What if it was all the Trolls’ fault? [a theory]

I’ve been letting this one solidify in my brain for a while. Frozen is still on a decent rotation in my household so I’ve been able to watch this movie enough times to believe that this theory has some decent foundations. There are no shortages of posts floating around the internet about the plot holes in this movie. I’ve posted a few of my own on this blog. However, I think that the theory I am about to lay out might solve almost all of them. And it all starts with the question: what if the trolls were behind….everything?

Let’s start at the beginning of the movie. Elsa has just nearly iced Anna and the King & Queen rush to trolls for help. This signals a previous relationship between the royals of Arendelle and the trolls. What kind of relationship isn’t clear but we know that the King only turns to this group because the trolls are fluent in the workings of magic. Not only does the Troll King understand Elsa’s powers completely, he is even able to heal Anna & even change her memories. The day is saved! Trolls Rule! But then, the Troll King has a chat with Elsa. He shares with her that her magic has the potential for great beauty and great danger which further exacerbates the situation engendering fear in both Elsa and her father.  So why didn’t the Troll King just tell them then that ‘Love’ was the answer? Instead he gives a vague command to the King that he must help her learn to ‘control it.’ Could it be that the trolls didn’t actually want Elsa to master her abilities? Is it possible that the Troll King not only knew this advice would not help, but also that his words would put the royal family on a path to destruction? Impossible!…yet….

Let’s look a little more at the character of the trolls. We see early on that Kristoff is ‘adopted’  by one of the female rock trolls. She surprises him and Sven and states that she is going to keep them. While cute and endearing, we only seem to accept this because it appears young Kristoff is without a family. But that can’t be true. How is he working with the ice-farmers or feeding/clothing himself and his reindeer? Whatever his situation, I can’t believe that living in the hot springs with a bunch of trolls that turn into rocks when no one is around could be the best environment for a young boy. The trolls take what they want regardless of the kingdom’s laws. Then later when Anna and Kristoff visit the camp for help, the trolls ignore the urgent need and instead join in the song that culminates with a wedding being performed on the two helpless humans. Kristoff informs them during the song that she is engaged and their response speaks volumes. They scheme: ‘So she’s a bit of a fixer upper. Her brain’s a bit betwixt. Get the fiance out of the way and the whole thing will be fixed!‘ They couldn’t care less about what Anna wants or even what she needs as she slowly freezes to death right in front of their eyes. They are solely focused on their own agenda.

The trollsBut here is where it all crystallized for me. Up until the point of the movie when Anna returns home half frozen, Prince Hans has been nothing but a gentleman. He is helpful, caring and heroic. Yet when Anna asks for him to save her with a kiss, he reveals that he has been evil all along…but what if that wasn’t him talking? What if the trolls got to him first? Instead of going back to sleep after Kristoff & Anna left, what if they went to ‘fix’ the situation? We know that they could perform magic on the brain and we know that they have a way of taking what they want. So would it be too shocking if they beat Anna back to Hans, cast a spell on him turning him evil just to get him out of the way? Once Hans was removed, there would be no reason Anna & Kristoff couldn’t be together. But why was that so important?

Theory: What if all along they were waiting for their opportunity to retake Arendelle, a land stolen from them by Elsa & Anna’s ancestors hundreds of years before? Could there have been a troll plot put into motion long ago that caused Elsa to be endowed with nearly uncontrollable magic abilities they hoped to exploit to destroy the human invaders? But then when Elsa was seemingly out of the picture, the trolls had to pivot quickly on the opportunity to insert their brain-washed, human pawn Kristoff as the husband to the next in line for Queen.

Yes, this is a little far-fetched, but if we can believe that Hans can do a complete 180…why not the trolls?


More to come. Follow me here —-> @DadsQuestions

Image Credit: disney.wikia.com


  1. Oh my gosh! You know, I WAS sort of wondering why they didn’t care about how Anna was engaged. Also, I noticed that Hans showed literally NO signs of being evil in the beginning. I always thought there was something not right about the trolls.

  2. Wow. Could be. :/ The trolls were really unexplained in the movie, one of the things I hate. They are just there. I also wondered why they never told Elsa that the solution was love. A very interesting theory, though.

