'Captain Gore' was the original antagonist for an early version of a port-side Haunted Mansion created by Ken Anderson. He would have also appeared as a character in Pirates of the Caribbean in an interconnected story between the attractions. While his story ultimately went unused, he served to inspire many other characters and stories used within the Haunted Mansion.
- 1 History
- 2 Appearances
- 2.1 Disney Parks
- 2.2 Film
- 2.3 Printed Materials
- 2.4 Video games
- 2.5 Merchandise
- 3 Trivia
Multiple different backstories and storylines with varying details were proposed for the story of Captain Gore.
Captain Gideon Gorelieu or, "Captain Gore" was a murderous 18th century pirate who retired from his life of crime to live in a manor in New Orleans. Using an assumed alias, Gore posed as a wealthy sea-merchant and married a beautiful woman named Priscilla who was unaware of Gore's past-life. One night, Priscilla wandered into the mansion's attic where much to her horror, she found evidence of Gore's piracy.
To keep Priscilla quiet, Gore murdered his young bride as he knew that dead men told no tales. How he killed her varies from script to script. In one he would have locked her inside of a wooden chest which he tossed down a well behind the manor, drowning her. In another he would have stuffed her body behind the brick chimney in their bedroom.
Regardless, Priscilla's ghost would return from death in-order to haunt Gore along with the ghosts of everyone Gore had ever killed during his career of piracy. Eventually this drove Gore to commiting suicide by hanging himself to death, only to have his ghost trapped in the mansion and haunted by the spirits of his victims for eternity.
Pirates of the Caribbean
In the plans for Pirates of the Caribbean back when it was to be a walk-through attraction, Captain Gore was planned to have been a character. In this draft for the attraction it would have been revealed that Gideon Gorelieu was merely a fake-name and that he was the historic pirate, John "Bartholomew" Roberts AKA Black Bart/Black Barty (1682-1722). Roberts being known as the most succesful pirate captain to have operated during the golden age of piracy.
One of the plot-threads within this incarnation of Pirates of the Caribbean was exploring Gore's ship and seeing how he acquired his fortune in blood money and subsequent retirement from piracy. Animator Marc Davis even made designs for Bartholomew Roberts for this script of Pirates of the Caribbean.
The attraction Captain Gore was housed in was originally going to be a walkthrough-type, with many of its concepts and functions making it into the more lighthearted Haunted Mansion and a loose variation of the storyline winding up in Phantom Manor. The Priscilla character eventually became the famous Bride Ghost seen in the attic of The Haunted Mansion.
The tour of his abode would take place in a picture gallery, with a winding staircase leading up to an unseen room. The host is a butler named Beauregard, who then lowers the guests into the basement, as the floor is a secret lift, a concept that would later be thrown into the Stretching Gallery. The tour begins in the basement and proceeds up to a foyer room. As the butler would tell the story of Captain Gore, hairy hands would emerge from the wall behind him in an attempted kidnap, supposedly Captain Gore's hands. Guests would then encounter the ghostly bride, Priscilla, slowly revealing the true story of Captain Gore. The end of the attraction would be marked by a well, with a massive clue to the events scratched in the walls saying "Ding dong dell, Priscilla's in the well. Who threw her in? The wicked cap-a-tain!".
The butler finishes by saying "And about the color of the water, maybe it's the reflection of the sun, but by an odd coincidence, it's blood red." Many believe Captain Gore killed his bride by stuffing her in a chest and throwing her down a well, and another draft states that he just threw herself and no chest into the well, either way, the ghost of Priscilla tormented Captain Gore every night, and he hung himself in the rafters.
The Haunted Mansion
Captain Gore's character was incorporated into the Haunted Mansion in Walt Disney World in 2010. Within the foliage near the entrance to the mansion, a tombstone reading, "Bartholomew Gore" can be seen. This name being a hybrid of Gideon Gore and Bartholomew Roberts from the different incarnations of the attraction. The character also left an influence on the Haunted Mansion for years to come, with examples including:
- Disneyland's Haunted Mansion used to be decorated with nautical equipment on the outside such as a spy-glass and barometer. These were inspired by the nautical theming of the unused Gore Manor. In 2001, these items were removed for unknown reasons (likely due to the Haunted Mansion Holiday overlay however). To this day however the weathervane of the Haunted Mansion is a sailing-ship, another remnant of the Captain Gore theming.
