Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.
LeChucks Revenge artwork 8693.jpg
I thought I'd killed the Ghost Pirate LeChuck for good. Wrong. How many times can that bloated old fool die? Other pirates tell me there's no escape. Legend has it that the treasure of Big Whoop holds the key to great power... I must find it before LeChuck finds me.
—Excerpted from The Memoirs of Guybrush Threepwood: The Monkey Island Years

Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge is the second game in the Monkey Island series, released in 1991. It takes place some time after the first. Guybrush is starting to have trouble getting other pirates to listen to his stories about the last game, so he decides to actually do something piratey that he can make a new story out of. His quest this time is to find the four pieces to a treasure map leading to a fabulous treasure known only as "Big Whoop". As the title of the game indicates, however, Guybrush's old foe LeChuck returns from the dead once more (this time as a zombie), and tries to get his revenge on Guybrush.

This marks the end of the old-school, Ron Gilbert Monkey Islands, as he left LucasArts the year after the release, with co-writer and designer, Dave Grossman, following in 1994, and the following installments in the series were, until Tales of Monkey Island came along, made without input from Gilbert or any of the other original writers. This game is given the twist-ending Gilbert wanted to put in the original game, an ending which divides the fanbase like nothing else in the entire canon.

A "Special Edition" Updated Rerelease was released in the summer of 2010, with redrawn artwork, voice acting from the cast of The Curse of Monkey Island, and creator commentary from Tim Schafer, Ron Gilbert and David Grossman.

