Hello, my fellow Zootopians! Prepare to get Z.A.P.ped! It's time for this week's edition of the Zootopia Appreciation Post, or Z.A.P. for short. Every Saturday, I'm gonna be posting a different Zootopia-related topic that we can all discuss.
For today's topic, I would like to talk about the tame collars.
As you know, in the original early version of Zootopia, the bigotry and unequal treatment of the predator population was made very clear. Mandatory for all predators, tame collars were made to keep predators from acting out of aggression and potentially hurting prey animals by shocking them when they became enraged or overly emotional. It has a light representing the predator's emotions: green meaning "calm", yellow signaling a warning, and red meaning the predator is too upset/excited and thus finally shocking him/her.
There are two deleted scenes that feature the collar. The first is when Nick goes to the doctor. Having hurt his neck, a cautious doctor has to temporarily remove Nick's tame collar in order to examine him. Being without his collar for the first time that he can remember, he is overcome with feelings of joy and freedom. His collar is put back on seconds later, however. Nick asks the doctor for more time without it, to which the doctor replies, "If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me that." And Nick responds, "Then you'd be the richest mammal in Zootopia." This plants the seed of Nick's idea for Wild Times.
The second scene is when Nick and Judy are watching Morris' taming party as his father Kozlov presents him with his tame collar. As his collar is put on, Morris is applauded by his peers, with a saddened Koslov looking on. As Morris becomes increasingly excited, Koslov tries to call out to his son to calm down, but Morris doesn't hear him. Finally, he gets his first shock from the collar and looks back worriedly towards his father. Koslov then sadly steps forward to give his son a hug, and it is then that Morris realizes that his collar is not a privilege, but the opposite: a cruel restriction.
Though animators and storyboard artists at Disney Animation Studios thought the collar would be a key plot point in the world of Zootopia, those select few at Pixar that they showed it to didn't enjoy the movie at all. They pointed out that, instead, the staff at Disney Animation could get rid of the collars and put stereotyping/subtler discrimination against predators in their place.
I'm really glad that they didn't go through with this dark concept. I think I actually would have hated Zootopia if it turned out like this. Wow, I never thought I would use the words "hated" and "Zootopia" in the same sentence.
So, what do you guys think? Sound off in the comments below!