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Why can’t Ember and Wade touch in Elemental?

Pixar movie Elemental follows a romance between fire element Ember and water element Wade, who believe that it's dangerous to even hold each other's hand.

Wade and Ember in Elemental

Why can’t Ember and Wade touch in Elemental? Elemental takes Pixar fans on a journey into the world of the rom-com, and it might well be among the studio’s most enjoyable original movies in years. It’s a journey into the beautiful, colorful world of Elemental City.

We loved Elemental, as we explained in our Elemental review, and we were thoroughly charmed by the romance at the heart of one of the best Pixar movies in several years. The movie follows the unlikely romance between fire element Ember (Leah Lewis) and water element Wade (Mamoudou Athie), as they bond amid the prejudiced society in which they live.

One of the problems in their relationship is that they believe they can’t hold hands or touch each other at all. But why can’t Ember and Wade touch in Elemental? With some spoilers for the new Pixar movie, let’s find out.

Why can’t Ember and Wade touch in Elemental?

Wade and Ember believe they can’t even hold hands because they believe he could extinguish her, and she might make him evaporate. Thankfully, it turns out they’re both wrong, and it’s safe.

As part of the prejudice between the fire and water elements, both Ember and Wade are concerned about what might happen if they hold hands. After all, one of the first things we hear in the movie is that “elements don’t mix”.

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Eventually, though, they tentatively take each other’s hand and learn that there’s a chemical reaction of sorts that protects them both from harm. In one of the most joyful scenes in the movie, they share a romantic dance together. Appropriately enough, it’s touching.

To see how the rest of the movie plays out, check out our complete guide to the Elemental ending. You can also find out whether there’s a new Pixar short before Elemental and learn everything you need to know about how to watch Elemental on the best streaming services.

We’ve also dug into why Elemental never stood a chance at the box office and explained why the movie got too close to a scary Lord of the Rings character. You can also find out our choices for the best movies of all time, and look at the new movies coming in 2023.