Some NIMH questions and theories....

edited March 2015 in Main

This is probably the oldest one...........so if it's been asked before, I'm sorry.

WHAT IS BRISBY'S FIRST NAME!?

The movie never says. The book never says. That's not fair. She's the best character and the most important one....EVERYBODY ELSE HAS A FIRST NAME SO WHY DOESN'T SHE!? It shocks me O'Brien didn't take the time to think of it....I mean, I have a lot of OCs and the first thing I do is name them! It's just odd, really!

I've heard fans refer to her as Elizabeth; I'm guessing because of her voice actress? Lol, that works for me and I think it does fit her. I just wish we knew the true answer. Because this drives me nuts.

Nicodemus

This guy is just one giant mystery in the movie. Why does he look so ancient if the injections slowed the aging process?

Possibility 1: He was already an old rat when they captured him. I have a small doubt of this though because when you see his arm unlock his cage in the lab, it looks like a normal, youthful rat arm. But again, we only see his arm so you can't tell all that much on what the rest of him would look like.

Possibility 2: Learning sorcery cost him his youth perhaps? How he learned it is also another mystery. I don't know if I'm among any fellow Whovians (Dr Who fans :D) but that series was the first one to introduce the idea to me that magic is simply the most enhanced form of science. It's a popular theory in sci-fi that if one's mind is powerful enough, you can develop telekinesis and powers like that. And using such power can greatly take a toll on the body and one's health because of the energy it requires. Thus Bribsy collapsing after she used the Stone the first time. It was only once so I'm sure she's all right. Nicodemus used his powers constantly though...so this might be what caused him to age so much?

When do you suppose Jonathan's death took place? How long was he with his wife and children?

I cannot remember if the book states this or not. I seem to have lost my copy. ;_; It seems rather recent to the movie's start when he died. Nicodemus states that has been four years since their escape from NIMH when he records Jonathan's death in the book. Did Jonathan meet her right after they left NIMH? If so, they were together for four years which means Teresa can't be any older than that. But she's a mouse so.....yeah. Actually, I think I remember that the book stated Timothy was bitten by a spider a year ago and he was a baby but Jonathan helped carry him to Mr. Ages so Jonathan was alive then. Then our answer to the second question must be "in between 3-4 years." And Jonathan was killed in less than a year before the story takes place in the book. The movie is likely the same.

The rest of the NIMH rodents didn't associate with others outside of their group. Mr. Ages seems that way too....even though characters know him like the Shrew. I wonder what made Jonathan leave and start a family?

Did the book state the time period of the story? We have electricity....but the type of tractor Fitzgibbon uses looked very old. Fifties or sixties, perhaps?

What's Nicodemus's connection with the Great Owl? Does anyone headcanon the Owl came from NIMH too?

How do you suppose the scientists were able to track the rats to the farm? o_o Granted, it took them a really long time. Haha. Five years. Five years, you incompetent numbskulls! XD

I'm beginning to understand why NIMH's fanbase is so huge; there's so much to explore and discuss and it's all really interesting. No wonder there is so much fanfiction XD

Comments

  • Good questions!

    How do you suppose the scientists were able to track the rats to the farm?

    I would feel the most obvious place rats/mice would go after gaining intelligence would be a farm. They have a food source and they could blend in. They obviously wouldn't go back to the city streets afterwards because 1. they were caught there 2. they have more exposure. So it's all about tracking them down logically, and I feel the scientists were correct in assuming a farm would be the best bet.

    What's Nicodemus's connection with the Great Owl?

    Since the woods are adjacent to the farm (or at least close by), it could be that Nicodemus felt it would be best to introduce himself to the Owl. I believe the book has a better answer, but considering it's been 3 years or so since I've finished it, I don't recall. The book did have a sort of economic system in place where good deeds and being helpful were looked upon and rewarded. So it's possible that the Owl had a fascination with the rats due to Jonathan's past work in helping them escape from NIMH. I don't recall the book being specific with how the rats and the Owl met other than he thought them to be different (I could be all wrong here).

    When do you suppose Jonathan's death took place? How long was he with his wife and children?

    The book made it out to be a year (give or take) and I'd imagine the movie followed suit. As for how long they were together, I'd imagine 2 and a half years.

    Did the book state the time period of the story?

    Yes, 1960s.

    Nicodemus

    Artistic licence.

    WHAT IS BRISBY'S FIRST NAME!?

    I'd assume that Mrs. Frisby was trying to be formal and as such people called her by that and discarded her first name. It's an interesting mystery to be sure, and since O'Brien is dead, we may never know canonically.

  • I can offer some help with when Jonathan died. The book states that he dies in late summer and the events of the story take place in late February. What the film doesn't convey very well is the passage of time between the prologue and when the story proper begins. As a child I thought it odd that Mrs. Brisby didn't seem to be grieving her late husband but now I realize 4 to 5 months had gone by by that point.

    During the prologue Nicodemus states that it had been four years since they left NIMH. Then later, as Justin and Mr. Ages are leading Mrs. Brisby down the tunnels, Justins says they have been there four years* but Mr. Ages quickly corrects him and says five years. I would in fact be closer to four and a half years so they were both kinda right and wrong.

    Hope this helps.

    *Justin says they have had electricity for four years but he really should have said they escaped NIMH four years ago but this may be splitting hairs.

  • Chiibihime said: When do you suppose Jonathan's death took place? How long was he with his wife and children?

    I seem to recall somebody had mapped out the chronology, but I don't remember where. As for his death, the book says "just the previous summer", so less than a year before the events of the story.