Tropes used in Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge include:
  • Adipose Rex: Governor Phatt, of Phatt Island. Not a King, but he runs an entire island, so it counts. He seems to be fed entirely on ketchup and mayonnaise, which he has piped next to the bed where he spends all his time.
  • The Alcoholic: Rum Rogers Jr.
  • All Just a Dream: Suggested in the end of the game, Or Was It a Dream?? [1]
  • Always Night: On Scabb Island. Booty Island was also initially going to feature this, but it was later changed to Always Daytime.
  • Animation Bump: Most of the (original) game is rather crudely animated, using mostly Limited Animation, but LeChuck stands out: his speech and walking animations have more detail and complicated movement patterns than other characters, and during the final confrontation has things such as anticipation and overlapping action.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The phrase can be said almost exactly word-for-word as a response to the librarian's question if Guybrush has any vices (when getting a library card).
  • Ascended Extra: The Voodoo Lady, who you could complete the first game without ever meeting, gets her biggest role in any of the games prior to Tales of Monkey Island.
  • Badass Beard: LeChuck's beard is so badass that it gets used to reanimate the rest of his body.
  • Bag of Spilling: Guybrush starts the game with his pockets full of riches earned in the past two years... before Largo LaGrande empties his pockets two minutes into the adventure.
  • Big No: Done by Guybrush near the end when LeChuck reveals he is Guybrush's brother.
  • Blind Without'Em: Wally is helpless without his monocle. Obviously, you have to steal it to progress the game.
  • Bound and Gagged: Guybrush and Wally.
  • Bucket Booby Trap: Guybrush pulls this one off on Largo LaGrande.
  • Buried Alive: Stan. Thankfully, when he shows up again in the sequel, he's just fine. He even managed to print out some business cards while he was in there!
  • Butt Monkey:
    • Guybrush. He's mocked and belittled by the other characters, robbed blind in the first few minutes, forced to wear a stupid pink dress to a costume party, beaten up by the aged groundskeeper, humiliated in a drinking contest with Rum Rogers Jr., sets off a room full of explosives by dropping the match he's using as a light source... the list is too long to fully repeat.
    • Wally. The developers actually had to remove a scene that shows what happened to him after LeChuck's fortress blew up because they just felt too sorry for him.
  • By the Lights of Their Eyes: You can see Guybrush's and Wally's eyes glow in the darkness of LeChuck's Fortress after their escape.
  • Can't Hold His Liquor: Subverted; Rum Rogers Jr.'s special contest grog is so strong that no-one can hold it, although Guybrush seems to be particularly bad at withstanding its effects.
  • Captain Color Beard: Yellow Beard.
  • Character as Himself: In the original game's end credits: "Featuring Walt as himself".
  • Church of Happyology: A book in the Phatt Library is called Dynanetics, by L. Ron Gilbert.
  • Copy Protection: The "Mix'n Mojo" code wheel [dead link].
  • Cruelty Is the Only Option: Wally's dialogue after you steal his monocle tugs at your heartstrings, but you can't progress through the game without taking it. And, though he's less sympathetic, Stan does the same thing when you seal him in his casket. Both seem even more cruel with the voice acting in the Special Edition.
  • Darker and Edgier: Much of the innocent goofiness of the first game is toned down. Guybrush is a hunted Heroic Comedic Sociopath that hurts other characters, and LeChuck is a murderous creepy villain. The dramatic and gory elements are toned up, specially during the final encounter.
  • The Dead Can Dance: Your late parents show up in a dream sequence, turn into skeletons and do a little dance (see below).
  • Dem Bones: Including one instance of Dem Bones singing "Dem Bones". Has to be seen.
  • Demoted to Extra: Elaine only appears in four scenes, including the pre-credits and the ending sequences, and has little dialogue apart from insulting Guybrush and asking him what he's been doing.
  • Did You Die?: Inverted. If you "kill" Guybrush during the game, Elaine tells him that can't have happened, since he is currently telling her his story, and he is obviously not dead.
  • Disguised in Drag: Guybrush has to wear a lady's dress as a costume in order to sneak into Elaine's Booty Island mansion.
  • Dummied Out:
    • Quite a bit of stuff was removed before release. For instance, after Guybrush blows up LeChuck's fortress, he and Wally were going to land on a raft in the middle of the ocean. Wally loses his monocle and falls into the sea. The scene was cut because even in a game chock-full of sociopathically cruel yet absurdly hilarious puzzle solutions, this was felt to be beyond the pale. The background which was to feature the raft was entirely redrawn and reused for another scene, but the game files still refer to it as the "raft" room.
    • Also of note are several rooms cut from LeChuck's Fortress, which presumably contained extra puzzles, including a voodoo shrine/potions laboratory, closeups of the desk and throne in LeChuck's office, and a closeup shot of Zombie LeChuck in all his g(l)ory. There was also a much more elaborate alternate version of the underground tunnels beneath Phatt Island. The filenames of these unused rooms were embedded in a pre-release demo of Monkey Island 2, but their art assets were not revealed until the 2010 Updated Rerelease included some of this cut material in its concept art gallery.
  • Ear Trumpet: There's one old man on Booty Island whose job is to fire a cannon when the mail boat comes in. Probably because of being deafened by proximity to that loud cannon, he needs an ear trumpet to hear what Guybrush is saying.
  • Easier Than Easy: The game has a lite mode with many puzzles dummied out.
  • Easy Mode Mockery: "I've never played an adventure game before, I'm scared."
  • Electrified Bathtub: How Rum Rogers Sr. kicked the bucket. In this game, you'll find his corpse lying in the bathtub under his son's home, while the sequel explicitly retcons his death so that LeChuck killed him when he found him drinking rum and eating toast while bathing by tossing his toaster into the bathtub.
  • Fat Bastard: Governor Phatt.
  • Gainax Ending/The Ending Changes Everything: After Guybrush falls down the hole in Dinky Island, he finds himeself in some concrete tunnels. LeChuck is there with a voodoo doll and he tortures Guybrush with it after revealing that he is Guybrush's brother. Big Whoop only contains a ticket with the letter "E" on it. In the tunnels Guybrush finds an elevator that leads to Melee Island, carnival equipment, and a hospital room with two skeletons that he immediately identifies as his parents. Later he builds a voodoo doll and nearly kills LeChuck with it, then he takes off LeChuck's mask and reveals that LeChuck is his long lost brother Chuckie. Then the scene cuts to both of them as kids at an amusement park where Guybrush's parents chastise him for wandering off, and then they go to a ride. But at the last second Chuckie makes a Aside Glance and lightning arches from his eyes. Finally, during The Stinger, Elaine wonders if Guybrush has fallen into another trap. And that's why there is a Broken Base (for this game). Many discussions with Epileptic Trees and Wild Mass Guessing have ensued. Nobody knows for sure what the ending originally was all about, and the next game Retconned it.
  • Gargle Blaster: As usual, grog is the series' usual example, but this game amps it Up to Eleven with Rum Rogers Jr.'s special home-made grog, with twice the alcohol and calories compared to the usual drink, used for drinking competitions.
  • Gender Flip: In the 1991 original, when Guybrush calls the LucasArts Help Desk (then LucasFilm Games Help Desk) on Dinky Island, the phone operator on the other end of the phone appears near him... and it appears to be a woman named Chester! In the redrawn Special Edition, however, Chester the phone operator is now a man. Interestingly, both characters can be found in the Special Edition version, with female Chester appearing in Classic mode and male Chester appearing in the high-definition mode, and both characters even have unique voice actors.
  • Getting Crap Past the Radar: Gov. Elaine's bedroom contains at least two of examples of this.
    • If you look at the bust (as in sculpture), Guybrush will remark "I overheard a couple of guys talking about Gov. Marley's bust, this must be it."
    • If you look at the chest (as in furniture), Guybrush will say "It's impolite to stare at a woman's chest."
    • Most of the lines involving the fishing pole ("I think you're just trying to get your hands on my pole.") and the (grind) organ ("Mr. Willy Gorilla. Arrested for grinding his organ in public.") involve Double Entendre.
  • Goofy Print Underwear: Happens twice with Guybrush: once when he lifts up the bone of Marco Largo LaGrande from his grave in Scabb Island Cemetery, and one when he gets knocked out by the gardener for taking a map piece while in a dress in the Booty Island mansion.
  • Gosh Dang It to Heck: There's only one scene in the game when Largo LaGrande refuses to tip the deliverymen, resulting in one of them muttering out, "What a butt". The rest of the game averts this completely.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: Governor Phatt's guard is one credulous cretin.
  • How We Got Here: The framing device for the game.
  • Ice Cream Koan: "If a tree falls in the forest and no one is around to hear it, what color is the tree?" "All colors."

