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- 1 The Species Itself
- 2 Gizmo:]
- 3 First Gremlins
- 4 The New Batch
- 5 Mutation Gremlins
The Species Itself[edit | edit source]
Mogwai and Gremlins are described in the films to originate from Western Asia as part of Chinese mythology. The word "Mogwai" is Chinese for "demon". Mogwai appear as small rodents, resembling anthropomorphic hamsters or guinea pigs and are generally similar in appearance, but can have their own individual features. There appear to be two types of Mogwai, gentle types like Gizmo, and the more aggressive and troublesome type like the Mogwai that are spawned by Gizmo in the two films. The films include three rules that owners of Mogwai must acknowledge in order to look after them properly. These rules are neglected and abused in both films, Gizmo's owner, Mr. Wing, proclaiming that the United States of America is not ready to raise Mogwai. These three rules are:
- Do not expose Mogwai to bright lights. The reaction causes a Mogwai or Gremlin to either be killed via a gruesome melting process, as seen with Stripe in the first film, until the creature's own skeleton melts away. If exposed briefly, a Mogwai or Gremlin shows fright. Gizmo shows a deep dislike towards bright lights. The Gremlins are shown to be afraid of simply lit matches and fire.
- Do not get a Mogwai wet. The reaction with water, causes Mogwai or Gremlins to spawn other Mogwai. However, the creatures will spawn the same creature (e.g. A Mogwai spawns more Mogwai, a Gremlin spawns more Gremlins).
- Do not feed a Mogwai after midnight. Mogwai seem to instinctively desire to eat after midnight in order to advance to the Gremlin stage of their evolution, the original batch in the first film tricking Billy Peltzer into feeding them after midnight by altering the time on his alarm clock. Upon feeding after midnight, the Mogwai become encased in cocoons and go through a metamorphosis into the Gremlin form.
Gremlins are tall, scaly-skinned creatures with large ears resembling bat wings, have fanged mouths, and a seemingly instinctive desire to cause havoc at the cost of humanity. Gremlins may keep some of their physical features from when they were Mogwai. Gremlins are very anarchic creatures, although some can seemingly be doing it for fun, whilst others like Stripe are more deliberately sadistic and violent. Gremlins also display little care for their own species or others, willing to shoot their own kind to get a laugh out of it. Gremlins can be killed particularly easily. The Gremlins shown in the films are killed via a gas explosion in a cinema the first film, and via electrocution in second film.
Gizmo:][edit | edit source]
Gizmo was the source of all the gremlins to appear in the films. He is a brown and white mogwai who likes to sing and watch television. Unlike the rest of his species, Gizmo is kind, friendly, and harmless. He is voiced by Howie Mandel.
Gizmo was first seen in the original Gremlins film when Randal Peltzer 'purchased' it from Mr. Wing, by making a deal with the shopkeepers grandson, to give to his son, Billy, as a Christmas present. When Billy is showing Gizmo to his friend Pete he accidentally spills water on Gizmo spawning the first batch. The first batch of mogwai are mean-spirited and deliberately manipulate Billy into feeding them after midnight. After the mogwais were fed after midnight they turn into pupas and then hatch as Gremlins. Four of these were killed within the Peltzers' home; the survivor was their leader Stripe, which escapes and multiplies at a YMCA pool.
After defeating the army of gremlin by blowing up a movie theatre, Billy went to stop Stripe from getting to water. Gizmo, having escaped Kate (who was then holding him), was able to inadvertently kill Stripe by opening a shade, exposing him to bright light. At the end of the first film, he was taken back to New York City by Mr. Wing for safekeeping, but implies that one day he would give Gizmo back when they were "ready" to handle the responsibility of keeping him.
In Gremlins 2: The New Batch, Gizmo was taken by mad scientists, after the death of Mr. Wing and destruction of Mr. Wing's store, where he was going to be dissected. Fortunately, Billy, who worked in the same building that the mad scientists' labs was, heard a mailman sing the song Gizmo sang while he was making a delivery, and snuck Gizmo out of the lab. When Billy leaves Gizmo for a 'business meeting', Gizmo escapes and is wet by a stray blast from a waterfountain, which spawns the second batch of gremlins, the first ones being Mohawk, Daffy, George, and Lenny. Gizmo then found himself tortured by Mohawk. Recalling having seen Rambo earlier in the film, Gizmo constructs a makeshift bow and arrow, which he uses to set Mohawk on fire killing him, and a red headband. Afterwards, he was kept in a box so he wouldn't be harmed while the other gremlins were destroyed. Thereafter he rejoined Billy, and Billy's boss suggested modeling a new line of merchandise after Gizmo.
