Characters / Coraline

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The Real World

    Coraline Jones 
Played By: Dakota Fanning
"I'm Coraline Jones. I've got so much to tell you."

A brave, clever, curious 11-year-old girl with dark blue hair.
  • Accidental Misnaming: When she first meets Wybie he calls her "Caroline" even after she corrects him. This is a Running Gag with the other neighbors as well.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Actually dyed in-universe, as we see her with brown hair in an old photograph. In the novel, she didn't dye her hair at all, and just like the movie, it was brown.
  • Adaptation Personality Change: In the book, Coraline was stoic, polite and well-mannered, if exasperated by her parents' absences. In the movie, Coraline is a lot more snarky, abrasive, and rude to her parents, neighbors, and Wybie.
  • Affectionate Nickname: "Twitcy-witchy girl" by her father. He even made a song about it:
    "Oh, my twitchy-witchy girl, I think you are so nice. I give you bowls of porridge and I give you bowls of ice cream."
  • Badass Adorable: Taking on the Other Mother, being only 11, and so cute? Definitely this.
  • Big Eater: Coraline eats a lot of food in the Other World made by her Other Mother.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: The Brunette to Ms. Forcible's Blonde and Ms. Spink's Redhead.
  • Blue Is Heroic: Her trademark blue hair and she's The Heroine.
  • Brainy Brunette: Coraline is technically this because she only dyes her hair blue and also see the Combat Pragmatist section.
  • Bratty Teenage Daughter: She can be snarky and rude to her parents, Wybie, and her adult neighbors. But, she isn't the worse. And it seems that by the end, Coraline has matured. Dealing with someone like The Other Mother can do that.
  • Brown Eyes: Shown to love nature in her first appearance.
  • Cassandra Truth: Tries to tell Wybie about the Other Mother, but he doesn't believe her. Which is understandable, because no one would. But he does believe her after seeing a picture from his grandma.
  • Character Development: Gains a better appreciation towards her parents, neighbors, and Wybie. Ultimately learning that "a perfect world" doesn't exist and that being with the real people who care for her is the only thing that matters.
  • Color Motifs: Blue. She dyes her hair blue and the shirt she's mostly seen with in marketing is a long-sleeved, blue shirt with silver stars.
  • Combat Pragmatist: As seen in her final battle with the Other Mother.
  • Curtains Match The Windows: Coraline has brown eyes and her hair (without the dye) is naturally brown.
  • The Cutie: A cutie with blue-dye hair.
  • Daddy's Girl: She gets along better with her dad.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Snarks at everyone from the ironic job of her parents to Wybie's stalking.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: "Ice" is probably not the right word, but she was rather dismissive and hostile towards Wybie in the beginning. She eventually begins to warm up him and befriends him.
  • Delinquent Hair: Coraline has blue hair in a setting where everyone else has normally-colored hair, speculated to be an attempt to get her parents' attention.
  • Dye Hard: In-universe; She dyed her hair blue.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Wybie.
  • A Girl And Her X: A Girl and Her Cat. Coraline forms a bond with the Cat during her adventures.
  • Guile Heroine: Uses her smarts to find the ghost children's souls and find her parents in the climax.
  • Hair Decorations: Has a dragonfly hairpin in her hair.
  • Hates Being Touched: Shown most effectively and violently when the Other Wybie comes to her rescue.
  • The Heroine: The story revolves around Coraline discovering and visiting a seemingly perfect world.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Acts rude to her parents, her older neighbors and Wybie. Then, she comes to her parents' rescue and thanks Wybie for saving her from the Other Mother's hand.
  • Kid Heroine: Only 11 and the protagonist.
  • Little Miss Snarker: See the Deadpan Snarker section.
  • Malicious Misnaming: When she meets Wybie she deliberately calls him "Wyborne," and then "Why-Were-You-Born."
  • Mama Bear: Inverted. Coraline, the daughter, goes to save her parents from the The Beldam.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The Masculine Girl to Wybie's Feminine Boy.
  • Morality Pet: To the Other Father. He pulled a Heroic Sacrifice in order to give Coraline one of the eyes of the Ghost children.
  • Nice Hat: Coraline's Japanese Academy Cap.
  • Noodle People: She's quite slim.
  • Only Child Syndrome: An only child in a fictional world.
  • Parents in Distress: Her parents are kidnapped by the Other Mother and she has to return to the Other World one last time and challenge the Other Mother in order to save them.
  • Plucky Girl: She never gave up on finding her parents when the Other Mother kidnapped them.
  • Protagonist Title: The title of the book and film is her first name.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The blue to the Other Mother's red.
  • Ship Tease: With Wybie. Especially since the little punch she gives him in the end is similar to her mother's punch to her father.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Looks very much like her mother.
  • Tomboy: Boyish Short Hair, Little Miss Snarker, and Badass Adorable.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Became more grateful for her parents and neighbors after the whole ordeal. And actually becomes more affectionate and best pals with Wybie.
  • Trapped in Another World: Eventually and temporarily.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: When Other Wybie rescues her from the mirror, Coraline instinctively Judo throws him over her shoulder. Granted he was wearing a mask, so she didn't recognize him.
  • You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Subverted. A picture of her with her parents on holiday shows that she dyes it blue from its natural brown.
  • Youthful Freckles: Has a couple of freckles on her both of her cheeks.

