Follow TV Tropes


Characters / Ratatouille

Go To

    open/close all folders 

Voiced by: Patton Oswalt

Rémy is the protagonist; he's a common rat who dreams of being a chef.

  • Affectionate Nickname: "Little Chef" by Linguini, who can't communicate with him to learn his real one.
  • Be Yourself: What he ultimately learns by the end of the movie:
    I'm sick of pretending. I pretend to be a rat for my father, I pretend to be a human for Linguini. I pretend you exist so I have someone to talk to! You only tell me stuff I already know! I know who I am! Why do I need you to tell me? Why do I need to pretend?
  • Blessed with Suck: What good is being a great chef with refined tastes if A) your Extreme Omnivore family thinks you're just being unnecessarily picky and B) you're more likely to be slaughtered than be allowed into a proper kitchen?
  • Deadpan Snarker: Makes quips from his family to Linguini.
  • Escape Convenient Boat: Tried twice; only works the second time when he escaping from Skinner.
  • Expressive Ears: With his ears, you can tell if he's sad, disappointed, or happy.
  • Fat and Skinny: With Émile. He's the Skinny.
  • Head Pet: Not really a pet, but he is Linguini's Non-Human Sidekick and is kept under his hat for the most of the film.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He starts off being a bit selfish and drags his brother around rather thoughtlessly, but he quickly grows out of it once he finds himself alone.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: After he and Linguini come to blows midway through the movie and he gets temporarily sidelined, Rémy brings his clan to the restaurant's kitchen to raid the food stores. Halfway through, Linguini, whose temper has cooled down by this point, comes in to try and apologize for losing his temper which quickly causes Rémy to deeply regret letting his anger get the better of him, doubly so when Linguini sees the other rats and breaks off their partnership for good.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: Though the "sidekick" part may be debatable.
  • The Nose Knows: He has an excellent sense of smell, and it's useful for both cooking and sniffing out poison.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: Particularly if you're a rat person.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: With Émile. Rémy wants to do his own thing, but Emile follows what their dad wants them to do.
  • Silent Snarker: When he’s around the humans and can’t talk.
  • The Speechless: When he’s around the humans. Around the rats, however, he can talk, and he’s got a lot to say.
  • Supreme Chef: He's a great cook and longs to go pro.
  • Technician vs. Performer: The performer to Colette's technician.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Rémy starts out as a bit of a selfish jerk, but this largely softens once he's in Paris.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Rémy, who is never quite understood by his father, but despite this, wants to be appreciated by him.
  • What Measure Is a Non-Cute?: Lampshaded. Rémy's major struggle is the fact that humans think rats are gross; the movie shows them as just mischievous and self-interested at worst.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Linguini calls Rémy out for stealing food from the kitchen.

    Alfredo Linguini
Voiced by: Lou Romano

Alfredo Linguini is the deuteragonist and a horrible cook.