    1. I like this theory about Hans and the trolls. I mean he smiles when he sees Anna walking away when they first meet. And not not a “I’m gonna kill you and your sister and my plans already set in motion.” smile. But a genuine sweet smile. But as far as the whole “Trolls wanting to take back their long lost kingdom plan” I don’t think so. I think Kristoff was alone as a child. I mean it wasn’t unheard for a child in that time period who had been orphaned to work to take care themselves. And I think the troll lady adopted him because she thought he was adorable and saw he and Sven were alone. And that made all of the trolls concerned for Kristoffs happiness. And when they see that Kristoff likes Anna, they want him to be happy. So when they hear that she has a fiance, they decide to get the fiance out of the way in order for Kristoff to be happy. I think that Kristoff definetly does love Anna. Whether its true love or not is the question. So what if Hans and Kristoff both loved Anna but the trolls put Hans under a spell in order to make Kristoff happy? What if what Hans felt for Anna was true love, even though Kristoff loves Anna but Kristoffs love isn’t true love? What if Hans is stuck in his own mind screaming as he watching himself lose his true love by his own hands. That for him, the open door never closed and he still loves Anna. I mean what if the spell of the trolls kicked in just before he was about yo kiss her and the kiss would have saved Anna but also have freed Hans from his spell? And now, since he’ll never receive true loves kiss, he’ll spend the rest of his days screaming in his own mind. Trying to break the spell himself so he can win Anna back and dying with every moment hes under the spell. What if the open door never closed? And as far as the trolls knowing about the key to Elsa’s powers. I don’t know. I mean they may not have known. But if they did know, maybe there was a good reason for not telling her. Maybe she needed to discover it for herself. Not be told what to do but feel what to do to control them. This is all just my opinion but I feel like its a decent assumption.

      1. This makes loads more sense when you consider that the trolls are a different species. When the female troll sees Sven and Christoph she doesn’t say “I’m going to give you a new home!” or “I’m going to take care of you!” no. “I’m going to keep you!”

        She sees him as a PET not a child. They think of the humans as ANIMALS.

        From their perspective some local wildlife wanted someone to cure an illness in their young. One of them acted as a vet and the creatures went back to their den. Later they adopted a cub or puppy (or whatever) of the same species- as well as another pet.
        When the kid reaches maturity they decide to set it up with a mate- and so they go for the one they cured years ago, because it’ll be easier to domesticate and it has an impressive pedigree.
        Unfortunately it already has a mate so they need to persuade her to reject that one and go for Christoph.

        ‘She’s a bit of a fixer upper’ wasn’t a song about interfering relatives- it was about trying to get the best pedigree in their new pets’ offspring. (Which they will most likely sell when they reach three weeks old.)

  3. I hate the trolls…I hated them the moment I saw the movie for the first time. The king clearly said what he planed to do to Elsa, but did the oh so wise troll tell him that this was a bad idea? No! (do you know the How should it ended entry for this one?)
    And they get only worse during the movie. The whole Fixer Upper scene makes me aggressive. For a movie which is supposedly about empowering a heroine, it is awfully fast with denying her her own agenda.

  4. Absolutely it was all the trolls’ fault. It doesn’t necessarily mean they were plotting against the king and did some voodoo magic on Hans. (Hans sort of gave his agenda away when he was talking about being so far down the line to the throne. Just because someone’s got leadership potential and the ability to win people over doesn’t mean they’re not evil. And anyone whose been in an abusive relationship will know how the most charming of men can turn 180 degrees when the doors are closed.)
    But I’m also sure the trolls knew about the ‘love is the cure’ solution. Perhaps you are right, because it seems like an obvious thing to have pointed out. But then, how many times in real life have things turned out catastrophically when one leader has been badly advised by another? Maybe the trolls were the fictional Scandinavian version of Tony Blair’s weapons of mass destruction. Ditto, how many times does a mass of advisers get distracted by their own agenda rather than sorting out the problems in front of them? I don’t think the Frozen situation was a complex conspiracy, more a comparable situation to modern international politics.

