Bluto is the main antagonist in the Popeye franchise, and a nasty sailor who loves to pester Popeye and try to win the heart of his crush Olive Oyl. He varies between being a big strong brute of a man and very bold and smart - he is always depicted as extremely strong (often superhumanly so). However, after he usually beats up Popeye, Popeye finds a can of spinach, eats it, gets stronger, and beats Bluto into unconsciousness.
Despite Bluto and Popeye's legendary rivalry, it is often shown that Bluto was once a friend of Popeye but the two became bitter enemies due to the fact that both were in love with Olive Oyl - while Popeye was a gruff but well-meaning sailor Bluto was always rough and mean, so naturally he began to pester Popeye and even when Olive Oyl clearly made her choice he wouldn't let them be: going as far as regularly kidnapping Olive Oyl, expressing his affection as only the big brute can.
From time to time this friendship is rekindled, though it seldom lasts long, although Bluto is widely seen as Popeye's nemesis he is not actually the official archenemy of the sailor - that honor belongs to The Sea Hag: who Bluto has occasionally worked for both willingly and as a mind-washed slave.
Live Action MovieBluto is the main antagonist of the Disney/Paramount live-action Popeye movie where he was not only his traditional bullying self but also a shameless criminal who terrorized the fishing community Popeye came to, this movie was rather unique in that Popeye hated spinach and near the end Bluto's own stupidity got the best of him when he force-fed Popeye spinach out of spite: the resulting transformation scared Bluto so badly the big bully literally turned yellow and swam out into sea.
- In a series of 1960's Popeye cartoons, King Features Syndicate operated under the mistaken assumption that they had lost the rights to the name, 'Bluto'. As a result, Popeye's rival was named 'Brutus' instead, even on merchandise.
- Unknown to most, Bluto was actually a major inspiration for Nintendo's famous character Donkey Kong, as the original Donkey Kong Arcade game was originally intended to star Popeye, Olive Oyl and Bluto instead of Mario, Pauline and Donkey Kong
- Bluto is similar to multiple villains:
- Peg Leg Pete (Disney) - Both are strong villains of big size who use their strengths, as well as the tricks they have up their sleeves, to defeat their enemies, but are terrible strategists, but are also friendly to their foes at times and kidnap the protagonist's love interests. Pete kidnaps Minnie and Bluto kidnaps Olive. Pete himself initially was a sailor like Bluto (more so captain of a boat).
- Bowser (Super Mario series) - They are both rivals to a hero (Mario, Popeye) because they're in love with a woman (Princess Peach, Olive Oyl) that loves the hero instead of the villain. They also both have brute force and tend to kidnap the love interest. They also show occasional signs of slight friendliness to the hero: Bluto with acting nice to Popeye every now and then and Bowser teaming up with Mario in Super Mario RPG, Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story and Super Paper Mario.
- Snidely Whiplash (Dudley Do-Right of the Mounties) - Both are villains who use tricks that they have up their sleeves, are archenemies of titular protagonists and kidnap the protagonist's love interests. Bluto kidnaps Minnie and Snidely kidnaps Nell Fenwick.