  • Acquired Situational Narcissism: Downplayed. Linguini starts to enjoy the life of being a famous chef, but it doesn't go to head so much that he starts taking Rémy for granted.
  • Adorkable: Clumsy mannerisms? Check. Distracted by Colette? Check. Master of Buffy Speak? You bet.
  • Amazon Chaser: When Colette's been assigned the task to teach Linguini, she nails his sleeves to the bench with knives while performing a Badass Boast and telling him who he's dealing with. When finished, she pulls out the knives and walks away. Linguini's response to her behaviour? "Wow!"
  • A Boy and His X: A Man and His Rat. He even calls Rémy, "Little Chef". He cares greatly for Rémy, whom he treats as his equal and best friend.
  • Buffy Speak: "I am not your puppet! And you are not my puppet... controller... guy!" "Appetite is coming and he's going to have a big ego! I mean Ego! He's coming! And he's going to order! Something... from our menu! And we're going to have to cook it!"
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Is seen as this In-Universe, since Rémy controlling him would look weird to anyone who wouldn't know about it. Then he later reveals that Rémy is the real mastermind behind his talent.
  • Chekhov's Skill: Linguini’s roller skating skills, which he uses to become a really fast waiter.
  • Distracted by the Sexy: Colette, unfortunately for Rémy.
  • Fiery Red Head: Averted. Though, when he does get angry, he's not that fun to be around. See the first quote under Buffy Speak.
  • Graceful in Their Element: As mentioned below, he's ordinarily The Klutz, but put him on roller skates and he's the deftest, speediest waiter you've ever seen.
  • Heroic Bastard: Gusteau's Bastard, specifically. And still a Nice Guy before and after his rise to fame.
  • The Klutz: At least, when he's not on roller-skates.
  • Lethal Chef: His first attempt at cooking made him immediately vomit. The smell almost made Rémy throw up.
  • Like Father, Unlike Son: Gusteau was a Supreme Chef. not.
  • Lost Orphaned Royalty: Maybe not in the "royalty" sense, but his father Gusteau is critically famous and has specified Linguini as the next heir to his restaurant, much to Skinner's despair.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The Feminine Boy to Colette's Masculine Girl. He's not overtly feminine, but is a great deal more soft-spoken than the aggressive Colette.
  • Meaningful Name: His name is derived from Linguine Alfredo, a classic and simple Italian pasta dish.
  • Nice Guy: Overall, Linguini is a kindhearted, yet klutzy person who tries his best to help others and moves people with his kindness and honesty.
  • Official Couple: With Colette.
  • People Puppets: How Rémy controls him.
  • Quirky Curls: Red curls to showcase his quirkiness.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: Since Colette's been assigned the task to teach him about cooking in a small portion of the film, and that they later become an Official Couple, this qualifies.
  • Youthful Freckles: To show how easily excited he can be.

    Auguste Gusteau
Voiced by: Brad Garrett

Auguste Gusteau is one of the two tritagonists (the other being Colette) and one of the most renowned chefs of Paris.

  • Big Fun: A portly, cheerful and friendly man.
  • Catchphrase: "Anyone can cook."
  • Death by Despair: The actual Gusteau died shortly after Anton Ego gave him a negative review, suggesting this as his cause of death.
  • Disappeared Dad: Turns out he's the father of Linguini.

Voiced by: Peter Sohn

Rémy's younger/older brother.

  • Big Eater: Unlike Rémy, he's not picky at all and would munch on pretty much anything.
  • Big Fun: He's chubby and the nicest rat around.
  • Big Little Brother: Contrary to popular belief, Emile is Rémy’s younger brother, not older. During the movie, Emile calls Rémy “little brother”, but this is simply meant to be Emile teasing Rémy about literally being physically smaller than he is. Tie-in material of the movie actually mentions this trope. In the “Guide to Rémy’s World” book, Emile himself even says that he likes “hanging out with my little brother (and I mean size, not years)”.
  • Easily Impressed: Rémy calls him this word for word.
  • Extreme Omnivore: Moreso than any other rat character.
  • Fat and Skinny: With Rémy. He's the fat one.
  • Fear of Thunder: Shows signs of this in the movie, and the book mentioned above outright states that he hates lightning.
  • Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: Flip-flopped between the brothers. More often than not, Émile is the Foolish to Rémy's Responsible.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Émile is not a jerk by any means, but, like his father, he's extremely cautious around humans and lightly berates Rémy for spending too much time in Mabel's kitchen looking for ingredients, which he finds rather dangerous.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He gets a little hostile toward Rémy when he's looking for ingredients at Mabel's kitchen, which he perceives as a "crime" and also doesn't approve of his brother reading and watching TV, which he believes, goes against rat nature. He nonetheless loves his brother the way he is.
  • Nice Guy: He's pretty cheerful and sweet much of the time. Rémy even mentions that while Emile may not understand him, he can be himself around him. Emile accepts his brother's abilities and doesn't rat out his brother, no pun intended. That being said, he isn't fond of Rémy spending too much time around humans and also wishes his brother would be more happy with living a more simple life like his fellow rats.
  • Sibling Yin-Yang: With Rémy. While he's a simple-minded Big Eater, his brother is a sophisticated dreamer.
  • Stealth Insult: Gives one to Rémy.
    Rémy: *trying to get Emile to understand taste* Chew it slowly… think only about the taste. See?
    Emile: Not really.
    Rémy: Creamy, salty sweet. An oaky nuttiness? You detect that?
    Emile: *sarcastically* Oh, I’m detecting nuttiness.

