Philoctetes, better known as Phil, is an old Satyr (half-man, half-goat) infamous for training heroes who, more often than not, end up as failures. He appears as the deuteragonist in Disney's 1997 film, Hercules, and its television series. He was voiced by Danny DeVito (and may also be a possible caricature of him) in the film and Robert Costanzo in the television series as well as in later appearances.
Phil has likely based on the satyr Pan, half-man and half-goat. He has two goat-like horns on his head, a beard, and a round red nose. And he is also bald.
Although he has a large heart, Phil can be easily ticked off. He dislikes others who ignore him or refuse to grant him respect. When not busy training heroes, he spends his time watching beautiful women and flirting with them, only to usually face rejection. A peculiar habit of his is announcing certain statements by saying their word count, then following with a sentence that fails to match the aforementioned count. He also has a rare condition called Pica by eating things that is not food. For example Phil eats a bowl (without fruit) and flowers.
At the command of his father, Hercules travels to Phil's island with Pegasus to begin his training. He stumbles upon Phil watching Nymphs bathing, angering the Satyr when they flee at his arrival. Hercules introduces himself and his purpose, though Phil refuses to hear his plea, insisting he had retired with the many failures he had trained in the past. Even with a tremendous display of strength and the claim that he is the son of Zeus, Phil refuses to believe him or train him. It isn't until a lightning bolt comically strikes Phil that he settles on taking the young teenager into his hands.
Years of training pass under Phil's counsel before he declares Hercules ready to begin his work. They begin flying to Thebes, a rough city in Greece, before being sidetracked by the cry of a damsel in distress. After Megara is rescued, Phil flirts with her but is rejected, distrusting her immediately. The trio of Pegasus, Hercules, and Phil then continue their flight to the misfortunate city, where Phil loses his patience with the disrespect shown by the citizens there. It isn't until Hercules defeats Hades' Hydra that Phil receives recognition for his efforts. From there on, Phil keeps Hercules on a strict schedule while enjoying the benefits of wealth and glory.
When Hercules goes off to train and accidentally leaves his mentor behind in a garden, Phil witnesses Meg speaking with Hades, who had Meg seduce Hercules in order to learn of a possible weakness. Phil hurries to the stadium in which Hercules is training and insists that Meg is tricking him. Hercules ignores him the first few times before becoming so overcome with anger that, to his own horror, he slaps Phil. At this, Phil gives up on Hercules and attempts to return home to his island during Hercules' most vulnerable hour. It takes Meg to convince Phil to forgive his student and help as the Titans attacked.
Hercules prevails in the end, and instead of becoming a god as he had often dreamed, he stays on Earth with Phil, Pegasus, and Meg. He is overcome by a sense of unrivaled pride when the stars form a constellation in the shape of Hercules and a man shouts, "That's Phil's boy!", giving him a true sense of fulfillment as a trainer.
Phil was a main character in the series that took place during Hercules training. He and Hercules would regularly go on adventures often stopping legendary beast or training to become the true hero he will eventually be.
Phil served major roles in a few episodes of the series. In "Hercules and the Living Legend", Achilles returns after his infamous injury rendered him unemployed. He reunites with Phil and secretly manipulates the satyr to rejoin his side as his personal trainer, thus abandoning Hercules. Unbeknownst to Hercules and Phil, Achilles was actually working for Hades, who wanted Phil out of Hercules life, knowing the hero was (at the time) nothing without his trainer. In the end, when Hercules and Phil are attacked by one of Hades' hired henchman, Achilles arrives, reformed, and saves the duo, learning his lesson after his deal with Hades became void.
In "Hercules and the Caledonian Boar", Phil takes Hercules on a hunting trip, where his old friends are introduced, as well as his old rival, Chiron, a much larger, hero-training satyr with a far grander track record, having trained some of the most legendary heroes of all time, much to Phil's dismay.
