Man is the unseen main antagonist of the 1942 animated film Bambi, and the secondary antagonist in the 2006 midquel Bambi II.

History

He is first seen when Bambi and his mother are first in the meadow, and the Great Prince warns them. Later on in the film, Bambi and his mother found spring grass in the winter and they ran away and he shoots her and he is responsible for the death of Bambi's mother. Near the end of the film, Man returns to the forest with other men hunters and Hunter Dogs to help him kill more deer and the rest of the forest's animals. During the hunt, he succeeds in shooting Bambi, but only wounds him and never manages to track the deer down. However, Man and the other hunters unfortunately leave their campfire lit, which causes a massive forest fire. Despite the existence of these other hunters, "Man" still specifically refers to one person, and the main one at the climax of the movie is indeed the killer of Bambi's mother from earlier. Being a mere hunter, Man is not truly evil by human standards, but from the perspective of the animals whom the film follows, he might as well be the Devil. However, since he killed Bambi's mother, he is classed as a poacher, as it is illegal to hunt does and fawns in many parts of the United States.

Despite not actually appearing in the film at all, the character is famous for causing the death of Bambi's Mother, one of the most famously tragic scenes in Disney history. Because he is never once seen onscreen, one can tell that something revolving around "Man" will occur when his infamous tune begins to play. "Man" was ranked number 20 on the American Film Institute's list of the top 50 film villains of all time, being one of only three Disney villains on the list (along with The Queen and Cruella De Vil, Man being the middle ranked of the three) and beating out such famous villains as Maleficent, Jafar, Scar, Ringmaster and many others.

Dogs

The vicious hunting dogs were used by Man to track down Faline. They were relentless,violent,and cold-hearted; luckily, Bambi was able to hold them back and give Faline enough time to escape. When they began chasing after Bambi, he climbed up an unstable rocky ledge, which caused a rock slide that has the dogs fall down. Their fate is unknown after this. They have the appearance of razor sharp jaws and huge muscular bodies, but their exact breed is left as a mystery.

Man's Fate

Man's death as shown in a deleted scene.

In the Deleted Scenes, Although he is no longer shown on screen, it was revealed that Man actually died in the fire. Bambi and his father discover his corpse after the fire was animated and shown to test audiences, but they thought it was too grim so it was cut.

Trivia

in the original book Man is referred to as He.

  • In Who Framed Roger Rabbit, one of the early drafts of the script was going to have Judge Doom be revealed as the hunter who killed Bambi's mother, but was changed for unknown reasons. Nonetheless, it should still be considered a joke since Bambi is revealed to be a resident of Toon Town in the final scene. Another urban legend circulates that Gaston from Beauty and the Beast killed Bambi's mother, but it is mostly considered a joke since Bambi is supposed to take place in North America, while Beauty and the Beast is supposed to take place in France, making it unlikely that he was the perpetrator. The hunter's identity remains unconfirmed.
  • While it can be argued whether or not he holds any true evil intent, like most other Disney villains, it is noted that Man had no qualms with killing a doe with her fawn, further hinting he was more of a poacher than a hunter, as it is illegal to shoot does or fawns in many parts of the United States. Also, in Bambi II, he had no guilt about trying to kill Bambi, who at the time was still a fawn.
  • Universally, along with Claude Frollo from The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Ringmaster from Dumbo, Scar from The Lion King, Lady Tremaine from Cinderella, Lotso from Toy Story 3 and Prince Hans from Frozen, Man is one of Disney's most evil/hated villains.
  • He is similar to Scar from The Lion King  as both killed one of the main protagonist's parent (Mufasa by Scar and the Great Princess of the Forest by him).
  • He was originally intended to appear onscreen, but the production team decided to avoid depicting the character, because such an entity would be too dark, grim and notorious for the film, thus confirming that Man was indeed an evil individual.
  • In a Golden Book about Bambi which abridged the film, Man's campsite is shown and Bambi is cautioned this is when again "Man" has entered the forest. However, several tents are shown, suggesting Man is with a larger hunting party instead of by himself.
  • Man was ranked as the 20th greatest screen villain of all time by the AFI's 100 years, 100 Heroes and Villains list, being the second highest animated villain on the list, and the only one that was not physically seen.
  • Both Bambi's mother and the Pheasant that Man kills are both voiced by the late Paula Winslowe.
  • Despite being the main antagonist of the first film, his role is small.
  • Deleted scenes where Bambi and his father discover his corpse after the fire were animated and shown to test audiences, only to be cut for being too grim.
  • In the film. Man is represented by a 3-note motif. This motif may have inspired John Williams' iconic theme from Jaws.
  • "Man is in the forest" was a code phrase in the studio to indicate that Walt Disney was approaching.
  • Man also appeared in the 1938 Felix Salten book Perri. However, he doesn't make an appearance in the 1957 live action film. Instead, his role of the main antagonist is replaced by The Marten.
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