Beavis

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For other uses, see Bevis (disambiguation).
Beavis
Beavis and Butt-head character
Beavis BeavisandButtHead.png
First appearance "Frog Baseball"
Created by Mike Judge
Voiced by Mike Judge
Information
Aliases Cornholio
Gender Male
Occupation Student,
Fry cook at Burger World

Beavis (born 28 October 1979) is a fictional character. He is one of the young teenaged protagonists on the MTV animated series Beavis and Butt-head. He is voiced by the show’s creator, Mike Judge.[1]

Beavis has an underbite and an obsessive stare on his face which usually looks to the side rather than directly at the television viewer. He is usually seen wearing a Metallica T-shirt, though in merchandising appearances, his shirt displays the slogan “Death Rock,” to avoid licensing issues. In the episode “Give Blood”, he wears a Slayer shirt, while in the Christmas special "It's a Miserable Life" Beavis is seen wearing a Winger shirt during the alternate reality section of the episode.

He is slightly shorter than his best friend Butt-head, although he appears to be the same height when viewed at a distance because of his oversized pompadour hairstyle. Beavis works as a fry cook at the (fictional) fast food restaurant Burger World and once defiantly revealed that he is a fan of the rock band Bon Jovi to Butt-head, who dislikes the band and its leader Jon Bon Jovi.

Beavis' name was inspired by a friend of Judge’s from his college days named Bobby Beavis.[2]

Personality[edit]

Dan Tobin of The Boston Phoenix described Beavis as "the sidekick and follower" who developed into "more of a loose cannon." [3]

Mike Judge once said in an interview that Beavis "is a zero" when it comes to intelligence;[citation needed] indeed, Beavis is often oblivious to what should be obvious.[2] Generally submissive to Butt-head and willing to tolerate a large amount of physical and verbal abuse, Beavis nonetheless has limits. In “Murder Site”, Beavis was driven to attack and nearly kill Butt-head, who ceaselessly called him “Butt-knocker", a term which Beavis resents. Beavis also stood up to Butt-head while they were watching the video for Rancid's "Nihilism": Butt-head kept talking about it derisively, prompting Beavis to tell Butt-head to shut up. When Butt-head reacted with fury, ordering Beavis never again to tell him to shut up and threatening to attack him, Beavis preemptively kicked Butt-head in the testicles, told him to shut up again, and walked out of the room to get something to eat. In another episode, while the duo were watching a Bon Jovi video, Beavis claimed to like one part of the song, causing Butt-head to slap him in disgust. After being struck a few times, Beavis kicked Butt-head in the groin and proclaimed "Bon Jovi rules!"[4]

In spite of his overt idiocy, Beavis possesses a number of character strengths. He can be inadvertently witty and, when discussing subjects that neither he nor Butt-head understand, he is more likely to guess the actual mechanisms at work. Also, on the rare occasion that a female exhibits interest in one of the duo, it is usually Beavis who gets the attention.[5] This could be because of Beavis’ somewhat childlike temperament, which is less off-putting than Butt-head’s crasser, more blatantly sexual approaches. For example, when the two encounter members of the opposite sex, Butt-head will typically lead off with a smug opening line such as “Hey, baby”, which invariably flops; Beavis, on the other hand, will usually approach the woman with a less obvious “Hi!” or “Hey, how’s it going?” Easily influenced by Butt-head, however, Beavis will often imitate his buddy's cruder pickup lines. Beavis has also shown instances of insight on such topics as the true meaning of Christmas, or in his analysis of a video by Korn. However, in both instances Beavis seems to be either in a trance or possessed, and shortly afterward he displays no recollection of what he just said.

Recklessness[edit]

Beavis has a more volatile, unpredictable nature. His hasty actions usually end in disaster, ranging from being deported to Mexico[6] to severely injuring himself.[7] In some early episodes, Beavis displays signs of being a pyromaniac.[8] Though his obsession with fire remained an obvious trait, as the seasons progressed and network censorship pressures increased, his fixation became more of a passing gag. In a deleted scene from the film, Beavis steals The Declaration of Independence to use as toilet paper.

