|“||What a miraculous device. I'm really getting the hang of this. I do believe that we are destined to be soul mates.||„|
|~ Hexxus, while merging with the Leveler machine.|
Hexxus is the dark, ancient, and evil spirit of destruction and the main antagonist in 20th Century Fox's 1992 animated feature film, FernGully: The Last Rainforest.
He was voiced by the legendary British voice actor who is also known for portraying many villainous roles and characters in the film, Tim Curry, who also played Pennywise, Drake, General Von Talon, and El Malefico.
Hexxus is the dark, ancient, and evil spirit of destruction and all that is toxic to nature. As such, his only goal is to cause destruction, decay, and death in any way he can to FernGully and all its inhabitants, and to kill off all the Earth's creatures by transforming the world into an uninhabitable toxic wasteland after he has taken complete power and control over it as the primordial embodiment of destruction and pollution, and will stop at nothing to exact his revenge on the fairies of FernGully by means of manipulating humans to help him in his evil plan.
Hexxus first appeared on Earth in ancient times when the balance of nature shifted. He rose out of the Earth and rained down his poison, destroying much in his wake and killing countless living creatures, including humans, who fled in fear, never to return. He was finally defeated by the fairy priestess, the elderly and wise Magi Lune, and was imprisoned inside an enchanted baobab tree, which he remained trapped in for hundreds, if not thousands or possibly even millions of years.
FernGully: The Last Rainforest
While painting red "X" marks on trees, marking them for cutting, the movie's main male protagonist named Zak comes across the tree Hexxus is imprisoned in; he finds it creepy, much like the entity it contains. While he is looking at the tree, Zak is bugged by a fly, and while trying to hit it with his aerosol can, he ends up marking the tree. That evening, the mobile lumbermill known as "The Leveler", driven by Zak's superiors, Tony and Ralph, cuts down the tree. As the cutting begins, the Leveler shakes violently, likely due to Hexxus's supernatural presence, but the lumberjacks ignore the signs and cut it down anyway. The tree is processed and reduced to sheets of wood by the leveler, releasing Hexxus in a slimy form. Chuckling maliciously, he almost immediately begins absorbing energy from the Leveler, and by the next day, he has regained enough strength to quickly move around and coherently speak. While wondering how he escaped, Hexxus quickly realizes it is the work of humans. Determined to get revenge upon the fairies of FernGully for imprisoning him and seeing the most useful potential of the human machine, Hexxus decides to take control of it and use it to exact his sinister plan.
Under the outspoken vocal guise of their boss, Hexxus occasionally manipulates the lumberjacks into tearing down the rainforest in the direction of FernGully by the next morning, thereby destroying the very fabric of their world. He then assumes his ghostly main form, singing the song "Toxic Love", before going to the Leveler's roof to oversee progress as he laughs maniacally. Sometime later, upon reaching FernGully after having successfully destroyed much of the rainforest, Hexxus reveals himself. With Magi Lune gone (having sacrificed herself to give her power to all the other fairies), it is up to Crysta and the other fairies to defeat him once and for all. He and the Leveler chase the fairies and drive them into their home tree despite Crysta's efforts to stop his advance. Zak, knowing the fairies cannot stop the Leveler, has Batty take him to the machine's cab, from which he can stop it. However, Batty gets carried away and flies right up to Hexxus, who laughs and swipes at them, sending debris raining down onto Batty, who drops Zak onto the windshield as a result. As Zak frantically tries to get the lumberjacks' attention, Hexxus immediately scares them off and takes control of the machine himself. As he proceeds to the fairies' home tree, he closes off the Leveler's cab to keep out intruders, but Zak still manages to get inside with Pips' help. Just as Hexxus is about to kill off all the fairies, Zak turns off the leveler, causing Hexxus to lose the energy he was gaining from it and disappear. However, he reemerges moments later, this time in the form of a giant, demonic, fire-breathing skeletal creature made of oil.
Remembering a bit of advice that Magi gave her before her death, Crysta occasionally takes a seed and flies up to Hexxus, who devours her as he laughs evilly, to everyone's horror. However, as he prepares to destroy FernGully for good, he begins sprouting branches like a tree. Annoyed, he rips off the sprouts, but the emerging new tree continues to grow. Pips, realizing what is happening, leads the fairies into helping the new tree grow; within moments, Hexxus and the Leveler itself are overrun. Hexxus can only watch in terror as he is sealed within the closing roots, imprisoning him presumably once and for all, so that he may never harm FernGully again. After his defeat, Crysta and Batty are revealed to be alive, while Zak, knowing human development can still threaten FernGully, returns home with Tony and Ralph with a new environmentalist mindset.