Gizmo was responsible for the destruction of leaders of both batches (Stripe met his demise following the destruction of his army, whereas Mohawk was destroyed before). It should be noted that Gizmo took a much more direct approach in Mohawk's destruction than Stripe's, as he shot Mohawk with a flaming arrow in the second movie, whereas he accidentally exposed Stripe to sunlight in the original. Gizmo had become much more assertive than he was in the first movie because, as Billy says, "they pushed him too far".
According to the novelization of the first film, mogwai are the result of genetic manipulations by an alien scientist to create a pet for children, but turned out mischievous and/or evil and the transformation mogwai can go through being totally unintended. Only one in a thousand are gentle, and as a result is hated by his brethren. Also, this previously mentioned mogwai is effectively immortal. As Gizmo is gentle, and has a long list of historical figures that have owned him, it is clear that he is this mogwai type. If this mogwai eats after midnight though, he will lose his longevity, becoming a typical gremlin. However, as this is never mentioned in the movie, the credence to this nature of the mogwai/Gizmo is unknown.
Tiger Electronics (makers of the Furby interactive toys) made a Gizmo-like furby as film memorabilia for the first Gremlins movie. Gizmo used a basic furby body with alterations such as the addition of arms and a less beaklike mouth. The Gizmo furby also featured the voice used for the character in the movie.
First Gremlins[edit | edit source]
The following gremlins appear in the first film.
The First Batch[edit | edit source]
Gizmo's first spawn, which included Stripe, conspired to trick Billy into feeding them after midnight by apparently cutting the power cord to his clock leaving it stuck at 11:37 PM to make Billy believe it is not yet midnight. Apart from Stripe, none of the other members of are given names. Shortly after they become Gremlins, the first batch begin causing havoc in the Peltzers' house. Four of them are killed in the Peltzer's home shortly after their transformation, leaving Stripe and Earl the only survivors of the first batch, until their eventual deaths. An argument can be made that the first batch may have become evil because of their treatment, as Billy, in their mogwai form, gave them nowhere near the amount of attention he gave Gizmo. Most of the Gremlins died in the explosion of the Movie Theater.
Stripe[edit | edit source]
Stripe was the main antagonist of Gremlins. When one of Billy's friends accidentally douses Gizmo with water, five new mogwai popped out of his back, Stripe being the first one. All of them looked virtually identical to Gizmo (with a few minor changes, such as weight, fur or size features). Stripe, the vicious leader of the new Mogwai, had a white stripe of fur on his head (from which he was identified ). Even as a Mogwai, he showed his nasty, malicious nature: He spits on Gizmo and ties the family dog up in Christmas lights on the front porch. He and the other Mogwai eat after midnight and become Gremlins, Stripe maintaining his white tuft of hair and became downright evil. He attempts to harm Billy's family (and his former owner), and Gizmo, who was effectively his father. He managed to create an army of gremlins from himself (by jumping into a swimming pool), that wreaked havoc on the small town Billy lived in throughout the movie.
He is quickly established as a survivor of the original batch, being the last of the original batch to survive, and then as the last surviving Gremlin in the film when the others are killed in a gas explosion. Stripe himself escaped, and pursued Gizmo and Billy to a department store Montgomery Ward, were they continuously battled. Eventually Stripe jumps into a water fountain in an attempt to reproduce by spawning new Gremlins. However, Gizmo, whom he often tortures in the film, douses him in sunlight and kills him. All that remained of Stripe after this lethal combination was a skeleton covered in green goo
Mr. Hanson's Gremlin[edit | edit source]
Mr. Hanson's Mogwai (in the novel he called him Earl) was the first Mogwai to be seen on screen as a gremlin, albeit very short. He was the sixth to be spawned when Billy took a Mogwai to see his old science teacher, Roy Hanson. Billy demonstrated what happened when a Mogwai come into contact with water. Hanson then kept Earl in a cage and conducted tests on him, taking blood samples which he appeared to hate and showed him no more affection than a hamster in a cage. Hanson was not an evil mad scientist (his students love him and he was very friendly), but he treated Earl just like an animal and not like an intelligent creature.
