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The main characters of Disney’s Hunchback don’t give us much indication of how “normal” people of Paris conduct themselves. Quasimodo is a forced shut-in, Frollo essentially King, Esmeralda and Clopin are outcasts, and Phoebus, well he just comes off too perfect to really be associated with “normal people”. So which characters represent as Frollo put it “the common, vulgar, weak, licentious crowd”? That would be the two guards that are seen throughout the movie. They are credited as the Brutish Guard (voiced by Corey Burton) and the Oafish Guard (voiced Bill Fagerbakke aka Patrick from SpongeBob SquarePants ). I’m just going to call them as Brute and Oaf.
We first see Brute and Oaf harassing Esmeralda because she’s a Gypsy and judging by all the gold in her hat, she is probably better paid then them. Anyway they try to assert their authority but then became submissive when Phoebus out ranks them. They are quite stupid, they shoo away people to show Phoebus to the Palace of Justice, but when viewed from behind you can hear them still shooing people but there is no there. These guy are all talk and no action, Djali can take them with very little effort.
Brute and Oaf are the main cause for the getting the plot moving. Yes, it’s all them. If wasn’t for them, Quaismodo would have been King of Fools without incident and Frollo would just have been mad at him. But because Oaf throw a tomato (where did he even get that) it sets the chain of events into motion. The Crowd throws food at Quasimodo then ties him down, Frollo refuses to help, Esmeralda helps Quasimodo, Frollo gets mad at her, she defies him and hello chase scene and obsession. Thank you Oaf and Brute for being common, vulgar, weak, and licentious and getting the plot in motion.
So Brute and Oaf represent the common people, they promote distrust in authority figures for Esmeralda, cause the plot to take off but that not it. They also provide some humor. Brute provides Achilles with a sit and oaf provides some amusement being an oaf and all. Plus Oaf’s voice sounds comedic (Patrick from Spongebob). But don’t count on them in a pinch – storming a certain cathedral – they’re no help at all.
Basically Brute and Oaf are glorified extras but they do something for the plot unlike some glorified extras that are memroable but do nothing for the plot, just add humor.
Next Time- a memorable old chap who “enjoys” a running gag (well not really).