullet, Jake flutters his eyelids and blinks when the light shines in his eye. SNAKES DON'T HAVE EYELIDS.
    • Lizards don't have hair, chameleons don't have navels, and toads don't have boobs. I don't think eyelids are a big problem.
    • Cartoon snakes are often portrayed with eyelids, to make their faces more expressive.
  • During the chase scene, there's only one peccary pulling the water jug on what appears to be a very rickety cart. That's fine because the jug is empty, but wouldn't they have needed a bigger cart and more animals to pull it in order to fool the audience until the Big Reveal?
    • There was only supposedly a small amount of water in it so, not necessarily.
  • What happened to that Native American raven character that got shot by Jake at the end? The last we see of him is him landing in a heap of crates and saying "that was a bad idea".
    • Well according to the novelization, he survived.
      • Holy crap, there's a novelisation?
      • The Blu-Ray Extended Edition shows him alive and well, and wearing a cast.
      • He's shown at the end of the film, with a cast, working as the lifeguard for the swimming hole.
  • Why does Beans' "survival instinct" of freezing never kick in when she's actually in danger?
    • To paraphrase the film: "Her switch is just broken."
    • Maybe Beans, as the hard-boiled but lonely rancher she is, only feels genuinely threatened in social situations, but never in situations where her life is actually at risk, since she's shown she can stand up for herself. Which would make it a bit of Fridge Brilliance if that were the reason.
    • That theory is now canon to this troper. Notice that every time it pops up, with the exception of the time she was faking it to get Rango to kiss her, she is in in a state of agitation due to social interaction.
  • What the hell was that thing in the aquifer?
    • Oneoffius Jokietus.
    • Um....a very confused Godzilla?
    • A misplaced Goliath frog?
    • It also bugs me, I understand that's supossed to be a joke, but is a joke that comes from nowhere and doesn't make much sense. My best guess is that it references the toad who falls victim of metalbeak at the begining of the film. His eyes were very similar and he could disguise himself as a rock, so there you have a (bus-sized, for no apparent reason) toad disguised as an entire cave wall. "That's a big one" indeed.
    • It is an alligator. Of the big lipped kind.
  • Just what did Raoul Duke say when Rango smacked into the Red Shark's windshield? It sounded a little like "I knew it!" but... it went by so fast...
    • He did say it, but beforehand he said something like, "Not again!" It makes it that much more funny if you've seen the film or read the book referencing it.
    • According to the Blu-Ray subtitles, he's saying "It's another one!" followed by "I knew it!" He's saying it because Rango is a reptile, as a reference to a scene in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas when he hallucinates being in a "reptile zoo."
  • Where did their roadrunners come from the second time Rango's posse "rides"?
    • I kind of just assumed, now that they knew where they needed to go, they went back and got them offscreen.
  • Just who or what is the Spirit of the West? For the purposes of the story, anyway. Is it... God? Just some guy poking around the desert for whatever he could find, who just happened to be dressed like The Man with No Name that day (things like the "chariot and golden guardians" remaining constant)? And he and Rango being able to communicate... I know, I know, it's a movie, I should really just relax...
    • Perhaps he was a real spirit, this was just a form that made the most sense to Rango because he's such a movie buff.
    • Western movies often feature an animal guide which appears to a human in need of guidance. It's fitting that an animal in need of guidance would see a human guide.
    • I always thought of him as a badassified version of Clint Eastwood (well, in everything but name). He sees a talking animal, he gives the little guy a motivational speech. Rango, being just an animal, sees him as a godly figure. The fact that he isn't fazed by a talking chameleon and gives exactly the kind of advice that Rango needed can be chalked up half to Rule of Cool, and half to him being badass. Alternatively, Rango doesn't really understand human speech and hears what he needs to hear because he's hallucinating, misinterprets what he hears or fills in the blanks. But I prefer the "Clint Eastwood-expy is being nice to an animal that looks like a cowboy and looks like he needs a piece of advice". It's no less believable than talking animals...
  • How does Rattlesnake Jake reload his gun? Seriously, reloading that thing would be hard enough with hands, let alone with his mouth, presumably.
    • He seems to have ammo rounds coiled around him, so it may automatically reload. That still leaves the question of what happens when he runs out of reserves, though.
