An American Tail Wiki
An American Tail Wiki

This is a list of the various continuity errors and inconsistencies that occur in the franchise. Some may be described as goofs by the animators, others might be flat-out retcons. The sequels in the An American Tail franchise were all handled by different writers, thus its only natural for there to be continuity errors and conflicts within the canon of the series.

An American Tail

Yasha is absent from Mama's arms; one of the infamous errors in the franchise

  • Yasha's Disappearance: About half way through the film, the youngest Mousekewitz sibling Yasha seems to disappear. This might be explained by the fact that her family are in potentially dangerous situations for the second half (building and controlling the Giant Mouse of Minsk, riding on Tiger, and flying on pigeons), but no real explanation is given. The cuts that were made for the film were responsible for Yasha's absence.
  • Disappearing Cheese: In the scene where Tony Toponi trips a mouse trap to get the cheese, and tosses it because it has gone stale, it simply disappears from the frame.
  • Bridget's Shoes: Bridget is one of the only mice in the series who is seen wearing shoes, however it is inconsistent and they appear and disappear from scene to scene.
  • Warren T Rat's Size: Warren's size varies throughout the film, particularly when compared to Fievel and Digit, who are almost the same height in scenes where they appear together. When standing next to Moe, a rat, he is dwarfed. Yet he becomes bigger when not wearing his rat disguise, the same size as the rest of the cats.

Fievel Goes West

Fievel and Tanya were usually one year apart; Fievel seems to be a lot younger than the timeline when Tanya is 16

  • Tanya's Age: In An American Tail, Tanya is close in age to Fievel. In An American Tail: The Storybook, it is mentioned that Fievel is seven years old, while Tanya is a year older, making her 8. However, by the time of Fievel Goes West she is much older, and her An American Tail Trading Card states that she is 16 years old, and it is very unlikely that Fievel is 15.
  • Yasha's Age: Even disregarding the conflicting canon on Tanya's age, it is clear that in the time between the first film and Fievel Goes West, enough time has passed that Yasha should no longer be an infant.
  • Tanya's Shoes: Similarly to Bridget's inconsistent footwear in the first film, Tanya has flats or slippers in some scenes and not in others, such as when she sings Dreams to Dream.
  • Tony’s inconsistency: Majority errors occurred throughout Tony’s cameo appearance, including his shirt and hat frequently changes colors during several shots. In first shot, his shirt is dim light blue and the strip on his hat is the same "red" color of his hat with the buttons missing. In second shot, his shirt is changed to dark blue and his hat strip appears black, revealing his gold buttons, which carries to the third shot. In fourth shot, both his shirt, hat and his head hair are changed to green, as his red scarf is strangely replaced with a white bow tie, notably another mouse (slightly older and not having head hair, setting between him and Bridget) is wearing a dirt-colored hat and scarf (switching without audience looking). This is all caused from Pat Musick's non-involvement of the film, causing animators not to have Tony as a focused character. Strangely in one sequence, Tony and his wife and baby only made a shot on the mousetrap with the crowd, while in all other shots, they are missing from the crowd.
    • Bridget’s cameo appearance is also cheap with the texture palette, as her flower, dress, and trimmings are all dark blue, with the exception of her brooch as it is gold instead of purple.

Fievel's American Tails

  • Cat R. Waul's Schemes: Several times, such as in The Legend of Mouse Hollow, Tanya, as well as the rest of the town, seem to have forgotten about Cat R. Waul's scheme to kill every mouse in Green River while sparing Tanya in Fievel Goes West, and continue to trust him. Fievel never trusts Waul, but never reminds others of Waul's scheme in Fievel Goes West again either.
  • Chula's Characterization: Chula is a very different character in the series, no longer as sadistic or psychotic. In That's What Friends Are For, Tiger and Fievel befriend him separately, as if forgetting the time Chula tried to cook Fievel over a candle and eat him in Fievel Goes West.
  • Wylie Burp's Whereabouts: Wylie Burp is missing from the series, and it is not explained what happened to him nor is he even mentioned.
    • As a respect for James Stewart's retirement, the character could not be recasted.
  • Fievel's Hat: At the end of Fievel Goes West, Fievel turns his hat back into its original shape from a cowboy hat because he is ready to start being himself. But in Fievel's American Tails, he is always seen in a cowboy hat.
  • Tiger's Characterization: By the end of Fievel Goes West, Tiger had found his courage, won back Miss Kitty, and it is implied Wylie passed his torch to him and he became sheriff. But in Fievel's American Tails he is back to being a coward, is unemployed living in a discarded wagon, and Miss Kitty has left him.

