|“||I'll have Belle for my wife! Make no mistake about THAT!||„|
|~ Gaston vowing to marry Belle by force.|
|“||The Beast will make off with your children! He'll come after them in the night! We're not safe 'till his head is mounted on my wall! I say we KILL THE BEAST!||„|
|~ Gaston convincing the town to help him murder the Beast.|
Gaston Legume (simply known as Gaston) is the main antagonist of the 1991 Oscar-winning animated Disney feature film, Beauty and the Beast, and its 2017 live action adaptation. He is also one of the tertiary antagonists in Mickey's House of Villains.
He is a treacherous, chauvinistic, egotistical, traitorous, deceptive, and arrogant hunter from Belle's village who was after Belle's hand in marriage by any means necessary and refused to let anyone else be with her, which made him the Beast's arch-nemesis.
|“||He's handsome, all right, and rude and conceited. Oh, Papa, he's not for me.||„|
|~ Belle commenting to Maurice about Gaston's chavunistic nature.|
Gaston embodies hyper-masculinity, as he happens to be a handsome and muscular hunter who likes to brag off his abilities toward others for pleasure. However, beneath his charming looks is an extremely rude, pompous, impatient, destructive, traitorous, manipulative, self-centered, narcissistic, egomaniacal, and psychopathic person. He is really conservative and narrow-minded to the extent that he disapproves intellectualism as he regards ideas as "dangerous pastimes"; he is also extremely misogynistic and lascivious, as he believes that women's sole purpose in life is to serve men. Because of his charming looks, he is well-respected in the village as he was able to rouse up a mob to help him kill the Beast, although it was clear that he cared nothing for the villagers in general.
He is also shown to be completely lustful, lecherous, and provocative towards Belle, as he plans to marry her because of her beautiful looks as opposed to her nonconformist and unconventional personality. Even when Belle made it clear that she doesn't want to be with Gaston (with LeFou pointing out that the other women in the village are quite fond of Gaston), the latter still wants to marry Belle to satisfy his own ego, proving to be quite regardless of her feelings or anyone else's. He even felt extremely jealous after learning that Belle has feelings for the Beast, which only motivates him in hunting down the Beast, so that he can have Belle for himself. He is also very abusive, insulting, vituperative, uncomplimentary, argumentative, and opprobrious towards LeFou and his buddies, as he would subject them to pain and suffering whenever things go wrong (even if it is not their fault).
Despite his anti-intellectualism, Gaston is also quite intelligent and knowledgeable, as he can come up with versatile and clever plans to get what he wants. In spite of his intelligence, Gaston can also be quite spontaneous and impulsive, as shown when he tried to grope Belle by menacingly cornering her announcing "Say you'll marry me." before attempting to kiss her, which forced Belle (who was disgusted) to reject him in return. In addition, he is extremely cunning, reckless, and acquisitive, as shown when he openly bragged many key details about his plan to blackmail Belle into marrying him during the Gaston reprise, as well as during the climax when he stabbed the Beast in the back without assessing any risks, which ultimately led to his own demise.
Beauty and the Beast (1991 original)
Gaston is the local hero of a small French village at an unknown point in French history. He owns a large tavern where he and the villagers drink and talk. Inside, there is a large portrait of himself along with "trophies" from his hunt consisting mostly of animal antlers. He also says he eats five dozen eggs every morning to help make him "roughly the size of a barge".
He first appears in the film shooting down a waterfowl headed south with perfect accuracy (implying that he had just returned from a hunting trip) and declaring his intent to marry Belle after acknowledging from LeFou of his popularity with all the women in the village. He then started pursuing Belle throughout the village as she returns home after buying a book from the local bookstore. Their meeting starts off well, but Gaston's remarks about women reading and thinking drive Belle away from him and she goes home, leaving him disappointed. In addition, after learning that Belle was going to aid her father, Maurice, Gaston scolded LeFou for mocking Maurice (although it was implied that he mostly did that in an attempt to impress Belle rather than out of any genuine concern for Maurice).
The next day, Gaston organizes a wedding outside Belle's cottage in an attempt to "surprise" her, complete with various decorations, a priest, and a wedding cake. He forces his way into the cottage and attempts to strong-arm her into marrying him, again making sexist remarks about women and housewifery (he even envisions the home they would live in as a "rustic" hunting lodge, with his latest kill roasting over the fire and Belle massaging his feet while their children — six or seven boys — play on the floor with their dogs). While he attempts to corner Belle in an attempt to kiss her, she manages to open the door that he has pinned her against, rejecting his proposal. This causes him to lose his balance and fly headfirst into a large mud puddle (complete with cat-tail plants) in front of Belle's cottage. Furious and humiliated, Gaston storms off, but not before vowing to make Belle his wife regardless of her refusal and throwing LeFou into the mud out of frustration.
