Excellent post. I have to be honest, being huge fan of E.T. to this day (almost 50) I've never been able to stomach M&M all the way thru to see the above big fat lying moment! That's terrific..!
To be fair, they do change some things. Elliott didn't have spina bifida, and Mac and his whole family stay at the end and become naturalized American citizens while wearing someone's old church clothes, which E.T. of course did not. And there's an even bigger ripoff of E.T. than this: Badi, the Turkish E.T. They didn't even wait six years; they struck while the iron was hot.
Talking about this movie makes me hungry.