    I think it's likely that there's a significant gap between Jonathan's arrival at the farm and him finding Mrs. Frisby; 4 years is a long time for a mouse, even in fiction. If I had to guess, I'd imagine they were only together a couple of years. The book says that Jonathan moved out soon after the Rats moved into the rosebush, and then met Mrs. Frisby some time after that, but it doesn't say how long that took.

    The rest of the NIMH rodents didn't associate with others outside of their group. Mr. Ages seems that way too....even though characters know him like the Shrew. I wonder what made Jonathan leave and start a family?

    The book says that he and Mr. Ages felt strange only associating with Rats, and specifically mentioned that Jonathan, being younger, felt lonely.

    Did the book state the time period of the story? We have electricity....but the type of tractor Fitzgibbon uses looked very old. Fifties or sixties, perhaps?

    The shrew mentions "the spring of sixty-five" in the book when talking to Mrs. Frisby about previous early thaws. Assuming that was within Mrs. Frisby's (already long for a mouse) lifetime, that'd put the book right around the late 60's, probably no more than 2-3 years later.

    How do you suppose the scientists were able to track the rats to the farm? o_o Granted, it took them a really long time. Haha. Five years. Five years, you incompetent numbskulls! XD

    The book actually explains this better; there, Jenner had left to start his own colony, but while attempting to move an electric motor, they were electrocuted, and the occurrence was strange enough to get a report in the local newspaper, which attracted attention of NIMH, though the book never says actually says it was NIMH, they just say "exterminators" or "the Public Health Service", though it's heavily implied it was. The farmer mentioned to them that he had a lot of rats on his farm, which brought them out.

    I'm beginning to understand why NIMH's fanbase is so huge; there's so much to explore and discuss and it's all really interesting. No wonder there is so much fanfiction XD

    Heh, never thought of it as particularly large. But it does seem to attract a fair bit of fanfic. :)

  • chiihibime said:

    I'm beginning to understand why NIMH's fanbase is so huge; there's so much to explore and discuss and it's all really interesting. No wonder there is so much fanfiction XD

    Yup. :D

    Because there was so much in the movie that was left ambiguous or unexplained, that’s precisely why there’s so much to explore and discuss, with plenty of room for individual interpretation. And that’s why looking for “true” answers may not be the best approach, IMO. I hope you don’t take offense at that; my point is that there’s so much that can be explained and interpreted in any number of ways.

    Take Nicodemus (please). I’d always thought that he couldn’t have been so aged while he was at NIMH, so in my own fan-fics, I “established” that it was something that came later, along with his powers and general air of mystery.

    Mrs. B’s (or Mrs. F’s) first name? I agree that it’s odd that neither was given a name, being the central character. I picked Madeline mainly because I just like the name, though I’d have very likely gone with Elizabeth had I started writing TSoN fanfiction after Elizabeth Hartman’s tragic death. As it was, it happened a year or so after I started writing, and by then I didn’t want to change it.

    As for how long Jonathan was with his family (the first time, ;) ), I’ve long maintained my own timeline of past events, and it’s set at 2 ½ years, as TPM said. At least one fanfic writer had it at only one year—maybe a bit too brief a time-frame for them to have had four kids, even if they are mice.

    My own idea with the Great Owl was that he and the rats made contact when they were scouting for a new home, and he steered them toward Thorn Valley. The physical similarities to Nicodemus are sometimes brought up, hinting at the possibility of a greater connection, but I’ve always chalked that up to artistic license. Likewise the glowing eyes.

    In my own fan-fics, I’ve overall followed what was presented in the movie. I’ve always regarded the movie and book as separate animals, two different fictional universes, though I’ve made use of elements and characters from the book, without feeling bound by the book as canon.

    For instance, I brought Isabella into my fan-fics, though she wasn’t in the movie, and I made her a little older than the “child” she was in the book, so she’d be a fit mate for Justin. She was actually included in early storyboards for the film, and my guess is that if they’d decided to keep her she would have turned out a bit differently, most likely a bit more mature.

  • Mrs. B’s (or Mrs. F’s) first name? I agree that it’s odd that neither was given a name, being the central character. I picked Madeline mainly because I just like the name, though I’d have very likely gone with Elizabeth had I started writing TSoN fanfiction after Elizabeth Hartman’s tragic death. As it was, it happened a year or so after I started writing, and by then I didn’t want to change it.

    I kinda thought it was interesting that you made it out to be that she didn't want people to know her first name because she wanted it to be a loving legacy to Jo'h'nathan's memory. I know someone who refers to herself by her last name and doesn't introduce herself by her first name for that same reason. Maybe that's the reason why O'Brien didn't give her a first name? I dunno. :3

  • DavidLeemhuis said: In my own fan-fics, I’ve overall followed what was presented in the movie. I’ve always regarded the movie and book as separate animals, two different fictional universes, though I’ve made use of elements and characters from the book, without feeling bound by the book as canon.

    I tend to use the book to fill in any blanks left by the movie where they don't contradict each other; in any case, it explains itself in a lot more detail. Still, I'd never expect a movie-based fic to follow the book as 100% canon either. It's a useful fallback, but no more.

  • I used to think, in the movie, that Jonathan's death occurred right before the movie proper began. Mrs. Brisby's line "I wish Jonathan were here" after the plow scene seems to suggest she's still unable to come to terms with it. But then I read the book, and it could be months. I guess it's in what you choose to believe.

Sign In or Register to comment.