The Beagle Boys are a group of thugs from the Scrooge McDuck comics, loosely based on the popular image of Ma Barker and the Barker-Karpis Gang. They are a gang of criminals who constantly try to rob Scrooge and were created by Carl Barks.
Their introduction and first appearance was in Walt Disney's Comics and Stories #134, in the Carl Barks comic Terror of the Beagle Boys. In more recent productions such as DuckTales and The Three Musketeers, the Beagle Boys sometimes appear as henchmen for Flintheart Glomgold, Magica De Spell, or Pete. They are still some of the most frequently appearing Disney comic characters, having gained huge popularity among Disney fans over the years.
In the comics, the individual Beagle Boys are referred to by their prison numbers, indicated on the tags seen on the chests of their distinctive red shirts (which appeared as orange in the comics). The three most common numbers are 176-167, 176-671, and 176-761. In fact, no digits other than one, six, or seven appeared on their prison ID tags. Carl Barks used to include the words "Beagle Boys, Inc." on their shirts under their numbers, which was later deleted. In later years, they appeared in the comics as a trio (some combination of the most common numbers with 671-176, 716-617 and 176-176), plus cousins and other relatives of various talents as spin-off characters. They live in a small tumbledown hide-out in Duckburg; in 1980s American-produced stories, their pet cat Ratty often lived there as well.
The Beagle Boys have lots of relatives who count each other as brothers and cousins: apart from their mother Ma Beagle there are the Beagle Brats (their rascal nephews), the Beagle Babes (a trio of female cousins) and their grandfather Grandpa Beagle. The brains of the Beagle clan is Intellectual-176 (or I-176) who wears a mortar-board cap and glasses over his black mask. Grandma and Grandpa Beagle have appeared in the comics at various times.
In Don Rosa's The Life and Times of Scrooge McDuck, Scrooge first meets The Beagle Boys in his Mississippi riverboat days. Those Beagle Boys include Blackheart Beagle and his three unnamed sons. In the same comic book series, Scrooge first meets the modern Beagle Boys, during the Christmas at which he first met his grandnephews Huey, Dewey and Louie and met his nephew Donald again. Since then, the Beagle Boys have been a constant threat to Scrooge's huge money bin.
Sometimes they team up with other villains such as Magica De Spell, Black Pete, or Madam Mim, or they hire out their services to Flintheart Glomgold, Ollie Eiderduck or John D. Rockerduck. During these occasions, it should be noted, they continue to operate out of their own interests rather than their employers.
Although the characters are obviously based on dogs, they in no way resemble the actual beagle breed.
The Italian band Banda Bassotti based its name upon the Italian name of the gang.
Appearances in animation
In the short, the Beagle Boys try to win the one-million trophy of the football competition, which was accidentally provided as a prize by Scrooge. Here, they were voiced by Will Ryan.
On DuckTales, the Beagle Boys were given names and different personalities. The usual character combination is Big Time, Burger and Bouncer and/or Baggy; or Babyface, Bugle and Bankjob. Other known names are Bomber and Blitzkrieg. Their leader is usually Big Time, Bankjob or their mother Ma Beagle. Like in the comics, the Beagles often team up with Scrooge McDuck's other enemies, particularly Flintheart Glomgold or Magica De Spell.
