- “The Monkey's the eye in the sky. he sees everything.”
- ―Chatter Telephone
Role in the film
The Monkey is a cymbal-banging monkey toy at Sunnyside Daycare. He doesn't speak, but he does make screeching monkey noises.
The Monkey is first seen being played by Bonnie Anderson when the much older Ms. Davis goes to Sunnyside to donate the toys and meets Bonnie's mother, and Bonnie is extremely shy to talk to Andy's mom.
During the times when Sunnyside is under Lotso's regime, the Monkey has worked under Lotso as a nighttime guard watching all the security cameras in his office. Every time a toy tries to escape, the Monkey pushes a button that turns on the P.A. and screeches loudly into it while banging his cymbals together repeatedly, alerting Lotso and his other nighttime guard toys to capture that toy like a security alarm.
When Woody returns to Sunnyside to rescue his imprisoned friends, the Chatter Telephone tells information about the Monkey to Woody and says that he'll have to get rid of the Monkey if he wants to escape.
That night, the Monkey is busy focusing his eyes on one camera where Ken, Big Baby, and the reset Buzz have cornered Mr. Potato Head (who escaped from his cell and left a real potato in it) that he doesn't notice Slinky coming out of his cell in the Caterpillar Room through another camera. Woody and Slinky quietly go through the vent into the Monkey's office. With Slinky grabbing hold of Woody and swinging him, Woody tries to put a plastic black bag over the Monkey's face, but the Monkey has already noticed them, and he quickly turns around and screeches at Woody, making him and Slinky fall on the Monkey due to getting startled. The Monkey and Woody both get up, and the Monkey turns and hisses at the surprised Woody and scatters off to go tell Lotso. However, before he can reach the door, Woody trips him over with his string. This then leads to a brief fight, in which the Monkey overpowers Woody by repeatedly banging his cymbals on Woody's face. Woody tells Slinky to grab a nearby scotch tape, and the Monkey screeches in horror when he turns to see Slinky charging toward him. Woody and Slinky then tie him up with the tape (like a mummy) and lock him in a filing cabinet.
Lotso's later knowledge of Woody and his friends' escaping in the first place is not revealed, but it is likely that the Monkey has managed to free himself and alert Lotso, leading to Lotso beating up the Chatter Telephone for information on Woody's whereabouts.
During the film credits, the Monkey has returned to his position of monitoring security cameras at night again after Sunnyside is revolutionized into a cool and groovy toy paradise by Barbie and Ken, Sunnyside's new leaders. Seeing a disco party taking place at the Butterfly Room through one of the security cameras, the Monkey, also enjoying the disco, puts on his star-shaped sunglasses and starts playing his clash cymbals gently, indicating that he has reformed as well.
- It is very likely that director Lee Unkrich put a monkey in the film due to his love for monkeys.
- His sounds are reused from the Barrel of Monkeys.
- He's similar to the experimental monkey from the 1988 American horror film Monkey Shines.
- Despite being a monkey, it is actually a chimpanzee.
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