Later, during a snowstorm, Lefou leads the villagers in the tavern to sing a song about Gaston's greatness to cheer him up after his failed proposal. Maurice suddenly interrupts and warns the villagers about a "monstrous" Beast who has locked up Belle as a prisoner in the tower of his castle. Thinking that Maurice is talking nonsense, the villagers throw him out of the tavern, which made Gaston realize that he can use Maurice's outrageous claim to his advantage. In a surprising display of animalistic cunning, he bribes Monsieur D'Arque (the owner of the local asylum) to throw Maurice into the asylum in order to pressure Belle into marrying him. Though D'Arque states that Maurice's claims and his odd inventions do not make him dangerous, he is willing to accept the bribe because he liked the despicability of the plot. However, just before Gaston and LeFou barge into Belle and Maurice's cottage, Maurice left for the castle on his own. Gaston orders LeFou stay outside the cottage and wait for their return.
When Belle and Maurice eventually return to the cottage, LeFou immediately informs Gaston, and he sets his plan into motion. With the villagers gathered outside the house, D'Arque has his men drag Maurice towards their carriage, while Gaston makes Belle his offer - he will clear up the "misunderstanding" if she marries him. Horrified and disgusted, Belle refuses and instead proves her father's claims of the Beast's existence by using a magic mirror that the Beast had given her, causing all the villagers (including Gaston) to realize that Maurice was telling the truth. Following Maurice's release, Gaston grows more frustrated and shocked that his plan has failed, and becomes increasingly jealous when Belle begins referring to the Beast as "kind and gentle" as he let her go to help Maurice. Realizing that she prefers a "monster" over himself, Gaston refers to the Beast with this insult, to which a furious Belle retorts back by saying that Gaston is the real monster.
In his jealousy and pride, Gaston snaps out and snatches the mirror from Belle, successfully convincing the villagers that the Beast is a threat to the village and therefore must be brought down immediately by playing off their fear of monsters. An outraged Belle tries to stop this, but Gaston has her and Maurice locked in the basement to keep them from warning the Beast. He then leads a lynch mob to attack the Beast's castle and leave no one alive while declaring that he himself is to take down the Beast. However, the castle servants formed a defense attack, leaving the rioters to fight back. Rather than helping out his fellow rioters, Gaston instead betrays them to their fate, and the battle ends with the rioters fleeing away in defeat thanks to the castle servants' enchanted forms. Despite the loss of the villagers, Gaston confronts the Beast alone in the West Wing, where he fires an arrow into him, tosses him out of the window onto a lower section of the roof and taunts him. The Beast doesn't respond back as he lost his will to live since Belle's departure, so Gaston uses a castle statue as a makeshift club to try to kill the Beast. However, the Beast regains his will when he witnessed Belle returning to the castle with her father (as they had escaped from the basement with help from Chip, who stowed away with Belle). As such, the Beast defends himself by viciously fighting back against Gaston with all his strength and ferocity.
Though roughly even with his adversary, Gaston soon learns that he cannot rely on brute strength alone to kill the Beast, and instead begins taunting him over his ugly exterior and love for Belle. Gaston even pushed the final button by claiming that Belle is his to take and no one else, but this immediately backfires as the Beast snaps out and head-butts Gaston in the chest. The furious Beast then gets Gaston at his mercy by holding him above the castle roof by the throat, threatening to drop him into the deep castle moat for the trouble he caused. With his life at stake, Gaston seemingly abandons his pride and cowardly begs for mercy. At first, the Beast initially attempts to ignore Gaston's pleas, but realizes that he ought to be better due to his genuine love for Belle. Seeing that Gaston is nothing more than a reflection of what he would've become as a cruel monster, the Beast reluctantly spares Gaston by ordering him to leave the castle and never return. However, when Gaston sees the Beast embracing Belle on the castle balcony, his hatred and jealousy arises again. Rather than leaving the castle, Gaston instead climbs onto the balcony and stabs the Beast in the back with a knife. The Beast swings his arm backwards at Gaston as he roars in pain, which makes Gaston lose his balance and plunge into the deep moat below, screaming to his death.
