Guybrush Ulysses Threepwood is the main protagonist of the Monkey Island series. He was first introduced in the Secret of Monkey Island as an ambitious, though somewhat naive wannabe-pirate. By the series' end, he had established himself as a competent swashbuckler. He would regularly be voiced by Dominic Armato.
Guybrush's chief nemesis was the dreaded zombie pirate LeChuck, whom he faced throughout various installments of the series. At one point in LeChuck's Revenge, it was suggested that the two were brothers, which has since been brushed aside.
He had a number of talents and idiosyncrasies, the most well-known of which was his ability to stay underwater for ten minutes. When challenged to a duel, he was shown to play the banjo quite proficiently. He was also seen to be able to speak Spanish. He developed an irrational fear of porcelain.
Little is known of Guybrush Threepwood's true origins. As a kid he loved to collect fireflies in a jar. He also had a Stretchy Strongman toy. He once mentioned that he (or rather his sister) owned a dolls house. He also admitted to having stopped practicing piano, which was strongly encouraged by his mother. He also had an abusive brother, Chuckie. One time he caused a serious accident involving scissors and his aunt's poodle, and he avoided dog grooming ever since.
In a hallucination he accused his parents for abandoning him.
When Guybrush first encountered the fiery Governor Elaine Marley, he revealed his troubled past with talking to women.
Becoming A Pirate
On Melee Island
Guybrush was washed ashore on Melee Island, beginning his dream of becoming a pirate. He encountered the town lookout, who mistook him for a flooring inspector. Guybrush was then advised to meet with the pirate leaders, who were holed up in the Scumm Bar. There, he learned that to be a true pirate, he must complete The Three Trials:
- Sword Fighting
- Treasure Huntery
To obtain mastery at sword fighting, Guybrush had to defeat the local sword master Carla. As for treasure huntery, he had to find the treasure buried somewhere in the island by following a special dance pattern. Finally, to complete his skills at thievery, he had take an idol hidden away in the Governor's mansion. It was in this last task that Guybrush first encountered and developed a fondness for the governor, Elaine Marley.
Once these tasks were completed, Guybrush proceeded to inform the pirates at the Scumm Bar. He then learned that Elaine had been kidnapped by the ghost pirate LeChuck. Guybrush wasted no time to hatch a plan to rescue the governor. He managed to acquire a sizeable amount of loot from the local storekeeper in order to purchase The Sea Monkey, a ship from Stan at Stan's Previously Owned Vessels. He then gathered a crew consisting of Carla the former swordmaster, Otis, a local criminal with a bad case of halitosis, and Meathook, a tough guy filled with tattoos. The group then set their sails for the legendary Monkey Island, hoping they weren't too late to save Elaine from a fate worse than death.
On his way to Monkey Island, Guybrush was dismayed at the laziness of his new crew. He was left to fend for himself, which led to him producing a special concoction that knocked him out cold. He awoke to find that he had arrived at his destination. Guybrush loaded himself into a cannon, and fired straight into the island.
On Monkey Island
Guybrush landed head-first on the beach and was approached by Herman Toothrot, who does nothing to help unstuck Guybrush's head. When Guybrush finally frees himself he travels to the peak of the island where, through use of the catapulting force of a Primitive Art, was able to knock some Bananas off a tree on the beach (This inadvertently sank the Sea Monkey, which was originally optional in the game, but later adopted as canon). Guybrush later obtained rope from a fort to the north of the island, which allowed him to acquire a pair of oars for an abandoned boat he found earlier on the beach. This mode of transport allowed him access to the entire island. He then obtained another banana from the local Cannibal village. After he escaped captivity from the cannibals via a hole in the floor of his hut prison, and used his supply of bananas to lure a monkey to the Giant Monkey Head where he then took a totem. In return for the totem, the Cannibals became friendly towards Guybrush. It's here that Guybrush retrieved the Banana Picker from the Cannibals so he could return it to Herman Toothrot. In gratitude, Toothrot gave Guybrush the key to the Giant Monkey Head, which was believed to be the only way to LeChuck's secret lair.