Voiced by: Brian Dennehy

Rémy and Emile's traditionalist father and leader of their family.

  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: The “Guide to Rémy’s World” book even mentions this.
  • Humans Are Bastards: He’s quite adamant about this.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: Despite being a dick about it, he DOES have a point with his disapproval of Rémy's pickiness and him befriending a human. Scavengers like rats can't afford to be picky about what they eat, and humans, while capable of liking rats, almost certainly won't react well to a wild one.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Gruff and tough when he needs to be, but is actually a pretty jolly guy and clearly loves his boys.
  • Large and in Charge: He’s the leader of his colony and is quite huge, second to Git, the lab rat.
  • Mundane Utility: When he finds out that Rémy has very advanced sense of taste and smell, even for a rat, he is suitably impressed, but to Rémy's annoyance, instead has him become the colony's food tester, making sure that the food they find isn't poisoned through scent.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: Said to be named after Django Reinhardt, the famous gypsy jazz musician, which explains Django's (the rat) fondness for this type of music, and why they snuck a Reinhardt stamp into the Your Friend the Rat short.
  • Papa Wolf: He’s very protective of his kids and really doesn’t want any harm to befall them at the hands of humans.
  • The Patriarch: Can easily command an entire clan of rats and will leap right into the action himself to help out Rémy if the situation calls for it.
  • Perpetual Frowner: He has his reasons, though he does finally seem happier by the movie's end.

    Colette Tatou
Voiced by: Janeane Garofalo

Colette Tatou is one of the two tritagonists (the other being Gusteau) and teaches Linguini on how to be a chef.

  • The Ace: She is "the toughest cook in [the] kitchen", and makes sure Linguini remembers that.
  • Angry Chef: A fierce, hot-tempered woman who wants to work her way up in the kitchen. Since the job is male-dominated, she has to be twice as tough to get to the top. She eventually softens up to Linguini.
  • Badass Boast: Performs one for Linguini when she's been assigned to teach him.
  • Biker Babe: Rides a stylish motorcycle.
  • Boyish Short Hair: Her hair is short and neatly cut, most likely so it doesn't get in the way while cooking.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Starts out harsh towards Linguini, but only so he can succeed. She even becomes a couple with him.
  • Determinator: Colette was willing to go through hell to become a top chef.
  • Double Standard: Abuse, Female on Male: Colette shouts with Linguini a lot, waves knives threateningly at him, and actually hits him in the face on several occasions when she is upset with him. He never complains and she is still presented as completely sympathetic throughout the film.
  • Face Palm: When Ego looks through Gusteau’s kitchen after tasting Rémy’s dish.
  • Feminine Women Can Cook: Inverted. Colette makes it clear that it's very difficult for a woman to get into haute cuisine, due to the sexism ingrained in the system, and that the only reason why she managed to become a professional cook was because she was willing to go through hell.
  • Hair Color Dissonance: Lighting in certain scenes gives it a violet tint.
  • Hot-Blooded: A good example: "Keep your [Linguini] station clean, or I will kill you!"
  • Knife Nut: Demonstrates her skill with knives throughout the movie, most notably while "introducing" herself to Linguini.
  • Masculine Girl, Feminine Boy: The Masculine Girl to Linguini's Feminine Boy. He's not overtly feminine, but is a great deal more soft-spoken than the aggressive Colette.
  • Motor Mouth: When she rambles about cooking.
    Colette: You think cooking is a cute job, ay? Like Mommy in the kitchen? (rapidly chopping vegetables as she talks) Well, Mommy never had to face the dinner rush when the orders come flooding in and every dish is different and none are simple and all have the different cooking time and must arrive at the customer's table, hot and perfect! Every second counts and you CANNOT BE MOMMY!
  • Neat Freak: "Keep your station clear, or I WILL KILL YOU!" Justified: a cluttered station will cause delays which can easily snowball into a disaster.
  • Official Couple: With Linguini, eventually.
  • Slasher Smile: Delivers a couple to Linguini while telling him why she is the only woman in the kitchen. Doesn't help that she is playing with knives in that scene as well.
  • The Smurfette Principle: She's the only woman in the kitchen. She actually brings this up and the reason why when she laid down the law for Linguini. She's pretty much the only female character in the entire movie. (Unless you count Posthumous Character Renata Linguini or the female rat at the end of the film. There's also Solene Eclaire, the female food critic who compliments Linguini's soup.)
  • Stern Teacher: Initially harsh on Linguini when teaching him how to handle cooking, though she softens over time.
    Colette: (seeing dirty dishes at Linguini's station) What is this? Keep your station clear. (chucks dirty dishes into the sink) Dinner rush come, what will happen? Messy station slow things down. Food doesn't go, orders pile up, disaster. I'll make this easy to remember: Keep your station clear, or I WILL KILL YOU!
  • Teacher/Student Romance: Since she's been assigned the task to teach Linguini about cooking in a small portion of the film, and that they later become an Official Couple, this qualifies.
  • Technician vs. Performer: The technician to Rémy's performer.
  • Tsundere: Type A. Colette is harsh and hot blooded, but is also loyal and kind.
  • You Go, Girl!: She was willing to go through hell to get a job in a gourmet kitchen; a place only men are allowed to work. This fact is also Truth in Television.

