Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory: it's a fun and enchanting film for all ages, with a cautionary moral tale to boot. What's not to love? Well, a lot, apparently.
Sure, we know Gene Wilder's iconic turn as Wonka may have been a little sinister in places, but did you ever stop to think that Wonka might actually be a serial killer?
Someone has, though, and that someone is Reddit user htallen, whose fan theory on the true nature of Wonka has been doing the rounds. Spoiler: it's beyond dark and 100% childhood-ruining.
htallen sets the scene by re-framing Wonka as a "madman" who kills children, sparing one – Charlie – so that he can become "the psychopath's protégé". So far, so scoffable.
But then they go into the details of each child's demise in the factory, putting together some pretty solid evidence suggesting that Augustus, Veruca, Violet and Mike never made it out alive.
First up is Augustus Gloop, who fell into that chocolate lake and got stuck in a massive vacuum. According to this fan, the process would've killed Augustus at worst or, "at best", given him "permanent brain damage from lack of oxygen and hearing loss".
Next is Veruca Salt, the bratty one who wanted a goose that laid golden eggs (can you blame her?). htallen argues that her fall onto piles of solid gold eggs would've meant almost-certain death – or, if not, 'snapped vertebrae'. Ouch.
Wonka's next victim, Violet Beauregarde, the obnoxious gum-chewer, wasn't spared death either. Rather than being drained of blueberry juice, the fan theory suggests she was subjected to the torture of "blood letting". Oh, and she also developed necrosis, by the way.
Finally there's Mike Teavee, who got shrunk and trapped inside a television and then stretched to death by a taffy pulling machine. "It kills you by ripping your limbs from their sockets and letting you bleed out," the theory argues. Bleak or what?
Now that that's over, excuse us while we go and cry over our destroyed childhoods and console ourselves with chocolate. It's what Wonka would have wanted.
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