Cornholio[edit]

Beavis as the Great Cornholio.

Cornholio is an alter ego of Beavis’. Though the Cornholio character was developed in the episode “The Great Cornholio”, Beavis first plays the entity as a passing gag in “Generation in Crisis.” Beavis sometimes undergoes a radical personality change, usually after consuming large amounts of sugar and/or caffeine. In “Holy Cornholio”, the transformation occurs after Beavis takes many pain pills. He pulls his shirt collar over his head, raises his forearms in a 90-degree angle next to his chest, and then begins to yell or scream erratically, producing a stream of gibberish and strange noises, his eyes wide. Cornholio is a normally dormant persona (apparently the name is derived from the word "cornhole"). Cornholio tends to wander aimlessly while reciting “I am the Great Cornholio! I need TP for my bunghole!” in an odd faux-Spanish accent. Sometimes Beavis will momentarily talk normally before resuming the persona of Cornholio. When he stops acting as the Cornholio persona, Beavis usually has no memory of what happened. In the guise of Cornholio, Beavis becomes a successful beat poet.[9] In “Vaya Con Cornholio” he is deported to Mexico after wrongfully being subjected to immigration detention by an agent of the INS. During his detention the agent and his superior attempt to make sense of the gibberish, going so far as to look up the definition of "bunghole". In that same episode, he claims to be from Lake Titicaca (because of the scatological sound of its name), but when asked where it is, he responds (incorrectly) with "Nicaragua".[10] Nicaragua may be one of the few things Beavis remembers from class lectures. Beavis’ teacher Mr. Van Driessen refers to Nicaragua during a lecture on world economic systems in “The Great Cornholio”, after which Beavis repeats the word while pacing back and forth in the classroom. Cornholio resurfaces in Bungholio, Lord of the Harvest, which he steals candy from everyone and Butt-head tails him. He had stood up to Todd Ianuzzi, who demanded he move out of the road. He prepared to beat Beavis up in his Cornholio form up with his friends. He later spares Beavis deeming him too insane, in favor of beating up the more sane Butt-Head.

Relationship with Butt-head[edit]

Though the closest of confidants, Beavis and Butt-head have a jaded, violent, and at times borderline sadistic relationship. Butt-head often insults and physically abuses Beavis (usually by slapping him). On occasion, Beavis will fight back or stand up for himself (“Madame Blavatsky”, “They're Coming to Take Me Away, Huh Huh”). His favorite means of retribution is kicking Butt-head in the testicles. On at least one occasion, Beavis throws the first punch. In "Canoe", he initiates a fight by smacking Butt-head across the head with a paddle (although Butt-head goaded him into doing it). Butt-head usually knows when Beavis is approaching his breaking point and will back off (as seen when he calls Beavis "Buttknocker" or insults Metallica one too many times). In "Choke", he specifically states that Butt-head is "not really my friend". Nevertheless, it can be inferred that the duo are still best friends, considering their shared activities, residency, interests, and their lack of any other friends. The two usually compliment each other when one makes any sort of endeavor, especially if it involves their lifelong goal to 'score with chicks'.

Beavis is usually a follower, willingly taking Butt-head's instructions and cooperating in his endeavors. This appears to be a byproduct of Beavis' own general witlessness rather than any fear of Butt-head's abuse — as demonstrated in the alternate reality of “It’s a Miserable Life”,[11] in which Butt-head had never been born and Beavis was instead the dim but productive friend of younger neighbor and schoolmate Stewart Stevenson.