Under the Monkey Head
Guybrush used the key, which resembled a giant Q-Tip, on the Giant Monkey Head. As he descended the dark and hellish realm beneath, he realized it was impossible to figure out how to find his way without some help. He learned that he needed a certain shrunken and sentient head of the navigator, which the Cannibals used for special occasions. The head allowed Guybrush to travel through the hellish, lava-filled maze. As he finally made his way through, Guybrush used a necklace of eyeballs to turn invisible and obtain the "Voodoo Root" from the moored ship of LeChuck. Once this was complete, Guybrush returned to the Cannibals, who prepared for him a special ghost-vaporising potion from the root; which turns out to be nothing more than common Root Beer. As Guybrush returned to the hellish underground "harbor", he found out he was too late, and the ship had gone to prepare for LeChuck's marriage with Elaine on Melee Island.
Thanks to Herman Toothrot's secret ship, Guybrush hastily made his way back to Melee Island confronting LeChuck. He barely made it to the church to disrupt the wedding, bumbling in and ruining Elaine Marley's own cleverly orchestrated plan to escape and defeat LeChuck.
LeChuck, furious at Threepwood's constant meddling, hit him with such force that he landed at Stan's Previously Owned Vessels. Through his quick wit, he used the Voodoo Root Beer on LeChuck, causing him to explode into a million pieces.
With LeChuck defeated, Guybrush and Elaine enjoyed the fireworks of LeChuck’s exploding corpse.
Following the events, Guybrush became a minor celebrity and a savvy businessman. He made a considerable fortune as he detailed his adventure in four books, which were available in the Phatt City Library.
- When I Blew up LeChuck by Guybrush Threepwood
- Where I Blew up LeChuck by Guybrush Threepwood
- Why I Blew up LeChuck by Guybrush Threepwood
- The Time I Blew Up LeChuck described as questionable memoirs.
Guybrush made sure every person in the Caribbean knew of his deeds (albeit with some exaggerations, making himself seem the brave hero, rather than a bumbling oaf), something that would have implications later. He claimed to have been a highly-demanded author of books, discoverer of treasures and highly-regarded after-dinner speaker. He claimed to had had many colorful exploits and travelled the Caribbean entertaining, impressing and enlightening his large and loyal following.
However, the demise of LeChuck became a legend of distorted facts (Elaine, as well as the Voodoo Lady, claimed that she had destroyed LeChuck, while the Barkeeper had heard that LeChuck was destroyed by "drinking too much root beer").
In the same time, tensions arose with Elaine; for unknown reasons, but no doubt having to do with his obsession with fame and his inflated ego. Some other women were involved as well, while Guybrush claimed that Elaine owed him some money. Elaine abandoned Guybrush, quit her job and left for Booty Island without leaving an address. She even wrote a bitter memoir about her relationship titled "Next To Nothing". She held a grudge on Guybrush and named her dog after him.
The Search for Big Whoop
The Largo Embargo
By the events of LeChuck's Revenge, Guybrush's personal wealth had grown substantially, and he was considered a minor celebrity of sorts. Eventually, people grew sick of hearing about his brush up with LeChuck. Guybrush knew he had to make a name for himself yet again - thus began the search for the legendary treasure of Big Whoop, something he knew next to nothing about.
His search began on Scabb Island, where he found himself trapped due to a shipping embargo imposed by the local heavy, Largo LaGrande. Largo's tyrannical rule made life on the island more than a little unpleasant for Guybrush. Their first encounter on the bridge to town ended with LaGrande robbing Guybrush of all his possessions.
In order to get off of the island, Guybrush had to find a way to end the embargo which prevented sailors from docking or leaving, and charter himself a ship to continue his search for Big Whoop. This led to him seeking help from The Voodoo Lady. It's here that the Voodoo Lady instructed Guybrush on how to go about creating a voodoo doll of Largo which he could use to run him off the island. He began secretly collecting the necessary ingredients careful to avoid any encounters with the bully. Once Guybrush had them, he returned to the Voodoo Lady who prepared the doll for him.
He took the doll to confront Largo, and all was going well until Guybrush boasted that he had once defeated LeChuck. Largo became curious of his claim, demanding evidence. Guybrush then produced LeChuck's Beard, which Largo quickly stole as he fled the island. Unbeknownst to Guybrush, Largo intended to use it to resurrect his former captain, as it was a living piece of LeChuck, wriggling around like a mass of black worms, and thus suitable for a voodoo resurrection.
The Map to Big Whoop
Guybrush returned to the Voodoo Lady, only to be told that that the only way to escape LeChuck's wrath would be if he found Big Whoop first. She gave him a book that detailed the story of the four pirates that had initially found the treasure, and how they separated the map into four pieces. It was also revealed that the four pirates died soon afterwards under mysterious circumstances.