The Treasure of Manhattan Island and Mystery of the Night Monster

  • Back in New York: Perhaps the most infamous continuity error in the whole franchise, the direct-to-video films inexplicably take place in New York and disregard the events of Fievel Goes West. The Treasure of Manhattan Island alludes to this by Fievel stating he had a dream where the family moved west, perhaps implying that the film was all just a dream. Some fans explain this by saying the two direct-to-video sequels take place before Fievel Goes West, but it seems the creators of those movies wanted to retcon the first sequel. Notably the song "We Live in Manhattan" is part of retconning that event as lyrics, such as "...and we're here to stay.", might mean that the mice aren't leaving to Green River.
  • Irreverent Historical References: The Statue of Liberty is given a green texture that was 4 decades ahead of its time, while the Statue was given a copper tone as shown at the end of the 1986 movie. Also, Tony mentions that the Subway closed down 12 years after the timeline the film took place, but the Subway shut down in 1873 as the movie took place after the completion of the Statue of Liberty (albeit mid 1886), which makes the Subway’s closure 13 years after.

Fievel glances at Tony's flirtation with Cholena hints his supposed-relationship with Bridget in spite of her absence.

  • Bridget's Whereabouts: Bridget, Tony's love interest in the first movie, seldom appears nor spoken of on any of the DTV movies. Instead Tony develops an unrequited crush on Cholena in the third installment, which this fragment was deliberately given out for undisclosed reasons. Fans have theorized why Bridget is missing, but no explanation offers in any of these latter sequels at all. Due to the involvement of the then-child actor Thomas Dekker, any reasons of Tony’s situations were not allowed in the speaking dialogues except having Fievel to speak with his expression. This fragment is withdrawn from Mystery of the Night Monster.
    • Notably that Bridget isn’t the only character to be excluded from the sequels, but others, like Gussie Mausheimer, Moe, and The Bullying Orphans, are also absent from the sequels as well, with the exception of Henri's cameo in that one sequence before disappearing from the series afterwards. The absence of the villains from the 1986 film can be easily explained from being chased off to China by the Mouse of Minsk. Honest John had since been removed from the film series after his cameo during Way Out West in the first sequel for being an excessive alcoholic, as his image is awkwardly given to the Mayor in the finale.
  • Tony’s characterization: Not only Tony’s unrequited crush with Cholena was one of the film’s glitches, but Tony seems to be more scared and defenseless towards his foes for his physical return, disregarding the courage he had in the original film. For instance, Tony rarely stood up to Mr. Grasping before he could fire him. Also, Tony was overpowered by Scuttlebutt before Tanya saves him near the end. Notably for his physical return, Tony is shrunk down a feet shorter than any of the adult mice compared to the size depicting him in the 1986 film, but still taller than any of the kid mice.
    • Luckily, Tony regained his courage in the finale.
  • Tanya's Characterization: Tanya is known to be nicer to Fievel in the first two movies and the short lived Fievel's American Tails, but in The Treasure of Manhattan Island, she appears to be more jealous of her sibling, which is definitely unlike her at all.
    • As a regret from that experience, this concept is dropped from The Mystery of the Night Monster.
  • The Silencing of Papa Mousekewitz's First Name: In the Fievel's American Tails, Papa's first name was revealed to be Bernard. But his name is rarely ever mentioned in both direct-to-video sequels, like in The Treasure of Manhattan Island, Papa said that his name is "Mousekewitz" to Mr. Grasping, completely not mentioning his first name. The reasons for this has yet to be known.
  • Yasha's Appearance: Throughout most of the film, Yasha appears to be asleep, starting after Mama takes the baby out of the tub. Strangely, she is seen asleep in Tanya’s arms during both sequences including getting lost in the mob and sliding down the water sprout. Notably again, Yasha is not seen with the Mousekewitz family, Tony, Tiger, Dr. Dithering, and Scuttlebutt in the Subway, prior to their exportation for the treasure.
    • Luckily, her appearance is improved in the finale.
  • Fievel's Characterization: Fievel has always been portrayed as brave to a fault, often getting himself into trouble because of it. But in The Mystery of the Night Monster, Fievel is fearful and plagued by nightmares, which is very unlike him.
  • Daily Nibbler Calendar: Reed Daley's calendar on the wall of his office at the Daily Nibbler always reads September 19th even though several days go by in the course of the film.