    1. Yeah, I hear you on that one. Maybe they didn’t have a plot, but they could have made life a lot easier for this family if they would have just said ‘Love’…..but then the movie would have been pretty boring…

  5. I think that this would have been a better overall plot to the movie – and might make more sense. I’d like to see a troll-vs-ice monster battle.

  6. I totally buy this. The trolls are obviously troublemakers. Why, when Kristoff brings Anna to them, don’t they say, “Oh yeah, we know what this is, we dealt with this issue with her before?” (For that matter, why doesn’t Kristoff remember that?)

    Honestly, as much as I enjoy watching and singing along to Frozen, I really think it’s one of the least well-written Disney movies. There are too many holes and random loose ends that aren’t tied up. Oh well. Not every single one can be a hit!

  7. Gotta agree, the trolls are pretty creepy. I don’t know if they’re the evil plot type, but at the least they’re blundering around tampering with human free will with no idea what they’re doing, which is almost worse!

  8. Wow, I never thought of it like that..
    I think I agree to a certain extent, I think Hans had a plan to turn all along but, I also think it was the trolls plotting.
    Great post!

  9. Mystery solved, the trolls are the Illuminati of Disney.

    seriously though, this is a good theory, especially considering how creepy and meddlesome trolls in norse myths and stories really were. they were said to kidnap young children and wipe/alter their memories (which makes the whole thing with kristoff even creepier, especially with how he apparently can’t remember anything before the trolls).

  10. I think there is some foreshadowing of Hans’ betrayal. In “Love is an Open Door” he says he’s been searching to “find his own place” as he points and looks at the kingdom (not Anna). I do think a few more hints of Hans’ behavior would have helped, though.

    However, “I’m gonna keep you” is still totally creepy. Can’t trust those trolls, man.

  11. Mind. Blown. I never liked those walking boulders. They were annoying, their musical number was pointless, and they didn’t handle the situation well (modifying Anna’s happiest memories? Pls.) and now this post makes them a whole lot more shady to me. This is a great post–I’m gonna go and read all your other Frozen-related ones! Haha

  12. Nice theory! Perhaps things will take a dramatic, majority-viewer-displeasing turn in a sequel someday, and the trolls will be the villains, Kristof will end up with Elsa (he didn’t marry Anna yet anyway- a flex engagement, ya think?) and maybe Hans will come back, as a good guy confessing he was under a troll spell, and she’ll forgive him? There, now everyone is with someone of matching hair color! And for further entertainment, a troll battle with Elsa’s giant evil snowman. Though I can’t picture this in summer weather so maybe it will take place in a literal winter. The only question now is, how do you defeat magical trolls who you’ve always looked to for advice and power before? It’s a stretch, but I’m sure love and Elsa and Kristof’s ice abilities paired with Anna and Hans’ dependability under pressure will do the job. We’ll prob be introduced to some new mythical creatures like good fairies or something, though, to aid them.

  13. So… I really like the idea of one of the cute little trolls trying to ‘help’ (perhaps the one who just got the fire crystal…because what does that do exactly?) Maybe the cute little misguided troll was trying to ‘help’ Kristoff, but putting a spell on Hans.

    BTW I’ve read the original story by Hans Christian Anderson (and also why would you vilify the character with the name of the original author..? Seems weird). The trolls in the original had a magic mirror that made your ‘eyes and heart’ dark. You could only see/feel ugliness and dark emotions – not beauty or love. This actually gives credit to the thinking that Hans has a spell on him.

    Maybe as someone else said Hans is inside his head, and not actually evil but screaming to get out of this terrible – “helping” spell gone wrong. And while he is interested in the throne – (because… well Royals kinda are supposed to be) I agree he was not properly ‘vilified’ by traditional Disney standards. SO … In some odd realm of hope… maybe in a squeal – Perhaps Hans comes back and somehow the spell is lifted … maybe even realizing/falling in love with ELSA despite her unique situation/powers. We then have two happy couples… and have redeemed prince Hans….

    I like my little fantasy world.

