Pabbie is described as being as old as the Earth. He resides in the Valley of the Living Rock alongside a colony of trolls, all of whom have the ability to morph into rocks to hide themselves from the outside world. Pabbie is unique amongst the colony, as he possesses magical abilities beyond his rock transformation, the most notable of which is his ability to heal the sick and injured. Though the existence of Pabbie and his trolls is mainly believed to be mere folklore, King Agnarr was made aware of their valley—as well as Pabbie's healing magic—through an old book stored away in Arendelle Castle, revealing that Pabbie has crossed paths with the outside world before.
Pabbie and the trolls are derived from the Troll from the original Snow Queen tale. Contrary to the fairy tale, the trolls are actually benevolent and instead of causing one of the protagonist's curse, Pabbie is ironically the one who heals the protagonist from the curse.
Originally, Pabbie served as the film's narrator, and spoke with a Brooklyn accent. This iteration of Pabbie was livelier and wisecracking, compared to the solemn character seen in the final film. Some early artwork portrayed him as having red hair, and a walking stick. He also had a song in early versions of the movie, which was ultimately replaced by "Fixer Upper".
Being the king, and quite possibly the oldest member of the troll community, Pabbie has notable differences when it comes to physical features. For instance, he has a mane, much like a lion, making him stand out for the others and symbolizing his position as ruler of the valley. He also dons a flowing green cloak, which appears to be made primarily of moss. And though this is a minor feature, he is the only troll with noticeable eyebrows, that are on the rather bushy side that match the color of his mane. And if you look closely, you can see that Pabbie is the only troll with hair in his ears that also match the color of his mane. Interestingly enough, an outfit greatly similar to Pabbie's was given to Kristoff during the wedding ceremony created by the trolls, indicating, for the troll community at least, Pabbie's outfit is completely royal attire. He is also the only troll who wears yellow crystals, in contrast to the other trolls who wear blue and green crystals for males, and red and pink crystals for females. This likely signifies his leadership role within the community.
Powers and abilities
Shamanistic Healing: Pabbie most notable talent is the ability to heal the weak and injured, including injuries caused by magical elements, such as Elsa's power over ice and snow; revealing himself to be a shaman. However, his powers have some limitation, an example being his inability to cure a "frozen heart" curse, which can only be remedied by an act of true love.
Mind Manipulation: Pabbie can erase and alter the minds and memories of others, as he did with Anna early on in the film.
Connection to the Aurora Borealis: Grand Pabbie can influence the aurora borealis (or the northern lights) that reign over Norway, to conjure images and create visions; a talent he demonstrated during his first meeting with Elsa and the royal family.
Magic Sensitivity: Pabbie has a connection to elements of magic and the supernatural. Without word or physical evidence, he is able to sense when magic has entered his valley. Through physical contact, Pabbie can also garner a full understanding of a magical curse that has inflicted one's body, such as its source, properties, and remedy.
Pabbie is first seen when King Agnarr and Queen Iduna visit the Valley of the Living Rock, seeking assistance after their daughter, Princess Elsa (who was born with powers over ice and snow) accidentally struck her younger sister, Princess Anna, in the head with her magic. The trolls part for Pabbie to come onto the scene, and the wise troll examines the unconscious Anna's injury. Pabbie cures Anna by cleansing out every ounce of magic within her and alter her memories so she won't remember Elsa's powers, only the fun that they had. Afterward, Pabbie informs Elsa that it's crucial for her to learn to control her abilities, as they can be very dangerous. He warns her that "fear will be her enemy". In response, Agnarr assures Pabbie that he and Iduna will do whatever they can to keep Elsa's powers from harming those around her.
Years later, Elsa's powers were revealed to the world, including Anna, having her flee the kingdom and accidentally causing an eternal winter. Anna goes out to find her, with the help of Kristoff. When she does, however, Elsa accidentally strikes Anna in the heart with her magic, causing her to slowly freeze to death. Noticing this, Kristoff believes Pabbie can heal her, and guides her to the Valley of the Living Rock. A little while after they arrive, Pabbie senses strange magic in the area. Kristoff explains what happened, but Pabbie explains that he's unable to save her, unfortunately. However, he informs them that an act of true love will break the frozen curse, but if they fail to do so in time, Anna will become frozen solid forever, killing her. With these heavy thoughts in mind, Kristoff and Anna rush back to Arendelle to break the curse.