In addition to the seven regularly-recurring Beagle Boys, other Beagles introduced on DuckTales include
|Bigtime Beagle||167-671||Bigtime is the usual leader of the group, and is distinguished by being rather short for someone with the word "Big" in his name. He often has to correct his companions whenever they get something wrong and mishear his directions. Voiced by Frank Welker.|
|Burger Beagle||761-176||As his name suggests, Burger has a large appetite, although it is for more than just hamburgers. He has a habit of rambling about food no matter if any of the others are actually talking about it. He also isn't very bright. Incidentally, his comic counterpart (who had the second placard number) is known for a special appreciation for prunes and his curious culinary tastes (i.e. catsup on ice cream or peanut butter pizza with gravy). Voiced by Chuck McCann.|
|Bouncer Beagle||716-167||Distinguishable for his teeth, one of which is missing. The strongest Beagle after Bankjob. Voiced by Chuck McCann.|
|Baggy Beagle||617-716||Baggy is distinguishable for his silly grin as well as his loose-fitting clothing. He's probably the least intelligent of the Beagle Boys as well. Voiced by Frank Welker.|
|Babyface Beagle||176-167||As his name suggests, Babyface seems to be the youngest of the primary Beagles, as evidenced by the fact that his own clothing matches those of a baby, including a propellor beanie in place of the usual hat. Like Bigtime, he's also rather short. In spite of this, his voice, provided by Terry McGovern (who also voices Launchpad), sounds more manly than that of Burger. Strangely, one particular comic story in Disney Adventures prominently featured Babyface, wherein he infiltrated Webby's class. But he looked different from how he did on the show, and he also had a conscience, as he ended up rebelling against his brothers during a field trip to Scrooge's Money Bin. (He still ended up being arrested along with his brothers, though.)|
|Bugle/Bebop Beagle||671-761||Bebop, or Bugle, depending on the episode, is the poetic member of the Beagle Boys (despite the fact that the comic Beagle with this character trait corresponds by placard to Babyface), and even dresses in a jazz-styled outfit. Voiced by Brian Cummings.|
|Bankjob Beagle||671-167||Bankjob usually leads the group in episodes where Bigtime isn't present. He is the largest of the seven main Beagles (by comparison, he is about the same size as Launchpad), and the strongest. Voiced by Peter Cullen.|
In the direct-to-video film Mickey, Donald and Goofy: The Three Musketeers, three Beagle Boys make an appearance working as minions for Captain Pete. These three Beagle Boys are different from previous incarnations as they have grayish skin, British accents and wear hoods. Two of the Beagle Boys are tall and the third one is rather short.
The boys are first seen at Princess Minnie's palace preparing to murder her by dropping a safe onto her. Their attempt fails, and they run off to tell their boss, who is revealed to be Pete, the captain of the musketeers. Pete is outraged by the Beagle Boys as the plan was not to murder the princess but to kidnap her only. The boys are then banished to a pit as punishment while the pit is actually adequate. Later on, by orders of Minnie, Pete assigns three janitors, Mickey, Donald and Goofy, to protect her as musketeers. Pete believing they'll do a terrible job, orders the Beagle Boys to kidnap Minnie with high hopes of success. However, upon the Beagles' return, Pete realizes the three are better musketeers than he thought and advises a plan to pick them off one by one. Pete and Clarabelle go after Mickey and Goofy respectively, while the Beagles lure Donald into Pete's lair to be decapitated. Time restrictions force Pete's plan to take place at the grand opera where Mickey, Donald and Goofy reveal to survive their planned deaths and battle the Beagles. Pete interferes and seemingly murders Donald and Goofy along with the Beagles. Pete feels no remorse for the loss of his henchmen and continues with his plans. The Beagles are not seen or mentioned again in the film after that, but in the comic book adaptation, they are shown being arrested along with Pete.
Some of the Beagle Boys make cameo appearances in the Darkwing Duck episode "In Like Blunt", along with Magica De Spell and Flintheart Glomgold, among the bidders for the secret S.H.U.S.H. agent list.
The Beagle Boys made a cameo appearance in the Goof Troop episode
A Beagle Boy made a cameo appearance in the Bonkers episode "The 29th Page".
An unnamed Beagle was seen during the "A Very Goofy Christmas" segment of Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas in a cameo role. In the middle of the short, the Beagle Boy in question was seen robbing Pete's house and was mistaken for Santa Claus by Goofy and Max until the police arrived.
Video game appearances
The Beagle Boys appear as recurring enemies in each of the levels. Getting injured by them will also cause Scrooge to lose some money. The HD remake expands their role in the game, with Big Time, Burger, and Bouncer appearing as sub-bosses in the Transylvania level.
The Beagle Boys appear as bosses in the Duckburg level.
The version of the Beagle Boys from The Three Musketeers appear in Dream Drop Distance, where they appear in the world, Country of the Musketeers as figments of the dream the world is having. Like in the film, they work for Pete, trying to kidnap Princess Minnie for his nefarious plot to seize the throne. However, unlike the film, they fight Sora and Riku; Sora defeats them while saving the princess in the Tower, and they try hiding from Riku to keep the Stage Prop away from him to keep Pete's trap for the musketeers from being undone.
During the time of DuckTales and the popular Disney Afternoon block, the Beagles occasionally appeared as meet-and-greet characters, as well as taking part in some special promotional material involving other park characters. However, as of yet, the Beagles no longer make live appearances at the Disney parks.
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