True to all he embodies, Hexxus could very much be considered the dark side of nature itself. He is extremely powerful and truly menacing towards nature. At the core, he relishes destruction, decay, and death, and has nearly destroyed the entire rainforest in the past with his omnipotence and deadliness. As a result, he is feared by the fairies of FernGully and all the other inhabitants of the beautiful rainforest. Hexxus is truly malicious, nasty, greedy, conceited, persuasive, selfish, vindictive, devilish, vile, callous, cunning, arrogant, deceptive, diabolical, mysterious, oppressive, deceitful, ruthless, scandalous, manipulative, iniquitous, heartless, impatient, destructive, powerful, merciless, hateful, vain, and cruel, and he loathes the beauty of nature and all living things and vows to do away with them all to no end until the world is an uninhabited, polluted, and desolate wasteland that is under his complete control, showing his extreme hunger and lust for gaining power. He is also shown to take great sadistic pleasure in the suffering, greediness, and death of all living creatures, killing them off and not even batting an eye about it. Hexxus (at least in his smoke form) usually talks in an extremely respectful, polite, appreciative, thoughtful, quiet, and sensual fashion with a rather sophisticated air, and the pleasure he derives from pollution seems to be almost sexual in nature. However, he also shows great fear when the situation turns against him, such as when Zak turned off the leveler and then when he was imprisoned once again, only this time for all eternity.
Hexxus has also shown to be an exceptional master manipulator, able to influence others from the shadows, and he also seemed to hold some great admiration for humans, describing them as "wonderful creatures, so clever and helpful", possibly because he and humans share much in common, as they both cause destruction to nature and its creatures, although humans may not be aware of the harm they unknowingly cause. Nevertheless, he only sees them as a means to an end and, like all other living creatures, Hexxus takes great sadistic pleasure and delight in their deaths just the same. He also has demonstrated extreme overconfidence and enjoys cruelly taunting and mocking his prey to no end; however, his own arrogance is ultimately his greatest flaw, as it caused him to be sealed away by the fairies for the second and presumably last time, ending his cruelty and destruction of FernGully hopefully forever.
Powers and Abilities
As the dark side of nature, Hexxus wields as variety of abilities and powers. He can change his form, which presumably depends on what type of poison or toxin he is currently feeding on, for example: Zak's red spray paint (a shapeless blob of black ooze), the smog produced by the Leveler (a humanoid shadow of black smoke), the oil in the Leveler (a giant flaming skeleton-like beast draped in ooze like a cape), or anything else.
He has been shown to be able to mimic seemingly any voice. He is also able to breathe fire, both in his smoke and fire forms. His smoke form also appears to be able to cast bolts of acid. Hexxus can also possess machines, such as when he merges with the Leveler and also takes control of it once he scares off its human operators. As stated by Magi Lune, Hexxus can rain down his poison which presumably is his deadliest ability, for Magi states that during his first rampage the impressive forest was "nearly destroyed and many lives were lost".
Aside from those abilities, Hexxus also seems to have some level of omniscience or omnipresence. Because as is hinted many times in his song "Toxic Love", it seems that, despite being imprisoned for countless years, Hexxus was still fully aware of how much humans and civilization had evolved over the millennia. Thus he, at least partially, understood the concept of machines, human greed, human work (shifts, breaks and all) and was aware of human things like shopping malls, cocktails, and anything else. Furthermore, he apparently also knew both the voice and even the personality of the lumberjacks' boss when he mimicked him over the intercom. The fact that he is a spirit further adds constructive plausibility to this theory. Indeed, Hexxus himself has stated that he "sees the world and all the creatures in it".
- The name "Hexxus" is probably derived from the word "hex", meaning a harmful curse.
- Hexxus is often considered to be the best character in FernGully. Tim Curry's voice gives a very darkly sensual charm to the lord of pollution (especially during his signature song "Toxic Love"), making him stand out among the other characters who are mostly considered fairly bland (with the possible exception of Batty, voiced by Robin Williams).
- Toxic Love's full version is longer than the one that appears in the movie. It may have been cut due to both time constraints and age-inappropriate content (such as the line "I feel good, a special kind of horny").
- The first tree in which Hexxus was trapped was small and completely rotten, permeated to the core with the spirit's filth. However, the second seems to be green and alive. This could be taken to mean that the new seal is better and less likely to be broken, but it is also possible that the first tree only became tainted after centuries of housing Hexxus.