Phil also a major character in the special crossover episode, "Hercules and the Arabian Night". He is first seen training Hercules when the duo are attacked by the evil sorcerer Jafar, who has team up with Hades in a domination plot. Jafar conjures up a few giant monsters to destroy Hercules, but the hero defeats them, sending Jafar to the Underworld. Later on, Hercules receives word that his friend Icarus has been kidnapped by a boy named Aladdin. Hercules, Phil, and Pegasus, travels to Agrabah to save Icarus. There, Hercules and Aladdin battle, as Aladdin thinks Hercules kidnapped his monkey Abu. Eventually, the heroes realize that neither of them are the kidnappers. Upon mentioning Jafar's revival, Phil realizes that Jafar had to have team up with Hades. Hercules and Aladdin travel to the Underworld where they eliminate Jafar, leaving Hades to simply give up.
Phil made rare usually non-speaking cameos in the animated series usually seen sitting alongside Hercules and Megara. He had a speaking role in the episode "Donald Wants to Fly" when he and Hercules were witnessing Carpet's stunt. In the episode "Salute to Sports", Phil had his own advertisement at the end of the show promoting a training camp where he promised to have you go from zero to hero in twelve weeks.
Phil is a recurring series in the game featured in his homeworld Olympus Coliseum. Like the film, he's featured as the grumpy trainer for Hercules and once he encounters Sora, Donald, and Goofy, he shares their passion in wanting them to succeed and become true heroes.
He first appears in the original Kingdom Hearts, where he refuses Sora access into the coliseum games on account of the fact that he isn't a true hero. Sora challenges Phil and offers to show his skills, and nearly succeeds until Ceberus arrives and attacks. Phil escapes, leaving Sora, Donald, and Goofy to defeat the beast, proving to Phil what they're capable of. As a reward, Phil dubs the trio junior heroes.
In Kingdom Hearts II, Phil reunites with Sora and friends, happy to see them, but claims they still haven't got what it takes. At this time, Hercules has been fighting beast after beast without much rest, rendering him weak and upon eventual defeat. To help, Phil goes into the Underworld to find an "understudy" of sorts for the hero, wanting him to take a break from the action to rest up. He's instead attacked by Demyx, a member of an evil group known as Organization XIII. During the climax of the visit, Phil assists in the battle against the bloodthirsty Hydra. During the world's second visit, Sora and company finally earn their titles as true heroes, much to Phil's joy, though he tries to hide the proud tears.
Phil makes a larger appearance in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep. Set ten years before Sora, Phil is trainer a juvenile Hercules when he meets the wisecracking young fighter, Zack, who wishes to become a hero, begging Phil to train him. Phil claims he'll watch the two students (being Zack and Hercules) battle and decide from there. In the end, though, it's revealed that Phil never intended on leaving Herc in the dust, as he merely felt the young Demi-god had been slacking lately and used Zack as a way to boost his effort.
Though Phil was once a regular at the Disney parks, his appearances became less frequent in the 2000s and are now extremely rare.
During the original release of the film, an animatronic Phil was seen in the Hercules centric parade as the star of his very own, gym-themed float.
He still makes occasional appearances at Disneyland Paris.
- Animator Eric Goldberg used the character Grumpy from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, as a basis for Phil during creation.
- Phil bears a striking resemblance to his voice actor, Danny DeVito.
- Phil's character is somewhat inspired by Pan, the God of Nature. Pan is the same species as Phil, and they have a tendency to chase after Nymphs, like what Phil was doing when Hercules first met him. However, the Nymphs would always run from Pan due to his hideous face, with some even being turned into trees to keep them away from Pan. This also happened to Phil.
- The Kingdom Hearts series shows that Phil is almost as big as Donald Duck.
- Phil is similar to Jiminy Cricket in the sense that both characters try to guide the protagonist throughout their films, but one point leave due to the protagonist choosing to listen someone else (Lampwick, Megara) instead of them, leave in anger, but come back when the protagonist is in danger.