Guybrush befriended a local cartographer, Wally B. Feed, who agreed to piece the map together. He also chartered the service of Captain Dread, which allowed him to travel around the islands of Scabb, Booty and Phatt to aid him in his hunt for the missing map pieces. His journey temporarily reunited him with Elaine Marley, but when he revealed that he was looking for her grandfather's map, their meeting soured.
Once all the map pieces had been collected, Guybrush returned to Wally, who began to decipher the treasure's hidden location. To return the favour, Guybrush proceeded to collect a Love Bomb from the Voodoo Lady. Upon his return, he found out that Wally had been kidnapped by Largo, and his map stolen.
The Return of LeChuck
Guybrush then spent five days in a crate full of snakes and voodoo supplies being delivered to LeChuck's Fortress, which was hidden away near Monkey Island. There, he managed to rescue Wally in a hopelessly complicated torture device, and in the process, accidentally blow up the entire fortress leaving himself stranded on Dinky Island, the very place he was searching for.
Threepwood continued his quest for the fabled treasure of Big Whoop, and finally discovered its location. In his attempt to dig it up, he used explosive methods which left him hanging from a rope by one hand, while clinging to the treasure chest with his other. Elaine Marley, having heard the explosion from her home on Booty Island, immediately rushed to his rescue, but waited for him to recap his story before trying to help him out of the hole. At the end of the lengthy tale, Threepwood's rope gave under his weight and he fell into the pit he had blown into the ground. He landed in an underground network of tunnels.
LeChuck, now a zombie, had been waiting for Threepwood in the tunnels and had produced his own voodoo doll designed to send Guybrush into a realm of "eternal suffering". The doll, however, failed to work properly, and Guybrush created his own doll to fight back.
Seemingly out of options, LeChuck resorted to using voodoo magic to cast Guybrush into believing he was a child in a Carnival, out with his brother Chuckie.
The Curse of Monkey Island
The Demise of the Zombie Pirate LeChuck
Following the events of LeChuck's Revenge, the Curse of Monkey Island opened with Guybrush lost at sea. After managing to escape from the Carnival of the Damned, Guybrush spent several days adrift on a Big Whoop Bumper Car with nothing to sustain him except a few provisions, and his unquestionable love for Elaine Marley.
He was down to his last half of a corn-dog when he found himself floating into the midst of a battle at Plunder Island. The battle turned out to be between Elaine and his arch-enemy, LeChuck. LeChuck was leading an assault on Elaine's fort, hoping to kill her and take her as his undead bride. Both were unaware of Guybrush's presence, who could only listen to their arguments. It was here that Elaine finally confessed her love for Guybrush.
At the same time, Skully, an undead member of LeChuck's crew, spotted Guybrush beneath their ship. LeChuck shoots Guybrush out of the water with his Hand Cannon, but only managed to destroy his Bumper Car. The crewmen fished Guybrush out of the water. LeChuck was surprised that Threepwood had escaped his carnival, but nevertheless decided to kill him there as a demonstration. As he raised his cutlass to deliver the final blow, Elaine shot the blade from his grasp with her musket. LeChuck, impressed with her spirit, ordered Guybrush be thrown into the hold to be dealt with after the battle.
In the hold, Guybrush was put under the charge of the diminutive Bloodnose the Pirate. After speaking to him for a short time, he learned that his guard was really Wally, the cartographer. Guybrush managed to convince Wally to give up on piracy, which allowed him to take control of the cannon. He destroyed the landing parties before untethering the cannon, and firing it once more. The recoil of the massive weapon caused the entire ship to shake and made LeChuck drop his Voodoo Cannonball. The resulting explosion destroyed the zombie pirate and capsized the ship.
While trapped in LeChuck's ship's treasure hold, Guybrush made his escape by using a large diamond ring to cut through a porthole, and riding a Floatation Device to safety. Once on shore, he was finally reunited with Elaine and, in the heat of moment, Guybrush used the large diamond ring he found to propose for her hand in marriage. Out of nowhere, Wally showed up and told the couple that he wondered whether the ring Guybrush had given was actually a ghastly, disfiguring voodoo curse. It was, and promptly transformed Elaine into a golden statue.
The Curse Gets Worse
Guybrush immediately explored the island to try and find some way of undoing the curse. It was here that he came across the Voodoo Lady in her newest voodoo shop, which was located in the island's swamp. When she asked if he had hidden her safely, he rushed back to the beach only to find she had already been stolen. On return to the Voodoo Lady she suggested that it was most likely the Pirates of Danjer Cove who had taken her. She then informed him that once he had gotten her back, he would need a pure ring of greater or equal value to undo the curse. One such ring was to be found on Blood Island, but she foresaw that the location was where Threepwood was destined to die.