In the LEGO special, Anna, Elsa, Olaf, Kristoff and Sven visit the Valley of the Living Rock to question Grand Pabbie about the disappearance of Arendelle's northern lights. The trolls - who take advantage of Pabbie's absence by throwing a party - tell the visitors that Grand Pabbie headed off on the northern trail, prompting Anna to lead a mission to find him. When they do, Pabbie explains that every 500 years, he uses four crystals to refract the northern lights to reign over Arendelle, and they didn't appear on schedule because he only had one, and was waiting for Anna, Kristoff and Elsa to bring him the other three crystals.
Grand Pabbie will return in the sequel Frozen II where he instructs Anna, Elsa, and their friends to travel north after sensing Arendelle is in grave danger.
He is the first to recognize that the spirits of nature have awoken and are angry, though he is not sure exactly why. He also worries that Elsa's power alone may not be enough to take them on. He warns thae group that there is much about the past that is not what it seems and that the spirits will challenge them every step of the way.
An emoticon version of Pabbie appeared in the Frozen entry of the As Told by Emoji short series.
Grand Pabbie listens to the plight of one of the royal princesses, Gerda, as she expresses sorrow at losing her sisters, Ingrid and Helga. He consoles her and asks how it happened, but she refuses to speak of it out of grief. Due to the unknown tragedy, Gerda requests a memory potion powerful enough to wipe everyone's memories of her sisters. Pabbie agrees to help her, but he warns the truth has a way of coming out one way or the other and that there will be a magical price extracted at her expense. Nonetheless, Gerda consents, and soon after, all of Arendelle forgets Ingrid and Helga.
Years later, Gerda becomes Queen of Arendelle and has two daughters, Elsa and Anna. When Elsa exhibits icy powers, she and her husband decide to visit Mist Haven to find a solution. They take the voyage under the guise of a diplomatic mission to the Northern Isles, but the royals reveal to Pabbie of where they are actually headed. On their homebound trip, Gerda and her husband die in a storm as Elsa becomes the next Queen. While planning Anna's wedding to Kristoff, the sisters discover their mother's diary ambiguously referencing their reason for traveling out of Arendelle was due to their eldest daughter's magic. Anna and Elsa then consult Pabbie for answers, and he admits their parents were going to Mist Haven, though their reason for it is not known to him.
When Anna visits Pabbie again, she brings a companion, Belle, who wishes to reclaim lost memories of her mother's death. Using magic, he extracts them from Belle's mind and transforms it into a stone. Pabbie instructs her to return to the place where she lost her memories, boil the stone in a tea and drink it to remember what was lost. With Belle's matter settled, Anna privately asks him about a woman, Ingrid, claiming to be her deceased mother's sister. Anna is in disbelief, as she believes her mother has no sisters, but he reveals Ingrid is not lying. Pabbie explains that her mother, Gerda, is the youngest of her two other sisters, Ingrid and Helga, and the three often played together as children. To his knowledge, he doesn't know how Ingrid and Helga disappeared, but it was a tragedy that prompted the two sisters to be erased from everyone's memories. Pabbie informs Anna of this, but he obscures that it was Gerda who requested her sisters' existences to be wiped clean. Worried for Elsa's safety and suspecting Ingrid is up to no good, Anna abruptly leaves with Belle.
Pabbie's likeness is featured during the Anna and Elsa's Frozen Fantasy event at Tokyo Disneyland, where a decorative statue of Pabbie can be seen near the main gate of the park. In the 2016 rendition, Pabbie's statue appears in front of Cinderella Castle.
According to the book Frozen: The Essential Guide, Pabbie is sensitive about his age, even refusing to disclose it.
His name is a play on the nickname 'Grand Pappy'.
The vision he shows Elsa about her abilities, even though it was supposed to mean what could happen if she lets her fear take control of her, hints to what happens in the future. The blue image of the adult Elsa is a silhouette of when she turns the courtyard into an ice rink after being accepted by the people for her magic. But in the red image, when her magic and the people attacking Elsa, it hints that once her powers, controlled by fear, are revealed to the public, they will become afraid of her, see her as a monster, and then some will even try to kill her or have her killed (Hans, the Duke of Weselton and his thugs).