“Lightyear” opens with a title card that gives only a small amount of context to the movie. “Toy Story” fans find it hard to believe that this is the movie that impressed Andy, and many are disappointed as the movie doesn’t reflect some of the Buzz Lightyear franchise already set up in the saga.
One of the biggest and most absurd controversies surrounding “Lightyear” was brought up by conservative fans, as two openly gay characters share an on-screen kiss. This scene led to the movie being banned or modified in over a dozen countries, and it is thought to promote Disney’s “not-at-all-secret gay agenda.”
The evil emperor Zurg’s visual design changes from his debut in “Toy Story 2,” and he is missing standout features such as his cape and the letter Z on his chest plate. This has led to speculation that he is not the true Emperor Zurg, and the post-credits scene suggests we could see this character again.
Fans can agree that one of the worst aspects of “Lightyear” is the underbaked supporting characters. Their jokes don’t land, and they fall somewhere between bland and insufferable as many fans find them forgettable or annoying.
In “Lightyear,” Buzz is given an adorable robotic cat, Sox (voiced by Peter Sohn), that is an adorable highlight of the movie. Fans speculate that if this was the movie that Andy saw when he was a kid, Sox would have been just as popular, and Andy himself would’ve likely had a Sox toy as well.
“Lightyear” has a plot that hinges on time dilation in space travel as only a few minutes pass for him while years pass on the planet. Reddit users have found that the math the movie uses doesn’t add up, and also note that any scientist working with Buzz should’ve known about these effects beforehand.
“Lightyear” reveals that Zurg is actually a future version of Buzz that traveled back in time, but this decision divided fans. Some loved the difficult philosophical questions posed, while others claim that a “real” Zurg is out there as he is said to be from the Gamma Quadrant of Sector 4 in “Toy Story.”
The time paradox mentioned by Zurg/Old Buzz is not explained well, and the motivations suddenly become fuzzy for each character. The paradox isn’t perfect, and the explanations for why Old Buzz comes back and what he hopes to accomplish remain convoluted and confusing.
As a movie that Andy watched in 1995, “Lightyear” has too many modern touches to believably be a ‘90s film. Even director Angus McClane is unsure about its release date, placing it somewhere between 1980 and 1990, which changes the theory about when Andy saw the movie in theatres.