The Wrong Trousers is a 1993 animated film directed by Nick Park at Aardman Animations, featuring the characters Wallace and Gromit. It was his second short featuring the eccentric inventor Wallace and his dog Gromit. The film premiered on December 26, 1993 and won the 1994 Academy Award for Animated Short Film.
The short begins at 62 West Wallaby Street on Gromit's birthday. Gromit takes out the mail from the door and walks through but dodges a model train and arrives at the table. After falling downstairs from his bed through a trap door in the ceiling (which also dresses him at the same time) and eating toast for breakfast, Wallace is greeted with a large pile of bills. Meanwhile, Gromit subtly attempts to remind Wallace that it is his birthday.
After surveying their depleted funds
, Wallace sees a train set coming, lets slip that he has not forgotten Gromit's birthday after all and presents Gromit with a somewhat unwelcome gift of a collar and a leash (lead), and a second present of a pair of ex-NASA robotic Techno Trousers, designed to relieve the burden of taking him for walkies. Gromit manages to take the collar off and puts it on a toy dog instead, which is then taken for a walk by the Trousers. While Gromit is out on a "walk", Wallace decides that the only solution to their financial problems is to rent out the spare bedroom. Thus, a lodger, a malevolent-looking penguin criminal named Feathers McGraw comes to stay at the house. Unsatisfied with the spare room, Feathers decides to sleep in Gromit's bedroom, forcing Gromit to sleep in the spare room. Feathers keeps Gromit awake at night with his music, and wins Wallace's favor. He also gains interest in the Trousers after seeing Gromit use them to walk along the house's ceiling to paint it. Disappointed that Feathers has barged in on his relationship with his master, Gromit leaves home. Viewing his departure, Feathers goes to work on modifying the Techno-Trousers for his own nefarious use.
After sleeping rough, Gromit hunts for suitable lodgings, noticing a police poster depicting a criminal penguin with a rubber glove on his head and the caption "Have you seen this chicken?". This makes him begin to suspect that the "chicken" in the wanted poster is, in fact, Feathers.
Meanwhile, Wallace's normal morning routine is interrupted by the replacement of his expected trousers with the modified Techno-Trousers. Trapped inside the robotic garments, Wallace is sent on an extended test run, driven by remote control, although he is unaware of Feathers's involvement. Gromit, seeing this spectacle, later spies on Feathers from inside a box as the penguin suspiciously measures up the exterior of the town museum, sneaks back into his old bedroom, and uncovers a dastardly scheme the penguin has devised to steal a giant diamond from the museum using the trousers and Wallace as tools. However, as Feathers arrives back at the house, Gromit finds he is too late to foil the plan and is instead forced to hide inside Wallace's bed, where he observes Feathers in his "chicken" disguise (a large red rubber glove on his head). Realization dawns on Gromit: Feathers is a wanted thief; he'd been stealing from all over the country disguised as a chicken.
Wallace, in his own deep sleep after the morning's misadventures, is unwittingly brought into the robbery by the penguin, and by nightfall is marched out of the house to the museum. Feathers uses the suction feet on the Trousers to climb the wall, enter the building through an air vent on the roof and march along the ceiling to the diamond, narrowly avoiding the laser burglar alarm system. As the penguin watches from a window sill outside, he carefully uses a claw in Wallace's helmet to hook the diamond. After a close call when the diamond slips and almost falls to the floor, a loose ceiling tile sets the Trousers off balance, swinging the claw into the laser and setting off the alarm. The alarm wakes up a terrified Wallace, who has no idea where he is or how he got there, or what he'd been doing before he got there. Feathers quickly marches Wallace out of the museum and back to West Wallaby Street, where he reveals his identity to Wallace and locks him up in a wardrobe. Making for the door with the diamond, Feathers is confronted by Gromit with a rolling pin. Feathers then pulls out a pistol and forces Gromit into the wardrobe with Wallace, locking them both inside. Being an expert with electronics, Gromit is able to override the Trousers' circuits and break open the wardrobe door to escape and pursue Feathers.
Then follows a fast chase through the house aboard a train set, as Gromit attempts to stop the penguin escaping with the diamond, aided and abetted mostly unsuccessfully by Wallace. Wallace, however, does manage to disarm the penguin on the tender behind the engine, he crashes through a wall, and barely fails to catch the penguin, but grabs the engine after the penguin uncouples the train from the tender. After the penguin's train is abruptly stopped by the trousers, he is caught and handed in to the police station. In the final scene, he has returned home to the zoo and is clinging furiously to the prison-like window bars. For catching Feathers, the pair are given a substantial reward, which pays off their debts. They later celebrate at home with some crackers and cheese. Meanwhile, the Trousers, unceremoniously consigned to the dustbin, flips back up and walks off by themselves into the sunset, ending the short as the credits roll.
- When Gromit activates the jam-fling contraption, the headline on his newspaper reads "Moon Cheese Shares Soar!" This is probably a reference to their last adventure, A Grand Day Out, in which they visit the moon to get cheese.
- First appearance of Feathers McGraw. He next appears in the video game Wallace & Gromit In Project Zoo.
- This is the first appearance of Wallace and Gromit in their modern designs; in A Grand Day Out, Wallace had a narrower mouth and Gromit had a longer snout.