"Now, what have you learned?"
"That philosophy is a waste of my time."


WANTED: Guybrush Threepwood : For the murder of G. P. LeChuck, and also for the use of witchcraft on the person of Largo LaGrande, the thievery of clothing and medically-prescribed hair supplements for such witchcraft, graverobbing, trespassing, larceny without a permit, disturbing the peace, illegal gambling on a sporting event, use of falsified identification for the purchase of alcohol, exceeding allowable FDA limit for rodent parts in vichyssoise, premature entombment of a non-dead individual, reckless tampering with city-maintained plumbing without prior acquisition of environmental impact report, transportation of animals not in a mental state to give consent, vandalizing a historical miniature, reckless use of gardening tools, impersonating a woman in order to evade prosecution, two counts of unauthorized exiting from a penal institution, impersonating a federal mail boat, reanimating dead persons within city limits, possession of library books not specifically checked out to oneself, mixing drinks without a liquor license, and releasing a dangerous reptile in a populated area. Also wanted for questioning regarding the disappearance of prescription eyewear.


"Most of these coffins have been barely used, only for a few hours, premature burials and such..."
"You're back! I knew you would! All my customers return... eventually."

  • Oddball in the Series: Not a glaring example, but the much more open-ended structure, along with LeChuck acting like a murderous psychopath rather than an evil goofball, the complete lack of any insult combat game, and Guybrush having a full beard (or, on a more serious level, the gameplay forcing him to be needlessly cruel or jerkish to advance the plot) combine to give this a somewhat different feel to the other Monkey Island games.
  • Overly Long Gag: For the Ice Cream Koan mentioned above, you can go through a long list of colors before settling on the right answer.
  • Pamphlet Shelf: Averted: the library mostly contains irrelevant books, and finding the relevant ones is part of the puzzle. However, the book of quotes doesn't seem to be very long.
  • Pirate Girl: Kate Capsize.
  • The Quiet One: Freddy, Man of Low Moral Fiber (Pirate), who doesn't even laugh occasionally like in the first game, instead remaining completely silent. Unless you blow the ship's horn...
  • Refuge in Audacity: A totally Selfish Good, Selfish Evil, misogynist so-called hero who desecrates graves, sails swamps in a coffin, all in a cartoonish, comedic pirate videogame? You know it's just for laughs.
  • Revenge of the Sequel: The title is Monkey Island 2: LeChuck's Revenge after all.
  • Rhyming List: When the Voodoo Lady tells Guybrush the ingredients he needs to find, so she can make a voodoo doll:

Voodoo Lady: Something of the Head, something of the Thread, something of the Body, and something of the Dead.
Guybrush: Wow, that almost rhymes!


Violets are blue
Roses are red
We're coming aboard
Prepare to eat lead


LeChuck: I (Beat) am your brother.
Guybrush: That's not true! That's imposible!
LeChuck: Search your feelings, you know it to be true!


"I will take your bones, still alive and in great pain, and make them into a chair. I will call it my Screaming Chair. Every day I will sit in it and listen to you scream."

  • Updated Rerelease
  • Villain-Beating Artifact: Since spraying root beer doesn't work this time. Guybrush has to assemble a different VBA - A voodoo doll. - To defeat his foe Captain LeChuck.
  • Wanted Poster: A very thorough one, which lists everything the player has done so far. And grows longer, and longer and longer.
  • Wasted Song: The waterfall music is only heard very briefly, and almost completely drowned out by the sound of the waterfall.
  • We Named the Monkey "Jack": Guybrush the dog.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?:
    • The fate of Largo LaGrande after the Fortress explosion is also bizarrely unknown, even 3 games after his last appearance. Intriguingly, the Special Edition has re-opened this question somewhat. In the original version, the fortress was utterly obliterated by the blast, making it seem as if Largo had been blown to smithereens. The Special Edition version on the other hand just has one of the fortress's side walls collapsing, increasing the chances of Largo surviving. So far, the only place where Largo's fate has been so much as discussed was an April Fool's Day gag with the World of Monkey Island website, where "leaked" audio files from a new Monkey Island game included dialogue for Largo. And of course the ultimate example: "What was the secret of Monkey Island™?"
    • We also don't find out what happened to Wally for the rest of the game. A scene that didn't make it into the final game would have shown him dropping his monocle into shark-infested water, then falling in trying to retrieve it, but it was cut because the developers themselves finally took pity on him.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: "Because we had an extra disc."
  • You Bastard: Wally's dialogue after you steal his monocle is really depressing, and you will have a hard time to not feel like a utterly bad and mean person about leaving him in his blinded state, especially when he talks about how he will "die blind, hungry and alone", followed by "I have never hurt anyone." At least you eventually have to replace it.
  1. The third game in the series, The Curse of Monkey Island, Retconned that it was explicitly not a dream. Probably for the best, working your way back into the regular Guybrush story from where the second game left off would have made for some very convoluted story logic.