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The Giants are the main antagonists of the novel and film of The BFG. They were led by the Fleshlumpeater, being the most notable member of the band of monsters. Compared to the BFG, they were ferocious and hideous monsters bent on kidnapping and devouring any and every child they could.

In the 2016 film, the Giants were portrayed by:

  • Jemaine Clement portrayed the Fleshlumpeater. Clement also portrayed Boris the Animal
  • Bill Hader portrayed the Bloodbottler
  • Michael Adamthwaite played the Butcher Boy, who collected cars everywhere in the place
  • Chris Gibbs portrayed the Gizzardgulper
  • Adam Godley portrayed the Manhugger
  • Jonathan Holmes portrayed the Childchewer
  • Paul Moniz de Sa portrayed the Meatdripper
  • Olafur Olafsson portrayed the Maidmasher
  • David Bacon portrayed the Bonecruncher

Biography

In the novel

Living in a large desert known as Giant Country (implied to be on another planet or in another dimension), the Giants were 50 feet tall, had skins burned by the sun, and are dressed in a skirt-like covering around their waists. Often engaged in night-time raids of the human world, the giants have been stealing men, women and children alike under the cover of night and devouring them: although the BFG was aware of the crimes his fellow Giants committed he was unable to stop their evil ways.

This would change when the BFG befriended a young girl named Sophie and took her to Giant Land, through her, he picked up the courage to finally call on the British Army to deal with the Giants and they managed to capture the beasts as they slept but woke up the Fleshlumpeater when doing so. The Fleshlumpeater was surprised, but he was even more hungry at seeing the humans in his country, and he jumped to his feet, boasting about how he would eat them all. Sophie stuck a brooch the Queen had given her into the Fleshlumpeater, causing him pain and making him retreat, the BFG tricked him into being tied up. Afterwards, they flew the Giants back to England by chaining them under helicopters and had them locked away in a large pit where they would be fed nothing but a disgusting plant known as "Snozzcumbers" as punishment for their crimes for the rest of their lives.

The BFG (1989 film)

The Giants are the primary antagonists of the film. While all nine of the giants are named, only Fleshlumpeater and Bloodbottler were identified.

The BFG (2016 film)

You are a very bad Giant!
~ Sophie to the Fleshlumpeater.


I has no regrets!
~ The Fleshlumpeater, showing his evil nature.


The Giants return as the primary antagonists of this live action film. This time, all nine of them are identified.

They are first introduced when they are seen swarming outside the BFG's home in Giant Country, being described to Sophie as bogeymen who will eat her if she so much as steps outside. The BFG tells her that the Giants have been eating humans for centuries, and he is powerless to stop them all.

Initially, Sophie disbelieves the BFG about the Giant threat, and sneaks out, but is horrifyingly captured by the Fleshlumpeater, and almost eaten alive - but this is shown to be a nightmare the BFG intentionally gave Sophie to make her see that he is telling the truth all along.

The leader of the Giants, the Fleshlumpeater, enters the cave, calling him "Runt", and initially claims that he is keeping him awake with his “jabbeling”, but then admits he has a “booboo” on his finger. As the BFG tends to his cut, the brute picks up Sophie’s scent and realizes the BFG has a human. The Fleshlumpeater narrowly tracks Sophie, who hides in the snozzcumber vegetable on the table. He almost eats her after being persuaded by the BFG to try the snozzcumber, only for her to reveal her feet so the BFG can stop him in time, reminding the Fleshlumpeater that he hates vegetables and eats only “beans”. With that, he takes one of the bottles of Frobscottle instead and storms outside, saying that the BFG is an insult to “giant peoples”.

The Giants ambush the BFG when he goes outside for dream-catching upon Bloodbottler quickly waking up. Being bored, the Giants decide to amuse themselves by throwing the BFG around like a football and then trapping him (and, unbeknowest to them, Sophie) inside two abandoned Jeeps and zoom downhill to give the others entertainment. The Gizzardgulper and the BFG are forced into a collision course, with each going downhill, but the crash course ends violently with Sophie being thrown from the Jeep and the BFG being humiliated. The BFG gets his own back on the Giants by telling them rain will strike, and as the Giants are deeply afraid of water, because its something even they cannot control, the Giants are all scared off into hiding. However, in the chaos, Sophie drops her blanket, and the Fleshlumpeater picks it up and smells it with his sidekick the Bloodbottler. They both remark “Bean!” and look hungrily and suspiciously round the landscape.