Despite laying a fatal stab on the Beast, Gaston would die in vain that night; just as the Beast nearly succumbed to his wounds, Belle confessed her love for him just before the last petal of the enchanted rose that kept him bound to his beast form fell, breaking the spell and reviving the Beast. This also allows the Beast and the castle servants to transform back to their human forms, much to their delight.
Beauty and the Beast (2017 remake)
Gaston appeared in the 2017 remake, portrayed by Luke Evans. However, in this film, Gaston is portrayed as a former soldier prior to his career as a hunter due to a portrait of him standing over fallen soldiers in the tavern. It is also implied that this incarnation of Gaston is a much darker portrayal than in the original.
Just like his animated counterpart, Gaston is well-liked and respected in the village for his previous war heroics against the Portuguese, and aims to have Belle as his wife. At first, he attempts to woo her to get her approval for marriage many times, but she respectfully turns him down. Gaston then warns Belle that she will end up being in the streets as a beggar if she doesn't marry him, but she still refuses, much to his disapproval.
Eventually, in the tavern, Gaston gets cheered up by LeFou and the villagers following his failed attempts to woo Belle, right before Belle's father Maurice arrives and exclaims that Belle has been taken prisoner by the Beast (the son of a wicked king) in his castle. The villagers instantly laugh at this as they find Maurice to be insane (due to a spell cast by an enchantress that erases all the townsfolk's memories of the castle), but Gaston decides to tag along, in hopes of getting Maurice's approval for Belle's hand in marriage. However, as they stroke into the woods with LeFou, Gaston tires himself of Maurice's story and reveals his true nature, which incited a furious Maurice to refuse Gaston's proposal. In revenge, Gaston ties Maurice up in a tree and leaves him to die of winter exposure and be fed by hungry wolves (despite LeFou's objections), though Maurice ends up being saved by a beggar woman named Agathe.
Following Maurice's return to the village, Gaston finds himself being accused by Maurice for attempted murder, but he uses his charisma to convince the villagers that Maurice is insane and must be locked up in the local asylum. He even bribes the local asylum owner D'Arque to lock up Maurice in an act to blackmail Belle into marriage. However, Belle arrives back to the village and foils this by revealing the Beast's existence with the magic mirror that he given to her, making the entire village realize that Maurice was telling the truth. Realizing now that he would be exposed of his attempted murder of Maurice and that Belle has feelings for the Beast (as the latter let her go to help Maurice), an angry Gaston turns the tables by stealing the magic mirror and playing off the villagers' fear of monsters to goad them into helping him hunt down the Beast, much to Belle and Maurice's horror.
After locking Belle and Maurice in the asylum carriage, Gaston leads the villagers to attack the Beast's castle, which forced the castle servants to fight back, resulting the deaths of several villagers. During the battle, Maurice frees himself and Belle before allowing the latter to head to the castle while Gaston betrays LeFou by using him as a human shield against several of the servants, which incites an outraged LeFou to defect from Gaston's side. As the surviving villagers flee away in defeat, Gaston heads over to the West Wing, where he find the Beast sulking (as the latter feels heartbroken after letting Belle go). Taking the opportunity, Gaston arrogantly taunts and attacks the Beast, who doesn't fight back as he has lost his will to live. However, Belle arrives to the castle in an attempt to stop Gaston, which inspired the Beast to regain his confidence and fight back against Gaston for good.
After a brief fight, the Beast finally overpowers Gaston, but rather than finishing him off, the Beast instead furiously orders Gaston to leave the castle. However, as the Beast climbs back to reunite with Belle, Gaston (in a final act of spite) fatally shoots the Beast from a footbridge, much to Belle's distraught. However, Gaston's victory is short-lived when the footbridge breaks apart, leaving Gaston to fall screaming to his death below. Gaston's death also proved to be vain as Belle's expression of her love for the deceased Beast inspired an arriving Agathe (who is revealed to be the enchantress who cursed the Beast) to uplift the curse and revive the Beast before transforming him and his servants back to normal, much to their delight. This also allows the townsfolk to regain the memories of the castle and several villagers recognize some of the servants as their loved ones before reuniting with them.
