Top-10 Monkey Island supporting characters!
The Lookout of Mêlée Island is quite a significant character in the Monkey Island series. He is not only the first character that Guybrush meets on his travels in The Secret of Monkey Island, he’s actually the first character seen on-screen in any Monkey Island game.
The Lookout is blind as a bat and can’t pronounce Guybrush’s last name properly, but he’s actually an important behind-the-scenes figure, who actually tells Governor Marley about Guybrush’s arrival, an act that may have saved the hapless pirate’s life.
The Lookout is such lovable throw-away character. He serves as simply as a sign-post to the character and has a funny schtick that defines him as a character (his piss-poor eye-sight), but beyond that he serves no real purpose to the story-line. Therefore he felt like the most appropriate pick for the lowest spot on the list.
As a side-note: The Lookout is voiced by Emmy-award winning voice-actor Rob Paulsen in the Special Edition.
Captain Dread was instantly my favourite character when I first met him on Scabb Island in Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge. Despite his frightening name, Dread is actually very nice and will charter a ship for the exchange of one lucky sea-talisman and a fair sum in pieces of eights, mon.
Dread also has one of my favourite character themes with a lovely reggae-style beat and even his ship is full of delightful surprises. What we believe to be just a hut on the end of the dock is his mighty vessel, The Jolly Rasta. On top of which Dread will sail you to any of the three major islands in the second game, using a funny line animation akin and in parody of the travel sequences in the Indiana Jones movies.
Sadly, beyond being your chauffeur for the game, Dread didn’t serve much of a purpose story-wise and I’ve always wished for the character to come back.
As a side-note: He is voiced by Phil LaMarr in the Special Edition.
It always seemed to me that the best characters from the fourth instalment of the series, Escape from Monkey Island, were the characters that were reappearing from the previous games (well, except maybe for Marco De Pollo). The villains of this instalment, however, were a lot of fun and I especially liked the absolutely creepy Pegnose Pete.
Pegnose, disguised as Guybrush, robs the 2nd Bank of Lucre Island, starting Guybrush’s first major hurdle in the game when he has to prove his innocence or else he won’t be allowed to leave the island. Pegnose’s hide-out is beyond the time-space continuum shattering Mysts-O-Time Marsh, one of the more memorable new locations from the game.
Along with his voice what creeps the hell out of me about Pegnose is the fact that he effectively has no nose. “How does he smell without a nose?” asks Guybrush from the local fish monger. “Terrible!”, he answers. In addition, Pegnose’s nose was apparently pecked off by a duck, a fact seemingly proven by his crippling fear of both ducks and quacking.
Pegnose’s involvement in the rest of the game’s story is quite minimal and he’s unfortunately turned from a fearsome pirate into a total wuss with the power of the Ultimate Insult, so it’s unlikely he’ll be seen in any future games.
Continuing the Monkey Island tradition of old men with impeded basic senses, Mad Marty seems like a character very similar to The Lookout from the first game. The practically deaf owner of the Scabb Island laundry service is the only guy who can get on the bad side of Largo LaGrande without getting massively beaten up.
Marty has the lookout beat in the area of sheer comedy-value. Due to his extremely bad hearing he’ll always miss-hear what you say to him regardless of the subject. This might make Marty the only character in the Monkey Island series with whom it’s impossible to carry out a coherent conversation.
Once again, Marty doesn’t actually serve much a purpose to the story (other than providing you with a piece of cloth for your Voodoo Doll of Largo), but he’s just a joyously silly character.
One thing Monkey Island fans typically lament over is the rather notable lack of important female supporting characters in the franchise. Looking back at the first four games the only notable ones worth mentioning are Elaine, The Voodoo Lady, maybe Captain Kate Capsize and possibly the ghost of Minnie Goodsoup. On the over-all though, the Monkey Island games have always been very male dominant.
Therefore it was truly a nice breath of fresh air to finally have a strong female character at the centre of the fifth game Tales of Monkey Island. Morgan was exceptional in more than one way. Firstly, she’s the only character so far in the series who actually looks up to Guybrush and even idolizes him to an extent. However, she’s a pirate bounty huntress and spends a good portion of the game trying to capture Guybrush for the game’s secondary villain the Marquis De Singe.
Her role only continues to get more and more interesting as the game goes on and this would have probably made her a shoe-in for the Top-5. However, I felt in Chapter 3 of the game, she did very little besides help solve a few puzzles. However, she was definitely one of the best new characters in Tales and deserves to be on this list never the less.
Bob was LeChuck’s hapless henchman in the first game who was constantly losing his skull. What made Bob great is the fact that he clearly didn’t want to be on LeChuck’s crew and yet somehow had wound up with the duties of serving as his right-hand man. He informs LeChuck of Guybrush’s arrival and can also be seen dancing on the deck of LeChuck’s ship during Part 3.
