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Alan-A-Dale is based off the minstrel of the same name from various Robin Hood legends and is depicted as a rooster. Alan-a-Dale only states his name at the beginning of the film, where he also introduces himself as a minstrel. He functions as the film's narrator, using songs to tell the story. He is always seen with his mandolin. Alan's comb on his head appears also with 4 or 5 points on his comb during in the movie.
Alan-A-Dale first appears in the film's opening, where he introduces himself and them begins telling the story of Robin Hood, starting from when Robin Hood and Little John are escaping from The Sheriff of Nottingham and his posse, during the song sequence "Oo-De-Lally".
Alan-A-Dale next appears as a viewer of Prince John's archery tournament. Together with Friar Tuck, he shoots down Sir Hiss, by using his mandolin together with an arrow to form a makeshift bow. The two then trap Sir Hiss in a barrel of ale.
The rooster's next major appearance is in the town jail, where he informs the viewers of Prince John's orders to: increase the taxes and imprison any townspeople who cannot pay. He then reveals that he has been imprisoned as well, and performs the song, "Not In Nottingham", which tells of the people's despair.
Alan-a-Dale's final appearance is at the end of the film, where he reveals that King Richard has returned and set everything right. He hears the church bells and rushes to the church, where it is revealed that Robin Hood and Maid Marian have wed.
Alan-A-Dale is seen briefly in the episode "King Larry Swings In".
- The Troubadour, a character from The Three Musketeers, has a similar role to Alan-A-Dale: both of them are anthropomorphic animals who narrate a story set in medieval times with music.
- In the French version of Robin Hood, Alan-A-Dale is identified as an animal version of Adam de la Halle, a famous medieval French songwriter.
- In the scene where he introduces the Sheriff of Nottingham, Alan-a-Dale was originally supposed to be spotted by the villain, at which point he would've run away.
- He is probably based on Chanticleer the Rooster from the play of the same name by Edmund Rostand. It is very likely that his lead animator Milt Kahl drew inspiration for his design from the sketches that Marc Davis drew for Disney's never-completed 1960 adaptation of the play.