Beauty and the Beast (musical)
In the musical, Gaston's role remains the same as in the movie. Unlike in the movie however, Gaston is hinted to be adulterous in nature, as he states to the Bimbettes that his "rendezvouses" with them will continue after he marries Belle, implying that his belief of marriage is based on ownership rather than of love and affection. Gaston also gave Belle an unwanted kiss when she refuses his proposal again as her father is being taken away by D'Arque, resulting a furious Belle to slap him in the face before proving Maurice's sanity with the magic mirror. Also, during the fight against the Beast, Gaston arrogantly claimed that Belle sent him over to kill the Beast, but Belle's return to the castle made the Beast realize that what Gaston said is a lie.
House of Mouse
Much like most Disney villains, despite his death in the movie, Gaston gained a recurring role on House of Mouse as a guest character, once again voiced by Richard White. His most notable appearance, in the episode "Daisy's Debut", had a running gag in which he frequently injected himself into other people's conversations to announce, "No one [verbs] like Gaston!" This gag would later go through the entire series and would become a memorable catchphrase for Gaston, much to the annoyance of others. Instances of this catchphrase include, "No one sings like Gaston!" in response to Daisy's compliment on Ariel's singing, "No one makes faces in spoons like Gaston!" when Timon and Pumbaa are making faces in spoons (with an annoyed Timon answering back, "Actually, no one asked the opinion of Gaston!"), and "No one eats candied apples like Gaston!" before eating one of the Queen's apples and promptly collapsing, to which Daisy reacts to by snarking, "Now no one needs a wake-up kiss like Gaston!"
Once Upon a Time
Gaston is featured in the ABC series in a very minor role played by Sage Brocklebank. Here, he was engaged to Belle through an arranged marriage, but just like the film, she did not love him because she found him "shallow". Unlike his Disney counterpart, he appears to be more noble and focused, as shown when he expressed concern for Belle's agreement to go with Rumpelstiltskin and when she refused his marriage proposal. He attempted to reclaim her from Rumpelstiltskin regardless, but was transformed into a rose and given as a gift to Belle.
Gaston was revived, and it was also revealed that he had two twin sons, who he named after himself (which is not surprising); their names are Gaston Jr. and Gaston the Third, but his two sons have not inherited his obsession with girls.
Gaston is considered one of Disney's most popular villains. He ranked 11th in an official poll, and the Nostalgia Critic placed him as the 5th best Disney villain, citing him as being different from most other Disney villains in that he wasn't evil from the start. Fans on the Internet often jokingly idolize him similar to how the townspeople do in the movie, giving birth to the "No one (X) like Gaston" meme, and the "Gaston" song in particular is a very popular source for YouTube Poop.
|“||How can you read this? There's no pictures! (Belle: Well, someone has to use their own imagination.) Belle, it's about time you got your head out of those books and paid attention to more important things, like me! The whole town's talking about it. It's not right for a woman to read, first she starts getting ideas and thinking...||„|
|~ Gaston making a terrible attempt to woo Belle.|
|“||This is the day your dreams come true. (Belle: What do you know about my dreams, Gaston?) Plenty. Picture this: A rustic hunting lodge, my latest kill roasting on the fire, and my little wife massaging my feet, while the little ones play on the floor with the dogs. We'll have six or seven. (Belle: Dogs?) No, Belle Strapping boys like me. (Belle: Imagine that.) And do you know who that little wife will be? (Belle: Let me think...) You, Belle! (Belle: Gaston, I'm..... speechless. I really don't know what to say.) Say you'll marry me. (Belle: I'm very sorry, Gaston, but.... but..... I just don't deserve you!)||„|
|~ Gaston making his wedding proposal to Belle (to no avail).|
|“||Who does she think she is? That girl has tangled with the wrong man! No one says no to Gaston! (LeFou: Darn right.) Dismissed, rejected, publicly humiliated... why, it's more than I can bear!! (LeFou: More beer?) What for? Nothing helps. I'm disgraced!||„|
|~ Gaston fuming over his failed wedding proposal to Belle.|
|“||It's like this: I got my heart set on marrying Belle. But she needs a little.... persuasion. (LeFou: Turned him down flat.) Everyone knows that her father's a lunatic. He was in here tonight raving about a beast in a castle. (D'Arque: Maurice is harmless.) The point is.... Belle would do anything to keep him from being locked up.||„|
|~ Gaston forming a plan to blackmail Belle into marrying him.|
|“||They have to come back sometime. And when they do, we'll be ready for them. LeFou, don't move from that spot until Belle and her father come home!||„|
