The “Shrek” movies are like onions. They’ve got layers. But the more you peel the layers back, the more unprepared you are for what’s there.
For instance, Lord Farquaad’s name may be a hidden joke since it sounds like “f**k wad,” and there’s a lot of other questionable adult humor in the movie, too. Now, a Redditor may have just revealed another secret.
The theory: Donkey is one of the boys from Pleasure Island in “Pinocchio” that was turned into a jackass.
Wow. You cut us deep, Reddit. You cut us real deep just now.
In “Pinocchio,” it’s hard to forget the messed-up part where boys go off to “Pleasure Island” and end up turning into donkeys. There’s no happily ever after there, either.
Could Donkey be one of those boys?
The theory has been on the internet before, but Redditor YeremyV recently put it together with convincing evidence.
First, remember that Pinocchio is actually in “Shrek.” Therefore, as TVtropes.org points out, a Pleasure Island donkey could show up, as well.
YeremyV expands on this idea, adding that most of the other characters in “Shrek” seem to be from fairy tales or nursery rhymes (Three Little Pigs, Three Blind Mice, Muffin Man), but “Donkey doesn’t seem to be from a specific story.” It’d make sense if you consider that he’s a boy-turned-donkey from “Pinocchio.”
As more support, the Redditor explains that, despite the fact that other animals can talk, a talking donkey seems to be out of the ordinary in “Shrek”:
Donkey may also have memories of being human. The Redditor points out how a scene of Donkey remembering “wedgies and swirlies” gets weird:
When Puss in Boots asks more about it, Donkey just says, “Some things are better left unsaid.”
For a last bit of evidence, when Puss in Boots and Donkey switch bodies, Puss can’t control his donkey hee-haws, much like the boys in “Pinocchio” when they try to talk:
Daaaaamn, Donkey. What do you have to say about this?
The evidence against:
The idea isn’t without its issues.
There is a talking donkey in author William Steig’s childrens book Shrek!, meaning that the character isn’t a complete anomaly in the story. The movies are inspired by the book and not a word-for-word retelling, so the characters are very different. Still, Donkey doesn’t necessarily have to be from Pleasure Island.
In addition, as another Redditor points out, Donkey and Shrek take a “Happily Ever After” potion in “Shrek 2”: Shrek turns into a human, and Donkey turns into a horse. If Donkey used to be a human, wouldn’t he have turned back into a human?
Donkey has no problem turning into a horse. He clearly thinks he’s very sexy.
On the theory, Redditor YeremyV told The Huffington Post, “I don’t consider it to be much of a stretch, considering that Fiona’s father (the king) turned out to be the Frog Prince. It just seemed like Donkey was never really from a story, and it’s interesting to think that maybe he is after all.”
What do you think? Is this theory about the ass from “Shrek” kick-ass? Or is it half-assed? Or did we just want to write a bunch of puns with “ass”?
As they say in “Pinocchio,” let your conscience be your guide ...
But, yeah, he totally used to be a boy, right?
The Huffington Post has reached out to the “Shrek” producers for comment.
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