Eccentricities[edit]

While Butt-head's main interest in life is "chicks", Beavis seems to be more interested in toilet humor and displays of violence. Beavis has a penchant for making off-beat sound effects to suit the occasion. Whenever he sees something that is sexually arousing, he imitates a spring (onomatopoetically saying “Boi-oi-oi-oi-oiiing!!!”) indicating a quick erection. He sometimes makes a Bronx cheer by puckering his lips. He occasionally does impersonations, such as of Principal McVicker (“Speech Therapy”), motivational speaker Mr. Manners/Mr. Candy (“Manners Suck/Candy Sale”), and Woody Woodpecker (“Top O' the Mountain”). During one episode, Beavis conspicuously reveals that he is sometimes prone to getting erections in the company of other men. A special ability of his is speaking backwards, as seen in “Vidiots” while the duo review a music video; however, he forgets how to do so by the end of the video. Beavis also displays a predilection for defecating and things that are related to it, and in a high pitched tone will often enthusiastically utter the word, “poop,” or will say the word "plop" to indicate a bowel movement. He frequently pulls down his pants during music video reviews. He also took Kaopectate once after hearing it is for diarrhea under the misconception he would “get” diarrhea; he was only soothed by an enormous bowel movement which he saved in his dresser drawer, much to Butt-head's disgust. Beavis sometimes displays examples of the idiot savant when slapped hard by Butt-head or when attempting to pass out by holding his breath and blowing into his thumb, in which cases Beavis starts to make intellectual statements usually regarding the music videos he is viewing.


Interests[edit]

In one episode, Beavis mentions that he is actually fond of Tennis, and that he would watch The Wimbledon Championships on TV.

Beavis' parents[edit]

Beavis's family is occasionally mentioned but has never been seen in the show in person. An example is when Beavis states: "My mom's a slut... meh heh heh." According to discussion during some music video segments, Beavis’s mother shares her son's peculiar hairstyle, is somewhat obese, and (most significantly) is an ignorant slut. While Beavis is conscious of his mother's promiscuity, it doesn’t seem to bother him much, as he often laughs along in agreement whenever Butt-head brings it up (in fact, when Butt-head refers to Beavis's mom as a whore, Beavis nonchalantly says "She's not a whore, she's a slut, she doesn't charge for it"). The irony, however, is lost on Butt-head, whose own mother's promiscuity is implied in Beavis and Butt-head Do America.

In “Be All You Can Be”, Butt-head states that Beavis's dad was in the Navy and told the Army recruiter that Beavis's dad was "a seaman" - although this could have been a joke designed to allow Butt-head to use the word "semen".

In Beavis and Butt-head Do America, Beavis is reunited with his biological father, who seems to exhibit the same pyromania obsession as Beavis, as well as an overt physical resemblance. He is said to be a drifter and a one-time roadie for rock band Mötley Crüe. However, they remain oblivious of their father-son relationship and part ways before they make the connection.

Parodies[edit]

In the 1996 Paramount comedy Beavis and Butt-head Do America, at the beginning during the King Kong/Godzilla-like scene, Beavis is called Beaviszilla; however, when he sees Butt-head, he calls him by his real name.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Rosenberg, Howard (November 26, 1997). "Butt-head, We Hardly Knew Ye". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2010-11-08. 
  2. ^ a b "Mike Judge Interviewed by John Kricfalusi". Wild Cartoon Kingdom. 1994. 
  3. ^ Tobin, Dan (1 December 1997). "Butting out". The Boston Phoenix (weeklywire.com). Archived from the original on 2011. 
  4. ^ Featured in "Prank Call", but only the version shown during the Super Bowl special
  5. ^ Vidiots”, “Another Friday Night”, “Teen Talk”, Letters to Santa Butt-head in “Christmas Special
  6. ^ “Vaya Con Cornholio”
  7. ^ “Woodshop”
  8. ^ Home Improvement”, “Comedians”, and “Stewart's House
  9. ^ “Buttniks”
  10. ^ Lake Titicaca actually sits on the border of Peru and Bolivia.
  11. ^ A parody of the classic Christmas movie It's A Wonderful Life