In the original “Chicken Run”, much of Ginger’s apparent fearlessness was actually the result of fear. As demonstrated to the audience in the scene which left scars on the psyche of many children (and a few adults), the hens that failed to lay enough eggs to meet Mrs. Tweedy’s quota were moved on to the next (and final) stage of their food production careers: the block of wood, the ax and fast cutting. With nothing to lose and only a grim, bloody future ahead, it was easier to take risks. But with an idyllic island with a chicken paradise and a family to protect, Ginger has even more reason to fear.
“Ginger was a little traumatized, she’s a little scared now,” Fell said. “I looked at Ripley [‘Aliens’]”You know, she doesn’t want to go back to the planet because she knows what’s out there.” Meanwhile, Molly grows up in the safe cocoon of the island, unaware of what is happening to the chickens in the outside world. And having inherited Ginger’s adventurous spirit and Rocky’s adventurous attitude, Molly can’t wait to find out if the grass really is greener on the other side of the street.
As if that prospect wasn’t terrifying enough for Ginger, Fell also wanted to “increase the threat” in “Dawn of the Nugget.” Tweedy’s farm wasn’t exactly paradise, but compared to the modern horrors of factory farming, “it really does look a bit like a nice organic farm.” While Molly seeks adventure off the island, Mrs. Tweedy awaits with a new look, a new husband, and a sinister hideout called Chicken Funland. Let’s hope Ginger finds a powered exoskeleton to fit the chickens.
“Chicken Run: Dawn of the Nugget” will premiere on December 15, 2023 on Netflix.