Guybrush was tasked with finding Elaine, a map to Blood Island, a ship and a crew to man it. He convinced the Pirates of Danjer Cove to give up their lives of piracy, found where they had stashed Elaine, stole a map off the back of Palido Domingo and took aboard the services of the staff of The Barbery Coast. In the meantime, he made an enemy of Captain Rene Rottingham having caused him to have all of his hair cut off.
Guybrush's other adventures on Plunder Island included being eaten alive by a Man-Eating Snake, nearly drowning in a Quicksand Pit, and terrorizing the people of Puerto Pollo while impersonating the dreaded El Pollo Diablo.
Plundering the Seas
Once Guybrush gathered his crew, the map and the golden Elaine aboard The Sea Cucumber, they set sail for Blood Island. Shortly after leaving port, they were boarded by Captain Rene Rottingham. He stole the map, intending to go after the island's treasures himself. Guybrush, a pirate captain of little reknown in those parts, was forced to upgrade his ship and learn an entirely new style of Insult Sword Fighting. After some time and effort, Guybrush eventually defeated Rottingham in his own game. He took back the map, and continued on with his quest.
On their way to Blood Island, their ship was suddenly hit by a violent storm. They arrived on the island, but much of their ship was wrecked and left stranded on the southern shore. The crew notified Guybrush that they had mutinied, as they hoped to go back to their old life as 'Buccaneer Hairstylists'. As Guybrush unravelled the secrets of Blood Island, he learned of its once glorious status as the place to be for artists and performers. That reputation died down, thanks to the volcano having seized erupting regularly. There was also the case with the once prominent Goodsoup family, which was hit with a terrible scandal that left Minnie Goodsoup to die with a broken heart. Thanks to Guybrush's actions, the volcano began to erupt, bringing hope to the proprietor of the Goodsoup Hotel. Not everyone was convinced of Guybrush's deeds, as Madam Xima revealed he was destined to die. Guybrush in fact did die somewhat, after consuming a lethal concoction of alcohol and tonic. He found himself in a crypt, where he meets Stan who began setting up an insurance business within the crypt. Guybrush managed to acquire a life insurance policy, which he then uses to cash in, and purchase a pure, uncursed diamond ring from the pirates at Skull Island. From there, he managed to convince Griswold Goodsoup that he was a long lost relative, allowing Guybrush access to their crypt. Guybrush feigned death once more, and helped break the curse of of Minnie Goodsoup whose spirit dwelled in the Goodsoup crypt. Guybrush finally completed a special, uncursed Diamond ring, which he then used to break Elaine from her curse. Their reunion was swift, but then the two were promptly captured and taken to Big Whoop carnival on Monkey Island.
Guybrush Kicks Butt Yet Again
Guybrush and Elaine found themselves yet again in the clutches of the evil demon pirate LeChuck, in the Carnival of the Damned on Monkey Island. LeChuck spent several minutes gloating about his evil plan, and how he pulled it off. He managed to incite Elaine into quite a bit of anger, after he explained how he slowly tortured her grandfather to insanity. Guybrush, through his sheer childishness, aggravated LeChuck who promptly turned him into a literal child. Guybrush however, figured out how to break the curse. He outsmarted Dinghy Dog, and made his way to the horrible rollercoaster of death. Through his cunning, Guybrush finally trapped LeChuck by causing an avalanche of ice. He was once again, presumed dead.
With LeChuck vanquished for the third time, Elaine and Guybrush were promptly married. The happy couple sailed away on The Sea Cucumber, headed for marital bliss on their honeymoon, as their friends waved goodbye.
Non Canon Deaths
Due to the nature of adventure games it is rare for the protagonist to be able to die. However, there are a few rare occasions where Guybrush can be killed.
When Threepwood is tossed into the sea at the docks by Fester Shinetop, he has ten minutes to find a way to save himself before he turns green and drowns.
In LeChuck's Torture Chamber, if Guybrush takes too long to work out how to escape, he and Wally will fall into the acid and be killed. However, the scene will then change to Threepwood and Marley in the pit as he realises that he must have told the story incorrectly.
In the Mysts o'Tyme Marshe, if future Guybrush gives present Guybrush a revolver, he can use it to shoot and kill future Guybrush. When present Guybrush becomes future Guybrush, he is shot causing a time paradox.