Voiced by: Ian Holm

Chef Skinner (also known as "Skinner") is the main antagonist and the head chef of Gusteau's.

  • Angry Chef: A diminutive, bad-tempered head chef frequently shown barking orders to his employees.
  • Batman Gambit: Tries to spring one on Linguini by forcing him to make a dish Gusteau himself hated, saying he's just doing it as a challenge for the "budding chef". Thankfully, Rémy's around to make it into something that's actually good.
  • Big Bad: He is Rémy's and Linguini's central antagonist.
  • Cassandra Truth: Obviously everyone who hears him rant about Rémy just thinks he's nuts.
  • Celebrity Resemblance: Skinner is based on the French star comedian Louis de Funès. He also looks a little like Adolph Caesar.
  • Disc-One Final Boss: Linguini throwing him out and claiming his rightful inheritance is only the first half of the movie. Even after that, Skinner still tries to sabotage Gusteau's, though he proves pretty pathetic outside of almost kidnapping Rémy and (eventually) getting a health inspector sent out who shuts the restaurant down when he finds rats in the kitchen.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Threatens to have Linguini drawn and quartered when he catches him cooking his soup. He was obviously exaggerating, but the sentiment is quite real.
  • Dropping the Bombshell: Skinner reveals during a discussion with his lawyer that he is paranoid about the rat, thinking Linguini is trying to psyche him out. Skinner's lawyer notes that he had to take a second sample of Linguini's hair. When Skinner asks why, the lawyer says:
    Lawyer: The first time, it came back identified as rodent hair.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • Despite the fact that he is a greedy, selfish schemer, he takes his job as chef seriously. The only time he is willing to serve a substandard meal is when he sees it as absolutely necessary to put Linguini in his place. Too bad it backfires on him.
    • He's willing to sell out Gusteau's name to sell a line of frozen TV dinners, but tells the artist (who drew Gusteau as a dog in a giant corn costume for a box of corn dogs) that the design must at least have some dignity.
  • French Jerk: Speaks with a thick French accent and is a volatile jerk pretty much 24/7.
  • Hidden Depths: Early versions of the script (from before Gusteau was made a Posthumous Character) suggest that he and Gusteau were long-standing partners, but that working in the restaurant business made him more and more jaded over time.
  • Inspector Javert: Always accuses the rat of being the real chef.
  • Karmic Transformation: Metaphorically speaking. Skinner hates rats (especially Rémy), but when Linguini inherits the restaurant and replaces him as the new head chef, Skinner gets banned from the restaurant and treated by his former employees as if he were a rat too.
  • Large Ham: He's always prone to dramatics about anything, from his cooking to the rat.
  • Mister Big: Skinner is in charge of a restaurant where all of his employees are about twice his height. In contrast his predecessor was Gusteau, who we could safely assume to have been the largest person in the room.
  • Mean Boss: Basically Pixar's Gordon Ramsay.
