Characters / A Bug's Life

A Bug's Life

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The ants

    Flik 
Voiced by: Dave Foley
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/flik01_8007.jpg

    Atta 
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/atta01_7774.jpg

  • Defrosting Ice Queen: She is rather dismissive towards Flik and his ideas on improving the harvest in the beginning of the film. But warms up to him in the middle.
  • Disappeared Dad: Her and Dot's birth father was never seen.
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: She may be neurotic, but she does care for her colony.
  • Hartman Hips: For an ant, Atta has pronounced hips.
  • Non-Mammal Mammaries: A rather subdued example, but you can tell she's an adult female ant.
  • Not So Different: Her and the ant colony, according to Flik.
  • Official Couple: With Flik.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Once Flik has the idea to get rid of Hopper, she's all the way on board. And after that she finally stands up to Hopper.
  • Single Woman Seeks Good Man: While Atta was at first dismissive towards Flik she wasn't as brutal as the rest, and it was somewhat justified given their colony's current predicament and that his inventions did cause problems. After he and the Circus Bugs saved her sister from death, Atta started to develop an instant liking towards Flik, even showing her own adorkable when with him. It was only after she and the colony found out about his lies did she exile him. She changes her attitude again when Flik and the other ants drive the grasshoppers out.
  • Slapstick Knows No Gender: She gets knocked to the ground twice by catapulted stalks of grain (thanks to Flik) and even falls off the counsel stand in the Hilarious Outtakes.
  • So Proud of You: Said word-for-word after Flik inspires the ant colony to Zerg Rush the grasshoppers.

    Dot 
Voiced by: Hayden Panettiere

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/dot01_9547.jpg

The grasshoppers

    Hopper 
Voiced by: Kevin Spacey
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/hopper01_6381.jpg

  • Bad Boss: As Molt tells the ants during the raid in the film's second half: "You don't want to make him mad. Believe me!" He takes out his frustration at his brother by punching out another member of his gang because of a promise to his mother. Later, he matter-of-factly kills several of his fellow grasshoppers just to demonstrate a point in an argument.
  • Big Bad: The main antagonist of the film, Hopper is the leader of the grasshoppers and without him the others wouldn't even care.
  • The Bully: He's loves picking on weaker species to make himself feel big.
  • Bullying a Dragon: He understands the weakness of his position against the numerically superior ants, and engages in a campaign of terror specifically to keep the ants from wising up and fighting back.
  • Deadpan Snarker: He is voiced by Kevin Spacey, after all. Throughout the film, he makes dry remarks about anything that annoys him.
  • Eaten Alive: At the end of A Bug's Life, Hopper gets eaten by the bird's chicks.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: He says that promising his mother on her deathbed not to kill Molt is the only reason he has not done so.
  • Evil Is Petty: When his big elaborate plan fails, he settles for mercilessly beating up Flik and trying to kill him. In fact, his only reason for going back was to browbeat them because of one ant who was no apparent threat and only hurt his pride.
  • Fatal Flaw: His overconfidence and underestimating the ants' strength eventually leads to his death.
  • Faux Affably Evil: He becomes chillingly polite when about to do something like murdering his own henchmen or preparing to feed children to deranged grasshoppers.
  • For the Evulz: Unlike other Pixar villains, Hopper has no known "reason" behind his twisted acts.
  • Genius Bruiser: He can easily beat down most anybody else in the film, and he's hardly dumb; he knows that if all the ants stood up to the grasshoppers, since they're far more numerous, the ants would easily push them away. And indeed it does happen, they just needed a push.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: It is NOT a wise idea to make him angry.
  • It's All About Me: Everything is about him being in control of everyone else.
  • Jerkass: He's just a wildly unpleasant individual all around given his actions and personality.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Jerk: He gives the impression of being more than a bully when he announces to his men that they're going to spend the rest of the winter partying instead of returning to the ants' island. Then he kills some of his men to make a point.
  • Karmic Death: He gets his Just Desserts when he becomes the meal of some hungry bird chicks.
  • Kick the Dog: A number of times. One example is him belittling Atta after "the grasshoppers" meal is gone.
  • Knight of Cerebus/Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: One of the scariest villains Pixar has ever done.
  • Large Ham: Helpful for a skilled orator.
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: In the Hilarious Outtakes, he's a fairly sensitive guy that puts up with a lot of goof ups and teasing from the rest of the cast.
  • Obviously Evil: Domineering presence, strongest of his group, enjoys making people suffer.
  • Perpetual Frowner: There is rarely a scene where he cracks a smile.
  • Pet the Dog: Though the ants had messed up badly in giving his grasshoppers food, he's ultimately willing to give the ants another chance, though he makes the ants double the amount of food they would have given him to compensate.
  • Red Right Hand: Hopper has a scar over his right eye.
  • Scars Are Forever: One over his (also likely blind) right eye, which the Pixar staff confirms was inflicted by the first bird that attacked him.
  • Smug Snake: Big time. He's smart and utterly convinced of his superiority but has no idea how to deal with the unexpected.
  • The Sociopath: Manipulative, ruthless, cold hearted, sadistic, remorseless, pompous, arrogant, evil... yes, he's clearly one.
  • Soft-Spoken Sadist: When not at borderline frothing rage point, he's committing brutality with a stoic, outright bored look on his face. How he makes his case towards his men ditching going after the ants is a key example.
    Hopper: *politely* Does anybody else wanna stay?...
  • Villainous Breakdown: He goes through one first when he tries to kill Flik out of anger and speaks about gathering grasshoppers and returning when it is obvious that he lost and when he's about to be eaten by a bird and then he realizes the bird has hungry babies.
  • Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: According to Atta, he was afraid of birds. This is his eventual fate when he gets eaten in the end.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Hopper doesn't hesitate to feed child Dot to Thumper.