    The Cat 
Played By: Keith David
"I'm not the other anything. I'm me."

A sarcastic, mysterious, nameless black cat from Coraline's world who appears and disappears at will and has the ability to speak in the Other World.

    Mel Jones 
Played By: Teri Hatcher

Coraline's busy mother.
  • Adults Are Useless: Justified. Having an imaginative child like Coraline can make a parent not really believe the stories he/she tells.
  • Beauty Mark: On the lower right side of her cheek.
  • Brown Eyes: Showing her Only Sane Man tendencies
  • Deadpan Snarker: Like mother, like daughter it seems.
  • Hartman Hips: Has rather curvy hips.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Although very busy with her work as a gardening catalogue editor, Mel loves Coraline very much despite the lack of time and attention she gives her daughter as depicted when Coraline shared to her that she almost fell in a well. As a mother she cares deeply for her daughter and even tried to make it up to her by telling Coraline that she could pick something she liked in the grocery, but was very dismayed when Coraline was still upset with her that she denied.
  • Noodle Incident: The exact circumstances of how she got the neckbrace. Her dialogue with Coraline implies it was the result of a car accident.
  • Not Now, Kiddo: Her (initial) relationship with Coraline when they first move.
  • Parental Neglect: Not on purpose, but she does need work.
  • Parental Obliviousness: Justified given that Coraline is a child and from Mel's POV is just imagining things.
  • Parents as People: Mel only works a lot because she wants to support her family.
  • Perpetual Frowner: She only smiles once or twice. Not counting the sarcastic ones.
  • Pet the Dog: Buys Coraline the gloves she wanted.
  • Raven Hair, Ivory Skin: Has black hair and pale skin.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: The only differences between Mel and Coraline are hairstyle and hair color.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Hot Wife to Charlie's Ugly Guy.
  • When You Coming Home, Dad?: Played with. Upset with lack of attention from her workaholic parents, Coraline is ensnared into the seductive world of the Other Mother where Coraline gets everything she wants and her parents exist only to please her. It's later revealed to be a honey trap, as the Other Mother is actually a creature that feeds on children's souls. It is implied that her parents at the start of the movie are close to an important deadline and are not workaholics. They also just moved into a new house, which partly explains Coraline's resentment — she was also upset that her parents had her leave behind her old friends and home.