When the BFG has gone dream-hunting, and found a good dream, (a Golden Phizzwizard) and a nightmare, (a trogglehumper). On the way back, the BFG hears sounds of lament and points out the notice of a group of the giants (the Fleshlumpeater, the Butcher Boy, the Maidmasher, the Manhugger, and the Meatdripper) who are out on a night of eating children. The BFG later fears for Sophie's safety when he realizes she dropped her blanket in Giant Country and the Giants have her scent. The BFG returns her to the orphanage, but she convinces him to take her back to Giant Country as she isn't afraid of the Giants.

Now furious, Sophie decides to concoct a plan to end the threat, especially as she realizes the BFG befriended a young boy, in Victorian times, only to have the Giants sniff him out and eat him, to the BFG's dismay.

However, back in Giant Country, the BFG is ambushed in his lair and interrogated in his cave by all nine of the Giants, who threaten to find the hiding human bean and eat her. Sophie desperately is forced into a game of cat-and-mouse from the Giants, which ends with the Giants smashing the dream jars and releasing all of the dreams. The BFG finally gets his courage, and, brandishing a poker, yells "This is my work - get out!" and actually burns the Fleshlumpeater, who only gets enraged, and humorously falls over backwards when exiting the cave.

The Giants are soon all ambushed by the Army when the BFG successfully conquers his fears of humans to speak to the Queen of England about the problem. She sends her forces to capture the Giants. The Fleshlumpeater is almost about to eat Sophie when she smashes open the trogglehumper nightmare. The angry Sophie scolds him for being an evil monster, to which he remarks he has no regrets. The BFG sends in the British Army who tie the Giants up on the helicopters, and then they fly them out into an island in the North Sea, sending them dropping into the ocean, and when they crawl ashore, shoving each other, the Army drop them a farewell gift of snozzcumber vegetables to eat for eternity. As Sophie remarks, they would just have to get used to it.

Nature

The Giants see humans only as food. Apparently, all humans taste different, and thus reflect the nature of their countries - for instance, humans from Turkey taste strongly of turkey (the animal). Welsh humans have a very suspicious taste, apparently, tasting strongly of whales, and mostly all Giants avoid humans from Greece, because apparently they taste greasy and no Giants eat Greeks ever (a possible reference to how humanity's greatest Giant slayers have been from ancient Greek stories). All of the Giants are dim-witted, with the exception of the Fleshlumpeater, the leader of the gang, and to a higher extant, the Bloodbottler, the secondary leader and overall most intelligent of the group. The Manhugger is the tallest and surpasses even the Fleshlumpeater in terms of height (though also slim and not as powerful), the Butcher Boy is the youngest and has the most childlike demeanor, and the Gizzardgulper is the shortest, standing 39 ft tall. All of the Giants are incredibly violent and aggressive, so they (although getting along well with one another) love getting in rough brawls with each other (similar to schoolyard fights). However according to the BFG, they will never go so far as to kill or eat one of their own species - but even the Fleshlumpeater breaks this code of honour at the end by vowing to eat the BFG for a change. The Fleshlumpeater is the most sadistic and apparently likes spending his days planning which humans to eat in the night time.

However, routine can be deadly, and the BFG and Sophie are able to exploit the routine of the more dim-witted Giants by using their absence when hunting humans to approach the Queen to send the Army to imprison them all.

The Giants are all terrified of Jack because he is one of the only humans to have killed a Giant and thus they know he is more than a match for them. Luckily for them, Jack may or may not be fictional.

Trivia

  • It is worth noting that in the film, the Giants' actors all have names either appropriate or inappropriate for their roles. Adam Godley, who portrays the Manhugger, has an ironic name, he portrays an ungodly and blasphemous monster yet his name gives the impression of holiness.

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