After the teacher left him within reach of food, Earl ate his sandwich after midnight. Hanson was thrilled that his test object had pupated and freed him from the cage. During the school lesson the Gremlin freed himself and hid in the classroom. Hanson tried to lure him with sweets, but the gremlin killed or knocked him unconscious with a syringe (seemingly revenge for the blood tests) and attacked Billy. Before Billy could retaliate he escaped through a vent and later met up with the others. Since all the gremlins in the film are the same color, he is not identified in the crowd.
He was killed with all the rest of the gremlins in the movie theater when it blew up. He has one of the (but not the) longest lifespans of any Gremlins, as he is one of two gremlins (who were originally mogwai and not simply spawned as a gremlin) to take part in the mass rampage. He is also the only Mogwai (besides Gizmo) who does not seem to start out with a malicious nature. When he is first spawned, he plays with the other Mogwai and seems to have temperament virtually identical to Gizmo. His time with Hanson seems to change him, making him much darker, aggressive and cruel and is implied that he became a Gremlin only to have the strength to kill his hated owner.
Caroling Gremlins[edit | edit source]
A team of gremlins who conspired with Stripe to kill Mrs. Deagle. The Gremlins performed the movies theme tune dressed in Christmas clothes (Hats, mittens, etc.) on Mrs. Deagle's doorstep while another gremlin sabotaged her stairlift. A terrified Mrs. Deagle then used the stairlift to get away from the gremlins. Moments later she was catapulted by the out of control stairlift out of an upstairs window. It appears as though the Gremlins have some sort of grudge against Mrs. Deagle, considering Stripe personally seeks her out. And when Stripe sees a sign outside, portraying the name: Deagle Constructions, Stripe then Snarls, Deagle...Deagle, Deagle Deagle.... In a deleted scene, gremlins are shown behind the human carolers and later presumably kill them and steal their clothes.
Pub gremlins[edit | edit source]
Various gremlins appear in the pub scene along with Stripe. It is easy to see that they are wreaking havoc, and enjoying themselves. Stripe himself was seen playing poker next to a gremlin posing as his female poker partner. This gremlin tips Stripe off that an opposing player is cheating, so Stripe shoots him. Another Gremlins dancing, drinking or, just, sleeping. One inventive gremlin is experimenting (or playing?) with electrical conduction.
Mugger[edit | edit source]
The mugger gremlin was in Kate's pub with the other gremlins. He wore a hat with three holes in it covering his face like a mask. He was about to shoot Kate with a gun until Billy drove his car through the pub with its headlights shining, stunning the creature. Beside Stripe, he is the only Gremlin who had a weapon.
Flasher Gremlin[edit | edit source]
The Flasher or "I-am-naked" Gremlin is a gremlin that appears in both Gremlins and Gremlins 2: The New Batch, portrayed by a different gremlin in each of them. Both of them are seen wearing a trenchcoat and a pair of sunglasses, both of them have a penchant to open their coat to flash women. In the First Movie, Kate is shocked, in the sequel she become angry and kicks him in the soft tissues. He was seen later in the movie theater watching Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs where he's killed. Although mischievous like any of his ilk, he is one of the few gremlins shown to commit no harm against humans and his own kind. He reappeared in Gremlins 2: The New Batch, only to flash Kate, who then strikes him with a kick. This second Flasher is maybe killed by the electric Gremlin.
Bogart[edit | edit source]
The Bogart gremlin was wearing a brown-black Trilby and fedora, much like Humphrey Bogart in the movie Casablanca. He's seen smoking a cigarette and digging jazz music by himself, much like a beatnik or hipster would. He cries and is very depressed, much to the amusement of the others. Later he is knocked out by a beer glass thrown by another Gremlin.
