When a Mogwai or a Gremlin is exposed to water, it multiplies.

But how then do they drink?

  • 1
    Couldn't they drink something that isn't water?
    – Tony Meyer
    Feb 16, 2012 at 18:43
  • 1
    They take in fluids through their food (fruits, vegetables)?
    – Xantec
    Feb 16, 2012 at 18:45

3 Answers 3


The only time we see Mogwai reproduce from water is when it contacts their skin. There is no indication that drinking water (or taking it internally) results in spontaneous reproduction. It is also possible that only certain parts of the Mogwai are affected by water (such as the main torso). The general rule to never get them wet would then likely come from the difficulty in only getting the safe part of them wet.

Because most all foods contain some trace amount of water, it is unlikely the carbon based lifeform would survive without it.

  • 12
    There's actually several real-world species that live in arid environments and never drink water as such; they get all their hydration from their food. Domestic cats, for instance, have trouble feeling thirsty because their ancestors were adapted like that (though these days they do need to drink some water, particularly if you feed them dry food).
    – Tacroy
    Feb 16, 2012 at 20:23
  • Just to point out, but in the movie they specifically say, "Don't give it water to drink."
    – Jeff
    Dec 27, 2017 at 21:02

They drink on the back, directly from the tap :

GREMLINS, 1984, drinking from the tap

  • Wait a minute, that's no water!
    – Zommuter
    Nov 16, 2016 at 15:34

In the Gremlin film official novelisation, it's revealed that the Mogwai don't drink. Ever.

It's reasonable to assume that this is because of the severe risk of spawning and because mogwai are able to ingest all the fluids that they need from their food...

The kid looked at Rand pointedly. “I’m serious, mister.” he said.
“Sure,” Rand replied. “It’s just that animals need water to drink, right?
“This one doesn’t.”
“You sure?”

Later in the same film we see Gremlins drinking alcoholic beverages so it's clear that they can imbide fluids (orally) without budding.

  • Mightn't that be a case of unreliable narrator, though? Nov 16, 2016 at 17:42
  • @GhotiandChips - Well, in the book he has it for several days before his "accident". He's evidently had sufficient time to learn about its eating patterns.
    – Valorum
    Nov 16, 2016 at 17:44
  • 2
    @Ghotiandchips - The wiki is fan-written. Without a reference, it's basically worthless.
    – Valorum
    Nov 16, 2016 at 18:02
  • 1
    I always wondered, if you can't feed them after midnight; what time the next day can you feed them?
    – sueelleker
    Oct 27, 2017 at 15:03
  • 1
    @sueelleker - It's not made clear. Nor is it clear which midnight (it's always midnight somewhere. And what about planets with solar periods greater/less than 24 hours.
    – Valorum
    Oct 27, 2017 at 17:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.