Quasimodo in Animaniacs hooked on a ceiling picture image

Quasimodo in Animaniacs

It’s another Hunchback of Notre Dame reference from Animaniacs. This one occurs in Season 1 episode  4 called Hooked on a Ceiling. The episode is the Yakko, Wakko and Dot help Michelangelo help painting the ceiling of the  Sistine Chapel. During the episode the bells start ringing which annoys Michelangelo and he goes to yell at the hunchback bell ringer who is claiming Sanctuary. You can tell it going to be Quasimodo the second the bells ring.

Notre Dame Rebel Ookami shoujo to kuro ouji picture image

Le Rebels Notre Dame in Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji

I was watching this crappy anime called  Ookami Shoujo to Kuro Ouji, which means Wolf Girl and Black Prince and I saw in the background Le Rebels Notre Dame. It was really nothing but I have so many question. Like what is it supposed to be? Even my meager French skills knows it poor grammar which the irony of my own english grammar is not lost on me.  But is it a play or a cafe or shop?

Maybe it’s a reference?  There is a High School in Missouri that is called Notre Dame Rebels but I doubt that is it. Once I figured out how to write it in Japanese I found mostly random pictures  of motorcycles and Moomin stuff, which is pretty great. So I have no idea what this means but the fact that saw in the background is pretty good.

And Really this anime was bad, don’t watch.

I was over a friend’s house and we decided to play this game a call Smart Ass. It’s a trivia card game and it’s really fun. So it was mine turn to read one of the cards and the player who guessed the answer right  landed a  bonus tile, so I had to read a card from the hard-ass pile. On card you have a choice of two questions  and I kid you not this is the card I drew to read.

Quasimodo Card from the game  Smart Ass picture image

Quasimodo Card from the game Smart Ass

 

Even though I knew the player knew the answer I had to pick the Hunchback reference. Smart Ass is also really fun, I would recommend it plus it has a Hunchback reference so clearly it’s awesome.

I won the first game, and the next two games I kept getting bad rolls that forced me back three spaces but it’s a really fun game. Photo credit to my pal Jackie ^^.

For those of you who read the blog, you know I like Final Fantasy. I have been playing the franchise’s second MMORPG Final Fantasy XIV; A Realm Reborn. FF14 has a lot of references to a lot of things for titles of quests. I was doing a quest to level up one of my classes  and the quest was called Topsy-Turvy Time. For the quest you just have to gather scaffolding logs, hence the name.

 Topsy-Turvy Final Fantasy XIV; A Realm Reborn picture image

Topsy-Turvy Time Levequest

I don’t know about you but when I hear the words “Topsy-Turvy” I go to the Disney song right away. Is it a direct reference to Hunchback? Only the localization team knows for certain but I think it is and that all that matters.

There could be more references to Hunchback in game but I’m sure there are more Disney ones.

30 Rock, Hunchback picture image

30 Rock, Hunchback

In the first episode of  7th season of the 30 Rock we are treated to a Hunchback reference. Liz Lemon and Jack Donaghy are talking about the new fall shows and one of them is called “hunchback “ which is meant to parody all the sexy vampire shows. It uses the water scene from the 1923 version.  It stars Jonathan Silverman as Dr Fantastico. I have no idea what that means.  But I love 30 Rock and was so happy to this reference.

Fran Fine (Fran Drescher) & Margaret (Nicholle Tom) in The Nanny S02x10 picture image

Fran Fine (Fran Drescher) & Margaret (Nicholle Tom) in The Nanny S02x10

Season 2 episode 10 of The Nanny entitled “The Whine Cellar” has a Hunchback reference. Fran Fine is throwing a party for her mother and when Margaret asks if they’ll be any boys her age there, Fran’s mother suggests they set her up with Cousin Irving who is “a nice boy with a wonderful personality.” Fran retorts with “ is he still ringing the bell at Notre dame?”

Watch the full episode here, reference starts at 1:42.

Ab fab or Absolutely Fabulous is one of my favorite television shows ever. It’s a comedy show from England. It’s about two middle-aged  women who think they are hip and trendy. And the main character’s daughter is their unfashionable, mature foil. The show is very funny and blends physical comedy with wit.

Anyway in season 4 episode 3, entitled Paris, they all go to Paris and there is a reference to Notre Dame de Paris the musical albeit, the London cast.

Watch the video for the full reference. Enjoy

In Season 4 episode 8 of The Nanny there is a reference to Hunchback of Notre Dame. It’s pretty obvious that they are refering to the Disney since it was topical at the time.

It starts with the Nanny, Fran Fine (Fran Drescher) complaining that her employer Maxwell Sheffield (Charles Shaughnessy ) isn’t taking her and his daughter Grace (Madeline Zima) to the movies. Maxwell’s buiness partner, C.C. (Lauren Lane)  chimes in by saying that Maxwell will go insane if he has to see “The Hunchback” agian and then the butler Niles (Daniel Davis) who hates C.C. retorts with “Well why don’t you quit”. If you watch the show you’d know that C.C and Niles are always insulting each other, so it’s a “cute” topical reference.

Reference starts at about 2:52
http://youtu.be/UXIu1HMhvxI

 

The Nanny has at least one more Hunchback reference but that is for another post

In 2010, I saw the first few episodes of an anime called Blessings of the Campanella (Shukufuku no Campanella). I confess, I watch it mainly because of the word “Campanella” which can mean either a Free Standing Bell Tower like the Tower of Piza or Little Bell. So  I was surpise by the Hunchback of Notre Dame reference which many people have overlooked. (Looked though the comments no one mentioned it)

Meet Agnes Boulange.