The New Batch[edit | edit source]
The following Gremlins appear in the second film. The new batch with the exception of Daffy had a completely different color scheme then the previous batch and Gizmo, being black and white as opposed to brown and white. Gizmo's former owner died, and his shop was demolished soon after. Gizmo was found by a group of scientists working in the Clamp building. Billy liberated him from the scientists and told him to stay in his desk while Billy had a meeting. Gizmo began to explore the building, and as he did, a gush of water from a water fountain hit a painting on a desk, where Gizmo hid to get away from the water. The water then dripped on him creating the New Batch. The new Mogwais are evil from the first moment and can not wait to become Gremlins. They trap Gizmo in an air vent and look for food in order to pupate after midnight. The most Gremlins (except Mohawk, Secretary and Greta) were killed by the Electric Gremlin.
Mohawk[edit | edit source]
Mohawk is one of two main antagonists in The New Batch, the other being Dr. Catheter. He is created from Gizmo in the second film, along with George, Lenny and Daffy and was the initial leader of the new batch. He is named due to his distinctive hairstyle. His Mogwai form is black furred with large bat-like ears, and upon becoming a Gremlin his hair turned into a long line of sharp, reptilian spines. He clearly recognizes Gizmo and proceeds to torture him throughout the film. Mohawk seemed to be the strongest and fiercest of the Gremlins, capable of punching a fully grown human to the ground. He also had a sadistic streak, taking great pleasure in torturing Gizmo. Unlike his predecessor (Stripe) who was an active leader, for the most part Mohawk seemed to simply let his followers wreak havoc in whatever ways they saw fit (in fact, his leadership role was later taken over by the Brain Gremlin). It is confirmed in the commentary track of Gremlins 2 that he is the reincarnation of Stripe; due to his personality, leadership, recognition and hatred of Gizmo, and the stripe of fur on top of his head as a Mogwai (like Stripe).
Mohawk and the others eat after midnight and he transforms into a Gremlin. He doesn't lead the Gremlins and instead focuses on torturing Gizmo. He later attacks Billy with an assault rifle, and then gets his hands on a fluid that contained the genetic profile of a spider. After drinking it, he turned into a sort-of "spider centaur", everything from his waist down turning into the body of a giant arachnid. This "Spider Mohawk" spun webs throughout the Clamp Center, entrapping Katie Peltzer and Marla Bloodstone. Mere moments before he could kill them, Gizmo (tired of Mohawk's torment) took his revenge, shooting him with a miniature flaming arrow and a cleaning liquid bottle that set his entire body alight. Mohawk screamed horribly as he burned to death.
Daffy[edit | edit source]
Daffy (a.k.a. the "Dentist Gremlin" and "The Crazy Gremlin") is a lighter shade of green than most gremlins, and a few thick yellow strands of "hair" that hang limply in the manner of the original incarnation of Daffy Duck. His most recognizable features are his large, round eyes, which whirl constantly in a chaotic manner. He is hyperactive and has a mad sense of humor, and is constantly laughing hysterically. He first appears when Gizmo got wet and is seen bouncing around until he hits a wall and uncurls, immediately beginning his crazy antics by throwing paint everywhere. He is taken back to Billy and Kate's apartment, when Kate mistakes him for Gizmo (Daffy was the only one of the new batch who had color scheme similar to Gizmo, as the new batch were black and white as opposed to brown and white), Daffy causes a mess in the apartment. He is taken back to the Clamp building by Billy while he tries to find the others before they feed, but he attacks a security guard and escapes (apparently eating the blood of the security guard after midnight or found some food later on). He later reappears in a cooking show, now a Gremlin, and sits in a boiling pot of noodles while George and Lenny blow up a microwave, setting off a sprinkler system and spawning more Gremlins. He appears briefly dressed as a repairman messing about with the controls for an elevator, and then knocks out Billy who is in search for Gizmo, straps him to a chair and attempts to drill and pull his teeth out using dentistry equipment. Mr. Futterman comes to Billy's rescue by fending off Daffy with a dentist light. Daffy appears for one last time in the lobby with most of the other Gremlins, seen wearing Groucho glasses (fake nose and sunglasses) on the right hand side of the Brain Gremlin.
Daffy is killed by the Electric Gremlin along with the others, although his death is only seen in a deleted scene where he dies laughing. Named after and based on Daffy Duck.
