Corey the Manticore is a major character in the 2020 Disney/Pixar animated feature film Onward. She is a manticore restaurant owner who the Lightfoot Brothers (Ian and Barley) go to for help on their quest.
Centuries ago, Corey, known simply as 'The Manticore', was a fearless adventurer known throughout the land by many intrepid adventurers, explorers, warriors, and wizards. She opened up her own tavern, where she would help aspiring adventurers to get started in undertaking dangerous quests.
Alas, like the rest of the world as it forgot magic in favor of technological conveniences, The Manticore, later going by the name Corey, turned her Tavern into a fantasy medieval-themed family restaurant and forgot her own original passion and love for adventuring, as she settled into the modern world as an uptight business-owner. She even sold her personal sword, Curse Crusher, to a pawn shop in order to take care of financial issues.
When she first appears in the film, Corey is an uptight and somewhat flustered and overworked restaurant owner, who is concerned with her business and curt with those around her as she tries to keep things running smoothly. She refused to help the Lightfoot brothers when they came to her for help, as she didn't want to be liable for any harm that befell them, even after they explained why they came to her.
When Ian points out a personal quote Corey had framed above her self-portrait from her glory days as an adventurer, Corey experienced a mid-life crisis, realizing she didn't like the person she had become, and went on a ferocious rampage around her tavern.
After calming down, she realized she'd forgotten to tell the boys about a curse regarding the gem they were looking for and was determined to do something about it as she joined forces with the boys' mother, Laurel, to reacquire her sword, Curse Crusher, to combat the curse.
Corey is brave, daring, dramatic, and not afraid to risk life and limb to have a great adventure, feelings she forgot as the world moved on from magic until she got a wake-up call and realized she didn't like the person she had become.
After the whole adventure, Corey reopened her tavern but this time remained true to her self while making her tavern even more successful.
Role in the film
Corey first appears when her restaurant was visited by two teenage elf brothers, Ian and Barley Lightfoot, who'd come to her, seeking guidance to find a new Phoenix Gem in order to complete a spell to bring back their father where they see the Manticore who would be able to help the elf brothers. Corey refused to help them, since she didn't want to be liable for anything happening to them until Ian confronted Corey about her days as an adventurer and Corey was reminded of her own glory days in such a way that she looked around her business as though she were waking to a nightmare and realized she did not like the person she had become. Suddenly experiencing something of a mid-life crisis, she viciously scared away her customers and accidentally set her restaurant on fire.
Later, after the emergency responders arrived, Corey met the mother of the brothers who'd shaken her perspective and suddenly remembered, she forgot to tell them about a curse regarding the gem they were seeking. Going with Laurel, Corey explained that the curse would activate should the gem be removed from its hiding place and summon up a dragon-like beast and the only way to destroy it was with her sword, the Curse Crusher. Unfortunately, she'd sold it to a pawn shop owner, forcing Laurel to make a stop there. Due to muttering to herself about Curse Crusher being one of a kind and forged from rare metals, the pawn shop opener Greckle tried to charge a huge amount of money for them to buy it. After a brief argument, Corey stung Greckle with her stinger, temporarily paralyzing her, and they made off with the sword though Laurel did pay some money for it.
Continuing their journey to find Laurel's sons, they accidentally drove off-road when one of the members of the Pixie Dusters crashed onto the windshield, wrecking Laurel's car. Laurel then convinced Corey she could fly them even though Corey hadn't flown for a while.
Despite this, Corey found the strength and resolve to fly, with Laurel on her back, her sword in hand, and they descended upon the stone-dragon that appeared as a result of the cursed Phoenix Gem that Barley had found. Corey bravely cut off the stone dragon's wings but was knocked down and rendered unable to move due to a back injury. Laurel took up Curse Crusher and continued the battle to aid her son, Ian, who wielded magic with his father's wizard staff. Working together, Laurel and her son slew the dragon sculpture, saving everyone.
Later during the epilogue, Corey returned to her tavern and had a grand re-opening, this time keeping true to her self as an adventurer while still making her place of business fun and exciting.
- Corey's name may have been derived from the name of her own species (manticore).
- Although she is a manticore despite her name, she is depicted with an actual lion's head instead of a man's head (one of the common characteristics of a manticore) in mythology. Like in modern depictions, Corey is depicted with wings despite the historical records mentioning the manticore did not have wings.
- Corey is Octavia Spencer's second role in an animated film after having previously voiced Mrs. Otterton in the 2016 Disney animated film, Zootopia.