      1. I actually had that theory before I saw the movie….sort of. It was the first clip that was released as a teaser that gave this idea, it’s “The Party’s Over” clip.
        It starts when she says that line, so since I hadn’t seen the movie yet, I didn’t know what was it that lead up to her shutting the party down. I also didn’t know yet where this clip fell in the line up of events, so this theory was my guess. Of course then I saw the movie….but believe it or not…I started to ship those two over again by the time the movie was two month old. I’ve had a lot of time to think about why they work, and why Hans has HUGE potential as a character that was in essence wasted in the movie but has even bigger potential for the sequel that for the love of heaven, is the route that the creatives need to take with the sequel. Practically every other sequel plot line would feel ridiculous and forced. Besides he has his own fandom, which only gotten bigger over these two years, and continues to grow. People love a villain and love him, but also people are realizing he’s not an ordinary Disney villain (albeit he’s still terribly written in canon but that’s a convo for another day).

  14. I do think this a tad far fetched but here’s a hole in this theory that one needs to consider. If it was the trolls that ‘cast a spell’ on him at some point we didn’t see in the film, then how/why does he do his 180 turn when no one else is around but Anna? He still his charming, gentlemanly self leading right up to it, so unless a troll was nearby in that room, this theory doesn’t hold much weight for me. Plus watch him at the beginning of this whole thing as he talks about his brothers. He tosses the “it’s what brothers do” like it means nothing, which it does he trying not to appear too hurt by this, but he’s ultimately trying to gain Anna’s trust at this point.
    And PLEASE watch him when she innocently suggest his brothers can stay there…he immediately stiffens up and his face and demeanor changes. It’s somewhat subtle but it’s there. He stiffens and his eyes widen as if to say “oh dear God, please NO NO NO!” It exactly what I do when my parents say there’s someone coming to visit that I literally don’t connect with, but because THEY do, I have to put up with it.

  15. This would make perfect sense if only the directors hadn’t already confirmed it was all Hans and the trolls had nothing to do with the betrayal.

  16. Ok, so here goes…
    NO, i have never thought of it that way, YES it goes so well with my questions. I hope that will give you too some food for thought. (I will try to be brief)

    1. Born or Cursed? =SO Elsa is NOT the only one in the kingdom, they have seen things before! And the king has been to them before, but WHY? I really want a prequel on that.

    2. Why Hans be the bad guy? I mean we have an incompetent queen, that flees the kingdom, but a competent guy who takes ALL THE CHARGE. And yes he just has to attack Elsa and just be the bad guy, I mean Disney forced it sooooo much. (That is why I didint like the movie, I was a big fan of Hans) However the troll theory looks AWESOME on that.

    3. Please Disney, read this post, please. Just imagine how AWESOME the movie could be by this perspective!

  17. I like it. But I’m a bit biased about it because I honestly thought that Kristoff would fall for Elsa since “Ice is his life”

    But I really like this theory

  18. Great theory, I found this post searching for similar ideas. My kids went through a phase watching this over and over as well. I had tried to watch for any hidden villains that may have used Hans once he was put in charge. The trolls make perfect sense, more specifically “Pappie”. I think making him the bad guy while keeping the other trolls the same would help make both sides of the troll like/dislike crowd happy. Sort of like the Prospector from Toy Story 2.

    Another possibility is Pappie isn’t evil, but is secretly taking orders from the true bad guy. Paying for “protection” sort of thing, were the secret bad guy threatens to destroy the trolls unless Pappie does a few magical favors that they cannot.

  19. I don’t think Hans really did a 180. In their duet he states “cuz I’ve been searching my whole life to find my own place.” I may have that quote slightly off, but the context you could take is he’s been looking for his own kingdom as he tells her later. He’s 13th in line back home.


    Hello! I know I’m late to this party, but since I’ve entered dad-hood and have a young daughter of Frozen age, I’ve thought a lot (too much) about how to explain Prince Hans’ 180 degree change to her and for it also to make sense to me. Because if we’re honest, his change is completely illogical and there is nothing early in the film to suggest that he’s a sociopath. He is totally, genuinely, head over heels for Anna and I completely agree with others that his lovestruck smile when he resurfaces under the rowboat when NO ONE IS WATCHING is authentic. I cannot buy that everything up to the point of the reveal was part of his “sinister plot.” The writers honestly screwed it up and his bizarre transformation is really the only flaw in an otherwise classic movie. There is no foreshadowing. Come on — That he rhymed “face” with “place” is NOT foreshadowing. It’s a rhyme in a song. And the line makes complete sense — he really does need to leave the place where he’s ignored by his 12 older brothers and his possibilities are limited and find a “new place.”