  • Meaningful Name: Named after scientist B. F. Skinner, who performed experiments on rats to study animal behaviour.
  • Meaningless Villain Victory: He successfully exposes Linguini's working with rats and gets Gusteau's shut down, but Linguini, Collette, and Rémy just open another equally-popular restaurant called "La Ratatouille" with Ego's help and keep on working there.
  • The Napoleon: The shortest in the kitchen and with the most anger issues.
  • Nice Job Fixing It, Villain!: He practically does all of Linguini's homework for him in proving he is Gusteau's son. Hell, Skinner dismissed that Linguini came forward with only a month left on the will's stipulation as anything but a coincidence, when in fact it was. Nothing hinted that Linguini even cared who his lineage came from; the boy just wanted a job.
  • Oh, Crap!: Both Skinner and the health inspector after barging in the kitchen and seeing all the rats.
  • Only in It for the Money: Is much more interested in whoring out Gusteau's image for a line of frozen foods than restoring the restaurant's reputation, and doesn't especially care about how this move has damaged Gusteau's standing in the culinary world. Justified from a financial perspective, as the restaurant's rating (and by extension its popularity) that attracts customers is lower than it used to be in Gusteau's heydey, and the frozen food sales are at least keeping the staff paid and the lights on.
  • Pet the Dog: In spite of his usual behavior, Skinner has a couple moments where he acts decently.
    • He's genuinely taken aback when he finds out Linguini's mother has died and tries to offer condolences.
    • Despite all his threats beforehand, he gives Linguini a reasonable chance to recreate the soup that Rémy modified. After he seemingly does, Skinner willingly allows Linguini to join his kitchen as a chef with only a stern but fair warning not to get complacent. Of course this doesn't last once he finds out Linguini is Gusteau's son.
  • Properly Paranoid: He is right about a rat being a chef.
  • Reassignment Backfire: Skinner, trying to get Linguini kicked out of the kitchen, gives him the task of cooking a recipe that Gusteau himself said was a disaster. To his shock, Rémy quickly fixes the recipe to the point where it is so delicious that everyone else in the restaurant wants it, running the cooks ragged to keep up with orders and convincing everyone else in the kitchen that Linguini is a master chef.
  • Sanity Slippage: He goes through this throughout the entire movie, to the point he made conspiracy theories of the rat chef. Even his lawyer asks if he should be worried about his client.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: It's unknown what happened to Skinner by the end of the movie. The last we see of him is him being thrown into the pantry by Rémy's rodent chefs tied and gagged along with the already captive health inspector. Remy mentioned in the epilogue that they eventually released Skinner and the health inspector, but we don't know about his wherabouts afterwards.

    Anton Ego 
Voiced by: Peter O'Toole

Anton Ego is the secondary antagonist and an infamously harsh critic.