George[edit | edit source]
George is grouchy, moody and cold, resembling Edward G. Robinson. As a Mogwai, he had grey fur, black patches around his eyes and a white walrus mustache. He seems mute and always a bit annoyed.
After he becomes a gremlin, he terrorizes Micromave Marge in the show "Microwave With Marge", along with Lenny and Daffy. He seems to hate microwaves, maybe a genetic memory of Mrs. Peltzer killing of a Gremlin in this way in the original movie. He had the idea to put metal pots and pans in the microwave, which caused the sprinkler system to activate. He was seen in the toy department when he was building a Lego gremlin, but it was knocked over by Lenny.
George doesn't like the clumsy Lenny, but always stands beside him, in every scene that the two are in. He, Lenny and Daffy were killed by getting electrocuted, his melting body seen with a cigarette protruding out of what remains of his mouth, although this is actually spat out in a police officer's face when Daniel Clamp charges in with the police force. He is partly based on George in the book Of Mice and Men.
Lenny[edit | edit source]
Lenny (a.k.a. the "Chef Gremlin" and "The Goofy Gremlin") is a tall, idiotic, light skinned, bucktoothed gremlin with a laugh a lot like that of Goofy. As a Mogwai, his skin is light-brown and he has black stripes on his face. He is generally the least aggressive or dangerous gremlin, he is also the only one not to have razor sharp fangs. Instead he has human like teeth with big buckteeth that stick out in front. (However, he does everything that George and Mohawk command him). He is George's partner in crime as he is always following him, George often using him for heavy lifting. Lenny often accidentally hit him with everything he carried, greatly annoying George.
Later we see him together with George, Daffy and the Brain and the other Gremlins the song "New York, New York" singing. He is killed in a deleted scene along with the remaining Gremlins, when the Electric Gremlin is unleashed after they are sprayed with a hose. He is partly based on Lennie from the book Of Mice and Men.
Phantom[edit | edit source]
One Gremlin parodies the Phantom of the Opera franchise, namely the musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber and the 1920s horror film. After half of his face is deliberately splashed with corrosive acid, Phantom dons a white facemask to cover his burns, although he actually cackles at his scarring. Phantom appears in the lobby finale where the Gremlins have a musical number, seen playing a Gremlin-sized pipe organ until another Gremlin dressed as a damsel removes his mask, revealing his scarred face. He angrily attacks the Gremlin and points menacingly at the camera, his figure blurring reminiscent to the a scene from the 1920s film. He presumably dies with the other Gremlins.
Secretary[edit | edit source]
One of the first spawned Gremlins to appear, also in some sources called "Macintosh" this Gremlin severely injured the secretary of Daniel Clamp by putting a mousetrap in her sandwich (which apparently either knocked her out or scared her away to seek medical help). Clamp runs out upon hearing his secretary scream and finds the Gremlin waiting for him wearing his secretary's sweater. The Gremlin throws a coffee pot at Clamp and after laughing hysterically, ducks out of sight. Clamp avoids the attack and rounds the secretary's desk to look for the Gremlin, only to be ambushed by the Gremlin who tries to bite his hand off. Clamp manages to catch the Gremlin in a paper shredder, slicing him to pieces. This death references to a Gremlin's death using a blender in the first film, the shredder idea suggested by Joe Dante's wife.
Movie Theater Gremlins[edit | edit source]
At one point, the film broke the 4th wall when near the ending of the middle of the movie, during the scene where Dr. Catheter and Billy communicate to each other for the first time, the film got torn and two Gremlins were making shadows on the movie projector with their hands (a bird, bunny, Abraham Lincoln), and then show the movie Volleyball Holiday by the film company Sunworshiper.
It was just then that a girl and her mother were complaining about the movie being interrupted, and the film manager who plays the projector was complaining, so the theater manager got Hulk Hogan to yell at the Gremlins that people want "cold sodas, hot popcorn, and no monsters in a projector movie!". Hulk Hogan later threatened them to show the film again or he'll come up to the room to wrestle with them, so the Gremlins just showed the original movie again.
Mutation Gremlins[edit | edit source]
Mohawk[edit | edit source]
Upon drinking a serum he mutates into a half centaur half spider.
