Rachel Cranor
Okay, so in the Toy Story movies, we know that toys take a beating at times, and we know that it hurts! But how much can they stand? In the first Toy Story, a Combat Carl is blown to bits, he's obviously a goner. Or is he? Remember the mutant toys? They are salvaged bits of other toys put together. Could the Combat Carl fragments still be sentient?
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Bonnie
What immediately springs to mind is that there might need to be a sort of central entity to count as the toy for them to survive. The mutant toys are different pieces put together that Sid may or may not play with in some way, so they're still together in a toy's form. Combat Carl, on the other hand, was scattered into a bunch of tiny bits. When Buzz and Woody lost bits, they couldn't move them, they could only move the main toy body. 

I apply this same logic to Cars. Mix and match and beat up all you want, but there still needs to be a good chunk together otherwise they die. 

Of course, it's possible the pieces are still sentient, they just can't actually move, but that's just creepy on so many levels. 
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Gray Catbird
The implicit rule seems indeed that for a toy or a car to be alive, its integrity has to be conserved. But that's pretty vague I find.

After all, the mutant toys still are pieces from many toys together. Their original entity is destroyed. I also think of how Stinky Pete implicitly says that tearing Woody in pieces won't kill him, since he can be repaired. In that logic, I think the Combat Carl pieces should still be alive... Unless he's disintegrated to dust?...

Maybe reparability is the criteria? Pieces can be stitched back together, but not particles of dust.

One of weirdest things to me in the Toy Story universe, when pushed far enough, is what is alive and what is not. It seems that anything a kid plays with is alive; even when it was not a toy to begin with; even when it was an object. Like the pool, shovel and other toys at the end of Partysaurus... Are they alive just because they have eyes, or are all pools and shovels sentient?

Maybe what gets played with becomes alive? Or is there a sort of latent life force in this universe and in fact, all objects are sentient....
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Bonnie
Well...technically, Prospector never says Woody will actually survive being torn to pieces, just that the guy can put him back together again. It could be like the basic equivalent of taxidermy; it's still together it's just not alive. Which is, again, creepy. 

Or it could be less whether or not it's possible to repair them, more whether or not they actually do get repaired. Woody could effectively be dead if Prospector cut him up but repairing him would bring him back, but since it's unlikely anyone's going to put Combat Carl back together he's permanently dead. 


As for what actually comes to life...I don't think there's really a criteria. The Toy Story universe' rules have always been really wonky. 
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Rachel Cranor
This got dark fast! I just thought of this one night while I was falling asleep! [repunzel-scared]

If anything that gets played with is alive, does that mean that sticks, rocks and toy weapons are all alive? That means that almost anything is a toy!
If the chunk theory is correct then how does the new part get "grafted" on? And which part counts? All the mutant toys seem to have multiple parts that could be considered a sizable chunk. [image]

If anything with eyes is alive, then how is Etch alive?
I'm not trying to blow your ideas out of the water, I'm just questioning.
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Gray Catbird
Bonnie wrote:
Well...technically, Prospector never says Woody will actually survive being torn to pieces, just that the guy can put him back together again. It could be like the basic equivalent of taxidermy; it's still together it's just not alive. Which is, again, creepy.

Or it could be less whether or not it's possible to repair them, more whether or not they actually do get repaired. Woody could effectively be dead if Prospector cut him up but repairing him would bring him back, but since it's unlikely anyone's going to put Combat Carl back together he's permanently dead.

Good points all around! I recognize I jumped to conclusions regarding Woody.

I like your second idea that it would work a bit like C-3PO or Frankenstein. That would makes sense, and could explain where the mutant toys are coming from. But again, inevitably it's a bit weird...
Rachel Cranor wrote:

If the chunk theory is correct then how does the new part get "grafted" on? And which part counts? All the mutant toys seem to have multiple parts that could be considered a sizable chunk.

If we go with that theory:
Maybe some pieces are more important than others and the strongest one wins? Or which piece carries the life of the toy depends on how he was destroyed/built...
Or, maybe the different parts are all individually sentient and collaborate together to work as a whole?
I'm just saying random things there. [tongue]
Rachel Cranor wrote:

If anything with eyes is alive, then how is Etch alive?

That's where my idea of "latent life force" was coming from. What if all objects are actually alive? Isn't that a logical way to explain those... discrepancies?

There's also the dump trucks at Sunnyside, or the Rubik cube in Partysaurus... I find the cube especially strange since we usually think of it as a game/puzzle, not a toy. Although I must say, for some reason I find it cool that some non-anthropomorphic toys are alive.

Rachel Cranor wrote:
If anything that gets played with is alive, does that mean that sticks, rocks and toy weapons are all alive? That means that almost anything is a toy!

You get my point! It's one of the things, at first the idea that toys come to life seems simple; but if you push it, try to take it rationally, logically, it can become very... weird.
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