  • A Glass of Chianti: It's France and he's a big-name critic who focuses on haute cuisine, what did you expect? He actually stops himself mid-Spit Take because he doesn't want to waste good wine!
  • Ambiguous Disorder: It's never confirmed, but it's likely that he may have been suffering from depression and had become bitter over the course of time. This all changes when he takes a bite of ratatouille. It's more implied by his final speech in the film that he had perhaps become a little too used to his position of power as a Caustic Critic and his ability to tear people down, and that Rémy and his dish open his eyes to this and make him realise that.
  • Ambiguously Gay: He appears quite a bit, *ahem*... "interested" in more than just dessert, if this dialogue with Linguini is any indication:
    Linguini: Can I interest you in a dessert this evening?
    Ego: Don't you always?
  • Animal Motifs: He has a vulture-like appearance to make him look more menacing.
  • Beauty Equals Goodness: After tasting the ratatouille Rémy's made for him, Anton finally begins to smile and his complexion improves considerably. In the epilogue, he's shown with a much healthier skin tone and brighter attitude than he did at the start of the movie.
  • Berserk Button: Never suggest that he doesn't appreciate cuisine.
    Anton Ego: You're slow for someone in the fast lane.
    Linguini: And you're thin for someone who likes food.
    Anton Ego: I don't LIKE food. I LOVE it! If I don't love it, I don't swallow.
  • Bring It: To Moustafa:
    "Tell your chef, Linguini, that I want whatever he dares to serve me. Tell him to hit me with his best shot!"
  • Caustic Critic: He's a prime example. However, he also has a good look at himself in his final review.
  • Cold Ham: Spends almost the entirety of the movie being dour and quiet. Despite this, both his body language and speech have a distinct dramatic flair to them.
  • Dark Is Not Evil: While he looks like a potential villain, he's just a very harsh critic. He has high expectations, wanting to see at least one restaurant give him an experience to remember.
  • Deadpan Snarker: For a good 3/4 of the movie.:
    Anton Ego: (about the restaurant) Finally closing, is it?
    Servant: No...
    Anton Ego: More financial trouble?
    Servant: No, it's...
    Anton Ego: ...announced a new line of microwave egg rolls, what? Spit it out!
  • Dramatic Drop: He drops his pen when he first tastes Rémy’s dish.
  • The Dreaded: His taste buds are so hard to please that even Gusteau, Rémy's indirect mentor, couldn't do so. Ego is so infamously picky in Paris that if he announces his intentions to visit a restaurant, it's treated like the death knell of said restaurant's rating.
  • Drink Order: He seems to have a preference for the incredibly rare and expensive Cheval Blanc 1947. Fitting as he's a notoriously hard-to-please critic.
  • Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette: He could pass for a vampire. After tasting Rémy's ratatouille however, his skin starts gaining color as he finds himself actually enjoying a dish for the first time in a long time.
  • Even Bad Men Love Their Mamas: Rémy's ratatouille reminding him of the kind his mother used to cook kicks off the film's resolution and denouement.
  • Final Boss: Satiating his taste buds is Rémy's final real challenge.
  • French Jerk: Downplayed; he is usually quite disdainful in his reviews and has a discriminatory appreciation of fine cuisine, but he's never malicious.
  • Heel–Face Turn: While he was never actually evil, he had a particularly antagonistic relationship with the staff of Gusteau's in the past, and was indirectly responsible for the death of Gusteau himself. Despite this, after tasting Rémy's cooking, he instantly becomes much friendlier towards them, even to the point of sacrificing his own career and reputation in order to assist them in starting up a new restaurant after the old one is closed.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Non-fatal version. His glowing review of Gusteau's at the climax is also his last - Ego's reputation and credibility as a critic are destroyed the instant Skinner and the health inspector reveal the "rat infestation". He's able to bounce back by becoming a small-business investor, fortunately enough.
  • Hypocrite: Ego's credentials as a critic would probably be hurt if anyone ever found out he only loves his mother's cooking (or any meal that matches it). Of course people will probably love their own mother's cooking over anyone else's, it's just that critics are supposed to be unbiased when giving scores, thereby giving their audiences the impartiality they require.
  • Jerkass: Causes Gusteau's death through despair by not just condemning his cooking, but slamming his beliefs "that anyone can cook", and he remains totally unrepentant for his actions throughout the film — until the end, that is (see Jerk with a Heart of Gold below).
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: After Gusteau's is forced to close, it's heavily implied that he helped front the money to open La Ratatouille, and he's a regular customer there. He's also one of the few people who respects and appreciates Rémy's talent even after finding out that he's a rat; he even sacrificed his job and reputation to give Rémy's cooking the praise it deserves.