Threepwood can also once again drown after spending more than ten minutes underwater.
Many characters in game either cannot pronounce Guybrush's name or refuse to by way of insult.
- Thriftweed- Lookout
- Peepwood - Fester Shinetop
- Threewind - Fester Shinetop
- Mr. Spicecake - Fester Shinetop
- Droopface - Fester Shinetop
- Creepfood - Troll (demo only)
- Peepcrud - Troll (demo only)
- Captain Freepwood - The Narrator (interrupted at Freep)
- Flybrunch - Frank
- Frygosh - Frank
- Gorbush - Frank
- Graybrash - Frank
- Threekwood - LeChuck
- Mr. Brush - Wally B. Feed
- Peepwind - Kate Capsize in prison
- Mr Wood - Wally B. Feed
- Mr Brush - Wally B. Feed
- Mr. Threewood - Palido Domingo
- Monsieur Tweephood - Captain Rottingham
- Mr. Freep-Snood - Kenny Falmouth
- Mr. Leap-Good - Kenny Falmouth
- Mr. Cheep-Hood - Kenny Falmouth
- Cap'n Driftwood - Haggis McMutton
- Thropwimp - Captain Rottingham
- Guybrush Threepnard - The Dainty Lady
- Geekwood - LeChuck
- Sheepgood - LeChuck
- Creepwood - Davey Nipperkin
- Threepwad - Davey Nipperkin
- Leapwood - Davey Nipperkin
- Skipwood - Davey Nipperkin
- Sleepgood - Davey Nipperkin
- Carniferouswood - Galeb
During his adventures, Threepwood had many nicknames, most of which were most likely inventions of his own.
- Sugar Boots (Pet name from Elaine Marley)
- Plunder Bunny (Pet name from Elaine Marley)
- The Bone Master
- Captain Loogie
- Juicious Maximus the Third
- The Phlegm Master
- The Sturgeon Surgeon
Guybrush's name comes from a few sources.
'Guybrush' was an accidental discovery. The software, Deluxe Paint, used to make the artwork had a way to select out a part of the screen called a "brush" and save it. So the 'guy' 'brush' was always saved as guybrush.lbm. This stuck when, during a team meeting, Ron Gilbert asked "What do we call the guy brush?" and Steve Purcell replied "Well, how about Guybrush?".
'Threepwood' was chosen in a competition, originating from characters from P.G Wodehouse books. e.g. 'The Brinkmanship of Galahad Threepwood'.
'Ulysses' is the Latin name for Odysseus, an ancient Greek hero who had a long eventful sea journey after fighting in the Trojan War and inventing the Trojan Horse.
- I'm Guybrush Threepwood, mighty pirate.
- Look, a three-headed monkey!
- "Ask me about Grim Fandango." I don't want people asking me about Grim Fandango.
- We'll surely avoid scurvy if we all eat an orange.
- It looks like a ship's skipper, first mate, a professor, and the rest.
- Flooring inspector!
- LeChuck is your schnoobums!?
- I got so much money, it's embarrassing!
- I'll sleep when I'm dead. Or later tonight.
- How appropriate, you fight like a-----OWWWWW! I was using that!
- Kick his two-faced butt for me.
- I'll be over here appreciating my head's ability to stay attached to my neck.
- Unholy this!
- How's the body treating you?
- I still have no clue what 'rue' means.
Behind the Scenes
- According to the original design document for SOMI, (titled 'The New Monkey Island') Guybrush Threepwood is English.
- Before his first adventure, Guybrush seems to suffer from selective mutism in front of some women, but this is seen only in front of Elaine, and only once.
Appearances in other Media
- Uncharted 4: A Thief's End - In a portrait.
- Guybrush's Skull - In the video game Gibbous - A Cthulhu Adventure, if you examine the 'Pony Tail Skull' in the Voodoo Gentleman's room Don says "A mighty pirate skull, by the look of it..." If you examine it again he says "The secrets that skull might be holding..." If you use the Haunter's Mark on it he says "Never pay more than 20 bucks for a computer game." all the three being references to Guybrush Threepwood.
- Star Wars: The Force Unleashed II - Guybrush Threepwood appears in the game as a hidden unlockable skin for the playable character and main protagonist Starkiller, the name given to the skin is called "Guybrush Threepkiller".
- Reference in the CoMI Hintbook
- Ron Gilbert - Guybrush Fact vs. Fiction