Real Name: Unknown
Premiered in: Who Framed Roger Rabbit? (1988)
Portrayed By: Christopher Lloyd
I know way back when I first started these reviews that I said I wouldn’t focus on any of the mixed animated films, those that were only partially animated in some form or another like Pete’s Dragon, Mary Poppins, or Enchanted, but I have a reason for choosing to end my villain reviews on Judge Doom. That reason is that I firmly believe that Judge Doom is not only the absolute embodiment of all that is villainous, but I also believe that he is, quite literally, the one and only villain that everyone, toon or human, hero or villain, would fear, but I’ll get to that in a moment. First, let me speak of Judge Doom’s minions.
Of course, like a majority of villains, he has his fair share of minions though I kind of doubt their usefulness and intelligence. Known simply as the Toon Patrol, the group consists entirely of anthropomorphic weasels known as Smarty, Greasy, Wheezy, Psycho, and Stupid. Considering there was originally to be seven of these little buggers, I’m sure you can all guess to whom there were a tongue-in-cheek acknowledgement to. As their names imply, the weasels are every bit the stereotype that they are based on and have what has to be the absolute oddest weakness I’ve seen out of anyone. They can die if they laugh too much. How on earth that makes sense, particularly regarding the fact that the Toon Patrol are toons themselves if not satirical in nature, I’ve no idea.
With that bit of silliness out of the way, let me move on to the one thing that makes Judge Doom incredibly infamous.
What do you get when you mix turpentine, acetone, and benzene?
A toon’s death sentence, there is no surer way to kill a toon and let me tell you, the first time you see it in action… It’s nothing short of horrifying and frightening especially considering that Judge Doom uses it to kill a toon shoe simply to make a point. That shoe, while incapable of actual words or speech, was screaming as it was slowly being melted into nothingness simply so that Judge Doom could demonstrate just what he planned to do once he got his hands on Roger Rabbit.
What’s even more disturbing is that Judge Doom has something of a Hitler complex insomuch that though he is a toon himself, his one and only goal is to wipe Toontown and its denizens from the face of the earth. A literal toon holocaust the likes of which, though never truly explained, leaves no doubt that Judge Doom is a sociopath. That then begs the question though, one that was asked amongst the toons upon Judge Doom’s ironic death by his own dip.
Just what kind of toon was he?
Ignoring the comic book sequel, there is very little of Judge Doom that’s revealed as to his “toony” nature. It’s obvious that he isn’t human, even long before the ultimate reveal during the film climax and comes down to three particular quirks of his. One, before his real eyes are revealed he never, ever blinks. Not once. Second, his teeth are far too perfect and look more like the kind of fake teeth one would wear to a Halloween party. Third are his own, admittedly minute, reactions to the Dip like how he makes sure never to go near it. Ignoring his insane eyes, Judge Doom also demonstrates a rather strange ability of shapeshifting the likes of which I’ve never seen any other cartoon character accomplish. With the flair of a magician, Judge Doom can turn his hand from a one-ton anvil into a massive buzzsaw both of which are a familiar shade of yellow. That combined with the springs beneath his feet means that he’s at least made of some kind of metal.
But what makes the toon known simply as Judge Doom far more frightening is something that only comes to mind when one considers the quote by Jessica Rabbit. The one in which she refers that she is not bad, she is simply drawn that way. For her, it meant that though she was drawn as a femme fatale, she actually has a heart of gold and was someone willing to emotionally hurt her husband if it meant keeping him alive. For Judge Doom however… what kind of mind could conceive such an abomination of animation that could gladly spit on the hilarity that was the golden era of cartoons? What kind of imagination could draw and put to paper such a monster that would sooner see its own kind dead than be associated with them?
I don’t know.
And truth be told, I don’t want to.
Either way, make no mistake, Judge Doom is a villain that I’m sure other villains would fear and rightly so. Out of the entirety of villainous reveals from all manner of films and not just Disney or Pixar, I’ve never come across one as frightening, or disturbing, as how Judge Doom’s true nature was revealed…
And that’s a wrap for the Villains, both Disney, Pixar, and somewhere in between. That’s not the end of my character reviews however. I’ve a new group to critique and praise. I chose the Disney Villains first and foremost because they were the “group” that I had grown up with in the Disney Family, the ones whom were from all walks of life and yet were able to stand shoulder to shoulder with one another if it meant getting what they wanted most. The next group that I’ll be reviewing is of more recent make, having only truly gone to the level it has in the last decade and that, my dear readers, is the Disney Princesses.
Or rather… those whom should be but aren’t.
Until the next page…