Tim Burton is without a doubt one of the most celebrated and eccentric directors in Hollywood. He is known for his brilliant storytelling and unique visual style as well as for his bizarrely charming characters. While Burton is fascinating in his own right, his movies are even more fun and enriching to delve into, as he regularly shows careful attention to intricate visual and narrative details.
Perhaps because of Burton's meticulous artistry, fans have put together a shared universe theory that connects all his original works, and it actually seems pretty plausible. While films that are part of other franchises - such as Batman - are not included, the theory does consider works Burton didn’t direct but had a large role in creating, such as The Nightmare Before Christmas. If it turns out to be true, it finally explains why all Burton's projects look so similar.
Vincent is one of Burton’s first films; it tells the story of the titular seven-year-old boy who becomes fascinated with horror and Gothic-inspired work. To further his obsession, he begins to experiment on his dog Abercrombie in an attempt to turn the pet into a zombie.
The theory contends the boy’s mother rescued Abercrombie from this torture and gave the animal up for adoption so he would not come to any more harm. Abercrombie then goes on to be adopted by Victor from Frankenweenie and is renamed Sparky.
Sparky (formerly Abercrombie) and Victor are inseparable friends; the two are pretty much do everything together. However, Sparky is accidentally killed when a car runs him over while he is chasing a baseball hit by Victor.
This devastates the young boy and he does everything he can to bring his pet back to life. Eventually Sparky does come back with the help of some lightning and a devious science experiment. Before the end of Frankenweenie, Sparky is killed again, but he's ultimately brought back to life once more by the townsfolk.
One of the main points of this fan theory is the two Victors who appear in Corpse Bride and Frankenweenie are in fact the same person. Either through some strange science experiment gone wrong or a family tragedy that separates Victor from his parents, the boy ends up being adopted by the Van Dorts family. He takes on their surname and becomes part of their clan as Victor Van Dort.
One version of this theory proposes Sparky was also adopted by the Van Dorts. When Victor is separated from his parents, his dear dog Sparky would almost certainly be with him as the adorable pup is always by his side.
If Victor is adopted by the Van Dorts and given a name-change to help ease him into his new surroundings, it seems perfectly reasonable to assume Sparky becomes Scraps to also give him a fresh start. Thus, the theory argues, Scraps is just Sparky's new title.
Other versions of the theory suggest Scraps is actually a completely different dog, as Sparky passed from natural causes and stayed that way. Rather than leave Victor without a best friend, his guardians buy him a new dog. To help Victor move on, they choose to buy a dog that closely resembles Sparky, and the boy names this new pet Scraps.