- A mariner character appears in a portrait within the attraction at the Magic Kingdom and Tokyo Disneyland, adapted from Gore. A similar if-not the same mariner appears as an audio-animatronic ghost in the graveyard scene. In 2010, this mariner was given a crypt outside of Liberty Square's Haunted Mansion which identified him as Captain Culpepper Clyne.
- A sea-captain character appears in the ballroom scene, visually based on Captain Gore as a sort of easter-egg or recycled concept.
- One of the duelists in the ballroom uses a design, recycled from Marc Davis' design for Black Barty.
- A crypt in the Magic Kingdom's Haunted Mansion is dedicated to the character of Bluebeard and his wives. Bluebeard is a fairy-tale villain who the character of Gore was inspired by. Stories like the Ghost Gallery have even adapted the Haunted Mansion's Bluebeard as a pirate.
- The ghost murderer in the attic role in the Haunted Mansion was eventually picked up by Constance Hatchaway who herself commit matricide.
Pirates of the Caribbean
Gore does not directly appear or have references to him in Pirates of the Caribbean, there are however allusions to his legacy.
- The Marc Davis design for the Captain was adapted into the character of the Auctioneer in the final ride.
- A now removed piece of dialogue from the ghosts in the Ghostly Grotto identify the beached ship being steered by the helmsman as being, "The Royal Fortune". In history, this was the name which Black Barty gave to his flagship as-well as countless of the pirate ships in his fleet.
In the Pirates of the Caribbean films, the Pirate's Code is stated to have been made by Morgan & Bartholomew. Morgan referring to 17th century buccaneer Sir Henry Morgan and Bartholomew of-course referencing Bartholomew Roberts. Both men were known for their organizational pirate codes.
In this comic series, the Captain Gore story (using the Captain Blood name) is incorporated into the backstory of Master Gracey in a manner that blends the story of the Mansion with Pirates of the Caribbean. After mutinying against his captain Randall Pace (who became the Hatbox Ghost), he took on the alias of Captain Blood. He became one of the most successful pirates operating in the Caribbean, but when the Golden Age of Piracy went into decline, he betrayed his crew and retired to New Orleans, again assuming the Gracey name.
The Buccaneer's Heart!
A character inspired by Captain Gore serves as the antagonist of the Disney Kingdoms series. He is simply referred to as the "Sea Captain" or "The Captain" and appears to be a combination between the Mariner portrait and Captain Gore. Though it isn't Captain Gore himself, the character directly alludes to him multiple times. He has trapped all the ghosts in the mansion with a curse and seeks a treasure guarded by Constance Hatchaway. The Sea Captain was eventually beheaded by Constance due to simply being an annoyance to her and "pirates sing too much". His head is kept locked away in one of the Hatbox Ghost's hatboxes.
Gore appears in the book Tales from the Haunted Mansion Volume IV: Memento Mori within the story, "A Pirate's Death for Me" (a play on the song from Pirates of the Caribbean). In this story he is a captain of a ship called The Bloodmere (a name taken from a different unused Ken Anderson script) which got wrecked on an island called Displeasure Island (a play on the Disney Parks location, Pleasure Island). In this story he is said to possess a lobster-claw for a left-hand used to decapitate enemies, making his appearance similar to that of Davy Jones.
At World's End
A depiction of Bartholomew Roberts' ghost appears as a boss-fight in Davy Jones' Locker in this game.
A character named Black Barty appears in the Pirates of the Caribbean levels of this game as well as him appearing in New Orleans Square. This character does not resemble the historic Roberts nor the Anderson/Davis incarnation of the character however and is merely a reimagining of Jack Sparrow.
Casey Jones' Haunted Mansion line for vinylmation identified the sea captain in the ballroom as "Captain Bartholomew Gore".
- Another character by the name of Black Bart used to appear in Disneyland's Frontierland as an outlaw walk-around character. Rather than depicting Bartholomew Roberts, this was an adaptation of real-life outlaw Charles E. Boles AKA Black Bart.
- Captain Gore is similar to the Mistress of Evil and the Bandido Gang in that they are all antagonists in Disney Kingdoms comics who originate from unused scripts/attractions with the Mistress of Evil even coming from another unused Haunted Mansion script.