Beauty & the Beast, Shounen Heroes Edition: Who Would Throw Gaston Off a Castle Roof?
Because we're adults, my most excellent friend Claire & I spent St. Paddy's Day watching the new Beauty and the Beast and drinking cocktails. Auto-tuning aside, I found the movie pretty charming, and was fonder of grouchy-yet-bookish Matthew Crawley-eyed Beast than I expected to be! There's a lot we could probably say about the film, but honestly, the most important post-movie discussion we had was definitely the one about how the Beast is basically Inuyasha: anger management issues, check; literally part animal, check; really needs a manicure before his hands go anywhere intimate, check; Terrible Dad complex, check; curse angst, check; reluctantly in love with spunky bossy girl, check.
The sorceress is obviously Kikyo the ex-girlfriend priestess; Belle is Kagome the spunky schoolgirl; Cogsworth is Myoga the flea servant; Gaston is Kouga the wolf demon; and Chip is Shippou the baby fox demon. IT ALL FITS.
The major difference, though, according to mine & Claire's increasingly bourbon and gin-fueled literary analysis, is that the Beast's human conscience -- do these count as spoilers if the Disney storyline was first released in like 1991? Eh, whatever -- prevents him from just chucking Gaston off the castle roof, whereas Inuyasha would definitely throw Gaston off that bloody roof. Like, SUPER FAR off that roof, no hesitation, no regrets, except maybe when Kagome inevitably yells at him about it.
This, of course, begs the question of which classic shounen anime & manga heroes from our childhood would throw Gaston off a roof, and which would not. It's like the philosophical question of our times & a fun new drinking-game alternative to Marry, Fuck, Kill, all wrapped up in one! Here were the results:
Goku (Dragonball Z): Nope. (But Chi-Chi would.)
Vegeta (Dragonball Z): Could go either way, depending on mood and current empathy levels for the human race, which is really dependent on which place in his narrative arc he's at. (Bulma probably would though, lbr.)
Yusuke (Yu Yu Hakusho): Threatens to spirit gun Gaston off the roof; in reality, probably just swears at him a lot and punches him out cold.
Kuwabara (Yu Yu Hakusho): Really wants to throw Gaston off the roof, but can't quite bring himself to do it. Probably reacts the exact same way the Beast does, actually.
Kurama (Yu Yu Hakusho): Passively lets Gaston beat him up for a while, until Gaston insults his mother, at which point Kurama grows the Beast's magic rose into a giant demon plant that consumes Gaston's body, yet allows Gaston himself to live a cursed half-life. Gaston's soul feeds the scary-ass nightmare plant for all nightmare-fueling eternity; everyone is traumatized.
Hiei (Yu Yu Hakusho): Peaced out of the castle fifteen minutes before the villagers and their pitchforks even arrived. Gives exactly zero shits; cannot be bothered with this human idiocy. Hiei out!
Kenshin (Rurouni Kenshin): Attempts to moralize kindly with the villagers, inevitably fails. Sighs, gives them all reverse-blade sword concussions & probable brain damage instead, then dramatically cripples both of Gaston's hands, so that the latter can never hold a gun again. No chucking anyone off a roof, though; that crosses a line in the moral code, clearly!
Ichigo (Bleach): Beats Gaston up, is briefly tempted by roof-chucking option, ultimately tries to gruffly talk the dude through his issues over a beer instead. (Might just end up having to chuck him off the roof anyway.)
Rukia (Bleach): ... Yeah, no, Gaston totally just got thrown off the roof.