Bob also serves as an important character as he reveals that LeChuck and his crew left for Mêlée Island at the end of Part 3 to wed Elaine with LeChuck. Bob also seems to know Guybrush’s crew-members (according to the non-canonical alternate ending) and he really shows he’s actually a decent guy. If Guybrush begins to show doubts about being able to save Elaine, Bob is ready to encourage you with some words of inspiration.
On top of which, the player can also choose to be a huge dick and dissolve him with the Ghost Dissolving Root Beer.
Note: Bob is also voiced by Rob Paulsen in the Special Edition.
The depressed and hung-over owner of the Goodsoup Hotel Resort on Blood Island can tell a mean story. After you’re done curing him of his illness, Griswold will divulge information on a number of topics in great length to add that little extra bit of story-telling goodness which is what makes The Curse of Monkey Island so awesome a game.
Truth be told, Griswold’s awesomeness is unquestionably dependant on the actor who plays him, the late Kay Kuter. A character like Griswold could easily be the most boring and tiresome character in the game with a number of dialogue options about the average of a character in The Longest Journey (they talk a lot is what I’m getting at). But because its that soothing, low story-teller voice of Kuter’s, Griswold’s tales become the single most captivating element of your visit to Blood Island. Whether it’s the tragic story of his aunt Minnie Goodsoup, the sad tale of the Lost Welshman or the darkly comical story of The Guest That Never Left.
Griswold Goodsoup had to make the Top-5 and he beats out many other awesome characters from the third game in doing so.
People may have mixed feelings about this Australian land-developer turned maniacal villain who was at the centre of events in the fourth game of the Monkey Island series, but in my eyes Ozzie Mandrill was a breath of fresh air. Having LeChuck be the sole villain of the fourth game would have been too predictable and Ozzie even ups the ante with the Voodoo Talisman known as the Ultimate Insult being his ultimate goal.
Besides which Ozzie is just a laugh with his stereotypical Australian gibberish and many literary, historical and other cool references he makes while boasting about his megalomaniacal plans. What makes Ozzie perhaps even more evil than LeChuck is that his malice is directed at pirates in general with him wanting to exterminate the very way of life that Guybrush and Elaine stand for. Ozzie’s evil influence is best felt in the extremely awkward and uncomfortable tourist trap island, Jambalaya, in the fourth game.
Some people may hate Ozzie for the elements he brought into the Monkey Island series, but he was so utterly unforgettable as a main villain that I felt it was appropriate to have him here. Also, he meets his end at the hands of his own creation which is also fitting irony.
Probably one of my favourite types of characters are those who were already pretty good and likeable to begin with and then pull a surprising move to reveal another side to themselves. Winslow, Guybrush’s navigator, first mate and sole crew-member aboard the Screaming Narwhal in Tales of Monkey Island, has got to be the single most useful and resourceful of any of the pirates Guybrush has ever sailed under (even if he is plagued by a condition where he finds sailing unbearable unless he’s been show a course on a map).
Where Reggie’s character becomes interesting is in the second chapter of the game where it’s shown that he is a romantic or at least a really creepy pervert at heart with the introduction of the Mer-… persons. Reggie also becomes infected with the Pox which sadly puts him out of commission for much of Chapters 3 and 4, but not without him throwing a hilariously scary hissy fit first (and even from his bed, Winslow still provides some exposition).
Winslow eventually romances the Mermaid (I think?) Anemone by Chapter 5 which was also a nice extra element of character for him. Winslow is a character who just surprised me in a number of ways and I really felt this is a character I would love to see return in future instalments. Winslow just really contributed to the memorability of the fifth game in a big way.
Real name Heart-Liver-and-Kidney-Boiled-in-the-Stomach-of-the-Animal McMutton (his parents were expecting a girl), this Scottish barber pirate was easily my favourite supporting character from The Curse of Monkey Island. A member of the Barbery Coast pirates (a barbershop quartet missing their fourth), Haggis is the mightiest of the lot and the one who actually does the hair-cutting in the crew.
Haggis also provides much explanation and exposition for his fellow pirates, Edward van Helgen and Cutthroat Bill, and in a very memorable test of Guybrush’s strength and virility challenges him to the time-honoured sport of the caber-toss (which Guybrush of course wins thanks to some cheating and tree trunk made of rubber tree). Haggis is just such a brilliantly goofy and cartoony character, he perfectly captures the type of bizarrely laid-back insanity that made me fall in love with the Monkey Island series. One of my favourite moments from the game was Haggis having to hold his kilt down when Guybrush’s ship, The Sea Cucumber, was hit by a storm on its way to Blood Island.
And in addition to all the other reasons why Haggis is awesome, he is voiced by Alan Young, best remembered as the voice of Scrooge McDuck in the Ducktales cartoon series.