    Charlie Jones 
Played By: John Hodgman

Coraline's busy father.
  • Adults Are Useless
  • Brown Eyes
  • Bumbling Dad
  • Cleopatra Nose: Has a big nose.
  • Curtains Match The Windows: Has both brown eyes and brown hair.
  • Lethal Chef: His food literally looks like slime. According to Coraline.
  • Not Now, Kiddo
  • Papa Wolf: In the book version, Coraline tells the Cat a story of how she and her father stumbled into some bees, her father told Coraline to run, while he stayed behind to be the one getting the majority of the bee stings.
  • Parental Neglect
  • Parental Obliviousness: Part of what makes Coraline want to go to the Other World.
  • Parents as People: Charlie is just trying to do his job so his family can be supported.
  • Perma Stubble: Has a nine o' clock shadow.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: Charlie cooks for the family and writes garden catalogs, along with his wife.
  • Smart People Wear Glasses: Wears brown-rimmed glasses and writes for garden catalogs.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: Ugly Guy to Mel's Hot Wife.
  • When You Coming Home, Dad?: Played with. Upset with lack of attention from her workaholic parents, Coraline is ensnared into the seductive world of the Other Mother where Coraline gets everything she wants and her parents exist only to please her. It's later revealed to be a honey trap, as the Other Mother is actually a creature that feeds on children's souls. It is implied that her parents at the start of the movie are close to an important deadline and are not workaholics. They also just moved into a new house, which partly explains Coraline's resentment — she was also upset that her parents had her leave behind her old friends and home.

    Wyborne "Wybie" Lovat 
Played By: Robert Bailey Jr.
"Hm. It's not real scientific, but I heard an ordinary name like Caroline can lead people to have ordinary expectations about a person."

The geeky, nervous 11-year-old grandson of Coraline's landlady.

    Miss April Spink 
Played By: Jennifer Saunders
"Never wear green in your dressing room."

A retired burlesque actress and lives with Miss Forcible.

    Miss Miriam Forcible 
Played By: Dawn French
"Well, not to worry, child: It's good news. There's a tall, handsome beast in your future."

A retired burlesque actress and lives with Miss Spink.

    Mr. Bobo/Alexander Sergei Bobinsky 
Played By: Ian McShane
"I am the Amazing Bobinsky! But you—call me Mr. B. Because, amazing, I already know that I am."

A retired circus performer living in the flat above Coraline's; he is commonly referred to as the Crazy Old Man Upstairs.
  • Acrofatic
  • Adaptation Name Change: In the books, his name was Mr. Bobo.
  • Amazing Technicolor Population: Probably from the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster.
  • A Boy and His X: A Man and His Mice. He has his own mice circus.
  • Character Exaggeration: In the book, Mr. Bobo simply happens to be Slavic (Russia isn't even mentioned, actually); it's not even implied that he has an accent until Misses Spink and Forcible happen to talk about him near the end of the book. However, the movie makes Bobinsky extremely weird and extremely Russian.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Lander: Just see below and you'll know why.
  • Crazy Cat Lady: A mouse variant. Is the owner of who knows how many mice in his part of the apartment.
  • Funny Foreigner: He is the most excentric character in the film. And he is Russian.
  • Gentle Giant: He is big and tall, but has a good heart.
  • Hidden Depths: That medal that he is always seen wearing. That is the medal that was awarded to the first responders of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant disaster...
  • Husky Russkie: Is a rather fat man with a very thick Russian accent.
  • Poirot Speak: He throws in a few Russian words now an then, much to the confusion of Coraline.
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: It is hinted he actually can communicate with his rats. As at one point he comments on how the rats keep calling Coraline by its actual pronunciation where Bobinsky fully believes her name is actually Caroline and knows about the other world.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Mr. Bobo seems to really like beets. He even tried to offer Coraline one, and at the end is seen tearing up some of the newly planted tulips and replacing them with beets.

The Other World

    The Other Mother/Beldam 
Played By: Teri Hatcher
"They say even the proudest spirit can be broken...with love."

The creature that created much of the Other World and the main villain.
  • Alien Blood: In the book, her blood is black in color and tar-like, as described when the cat scratches her across the face.
  • All Take and No Give: The Other Mother is the giver, and the previous ghost children (and Coraline, for a bit) are the takers. But then again, the relationship could switch around with the Other Mother as the taker, needing love and the souls from the children, who would give it to her unwillingly or unknowingly.
  • Animal Motifs: Spider.
  • Big Bad: The Other Mother is a major obstacle for Coraline because the woman wants to keep Coraline away from the real world. Even if it means playing dirty.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: She looks like the perfect mom. She's also a Yandere psychopath who manipulates children so she can make them her toy.
  • Black Eyes of Evil: The trait shared by all Other World inhabitants. The Uncanny Valley aside, it's the first indicator that the Other Mother, and her world for that matter, aren't all they seem.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: The Brunette to The Other Miss Forcible's Blonde and The Other Miss Spink's Redhead.
  • Creative Sterility: She can only copy and transform what already exists, hence why there's nothing beyond the garden in her world. It becomes a plot point in the novel when Coraline notices a snow globe on the mantle, which isn't there in the real world. It's where her parents are being held.
  • Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: Her true form has cracked, porcelain skin which stands out even more against her black, bunned hair.
  • Evil Counterpart: Of Coraline's Mother. Or any child's mother (dependent on who lives in the house). Let the Adult Fear sink in for a moment.
  • Evil Matriarch: She takes the form of the mother of the children she lures in to earn their trust and then sew buttons into their eyes and make them stay with her until she throws them away.
  • The Fair Folk: In the book, the Other Mother is implied to be some sort of fairy. Her other name "Beldam" is also used to refer to creatures of fairy.
  • Faux Affably Evil: She seems like the perfect, loving mother, until she tricks children into sewing buttons into their eyes, and then drains the life from them.
  • Femme Fatalons: Her gradual Glamour Failure during the second half of the film includes long, sharp, blood-red nails. They eventually turn into sewing needles when she hits One-Winged Angel.
  • Game Face: She starts off greatly resembling Coraline's mother (albeit with button eyes), but as she shows her true colors she starts to look quite terrifying.
  • Giant Spider: The Other Mother's "true" form ends up seeming to be this.
  • Hartman Hips: She is a near-identical copy of Coraline's mother (albeit an idealized version), so it's a given.
  • Helping Hands: Her severed hand spider-crawls its way to get the key to the Other World and nearly takes it from Coraline if not for Wybie showing up to save her.
  • Hot Witch: Her human form resembles an idealized version of Coraline's mother who is already quite pretty.
  • Humanoid Abomination: And she gets progressively less humanoid later in the story.
  • Lean and Mean: The thinner she gets, the more you see her true, evil self.
  • Living Doll Collector: She keeps children she's lured into her Other World as living dolls, sewing buttons onto their eyes and eating them up inside, leaving them as nothing but ghosts. Creepy.
  • Manipulative Bitch: She uses children's deepest wishes and desires to get them to do what she wants.
  • My Beloved Smother: She lures children into her world by pretending to be the perfect mother, to then trick them into letting her sew buttons onto their eyes so they can essentially become her toys until she grows bored of them and throws them away.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain:
    • She makes The Other Father, and The Other Wybie too well. They love Coraline and don't want to see any harm come to her, regardless if she instructs them to. They actively resist their creator even at the cost of their own existences.
    • Her need to gloat over her victory when Coraline says her parents are behind the door between worlds at The Climax is what leads to her opening the door for Coraline, in essence engineering her escape.
  • One Bad Mother: Known as The Other Mother.
  • One-Winged Angel: Over the course of the movie the Other Mother progressively gets more monstrous. She starts as a copy of Coraline's real mother, then gets thinner, spindlier and overall wicked-looking. By the end of the movie she reveals her true form - a spindly spider-human hybrid with cracked porcelain skin, metal legs and hands with claws made of sewing needles.
  • Parental Substitute: She acts like this to the children... until she feasts on their souls and then disposes of them.
  • Please Don't Leave Me: She screams this - alternated with "I'LL DIE WITHOUT YOU!" - at Coraline when she leaves the Other World for the last time.
  • Psychopathic Womanchild: While she's crafty and cunning, ultimately she's just a Spoiled Brat who can't accept it when she doesn't get what she wants.
  • Self-Made Orphan: Semi-subverted. She has put her Mother to the grave, "And when I caught her trying to crawl out, I put her back in". So her mother perhaps isn't exactly dead, but for all intents and purposes, she is.
  • The Sociopath: Pretends to be a loving mother when she in fact wishes to suck the life out of children and sew buttons in their eyes, which she plans to do to Coraline.
  • Sore Loser: In the book, after Coraline finds the first soul, she sends a strong wind - indoors - to slow her down. She also has no intention of letting Coraline go, whether she wins or not.
  • Stepford Smiler: One evil, twisted mind hides behind that motherly smile.
  • Supreme Chef: The foods she creates are stated to be much better than Coraline's father's cooking.
  • Villainous Breakdown: From about the time Coraline angers her and incurs her Glamour Failure, she begins to slip into this. By the finale, she's gone from an idealized version of Coraline's real mother (albeit with a paper-thin mask) to a monster that resembles a spider made of porcelain and sewing needles, barely able to conceal her anger.
  • Yandere: She's not above kidnapping a child's parents if it means the child will come back to her.
  • Your Soul Is Mine: Heavily implied through the button-eyes.

    The Other Father 
Played By: John Hodgman
"All will be swell, soon as Mother's refreshed. Her strength is our strength..."

A creation of the Other Mother, the Other Father is used to help trick Coraline into staying in the Other Mother's world.

    The Other Wybie 
Played By: Robert Bailey Jr

In the Other World, the Other Wybie is more silent than the original, but is loyal to Coraline.
  • Badass Adorable: During her second trip to the Other Realm, he rescues Coraline from the Ghost Children's Dungeon the Other Mother locked her in. On Coraline's third trip, he is already dead.
  • Creepy Child: The fact that he can't speak makes him rather creepy.
  • Cute Mute: The Other Mother took away his ability to speak.
  • Glasgow Grin: Played with. The Other Mother freezes his face into a perpetual smile when she takes away his voice, and later sews it into an even more hideous smile.
  • Killed Offscreen: He rescues Coraline and helps her escape from the Other Mother. When Coraline returns, he is already dead.
  • Minion with an F in Evil: What happens when you create someone solely to love someone else: they love that person too much to let something horrible happen to them, even at their own expense.
  • Punch Clock Villain: Like most other characters in the Other World, he is a slave to the Other Mother, but otherwise he tries to help Coraline as much as he can.
  • The Speechless: The Other Mother took away his voice so that Coraline would like him better.
  • Stepford Smiler: Type 1, played almost as straight as possible. He eventually gets a smile sewed on to his face.
  • Token Good Teammate: Whereas the Other Father is somewhat conflicted, Other Wybie has always been on Coraline's side.

    The Other Miss Spink 
Played By: Jennifer Saunders

The Other World version of Miss Spink. In the Other World (along with Miss Forcible), she is young, pretty, and perform continuously in front of many different dogs, who, in the Other World, are anthropomorphic.
  • Bawdy Song: Sirens of the Sea, which she sings with the Other Miss Forcible when Coraline first meets her.
  • Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: The Redhead to The Other Miss Forcible's Blonde and The Other Mother's Brunette.
  • Body Horror: Once Coraline goes to get the ghost children's eyes.

    The Other Miss Forcible 
Played By: Dawn French

The Other World version of Miss Forcible. In the Other World (along with Miss Spink), she is young, pretty, and perform continuously in front of many different dogs, who, in the Other World, are anthropomorphic.

    The Other Mr. Bobo/Bobinsky 
Played By: Ian McShane

The Other World version of Mr. Bobo; in the Other World trains rats, and is in fact made of rats.
  • Voice of the Legion: Implied to be the rats. It's the first clue that there is something very wrong with Other Bobinsky.
  • The Worm That Walks: The second time around, Bobinsky is the rats. It's unclear whether he was the rats the whole time, or whether they devoured him.

    The Ghost Children 

A trio of children who were previous victims of the Other Mother: two girls and one boy.