    Thumper 
Voiced by: David Lander
  • Ax-Crazy: Shown in full when he mercilessly beats up Flik.
  • The Brute: He's by far the most violent member of Hopper's swarm.
  • Fluffy the Terrible: If you associate the name "Thumper" with a certain adorable bunny, it's weird to see an Ax-Crazy grasshopper having the same name. On the other hand, it's also a Meaningful Name, as he likes to thump his enemies in the ground.
  • Karma Houdini: He gets scared away by Dim, but apparently survives.
  • Madwoman in the Attic: Well he's kept around, but often on a leash, blurring the line between thug and animal.
  • Mean Character, Nice Actor: Actor!Thumper is rather polite, completely sane, and far from the Ax-Crazy character he is in the movie.
  • Psycho for Hire: A very low-functioning example but very psycho for treats nonetheless.
  • Suddenly Voiced: In the outtakes.
  • Team Pet: Though it's ambiguous whether he's supposed to represent an attack dog or an ax-crazy human, he seems to be this to the grasshoppers to some degree. A blink-and-you'll-miss-it scene shows him begging Hopper for treats and catching a piece of grain tossed to him in his mouth.
  • The Unintelligible: Speaks in grunts, rasps, growls, snarls, and whimpers (when Dim scares him away).

    Molt 
Voiced by: Richard Kind

  • Affably Evil: Nice and friendly, even trying to tell funny stories to ants he's menacing. He even gives them a friendly warning during the second raid, having himself made Hopper angry one too many times:
    "Do as he says; you don't want to make him mad. Believe me!"
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: He infuriates Hopper. To such an extent that Hopper had to promise their dying mother that he wouldn't kill Molt.
  • Catchphrase: "Shutting up", whenever he realizes he's pushing his luck.
  • The Ditz: Molt isn't exactly the smartest bug in the movie.
  • Gentle Giant: He's a big guy and doesn't really want to pick on the ants.
  • Heel–Face Turn: He joins the circus bugs at the end of the film as a strongman.
  • Hidden Depths: He knows just how foolish and evil Hopper's plan is but is scared to refuse to go. He's also seen visibly flinching when Thumper attacks Flik.
  • Minion with an F in Evil: While he's one of the bad guys, he's a dim-witted Gentle Giant, often infuriating his intelligent but evil older brother.
  • Motor Mouth: Loves to babble on and on. Helps that he's voiced by Richard Kind.
  • Punch Clock Villain: When the food's collected and the circus is performing, he happily claps and plays along, rather like a child.
    "The circus, the circus, I love the circus!"
  • Token Good Teammate: He's not really evil, just following along with the other grasshoppers.

The circus bugs

    P.T. Flea 
Voiced by: John Ratzenberger
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/ptflea01_1546.jpg
  • Badass Normal
  • Jerkass: Though he's not as mean as Hopper is.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Despite his general nature, he does come around to help the ants rid themselves of Hopper, even offering Flik a place in his circus when they've reclaimed their home. When he sees Atta and Dot newly crowned, he is on the verge of tears before he shakes the sentiment off.
  • Nice Hat: Wears what appears to be a very small top hat.
  • Let's Get Dangerous!: There's no denying that's he's a Jerkass, but he shows his courage by heroically attacking what he thought was a real bird to save everyone.
  • Repulsive Ringmaster: He is the ringmaster of the circus bugs, and while not outright evil, he is the least heroic and most Jerkass out of them.
  • Skewed Priorities: When he sees Manny "bleeding" to death during the fake bird attack.
    P.T.: There goes my magic act!
  • The Napoleon: As a flea, he's tiny and mean.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom:
    • He's responsible for the ants finding out the circus bugs aren't warriors, costing Flik his newly earned good name. He suddenly shows up demanding that his circus bugs return to work for him. This in turn causes the ants to give up on rebelling against Hopper, almost resulting in the villain's victory.
    • He also ruins the ants' original plan of scaring the grasshoppers off with a fake bird by setting said bird on fire, thinking it to be the real deal.

    Heimlich 
Voiced by: Joe Ranft
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/heimlich01_3788.jpg
  • Big Eater: How he mainly copes with not getting to be a beautiful butterfly.
  • Fat Idiot: A very fat and not very bright caterpillar.
  • Funny Foreigner: He has a thick German accent.

    Francis 
Voiced by: Denis Leary
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/francis01_2977.jpg

    Slim 
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/slim01_4691.jpg

    Rosie 
Voiced by: Bonnie Hunt
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rosie01_5242.jpg

    Dim 
Voiced by: Brad Garrett
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/dim01_4874.jpg

    Manny and Gypsy 
Voiced by: Jonathan Harris and Madeline Kahn
http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/mannygypsy01_5832.jpg

    Tuck and Roll 
Voiced by: Mike McShane

Other

    The Bird 
Voiced by: Randy Thorn

  • Always a Bigger Fish: A gigantic predator (from the bugs' point of view) who defeats the film's true villain Hopper in the end.
  • Deus ex Machina: Shows up just in time to kill Hopper before he can catch and kill Flik.
  • The Dreaded: Everyone is afraid of birds, even Hopper.
  • Feathered Fiend: To the bugs. A human would probably find her rather cute.
  • Giant Flyer: A mix of the "normal sized flyer seen from a small character's perspective" and "giant predator" varieties.
  • Kaiju: What everybody sees it as.
  • Monster Is a Mommy: The bugs are terrified of her, but she's just a mother bird looking to feed herself and her chicks.
  • Non-Malicious Monster: It's only looking to eat and feed its young.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Characters/ABugsLife