Tiger as a cop at the end of AAT3. This is not repeated, as dropped from the finale for political reasons.

  • Inconsistencies Between Both Films: The two direct to video films are similar in most respects; same voice actors, generally same character models, the Mousekwitz family lives in the same house, Tony reappears without his girlfriend in both; they seem at first glance to take place in the same universe. However there are some key differences that aren't easily explained. The absence of the Lenape mice in Mystery of the Night Monster actually can be easily explained by their still living underground in exile, of course. The Cheese Factory is never mentioned again as it is quietly implied that Papa and Tony ended their jobs. Some have taken a brief comment by Papa that Nellie's undercover report which resulted in some sweat shop owners being arrested to mean that Nellie took down the evil Cheese Factory owners, which is unclear to the audiences due to their names are unmentioned by censorship. Tiger's position as Chief of Police at the end of The Treasure of Manhattan Island is cut from the next film and is probably the biggest inconsistency between the two films that can't be logically explained (maybe he quit, but we don't know). The two films may have been written to be at least somewhat self-contained.
    • It is assumed that the creators decided to depart the third film's elements from the fourth movie to avoid further controversy within the franchise by giving the fourth movie much safer plotline in spite of that.

Other Works (games, music, etc)

An American Tail: A Musical Adventure With Fievel and Friends

  • Diddy Diddy Dum Dum: The track Diddy Diddy Dum Dum (Fievel's Little Song) is riddled with continuity errors, stating that Fievel was made fun of for having a funny accent (never implied in the movies), that Papa was a tailor (he's a violin maker; although there are hints in the first film that he briefly was a tailor when he first came to America), and that Russia is west of Prussia (it was actually to the east).
  • Timeline error references: The album is considered infamous for containing anachronisms. In "Anything Can Happen in America" Papa mentions computers, as such didn’t come about until middle of the 20th century. And as for "A Little Bit of Reggae", reggae as a musical genre did not emerge until the 1960's. It is assumed that some of the songs' aspects in the album are non-canon.

An American Tail: The Computer Adventures of Fievel and His Friends

  • The Mousekewitz's Home in Fievel Goes West: The film itself is never clear in what area of New York the Mousekewitz family is living in at the beginning of the film. This DOS game states that they live in Brooklyn, while the trading cards say they live on Hester Street. A clear case of conflicting canon.
  • Sophia Kitty: The game gives Miss Kitty a first name that appears in no other An American Tail media. While fans have accepted this as her real name as a result, other aspects of the game are clearly non-canon, meaning this is probably unofficial.

An American Tail Trading Cards

Willie and Tanya at the end of the FGW comic, as Willie remain obscured from the actual movie

  • Conflicting Dates: The Hester Street card claims the Mousekewitz family settled in New York in 1881 (five years too early), while the Statue of Liberty card claims the statue was finished in 1885 (a year too early). While the first film opens in 1885, it is Hanukkah, a holiday in December, meaning the rest of the film couldn't possibly have taken place that year.
  • Tanya's Love Interest: Tanya's card states that she has "love for a certain young mouse". This error may be based on an older version of the script that appears in the Fievel Goes West comic book as well, where Tanya falls in love with a boy mouse named Willie. He seems to have been cut from the final film.