- Although Phil and Hades are enemies and have noticed each other for a bit (Phil when he discovers Meg works for him, Hades saying "Geez Louise, what's got HIS goat, huh?") they do not interact.
- Phil is similar to Yoda from Star Wars as he trains a hero in this case Hercules as well as being his mentor.
- Phil is very similar to Mulan's Yao as both are short, are short tempered, are tough and mock their film's protaginoist but eventually accept them.
- Apparently the residents of Thebes remember Phil as they recall him the one who trained Achilles.
Incorporated Films and shorts: Alice in Wonderland | Aladdin/The Return of Jafar | Beauty and the Beast | Cinderella | Fantasia | Hercules | The Hunchback of Notre Dame | Lilo & Stitch | The Lion King | The Little Mermaid | Mickey, Donald and Goofy: The Three Musketeers | Mulan | The Nightmare Before Christmas | Peter Pan | Pinocchio | Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl | Sleeping Beauty | Steamboat Willie | Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs | Tarzan | Tron/Tron: Legacy | The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
Villains: Master Xehanort | Ansem | Xemnas | Maleficent/Dragon Maleficent | Pete | Organization XIII | Vanitas | Xigbar/Braig | Xaldin | Vexen | Lexaeus | Zexion | Saïx/Isa | Demyx | Luxord | Marluxia | Larxene | Terra-Xehanort | Young Xehanort | Xehanort's Guardian
Other Characters: Jiminy Cricket | Naminé | Ansem the Wise/DiZ | Yen Sid | Xion | Axel/Lea | Master Eraqus | Dilan | Even | Aeleus | Ienzo | Lingering Will | Data Sora | Data Riku | Data Naminé | Data Roxas | Hayner | Pence | Olette | Riku-Ansem | Kairi's Grandma | Riku Replica | Anti-Saïx | Anti-Sora | Anti-Riku | Sora-Heartless | Jiminy's Journal
Disney Characters and Villains: Queen Minnie | Daisy Duck | Pluto | Tarzan | Winnie the Pooh | Aladdin | Genie | Tron | Magic Brooms | Peter Pan | Quasimodo | | Merlin | Tigger | Eeyore | Rabbit | Ariel | Mulan | Mushu | Jack Sparrow | Chernabog | Simba | Timon | Pumbaa | Nala | King Triton | Jafar/Genie Jafar | Alice | Cheshire Cat | Jack Skellington | Esmeralda | Phoebus | Beagle Boys | Scrooge McDuck | Huey, Dewey and Louie | Master Control Program | Sark | CLU | Rinzler | Beast | Stitch | Hercules | Tick-Tock the Crocodile | Snow White | Wendy (More coming soon)
Objects: Sea-salt ice cream | Wayfinder | Door to Darkness | Keyblade | X-blade | Mickey's Letters | Thalassa Shell | Kingdom Hearts Encoder | Keychain | Gummi Blocks | Bug Blox | Black coat| | Keyblade Armor
Locations: Land of Departure | Disney Castle | Disney Town | Timeless River | Datascape | Radiant Garden | Keyblade Graveyard | Destiny Islands | Traverse Town | Hollow Bastion | Dive to the Heart | End of the World | Realm of Darkness | Castle Oblivion | Twilight Town | The World That Never Was | Castle That Never Was | Halloween Town | Neverland | Wonderland
Music: Dearly Beloved | Simple and Clean | Sanctuary | Mickey Mouse Club March | Swim This Way | Part of Your World | Under the Sea | Ursula's Revenge | A New Day is Dawning | Destati | Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo | He's a Pirate | Beauty and the Beast | This is Halloween | It's a Small World | Night on Bald Mountain | Winnie the Pooh | The Sorcerer's Apprentice | The Pastoral Symphony
Soundtracks: Kingdom Hearts Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts Final Mix - Additional Tracks | Kingdom Hearts II Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts Original Soundtrack Complete | Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep & 358/2 Days Original Soundtrack | Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance Original Soundtrack