  • Lean and Mean: A tall, angular and rail-thin man who is a legendarily harsh food critic. His extremely thin frame despite eating food for a living further supports his reputation of being able to determine the quality of a dish from only a single bite, and since he refuses to eat food that doesn't meet his culinary standards, implies just how often those standards are not met.
  • Looks Like Cesare: Despite not actually being evil, Ego's appearance, paired with his reputation, is enough to immediately indicate that he is an antagonist.
  • Meaningful Name: The name Ego is from the Latin meaning "I" or "self", but is now associated with egotism (narcissism) or egoism (self-interest). This would allude to a certain level of vanity and arrogance on the part of Anton.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: His appearance was inspired by French actor and director Louis Jouvet. It's also been claimed (though not confirmed) that Ego was based on theater critic Kenneth Tynan, who was close friends with Peter O'Toole in real life.
  • Not So Different: Turns out that he was just as passionate about food as Rémy is. Which is what caused them to have a mutual respect for one another.
  • No Sympathy: It's implied that he actually takes pride in the fact he caused Gusteau's death, and the restaurant's slow decline by extension.
    That is where I left it. That was my last word, the last word.
  • Pensieve Flashback: When he takes a bite of ratatouille, he instantly thinks back to his mother making him ratatouille years ago. It's safe to assume that she's the reason why he became a food critic. And all of this is done without a line of dialogue.
  • Perpetual Frowner: Spends close to all of the movie frowning, befitting his status as an unpleasable food critic.
  • Picky Eater: Is an infamously harsh critic, judging dishes with a single bite. Justified in that this is his job.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Perhaps he's overly harsh, but as a critic, it's his job to give bad ratings to restaurants he doesn't like.
  • Rags to Riches: Depending on how much you read into Collette's claim that ratatouille is a "peasant dish". In any case, the house in Ego's flashback does seem to be rather small.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Even when it's revealed that Rémy was the one who prepared his dish, he was more than willing to dub him the finest chef in France (and keep quiet about the fact that they're breaking the rules about not having rats in a kitchen).
  • Red Baron: In the opening TV segment about Gusteau, Ego appears with a title listed under him as "the Grim Eater".
  • Secret Keeper: He wrote his review without mentioning that "the genius who works at Chef Gusteau's" is a rat.
  • Sesquipedalian Loquaciousness: Especially his ending narrative is incredibly hard to understand as a kid. Then again, he's a critic.
  • Spit Take: Subverted; he suddenly stops in the middle of one to he make sure the wine he’s drinking is okay to spit out. Given that eagle eyed viewers can spot that it's a bottle of Cheval Blanc '47, one of the rarest and most expensive wines in the world, he very understandably decides to swallow it instead.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Tasting Rémy's cooking and learning that it was made by a rat causes him to completely reevaluate his lifelong belief that only a select few are truly capable of being great chefs. This results in him overall becoming a much more pleasant guy.
  • Villainy-Free Villain: He's not actually doing anything wrong—he's just doing his job, and as a food critic, he's expected to be harsh—but he takes a fair bit more pleasure in giving scathing, caustic reviews than he really needs to.
  • When He Smiles: After tasting Rémy's ratatouille, he smiles for the first time in the film (and knowing him it's also probably the first time he's smiled genuinely in years). It's absolutely adorable.

Voiced by: Will Arnett

He is a German sous-chef after Skinner, which means he is in charge when Skinner isn't around.

  • Chekhov's Gag: "I killed a man… with this thumb!" Guess what he uses to throw Skinner out of the restaurant when he sneaks back in?
  • Germanic Depressives: He has a stern and serious demeanor, though he is also The Comically Serious because of how he keeps changing his story about how he was sent to prison.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: Keeps changing his story of how he ended up in jail.
    "I defrauded a major corporation."
    "I robbed the second-largest bank in France using only a ballpoint pen."
    "I created a hole in the ozone over Avignon."
    "I killed a man...with this thumb."
  • Mysterious Past: How did Horst wind up in jail?
  • Noodle Implements: One of his Multiple-Choice Past stories is that he robbed the second-largest bank in France with only a ballpoint pen.
  • Noodle Incident: The exact conditions of why he was placed in prison.
  • Once Killed a Man with a Noodle Implement: "I once killed a man... with this thumb."
  • Suddenly SHOUTING!: Horst has a habit of exploding half way through a sentence when things are going south.
    "He changed it as it was going out the door!"
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Leaves Gusteau's with the rest of the staff after Linguini reveals the truth about Rémy and is never seen after that.


Example of: