Characters / The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

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Main Trio

    "Blondie", The Good 
Portrayed by: Clint Eastwood

  • Adaptation Name Change: He's called "Whitey" in Joe Millard's novelization.
  • Affably Evil: While he acts soft-spoken and rather polite, he is actually much of a scoundrel as Tuco or Angel Eyes. However, he still retains a few more moral values than the other two and most of the time does what's right, as long as it doesn't interfere with going after the gold.
  • Anti-Hero: The main reason he's "The Good" is because his two opponents are worse.

    Angel Eyes, The Bad 
Portrayed by: Lee Van Cleef

  • Big Bad: He was hired by several people, but winds up becoming the primary antagonist in the search for the gold.
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: If you hire him to kill someone, make sure the other guy hasn't got any money to pay him to return the favour.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Inflicted on Tuco, with Wallace as his middleman. Also on Maria.
  • Distinguished Gentleman's Pipe: He's seen smoking one.
  • Dragon Ascendant: Was hired as Baker's hitman, but takes charge of everything himself after he kills Baker.
  • The Dreaded: Come on, how could you not be scared of this guy?
  • Enemy Eats Your Lunch: To Stevens just before shooting him under the table.
  • Establishing Character Moment: His dispatch of both Stevens and Baker (the men who hired him) establishes that he's on no one's side.
  • Evil Counterpart: To Blondie.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Talks in a calm, polite demeanor. It's all BS.
  • Fluffy the Terrible: "Angel Eyes" isn't the name you'd expect from a ruthless assassin. It was originally something Clint Eastwood ad-libbed while filming.
  • Freudian Trio: The Superego - Utterly cold, cares only about the money, doesn't give a damn about other people's lives. note 
  • Gold Fever: Not as bad as Tuco, but his motivation for killing so many people.
  • Greed: The motivating factor of all three protagonists, but especially Angel Eyes.
  • The Heavy: The biggest threat in the movie. Everything else that happens is simply because, well, there's a War going on.
  • Hired Guns: He is best described as a mercenary.
  • Ironic Nickname: Neither his eyes nor character resemble anything particularly angelic.
  • It's All About Me: His reason for killing Baker, the man who hired him to kill Stevens.
  • Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: He interrogates Tuco this way, courtesy of Union Cpl. Wallace.
  • Lack of Empathy: Amazingly, he shows no remorse whatsoever for his actions, and is generally emotionless. This trait is downplayed in the extended cut, however.
  • Mysterious Mercenary Pursuer: Angel Eyes is what happens when this guy becomes The Heavy and gives his employers the boot.
  • Nice Hat: Blondie and Angel Eyes both sport very nice cowboy hats.
  • Nice, Mean, and In-Between: The Mean.
  • No Name Given: "Angel Eyes" is a nickname from Tuco, and just in case you're wondering, "Sentenza" isn't his actual name, either.
  • Only in It for the Money: Will gladly turn on his employer if paid to do so. In fact, his Establishing Character Moment has him kill Stevens after Baker has paid him and return to Baker, only to kill him because Stevens gave him money before Angel Eyes killed him.
  • Professional Killer: Angel Eyes is equal parts bounty hunter, mercenary, and assassin.
  • Psycho for Hire: He enjoys killing and torturing as much as the money he makes from it.
  • Soft-Spoken Sadist: Never raises his voice because he knows that his victims have heard him the first time.
  • Screw the Money, I Have Rules!: His golden rule is to always see a job through if he's been paid, even if the person you paid him to kill has paid him to kill you.
  • Smoking Is Cool: To contrast even more with Blondie, he has a pipe.
  • The Sociopath: Less so in the extended cut, where he appears to show sympathy for the wounded Confederate troops at an isolated fort.
  • Sociopathic Soldier: As part of his disguise in the Union camp.
  • The Starscream: Kills Baker after hearing Stevens' confession about the case of coins.
  • Villainous Cheek Bones: It's Lee Van Cleef, whose infamous cheekbones provide one of the page's images.
  • Would Hit a Girl: Poor Maria...
  • Would Hurt a Child: He has no problem killing the child of one of his victims, at least not in self-defence.

    Tuco Benedicto Pacifico Juan Maria Ramirez, The Ugly 
Portrayed by: Eli Wallach

  • The Alcoholic: Chugs whiskey like a pirate frequently throughout the film.
  • And I'm the Queen of Sheba: Sarcastically introduces himself to a dying Bill Carson as "Lincoln's grandfather".
  • And Starring: "and Eli Wallach in the role of Tuco." Only in the US version; the European prints billed the three principal actors together ahead of the title.
  • Anti-Villain: His rather Sympathetic P.O.V. turns him into a Noble type (well... kinda) by the end of the film.
  • Attention Deficit... Ooh, Shiny!: He's quite hyperactive and generally talks and acts on impulse. The cemetery scene is worth noting.
  • Badass Boast:
    "But if you miss, you had better miss very well. Whoever double-crosses me and leaves me alive...he understands nothing about Tuco." (Chuckles) "Nothing."
  • Bandito: A more sympathetic figure than what was generally portrayed at the time.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: Though a hairy, goofy, scruffy, slovenly klutz, he's every bit as dangerous as Blondie and Angel Eyes, perhaps even more so.
  • Boisterous Bruiser
  • Bond One-Liner: "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk." Actually improvised on the spot by Eli Wallach. Also to Wallace: "You made a lot of noise, my friend."
  • Butt-Monkey: He isn't successful for more than 20 onscreen minutes. Although, considering that Tuco is a scheming and opportunistic bandit, he probably deserves most of what happens to him.
  • Can't Bathe Without a Weapon: He was probably expecting Blondie rather than the one-armed soldier, but it still came in handy...
  • Catch-Phrase:
    • "There are two kinds of people in this world, my friend..."
    • A variation in the infamous chicken soliloquy from a deleted scene: "The world is divided into two parts: those who have friends, and those who are lonely, like poor Tuco."
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: With Blondie. It's originally part of their get-rich-quick scheme, but later becomes real when they go after the big money.
  • Cold-Blooded Torture: From Wallace, courtesy of Angel Eyes.
  • The Comically Serious: He'll occasionally do the silliest things completely stone-faced. For example, watch him roll a bullet chamber up and down between his palms; his utmost sincere look of concentration makes the scene inherently funny.
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: He seems like a buffoon, but is quite the opposite. He is extremely skilled and very crafty.
  • Curse Cut Short: The famous last line of the film - "HEY BLONDIE! YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE? JUST A DIRTY SON OF A BAAAAAA!!!"
  • Determinator: He just won't give in on catching up to Blondie or searching for the gold.
  • Dirty Coward: He may be a treacherous scoundrel who would betray his allies when he gets the chance. Even so, he's so much fun that you can't help but love him all the while.
  • Dynamic Entry: His very first scene shows him crashing through a window.
  • Enemy Mine: With Blondie.
  • Enter Stage Window: He gets the drop on Blondie this way.
    "There are two kinds of spurs, my friend. Those that come in by the door; those that come in by the window."
  • Establishing Character Moment: Gunning down the men who were sent to kill him while apparently enjoying a meal. In addition to Foreshadowing how Tuco gets ambushed in the most unlikely of times, it sets him up as The Comically Serious because his freeze-frame intro has him holding a chicken leg in his hand.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: He is genuinely distraught to learn that his parents have passed away.
  • Everyone Has Standards: He's appalled at the carnage of the Civil War and he pulls one quick when Blondie reveals the corpse he dug and genuflects.
  • Evil Gloating: "Shoot, don't talk."
  • Eye Scream: Wallace gets him to reveal to Angel Eyes the name of the cemetery where the gold is buried by pressing down on Tuco's eyes with his thumbs. This was Eli Wallach's own suggestion; he'd seen doctors revive drunken soldiers that way during his time in the military.
  • Faux Affably Evil: When he's taunting Blondie, he speaks in a reserved, cool manner (that is, until Blondie pisses him off). Regardless, Blondie himself isn't fooled, and is never really intimidated by Tuco. Except for the two occasions in which Tuco actually comes close to killing him.
  • Fingerless Gloves: Hobo-style, to be exact. This is only in his Bill Carson disguise; the other times he wears enormous silver rings on his left hand.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The Foolish to Pablo's Responsible, but it's subverted hard when Tuco gets his Motive Rant after he learns his parents are dead.
  • Freudian Trio: The Id - Hyperactive, distractible, excitable, loses his temper fast and gets it back just as quick
  • Gangsta Style: In an early example, he finishes off a baddie using this technique, during the famous "When you have to shoot, shoot, don't talk!" scene.
  • Genre Savvy: Enough to hide a gun under the bubbles when he takes a bath. It works, too.
  • Girly Run: Tends to skip and bound with his upper arms close to his chest, hands slightly out from his sides. This "Wallach frolic" is part of what makes him The Comically Serious.
  • Gold Fever: One could argue that Tuco has it the worst. Just watch his "Gold Ecstasy" when he finally digs up the treasure during the finale.
  • Gold Tooth: He has a prominent silver tooth on the right side of his top jaw.
  • Hair-Trigger Temper: He's quite feisty; When Blondie rescues him the first time, they're both laughing about it like old friends. Then, in the next scene, he's screaming countless obscenities as Blondie prepares to turn him in for the bounty.
  • Hollywood Healing: Recovers very quickly from the beating he took from Corporal Wallace.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Earlier in the film, Tuco repeatedly loses out in his rivalry with Blondie because he can't stop monologuing long enough to actually kill him before Blondie escapes by luck or guile. When one of the assassins from the start of the film catches him in the bath and starts monologuing about losing his arm because of Tuco and training himself to fight left-handed to beat him, Tuco shoots him with a gun hidden under the foam and then mocks him for talking instead of shooting.
  • I'll Kill You!: After he is left behind in the desert when Blondie dissolves their initial partnership.
  • It Works Better with Bullets: His gun during the final showdown.
  • Ironic Name: Benedicto and Juan mean "Blessed" and Pacifico means "Peaceful"
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Justified since Tuco is the only character whose backstory we learn; Blondie's and Angel Eyes' histories are a complete mystery.
  • Large Ham: Wacky, flamboyant and larger than life in voice and body language.
  • Laughably Evil: He's far from a good guy, and he's absolutely hilarious. It's no coincidence that the funniest movie of the Dollars Trilogy is the only one to have a Villain Protagonist.
  • List of Transgressions: And it gets longer every time it's read out. Apparently (if you believe at least half of it), he has raped, killed, stolen money from both sides of the Civil War, and gambled with marked cards.
  • Lovable Coward: When his cowardice isn't shameful, it's endearing.
  • Lovable Rogue: He's a murderer, thief and alcoholic, but very personable.
  • Lovable Traitor: See Dirty Coward above.
  • Made of Iron: Gets hit full-on by a blast of cannon fire, has the hell beat out of him by Wallace, jumps out of a moving train and down a pretty steep hill, and is nearly hanged for his crimes on several occasions. And he still comes out of all of that in one piece.
  • The Man They Couldn't Hang: Because, according to Angel Eyes, a scoundrel like Tuco has a guardian angel as well (Blondie).
  • Manly Tears: Sheds quiet, restrained ones after learning about the deaths of his parents.
  • The McCoy: Mercurial and hot-headed.
  • Naked People Are Funny: The scene in the cantina bathtub.
  • The Napoleon: He's just over 5'5'' and a half and is hot-tempered to boot. To put into perspective, Lee Van Cleef is 6'2" and Clint Eastwood is 6'4".
  • Never Learned to Read:
    Tuco (reading a note Angel Eyes has left for Blondie and him): "See you soon, id-id-idi..."
    Blondie: "'Idiots.' It's for you."
    • "Un-k... un-k... there's no name on it!"
  • Nice Hat: For a good portion of the movie, although he loses it following the episode in the second Union camp. He also has a very impressive sombrero earlier which he ditches for his Bill Carson disguise.
  • Nice, Mean, and In-Between: The Inbetween. Obviously, one is "The Good", the other is "The Bad", so "The Ugly" is inbetween by default. He is by far the most human character in the whole movie, made likable by how funny and childish he is and caught between the other two outlaws, who act like forces of nature rather than people.
  • No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Receives an extremely painful one from Wallace. He gets his revenge after springing from the POW train and breaking Wallace's neck, after which Tuco proceeds to savagely beat his head with a rock.
  • Not Good with Rejection: Does not take Blondie severing their partnership well.
  • Oh, Crap!: Has three moments: the first when he realizes the true colors of the soldiers whom he has mistaken for Confederates, the second when he notices that Blondie has set up a hangman's noose for him in the cemetery, and the third is his reaction when he thinks Blondie is going to shoot him rather than cut the noose.
  • Opportunistic Bastard: Usually vaguely has a plan revolving around getting the money and/or revenge on Blondie and has to improvise around situations to reach his end goal.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • After punching his brother due to his "The Reason You Suck" Speech and walking out on him, Tuco notes that no matter how low he sinks, Pablo will always be the one man who'll offer him a free bowl of soup.
    • A missing scene has him showing pity to peones being enlisted as Confederate soldiers.
  • Plucky Comic Relief: Can be seen as this, as the movie's funniest moments involve him one way or another.
  • Really Gets Around: His offscreen promiscuity is mentioned offhand in a conversation.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: At one point carries a shredded pink parasol to shield himself from the sun (as well as taunt Blondie, who is crawling through the desert on his hands and knees).
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: The Red to Blondie's Blue.
  • Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated: In a deleted scene, Tuco learns from his old gang that a rumour went around that he was killed in Albuquerque. But of course, people talk bullshit.
  • Sir Swears-a-Lot: Unleashes quite a tirade on Blondie when Blondie turns him in for the bounty for the 1st time. It's understandable, though.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Continually overestimates his own intelligence.
  • Talk to the Fist: The "shoot, don't talk" line.
  • Tempting Fate: The scene where he confuses the Union soldiers for Confederates.
  • Third-Person Person: Frequently refers to himself this way.
  • Unorthodox Holstering: Keeps his pistol dangling around his neck with a piece of rope. Apparently, this was because Eli Wallach kept looking down to check whenever he wore a pistol belt.
  • Villain Protagonist: The movie is essentially his story.
  • With Friends Like These...: With Blondie.

Supporting Characters

    Union Captain 
Portrayed by: Aldo Giuffre

  • The Alcoholic: That's what he is when we meet him, up until he dies shortly after.
  • Go Out with a Smile: Shortly before he dies, he sees that the pointless bridge his men have been dying over has been dynamited out of existence by Blondie and Tuco, and he dies happy that no more of them will perish fighting for it.
  • Hypocritical Humor: Tells Blondie and Tuco that he "lacks the guts" to disobey orders and destroy the bridge, moments before leading a suicidal bayonet charge.

    Corporal Wallace 
Portrayed by: Mario Brega

  • And Starring: Mario Brega gets this in all the opening titles.
  • Asshole Victim: His prisoner, Tuco, ends up craftily pushing him out of a moving train to make his escape.
  • The Dragon: To Angel Eyes, at least in the prison camp.
  • Dumb Muscle: Letting a scheming, conniving bandit out of his sight for even a minute onboard a moving train probably wasn't a good idea. Even though said bandit tricked him by telling him he had to use the bathroom.
  • Jerkass: Unlike Angel Eyes, he had no inner motivation for what he did, and mercilessly pummeled Tuco simply because Angel Eyes told him to.
  • Mutilation Conga: After inflicting a cold-blooded beat down on Tuco (courtesy of Angel Eyes), Tuco makes his escape by pushing Wallace out of a moving train (which either knocks Wallace out cold or kills him instantly), and then Tuco proceeds to bash his former captor's head in with a rock. As if that wasn't enough, Tuco frees himself from a set of handcuffs by placing Wallace's body on the train tracks, which not only breaks the link on the cuffs, but takes Wallace's body with it.
  • Sociopathic Soldier: Does torturing prisoners for information not in any way related to the War at hand count? Check.
  • Torture Technician: Gets medieval on Tuco's ass by attempting to squeeze out the latter's eyes with his fingers.

    Father Pablo Ramirez 
Portrayed by: Luigi Pistilli

  • Affectionate Nickname: A brotherly example in the form of "Pablito".
  • Aloof Big Brother: Assuming that Pablo is the older brother, since Luigi Pistilli was 14 years younger than Eli Wallach. He certainly has the attitude.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: For a relative use of "nice", Pablo is gentle and patient, if cold and distant, but do not anger him and do not call him a coward.
  • The Dutiful Son: Views himself as this, as he was indeed available to visit his dying father when his brother wasn't. In his adolescence, it was different: he left for the monastery while Tuco stayed behind to look after the family.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: The Responsible to Tuco's Foolish. Subverted in his hypocrisy shown below.
  • Hypocrite: Chides Tuco for not going to see his dying father when, in their childhoods, Pablo was the one who left his family to become a monk and Tuco was the one who had to stay behind to look after them.

Portrayed by: Livo Lorenzon

A wounded former soldier who'd wanted to go after the gold that Jackson had hidden away somewhere.

    Jackson / Bill Carson 
Portrayed by: Antonio Casale

  • Almost Dead Guy: Lives long enough to tell Blondie which grave he buried the gold in.
  • Eyepatch of Power: Averted. After Carson lost an eye, he was killed in an ambush.
  • Final Speech: His final words provide Tuco with the cemetery's location and Blondie with the name on the tombstone (each individually) where $200,000 is buried. This forces the two to work together and sets up the rest of the movie.
  • Hero of Another Story: We're not told explicitly where all that money came from or why Baker wanted it. In any case the film feels like an epilogue to his story.
  • I'm Dying, Please Take My MacGuffin: Wants someone, just anyone, to enjoy the gold he hid, so tells Tuco which cemetery it's buried in, and Blondie the name on the grave.

Portrayed by: Antonio Casas

A retired soldier who had presumably been in the same regiment as Jackson and Baker. He takes Jackson refuge after he was finished storing away the missing gold. However, Baker sends his hitman after him when he suspects such a thing.

  • Could Have Avoided This Plot: Acknowledged in-universe. He tells Angel Eyes that if Baker had listened to him, the case of coins wouldn't have gone missing.

Portrayed by: Rada Rassimov
Jackson's prostitute girlfriend.

  • Cold-Blooded Torture: Inflicted on her by Angel Eyes. Not quite as violent or as protracted as on Tuco, but still quite disturbing.