- Gromit's mouth can be seen twice: once when he carries the letters to the table.
- The film reveals that Wallace and Gromit keep their money hidden in a vault behind a picture of a piggy bank.
- When Gromit leaves away from home, he is wearing a raincoat and hat to avoid getting wet. This is the only time he is ever seen wearing a coat.
- A stuffed and mounted puma from the original Aardman short film, Creature Comforts, can be briefly spotted in the museum. Additionally, there are several penguin-like birds on display that bear a resemblance to Feathers McGraw. They might possibly be some of his ancestors.
- Once again, the film reveals that Gromit likes to read books and watch TV in the morning during breakfast.
- Originally in the BBC version of the film, and in the film’s original U.K. VHS release, Gromit's birthday card played Happy Birthday To You in the scenes where he opens it, and also when Wallace goes over to the picture to take out the piggy bank. When it was rereleased on VHS and DVD in the UK and the US, Warner Bros. and BBC Enterprises changed it to For He's a Jolly Good Fellow to avoid copyright infringements. Also in the scene when Gromit is kept awake, Happy Talk and How Much is That Doggy in the Window were removed and replaced with Hammond organ music. Tie A Yellow Ribbon had no copyright, so it was left in. Also Gromit's TV at breakfast no longer plays the Open University theme.
- During the times the film had been aired by the BBC over the years, the original music and sound effects had been used, but soon the Hammond music and later sound effects were added in. However, on the British television channel G.OL.D, the original music and sound effects were still used. In the 2005 DVD release of 3 Cracking Adventures, an audio commentary by Nick Park, Bob Baker and Steve Box was heard over the original soundtrack. The Korean language dub uses the original soundtrack.
- This is one of two movies where Wallace does not have a love interest; the other being A Grand Day Out.
- Subsequently, this is also the last movie in which Sallis is the only voice actor.
- This was included on Learn English With Wallace and Gromit and had Stephen Tomkinson as the narrator. Peter Sallis even recorded new Wallace dialogue for the entire film.
Goofs / Errors
- When Gromit runs away, he is looking at signs. In the first scene, a blue sign is going over a white "Room to Let" sign, but in the next scene the blue sign isn't.
- The hatch the claw inside Wallace's helmet comes out of doesn't appear until it hooks the diamond, and also disappears when Wallace leaves the museum.
- After Gromit overrides the circuits on the trousers to make them march, the wardrobe's doors break open and he chases after Feathers. However, Wallace is later forced to smash out of the doors using the trousers because in the next scene, the doors are closed again.
- Gromit suddenly gains a watch on his right arm, when looking at the calendar. It is not seen before or afterwards.
- After Feathers shuts the door hard at the end, Gromit falls out of Wallace's bed and lands in his morning chair. He gets his face splattered automatically with jelly by the jelly-toast machine. However, this is impossible since in earlier scenes, Gromit was controlling it himself.
- Feathers slamming the door shouldn't have triggered the morning routine, as that is triggered by Gromit pulling a lever downstairs.
- After Gromit lands on Wallace's chair dressed backwards in his trousers, the sweater machine dresses Gromit in reverse order compared to how it had dressed Wallace previously.
- At the end of the film, Gromit confronts Feathers with a rolling pin. In retaliation, Feathers pulls out a revolver and forces Gromit into the wardrobe. But as there is no gun belt around his waist, how could he have just pulled it out of nowhere? In addition, how could he have had the gun for so long without anyone knowing?
- During the train chase, there are several objects around the house that disappear and reappear in later scenes, and some of which were not seen at all in earlier scenes.
- When Feathers uses the remote to get Wallace out of bed, the sheets are all crumpled up, but in the next scene they're neatly spread over the bed again.
- In the beginning, when Gromit pours a cup of tea, the teacup is in front of him. When he returns to the table, the cup is much farther away from the teapot.
- Gromit cuts out a piece of the box so he can spy on Feathers McGraw. It should have fallen on the ground next to the box. The entire time after he cuts it, the piece of the box is no where to be seen.
- During the train scene, Gromit is dangling from a lamp on the ceiling. Then Feathers McGraw shoots the lamp, Gromit falls onto the train, and the lamp is on his head. Aside from the arrangement being reversed, as earlier seen, there is a light bulb in the lamp, so shouldn't we have seen breaking glass?
- During the train chase, while Gromit is placing new tracks to catch up with Feathers, the box is open and it is clear that the amount of tracks in the box remains exactly the same, even as Gromit places more than a hundred new tracks.
- Before Feathers shoots at the lever of the train track switch, there are three flatbed trucks at the end of the train: one has logs on it, one is empty and the other one has Wallace is on. When Feathers shoots the lever, the empty truck disappears. However, it reappears later on after Wallace goes flying and lands on a cart.
- Director: Nick Park
- Producer: Christopher Moll
- Written by Nick Park, Bob Baker
- Animation: Nick Park, Steve Box
- Music: Julian Nott
- Voice of Wallace: Peter Sallis
VHS and DVD Releases
- The Wrong Trousers (1994, BBC Video)
- 3 Cracking Adventures! (2000, BBC Video)
- The Incredible Adventures Of Wallace & Gromit (2001, Warner Home Video)
- 3 Cracking Adventures! (2005, BBC Worldwide)
- The Wrong Trousers (2012)