You would have a very hard time convincing me that there is a Disney character more narcissistic and conceited than Gaston. I mean seriously, this guy is convinced that he is absolute perfection, God’s gift to women, etc. The other townspeople certainly don’t need any convincing of this “fact.” Therefore, Gaston can probably (maybe) be forgiven for presuming that Belle would agree to marry him without any argument whatsoever.
Yes, I said marry. Gaston has decided to completely skip courting Belle and is just going to ask her to marry him (and then hold the ceremony immediately afterward), what could POSSIBLY go wrong?
What Gaston can’t fathom is that the idea of being a housewife, raising a large brood of kids and doing whatever a boorish husband demands is the LAST thing Belle wants to do with her life. So needless to say, the proposal goes badly (Gaston ends up face first in a mud hole). But rather than accept this rejection, Gaston won’t take no for an answer, he MUST have Belle, it doesn’t matter what she thinks!
Despite this proclamation, Gaston is depressed that Belle said “no” to him, and while Belle is adjusting to life in the castle, Gaston is brooding in the tavern while Le Fou tries to cheer him up. This is the setting for “Gaston”, one of the crazier songs of the Disney Renaissance.
Gosh, it disturbs me to see you, Gaston
Looking so down in the dumps
Every guy here’d love to be you, Gaston
Even when taking your lumps
There’s no man in town as admired as you
You’re everyone’s favorite guy
Everyone’s awed and inspired by you
And it’s not very hard to see why!
No one’s slick as Gaston
No one’s quick as Gaston
No one’s neck’s as incredibly thick as Gaston
For there’s no man in town half as manly!
Perfect, a pure paragon!
You can ask any Tom, Dick or Stanley
And they’ll tell you whose team they prefer to be on!
From beginning to end, the entire song is an homage to Gaston, how amazing he is, how perfect he is, and how everyone wishes they could be him!
No one’s been like Gaston
A king pin like Gaston
No one’s got a swell cleft in his chin like Gaston
As a specimen, yes, I’m intimidating!
My what a guy, that Gaston!
Give five “hurrahs!” Give twelve “hip-hips!”
Gaston is the best and the rest is all drips!
No one fights like Gaston
Douses lights like Gaston
In a wrestling match nobody bites like Gaston!
For there’s no one as burly and brawny
As you see, I’ve got biceps to spare
Not a bit of him’s scraggly or scrawny.
And every last inch of me’s covered with hair!
There’s actually a funny story as to how this song came together (I referenced it in Film Music 101: “Test” Lyrics ). What happened is, when the writers were putting the songs for this film together, they created fake lyrics to accompany the melody to serve as a placeholder. However, the fake lyrics for “Gaston” proved to be so catchy that the writers made the decision to keep them!
No one hits like Gaston
Matches wits like Gaston
In a spitting match nobody spits like Gaston
I’m especially good at expectorating! Ptoooie!
Ten points for Gaston!
When I was a lad I ate four dozen eggs
Ev’ry morning to help me get large
And now that I’m grown I eat five dozen eggs
So I’m roughly the size of a barge
No one shoots like Gaston
Makes those beauts like Gaston
Then goes tromping around
Wearing boots like Gaston!
I use antlers in all of my decorating!
My what a guy, Gaston!
As it is, the song gives an enlightening view of how Gaston’s mind works. He receives constant praise from all the townspeople, which in turn feeds his massive ego. It’s amazing what the townspeople have put up with from him: Gaston knocks over the chess board when he’s about to lose; Gaston cheats in a brawl; Gaston is a bully but everyone seems to be okay with that! The song also reveals that Gaston is a hunter par excellence (this includes mounting a rabbit head and a frog head on his wall).
Except for his ego, Gaston otherwise fits the bill of a traditional Disney hero, even his singing voice is excellent. This was all planned by the Disney animators, they wanted Gaston to appear as this perfect specimen in the beginning, to contrast him with the terrible behavior of the Beast. However, as the story develops, the Beast and Gaston gradually switch roles: with the Beast becoming more “human” and Gaston becoming more and more “Beast-like.”
That’s all for Gaston for the moment (we’ll get back to him after while), next time, I’m not sure which song I’ll pick next (they’re all so good), but I’ll be back with more tomorrow! Have a great day!
*all images are the property of Walt Disney Studios
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