    And that’s another thing: Love Is an Open Door is a terrific love song. Very singable and a joy to watch. If Hans is evil while he’s singing that song, it really destroys the fun of singing it. I refuse to deprive my daughter of that joy by explaining to her that it is all part of Prince Hans’ sinister plan and not to believe any of it. Disney should know better than to ruin a great song by screwing with little kids’ minds.

    So, what to do? The solution presented by Just a Dad (and elsewhere) — the trolls turned Hans evil to set Kristoff up with Anna — has a nice appeal to it. BUT it just shifts the problem — now it’s the trolls who are doing evil things where there is no precedent to it in the movie. The trolls are consistently presented as desiring good for people throughout the movie, even if they are a little crass. They adopted and raised Kristoff. Plus, the movie shows that they need to put their hands on someone in order to “change their head” — their magic doesn’t teleport and they were not in contact with Hans. And now “Fixer Upper” — another great song — would have to be seen as part of the trolls’ sinister plan which resulted in Hans almost killing Elsa AND Anna (who they wanted to fix Kristoff up with, remember)?

    So here’s what I think (or want to believe) actually happened: Prince Hans’ change occurred because his HEART WAS PIERCED BY THE ICY FINGERS OF THE MARSHMALLOW MONSTER CREATED BY ELSA. Watch the fight scene. Marshmallow swung its arm at Hans as he was falling and its hand with all those stalactite fingers crashes into Hans’s midsection, before falling off the mountain. It’s right after that that Hans redirects the arrow to shoot down the chandelier, injuring Elsa, and he cruelly imprisons her as well. Then he has the “reveal” scene with Anna, tries to kill Elsa, etc. Because the marshmallow monster was created by Elsa’s magic, its ice has the same power to freeze a heart as she does. Sure, the effect is different on Hans than on Anna (his hair doesn’t turn white and Anna’s frozen heart doesn’t turn her evil) but the effect of a frozen heart could be different for each person. And when Elsa thaws Arendelle, that is the act of true love that also thaws Prince Hans’ heart. So when Hans wakes up again, he looks at Anna and says — “Anna?” as though he can’ remember anything — because he was under the enchantment of a frozen heart. Even his next line (“But she froze your heart”) doesn’t make sense because five minutes earlier he saw that she was not actually dead. In other words, by the end of the movie, Prince Hans has changed back to his old self, but we don’t get to see him enough to know it, because he is punched off the ship by Anna and then thrown into a cell.

    Anyhow, that’s my theory. I don’t expect that it’s “right” but it makes sense to me. And I do hope that the writers of Frozen 2 redeem Hans so that at least Love Is an Open Door can return to being a “love song” instead of a “villain song.”

  21. Also, in the very beginning of the movie the lanterns are glowing green when the ice-men are leaving their work for the day. When Ana is on the sleigh with Kristoff their lantern is a normal yellow glow. (Haven’t figured the significance of this difference yet). But the grandpa troll wears a necklace that has gems or something that also glow green- and in all the Disney movies I’m pretty sure a green glow always accompanies evil. Which would be another low-key support of this theory. This is a super old post, but felt like I’d throw this info out there into the interwebs.

  22. if u notice when the trolls saw Anna and Kristoff, they decided Anna is the best for Kristoff! how? “good teeth” and “working nose.”!! then they talked to themselves about the engagement as “a minor thing” and ” get the fiancée out of the way and the whole thing will be fixed”. why would they say sth like that? what is better than their adopted son become the next king in the region!? this is a theory that Hans was cursed! by who? a supernatural creature named troll who were also evil in the original story. otherwise, i just can say,only Disney film makers can make a monster like they did to Hans! Hans didnt deserve such a character at the end! he could be the prince charming like the previous ones in Disney’s movies… the way they changed Hans was so devastating and shocking and disgusting and so injustice… i wish they would correct this mistake at Frozen 2, but alas… Hans was destined to be the bad guy in this masterpiece…

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