So you know that thing where it's like Person A walks in disheveled and is like "sorry I was doing stuff." and Person B, also disheveled, is like "I'm stuff." Here is how I imagine it going for the ACOMAF crew -
*walks in disheveled* Sorry I'm late, I was doing stuff.
*disheveled and smirking* I'm stuff
*walks in completely put together* Sorry I'm late, I was doing stuff.
*walks in fixing her hair, clothes astray, and smirking* I'm stuff.
Nesta and Cassian:
*walk in, disheveled*
Sorry we're late, we were fucking.
Yea, so let's hurry up I need round 4.
*walks in looking fabulous with a glass of blood* I know we're late, but I wasn't going to let a pretty male go to waste.
*walks in looking like he survived a hurricane* It was awesome.
*already there looking perfect, blushing* Could all of you not wait an hour?
*leaning back, also looking perfect but grumpy* No manners with these people.
Let’s discuss this, shall we? This is Varian’s Flynn Rider collection. There’s a couple satchels, several books with titles such as Flynn, Flynnigan and Legend of The Rider. He has a broken sword (presumably broken in a fight with Flynn/by Flynn), and… a lock of hair? But it’s blond hair, so it’s clearly not Eugene’s… (Though perhaps Varian thought it was?)
But let’s also discuss the poster. It is the only wanted poster we’ve seen so far (other than the one at the beginning of Tangled) where the nose is right. Varian has sussed out (or drawn) a correct wanted poster.
(You know, I’d judge him as obsessed, but… *looks meaningfully at my own Tangled-covered walls and shelves* I have no room to talk.)
So far to me, the most intriguing new character in Tangled Before Ever After is Xavier the Blacksmith. Why? Because he is a character who was created for an earlier version of the movie but never made it to the version of Tangled we all know and love. For the longest time, all we knew about him was what he was going to look like.
by Dan Cooper
by Dan Cooper
by Lauren Airriess
by Lauren Airriess
From this concept art, alone, it’s difficult to glean any kind of personality, let alone a purpose beyond, “blacksmith.”
But today, I sat down with a friend of mine, a former-animator at Walt Disney Animation, who worked on Tangled, and was around during the version Xavier was involved in. I had to ask what he was like, so we could start getting a possible glimpse of one of these mysterious new characters.
“He was awesome,” she told me. “I’m sure that’s very helpful.”
So, I told her the purpose behind my question - to write this speculative character review - and she got down to telling me about him. But I can’t tell you about Xavier without telling you about Bastion.
No, not this cocky bastard
by Jin Kim
I’m talking about this lovable teddy bear
by Glen Keane
This is the version of Tangled where this giant bear of a man was our male lead.
Now, the concept art we have for him doesn’t give us much of a clue to his personality, either, so my friend filled me in.
Bastion is shy and self-doubting, though he is actually quite intelligent and strong (although he doesn’t believe this about himself). And, he is a gifted hobby inventor. When the story opens, he’s working on a miniature prototype of a flying machine.
The trouble is, Bastion has fallen in with the wrong crowd, a gang of thieves using him as muscle, and he doesn’t have the strength of character to get himself out. (Not to mention, they’re emotionally abusing him and manipulating him into staying with them - sound familiar? *looks at Rapunzel*)
Enter Xavier the Blacksmith. Bastion has been going to his smithy to get the bits and pieces and parts for his inventions. Xavier is not only seriously good at what he does, and is able to make things that others can’t seem to manage, he also has access to things like materials that a simple hobbyist can’t get his hands on.
Xavier’s forge is Bastion’s safe place, where he goes to get away from his troubles and work on his inventions. And though they don’t necessarily talk about Bastion’s life and problems, it’s good for him to be there and geek out with Xavier about mechanical/ metallurgical stuff and indulge this interest.
Xavier isn’t stupid and he knows Bastion has something else going on even if he doesn’t know what, and he’s all about trying to get Bastion out of that life and into being his own guy and having some confidence and following his dream. Xavier serves as a kind of wise man, not a Grandmother Willow type, but more in an, ‘I believe in you and you’re better than this,’ way. And he’s convincing. At the beginning of the movie, Bastion is hemming and hawing and making excuses, but Xavier’s advice and gentle prodding starts to work on him over the course of the story.
Later on, Bastion and Rapunzel are in the city, hiding from Gothel and Bastion’s gang. They take refuge in Xavier’s forge, and he (Xavier) teaches her how to make chain mail, because he’s a cool feminist like that.
This is also the version of the story where the Queen looks like this
by Jin Kim
because in this version of the movie, the Queen (and King, I presume) are badass warriors.
With Xavier’s help, Rapunzel makes an entire chain mail cowl and puts it on. Xavier suggests she dresses up like the Queen, for the fun of it (and because he’s a total Royal Family/Lost Princess enthusiast), so he digs out a crown for her to wear, and in this version of the story, this is the moment she’s recognized as the Lost Princess.
So, where does all this take us in regard to Tangled Before Ever After? How much of this past life of Xavier the Blacksmith is going to be held onto? All we know for sure at this point is that Xavier is voiced by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. We cannot presume, but it would not be far-fetched to guess, that his character design will remain basically the same.
Since Eugene is not an inventor, he won’t be any sort of role model to him in that regard. However, perhaps Varian the Alchemist is? Alchemists tend to be wizard chemists, but that doesn’t put them outside the realm of inventor.
I can see him still being a Royal Family/Lost Princess fanboy, though, and similarly I can see him teaching Rapunzel how to make chain mail, as well as any other kinds of forging things she’d like to know. (Perhaps she’s the one with the penchant for invention! Or perhaps the invention angle will be dropped altogether.)
At any rate, this is why I’m excited about Xavier. Because he was interesting enough (and boy, was he interesting!) to resurrect him in the modern Tangled universe! I cannot wait to see the role this gentleman takes.
@its-suriel I can’t decide if I’m a) in love with or b) want to murder this tiny, menacing, looks-like-she-could-kill-me-with-her-stare Fae woman I just met. She got on the bad side of my cousin a little while ago, but that’s okay, because I sent her a necklace to make up for it. I heard she keeps my cousin’s threatening ruby as a paperweight. What should I do?