  • Why was Merrimack the banker murdered? And for that matter, why was he killed with a method (drowning) that would make people suspicious as soon as it was discovered?
    • Why he was murdered...probably because he knew too much after presumably catching the thugs in the act. As for why they didn't just shoot him...yeah, still a plot hole.
    • Simple, less evidence. Shooting someone leaves behind a bullet that can be tracked to the type of gun used, even in the setting it can be, along with other possibilities. Drowning him left no evidence that could be tracked.
      • A good point, but still: The drowning alerted the townspeople that there was water somewhere in the area, a fact the mayor had been keeping from them.
      • We don't know what happened. He was killed offscreen, and we only see the body. It's possible that he found the mayor's water hoard, but was then discovered, and in the ensuing fight, he simply fell into the bottle/cup/whatever and drowned. The mayor didn't expect the townspeople to be out that far, so he just left the body for the birds (literally).
    • The mayor may have thought that, if someone found him, he could just say that Merrimack had stolen the water for himself, and ended up drowning himself in it?
    • Keep in mind they had the doctor with them when they found Merrimack. There was a window of opportunity to find him and even then who would immediately suspect drowning in a desert during a drought?
  • What happens to the city the mayor is building after Rattlesnake Jake makes off with him?
    • I guess we can assume that since the mayor's no longer around to fund its construction, the workers will eventually just pack up and leave once the money (water?) stops.
  • Where did Rango get that poncho for his showdown with Jake at the end?
    • Rule of Cool.
    • Probably grabbed it off a clothesline when he got back in town. That's basically how he got his first cowboy hat.
  • Okay, Wounded Bird is portrayed as a Native American, while the rest (with the exception of the Mexican-seeming owl band, armadillo, and possibly Rattlesnake Jake, this troper's not very good at telling) are the equivalent of white settlers. But technically, aren't ALL the animals depicted, except Rango, native to America and therefore should fall under the heading of "Native Americans"? (Then again, this troper is picky about that. The gijinka pics of Rango on Deviant ART bother me for the same reason. He's always portrayed as white, when my brain insists that, being a chameleon, he should be of African or Malagasy descent/appearance.)
    • I was thinking Wounded Bird is considered "Native American" because of his culture/religion. Like, perhaps the non-"Native American" animals don't share his culture/religion.
    • Technically, yes, all the animals could be depicted as native to America, but not in the same way as Wounded Bird. He's a Native American in the indian way and the rest of Dirt's citizens could be... in some other way. But not in the indian way. Perhaps in a Southern way.
      • That's what I mean. Why is it that species native to America are always portrayed (not just in this, in Welkin Weasels and plenty of online furry fic too) as behaving like the white settlers and their descendants instead of like the natives? Writers afraid of being accused of co-opting real cultures, or of getting details wrong?
      • Because not all "native" people of America are indians? I mean, indians ARE the one and only original native people of America, but nowadays white American people could be considered sort of native too because they're born in America.
    • It's because he's a crow. Get it? Crow... like the tribe of indians. It's a Visual Pun.
  • Probably overthinking this, but did anyone else feel sorry for the humans who lost their pet chameleon?
    • I would, but who the Hell leaves the back of their car open?
    • I always assumed that they won him or bought him in Vegas, and never really cared about him. I mean, the way his tank was set up, a real chameleon wouldn't have lasted a week; they need a certain level of temperature and humidity, as well as foliage. He had an open tank, a water dish, and a dead bug. They couldn't have cared too much for him.
  • I noticed a lot of the supporting cast members are avian (the Native American crow, the burrowing owls, the nondescript bird with an arrow through one eye, the grossly undersized turkey, etc). Why don't (or can't) they fly?
    • Well you said it yourself. They CAN'T fly. The turkey is, well, a turkey, Arrow Eye is a chicken, and Wounded Bird is a wounded bird, so one would assume it's not just his leg that's messed up. As for the owls, burrowing owls tend to walk rather than fly, and are better equiped for that, but as we never see them travel it's sort of a moot point, although they DID get up in that tree that one night, and were on top of the building too, so they probably DO fly. In any case, I think it's safe to assume that, if they're not flying, it's because they can't, or just don't bother.
  • Gunslingers and other townspeople of the Old West were not in very good terms with native Americans. How is it possible for Wounded Bird to be there like that?
    • Maybe it's like an inverse of "black and white lived in perfect harmony and ganged up on green. When all your friends are a different species, an odd name and different customs don't seem like such a big deal.
      • Could be so. Although, the bad terms between native Americans and the townspeople were the result of white people conquering the natives' lands.
    • There was plenty of peaceful interaction between Native Americans and white settlers; it was usually when economic factors got involved (discovery of gold on Indian lands, or too many settlers moving into the area) that violence broke out. The rest of the time, well, life must go on.
    • Not to mention the possibility that Native American and Western settler animals didn't have the same problems with each other that humans have had.
  • Another one considering Wounded Bird: I noticed that he actually changes the arm/wing he uses to support himself with the crutch, twice. Is this a production error or is it intentional? If it is intentional, does it mean that BOTH of Wounded's feet are screwed up?
    • He could be faking it, for reasons of his own.
      • Could be, but I can't buy it. I'll see it as a production error.
        • Why see it as a "production error" if you don't know what it is?
        • Given the amount of work that goes into an animated movie (which would make it unlikely that something like that would go unnoticed), and the amount of homages to Western films and the Western genre present in the movie, I'd bet it was an intentional, good-natured Take That at similar actual errors in Westerns.
          • Finally an answer that pleases me. Thank you.
            • According to the Director's Commentary, it was intentional. They wanted to include a scene where we saw him switching legs, but they couldn't find a good place to put it.
  • Where the HECK did the posse get all the outfits for the thespian act? (They borrowed some of the clothes from each other, but for instance, the mariachi owls' clothing and instruments; headwear for Furgus the bird, Buford the toad, Ambrose the owl and Doc the rabbit; the pope outfit for Wounded Bird etc.)
  • What was that giant eye in the underground cavern that Rango was leading his posse in? I was hoping for a giant beast to show up, but it...doesn't.
    • Big Lipped Alligator Moment; defines it all.
      • Perhaps it is an alligator (they are known to live in sewers after all), making it a literal example?
  • What was Rango's real name?
    • Somewhere (right now I cannot remember where...) is a source that says it's Lars.
      • Rango's real name isn't ever revealed.
      • In the film's credits, Johnny Depp is listed as the voice of "Rango/Lars". This doesn't necessarily mean that Rango's real name is Lars; it probably means that Johnny Depp voiced a minor background character whose name was Lars, in addition to Rango.
      • Word of God is that the above is true. Lars was a minor background character voiced by Depp. Rango had no name before the movie began.
      • Lars is actually the guy who drives the car where Rango originally was at the beginning of the movie.
  • Why are Wounded Bird and Sergeant Turley both in the posse? One wouldn't think that a Native American crow and a chicken war veteran with a horrific injury caused by an arrow to the head would want to associate with one another. Granted, I don't think they actually speak to each other in the movie, but still.
    • Sgt. Turley doesn't seem to realize that he has an arrow stuck in his head. Plus, I don't see why he would have a problem with Wounded Bird anyway since none of the other townspeople seem to have a problem with him.
    • Since ALL the characters except Rango are of species native to America, Wounded Bird's "native American"-ness seems to be nothing but a style choice for him, so there's no reason for the others to have a problem with him.
    • Also note Sgt. Turley's uniform. It's Confederate. The Confederacy never really had a chance to have much enmity with the Indians.
  • Okay, so, the bank's vault door is entirely transparent as shown over the course of the film. So, how in the heck did Mr. Merrimack hide the fact that the town was down to only 6 days of water, EVER?
    • Well, it's in the back of the bank, behind a locked grate, so Mr. Merrimack and the other employees just probably never let anyone back there. Thus, no one sees it until Beans mentions it.
  • Why do the townsfolk exclaim, "Hallelujah?" "Hallelujah" is not some random exclamation for rejoicing or even celebrating salvation; it's a contraction of "Hillel lu Yahweh!" (Praise be to Yahweh!) Gratuitous Hebrew aside, it makes no sense in the context of a Cargo Cult.
    • Erm... Because thousands of people in America and probably elsewhere use Hallelujah as a normal exclamation for rejoicing? Not everyone is exactly aware of what it means. You know that, right?
      • And a lot of (religious) people who do know what it means use it for that sort of an expression anyway. Not to mention that the whole point of it was to present the bringing forth of water as a near-religious event, with the mayor as the priest.
    • A background character was very clearly seen holding a Bible early on in the movie. Rango mistakes the woman asking for an autograph and he opens it and signs it, with "The Old Testament" being very clearly visible. This indicates that, yes, at least some of the townsfolk do follow Abrahamic religions.
  • So what the hell did happen to the Jenkins Brothers?
    • They died of infection.
    • This troper got the impression that Rattlesnake Jake killed them.
      • Jake really did kill them, it's official information.
  • So the Mayor and his goons were the ones who really robbed the bank, right? Was the arrival and attempted bank robbery by those hillbilly rodents just a coincidence, or did the Mayor set that up too? Because if he didn't tip them off to begin with (which is clear that the Mayor didn't, since the rodents don't mention any tip) and the rodents didn't dig into the bank, the Mayor wouldn't have had a scapegoat to pin the crime on, and it would have drawn suspicion towards him, since he has more water than anyone else in town.
    • The town was in a drought, anyone could and would be desperate enough to rob the bank.
  • IF (and only if) Rattlesnake Jake eats the Mayor, how's he gonna get that shell in?
    • I believe that turtles can be ripped out from their shells, and I don't believe that Jake would have any problems with that.
  • That bird dude with a mustache. HOW DOES THAT MAKE ANY SENSE?! I mean, you see his upper mandible sticking up over the mustache like a nose, and you don't see the rest of the beak, but his mouth moves perfectly well.
    • The texture of the mustache didn't quite mesh with his head feathers... maybe he was wearing a fake mustache?
    • What I'm saying is, how does his mustache work anyhow? Is it growing out of his mouth or what? You should know about the anatomy of a bird beak does not allow for a mustache like that.
    • I could suspend my disbelief over that guy's mustache since there were lizards with hair, but then I noticed he had hands -- not Feather Fingers but actual hands -- so I gave up and decided that since he clearly wasn't a hoatzin[1] he was the lovechild of an owl (or possibly a frogmouth) and a rodent -- a literal predator/prey relationship.
  • So who exactly was dumping water to the desert? Was it the Mayor? If it was, why did he do it? Okay, he didn't want the townspeople to have water, but couldn't he have hidden it somewhere for himself and his cronies to use instead of wasting it?
    • Yes, it was the Mayor. This troper suspects that he did horde some for himself, given how comfortably he was living, but that he couldn't find anyplace to store/hide all of it. Even the bank water jug was too small for that much. He probably took as much as he could hide for himself and figured the only safe way to hide the evidence was to let the rest be dried up in the desert.
  • Since the water came from a larger pipe in the human city, why was the pipe that lead to Dirt still active? No humans lived in the desert anymore, so why hadn't the humans dismantled that pipe? And even if there was some reason not to do it, won't they soon notice some of their water is going to waste, and close down the pipe leading to Dirt again? The Mayor was smart enough to ration the water usage, giving Dirtonians only a small amount of water once a week. But now they're spending enough water to maintain an artificial lake, so it seems inevitable the humans will notice it.
    • The valve that stopped the water to Dirt was an emergency cut off valve. It's possible that the pipeline is intended to stay on all the time and not off.
      • Why would a water company keep a pipeline that leads to a ghost town in the middle of nowhere on all the time? Surely they would've at some point noticed that no human being has been living there (or paying his water bills) for the last 100+ years?
    • Well, I cover many local government and water authority meetings. Maybe out west they have tighter standards, but in the North East where pipes are a hundred years old, constructed of materials ranging from plastic, to steel, to terracotta for who knows how many miles they tend to call it a good year if they lose only 18% of all water in their network. Note that the Mayor, long lived as he was, only released water on Wednesdays. It might be that through trial and error he picked up that there was a limit he could safely release to the town before it got noticed. Maybe the safety valve was turned off a few times, and he had his boys just turn it back on, i.e. how they knew where to find it.

Notes

  1. The only bird that has fingers on its wings, at least as a juvenile
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