Agnes Boulange from Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Agnes Boulange from Shukufuku no Campanella

 

Agnes is a street performer who performs more or less in front of a Cathedral that looks identical to Notre Dame de Paris.

Agnes Boulange from Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Agnes Boulange from Shukufuku no Campanella

Notre Dame de Paris depicted in Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Notre Dame de Paris depicted in Shukufuku no Campanella

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a street performer Agnes makes automatic puppets (automata) dance.  She even has a special puppet that can speak and takes money (Djali’s counterpart). This puppet is called Tango and it’s one of the few automata puppets that can speak (spoiler; there are like two).

Agnes with her dancing automata puppets Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Agnes with her dancing automata puppets Shukufuku no Campanella

Agnes and Tango Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Agnes and Tango Shukufuku no Campanella

Tango, Agnes' speaking automata puppet Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Tango, Agnes' speaking automata puppet Shukufuku no Campanella

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now for the sake clarification. Hunchback’s leading lady, Esmerlada, is a street performer who dances for the people outside of Notre Dame de Paris but for those who don’t know her birth name is Agnes. So to have a woman named Agnes performing infront of a building that is clearly Notre Dame de Paris is a clear reference to Victor Hugo’s book. The special peforming “animal” is  just a special bonus. Plus like goats, cats are associated with witches,  but I think it’s just meant to be a cute animal in the anime.

Agnes Boulange from Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Agnes Boulange from Shukufuku no Campanella

Esmeralda Illustration Image picture

19th century Illustration of Esmeralda

 

 

 

 

 

I also want to mention that within the context of the anime, the world is a Fantasy which takes place in a city called Ert’Aria and the characters’ name do not follow a cultural scheme. One’s name is English in origins, another Italian. Agnes is the french one.

The anime itself is not very good. It’s a Fantasy-Harem (one male and several females) but if you’re curious or just want to see the reference for yourself you can watch the first episode on youtube with Japanese subtitles. Watch Here

Oddly, it is not available on DVD (at least in the States) however if you’re interested in either the audio CDs or the video game.

 

Agnes performing with Tango and the dancing automata puppets Shukufuku no Campanella picture image

Agnes performing with Tango and the dancing automata puppets

Quasimodo Hunchback of Notre Dame Disney

Quasimodo’s Reveal Hunchback of Notre Dame Disney

The plot of the Disney’s Hunchback of Notre Dame is a water-down and condense version of Hugo’s novel and the 1939 version. Because the film is for children the film couldn’t follow it 100% or even 75% so watering it down  is understandable. To the film’s credit it did opt for a darker tone than most Disney movies especially where Frollo is concerned. And for the record there are worse children adaptions and as it stands, it is the best among the Hunchback for kids movies.

 

Victor, Hugo and Laverne singing A Guy like you Disney Hunchback of Notre dame

Victor, Hugo and Laverne singing A Guy like you Disney Hunchback of Notre dame

So the plot is stripe down to it barest essentials with a lens on Quasimodo and add-ons from the 1939 version. They added a moral,  eliminated some characters (Gringoire, Jehan, Louis, Sister Gudule (who is hardly ever mention in the adaptations) and added some characters (The gargoyles).

 

 

 

 

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame Dancing

The basic plot is really about a cute girl and the guys that  “love” her and where these men take that love  into their psyches. That’s Hugo’s book at it’s most basic level, the problem is that since this book  was published in English the focus has been take off Esmeralda (Notre Dame de Paris) and went to Quasimodo (The Hunchback of Notre Dame). And to make it worse, two of the most famous “Hunchback” movies from the golden age of cinema, were vehicles for leading man playing Quasimodo. So the movies really do think that Quasimodo has to be the focus of the film and Disney really bought into this mentally (listen to DVD commentary).

 

Frollo and Quasimodo Hunchback of Notre Dame Disney

Frollo and Qausimodo Hunchback of Notre Dame Disney

So the Disney plot lies in the moral that Quasimodo inspires, sure he ugly as all hell but he’s beautiful on the inside, and that’s what the plot is trying to teach, don’t judge people. A corrupt, yet pious Judge can still be a an evil jerk. Of course, this moral is as subtle as a ton bricks and the scenes can never shift away from Quasimodo for too long unless it’s a counterpoint to how great he is, and that would be how terrible Frollo is. So Frollo can gets just as many songs and srceen time as Quasimodo. This is why you’ll only see one scene without either Frollo or Quasimodo, which is Phoebus and Esmeralda’s introduction, you could count their time in Notre Dame but Frollo is technically in that scene and since there no cut in locations Quasimodo is there too . That scene of Esmeralda in Notre Dame speaking with Phoebus, getting grope by Frollo, and singing God help the Outcast ends with her following Quasimodo to the bell tower, so it doesn’t really count. So there is only one scene without Quasimodo or Frollo. The plot lives and dies on Frollo and Quasimodo and so the film’s moral is ALSO being referenced during the film’s duration. Even the songs act a method to reference the moral. All of Quasimodo and Frollo’s song are linked by this man vs monster prespective.  Clopin is the only character who gets some songs with any levity.

Clopin Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Clopin Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

 

Phoebus, Quasimodo, Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Phoebus, Quasimodo, Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

So how was the plot of Disney’s Hunchback? Despite the film’s tunnel view of not giving a character that isn’t Quasimodo or Frollo 5 minutes of screen time. the film’s plot does well. It keeps the overall feeling of the story and makes it kid friendly and that was Disney’s angle and yet gives it a darker edge which help roots the film in Hugo’s book. But the book and the Disney’s version are character driven and not as plot driven so next time let look at the Disney version of Hugo’s characters.

 

Next time – a brief look at the Characters of Disney’s Hunchback of Notre Dame