|~ Gaston telling LeFou to stay at Belle's house to await for Belle and Maurice's return.|
|“||Poor Belle, it's a shame about your father. (Belle: You know he's not crazy, Gaston.) I think I may be able to clear up this little misunderstanding.... if..... (Belle: If what?) ..... if you marry me. (Belle: WHAT?!) One little world, Belle. That's all it takes. (Belle: NEVER!!) Have it your way.||„|
|~ Gaston trying to blackmail Belle into marrying him as Maurice is about to be taken away to the asylum.|
|“||If I didn't know better, I say you have feelings for this monster. (Belle: He's no monster, Gaston! YOU ARE!!) She's as crazy as the old man!||„|
|~ Gaston snapping at Belle after learning that she's in love with the Beast.|
|“||We'll lay siege to the castle and BRING BACK HIS HEAD!!!||„|
|~ Gaston leading the townspeople to attack the Beast's castle.|
|“||Take whatever booty you can find, but remember... THE BEAST IS MINE!!!||„|
|~ Gaston encouraging the townspeople to raid the Beast's castle.|
|“||Get up! GET UP!! What's the matter, Beast? Too kind and gentle to fight back?||„|
|~ Gaston taunting the Beast.|
|“||Come on out and FIGHT!! Were you in love with her, Beast? Did you honestly think she'd want you, when she had someone like me?!||„|
|~ Gaston mocking the Beast.|
|“||It's over, Beast!! BELLE IS MINE!! (gets knock down by the Beast, who holds him up on the roof over the moat) Let me go! Let me go! Please... don't hurt me!! I'll do anything!! ANYTHING!!!||„|
|~ Gaston's last words before his death.|
- Gaston was going to be voiced by Rupert Everett, the same man who also played Doctor Claw in the live action film adaptation Inspector Gadget and the voice of Prince Charming in Shrek 2 and Shrek the Third. Everett was denied because he did not sound arrogant enough, something he would later keep in mind when voicing Prince Charming.
- The animators researched high school and college jock stereotypes to create Gaston's menacing and arrogant mannerisms.
- Gaston was not present in Kingdom Hearts II, despite being the main antagonist of Beauty and the Beast. Xaldin, a member of Organization XIII, serves as this world's main villain and reprises the role of Forte.
- However, Gaston finally debuted in the Kingdom Hearts series in Kingdom Hearts chi.
- Gaston was created for the film and does not appear in the original fairy tale Disney based the film on. Beauty's sisters (who were cut from the film) are the antagonists of the original fairy tale.
- Originally, Gaston was going to say to The Beast: "It's over Beast! Time to die!". This was changed, because it was slightly out of character, as Gaston is attempting to kill the Beast so that he can have Belle for himself.
- When Gaston says, "Belle is mine!" his lips instead synch to "Time to die!", implying that the filmmakers changed the line late in development.
- In two mockbusters of the Disney version of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, namely the Golden Films version and The Secret of The Hunchback, the respective main villains are clearly based off Gaston, specially the Golden Films version.
- Though Gaston persuaded the villagers to hunt the Beast by lying that he was a threat to the entire village (even though the Beast only left his castle twice to rescue Belle from a wolf pack and a lake of thin ice), Gaston ultimately decided to deal with the Beast himself, likely due to seeing him as a rival for Belle's affections and the villagers would potentially discover the Beast's peaceful nature if they discovered him before Gaston.
- During his fall off the castle, you can quickly see that some skulls appear in his eyes. This is likely to symbolize that Gaston did not survive the fall into the castle moat.
- There were several alternative versions to Gaston's death:
- After wounding the Beast, Gaston fell from the castle into the woods, where he has survived with a broken leg. However, he is confronted by several wolves who previously pursued Maurice and Belle. Without hesitation, the wolves close in on Gaston and mauled him to death. This scene was removed, but was later reused for the death of Scar in The Lion King (the wolves were replaced by Shenzi, Banzai & Ed, and the Hyena Clan).
- An alternative version of his death was for Gaston to lay multiple stabbings on the Beast and commit suicide by falling to his death laughing maniacally, as he feels that no one else would have Belle if he can't have her for himself, but not before he lashes out at Belle for ruining his pride and preferring the Beast over him. However, this was edited out since it was too dark, rewritten to have Gaston lose his footing after stabbing the Beast and only requiring one stab to finish him off.
- Before Prince Hans from Frozen who is confirmed to be 23 years old, Gaston was the youngest major Disney villain to date most believing him to be around 25.
- In a Youtube series called The Frollo Show, Gaston is the deuteragonist and is Frollo's best friend. Ironically, he is portrayed as rather heroic, though otherwise he is similar to personality to his Disney counterpart.