Vegetable[edit | edit source]
The Vegetable Gremlin was the first gremlin mutant and is half vegetable and half gremlin. He mutated after drinking vegetable DNA in the genetics lab, as the other scientists think he is a virus. He then later attacks somebody at the salad bar. A running gag involving The Vegetable Gremlin was vegetables be taken from his back by other characters, he is also seen as a bartender. He was killed by getting electrocuted and is also prone to belching.
Mr. Brain[edit | edit source]
Brain (alias "Creature" by Grandpa Fred in the TV-Show) appears as a brown mutated gremlin with glasses and is voiced by Tony Randall. His mutation was caused by a mutagenetic brain-enhancing serum which he consumed in the Clamp Building laboratories; his intelligence was greatly increased as a result, and he gained spectacles out of nowhere. After acquiring his intellect, he replaced Mohawk as the leader of the gremlins. For a gremlin, he is well articulated and cultured and has a normal/human sounding voice, though his mischievous nature still prevails; he later prepares to lead all the gremlins to the world outside. At one point he contacts a stock broker, advising his clients to invest all they can in "canned foods and shotguns", an obvious allusion to the chaos the Gremlins were going to wreak on society.
He was also interviewed by Grandpa Fred and described the gremlin desire for civilization and cultural identity, but then shoots a gremlin that was annoying him. Brain would admit that this action is not civilized but makes for fun, showing that he's just as evil as the rest of the Gremlins, but more reserved about it.
Brain was shown singing the all-gremlin version of "New York, New York" at the end of the movie, then was blasted with water and killed by getting electrocuted with the rest of the gremlins. This song seems to like him very much, because he repeated it several times until his death. Just before he dies, it is implied that he reverted to a normal gremlin as a result of the electricity. As he dies he sings the words "New York, New York" in a normal gremlin voice, as opposed to his human voice...
In the original draft, Brain was supposed to have a different death: After singing "New York, New York", Gizmo shoots a dart that injects him with a helium serum, causing him to bloat like a balloon and float out a window to his doom. This was cut out. In the novelization of the film by David Bischoff, he is named Mr. Glasses.
Though he is one of the main villains, and commercials for the movie depicted him keeping Gizmo in a desk, he and Gizmo have no screen time together in the movie. Also he is the first gremlin leader in the movies to NOT be a Mogwai originally and directly spawned from Gizmo, as he was spawned from one of the gremlins.
Electric Gremlin[edit | edit source]
The Electric Gremlin appears to consist of raw energy and has the power to absorb and control electricity. Before his transformation, he had a green skin colour. He obtained these powers by drinking a hormone in the genetics' lab (this hormone is introduced when Billy first enters the lab, in a scene where twin scientist Martin and Lewis show Dr. Catheter the effect it has on sewer rats). He is also the one who killed Dr. Catheter.
While Billy was talking to Mr. Clamp, he comes through an electrical outlet to try to kill them. Billy was able to trap him within the building's phone system by putting him on hold. He was used at the end to kill the moist wet gremlins in the final scene of the movie and, at the same time, he exploded into lifeless sparks by using too much of his power.
Bat-Gremlin[edit | edit source]
The third gremlin mutation in the movie, was a hybrid of a bat. The Bat-Gremlin possessed huge wings, grey skin, and pale red eyes. This occurred after a gremlin drank Bat-DNA. He was also injected with genetic sunblock by Brain and set free out of the Clamp building, to scout out New York for him. When he was outside of the building, he attacked Mr. Futterman. Mr. Futterman won the battle by covering him with cement, which hardened as he flew away and landed on a pillar, turning him into an inanimate gargoyle.
Greta[edit | edit source]
The Female gremlin was another mutation after a gremlin drank a chemical that could change his gender (even though Gremlins are effectively asexual). The resulting creature was bright green with green hair; wearing a dress and had big, red feminine lips. She is not harmless, like Gizmo, but not so aggressive to humans except for her affections for Forster, one of Clamps management team, whom she constantly forces herself upon and kiss him. She was also shown in the musical sequence. At the end of the movie, she 'married' Forster. She was the only gremlin in the film that was confirmed to have survived.
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