Many people have heard of the dread pirate LeChuck, scourge of the Caribbean - more specifically the tri-island area. Of course, he has been killed several times since he first took to the seas a while before The Secret of Monkey Island rolled around, published by LucasArts in 1990, which is why I’m writing about him.
How can he have been killed multiple times? Is he immortal? Do his fatal wounds heal? Does he bathe in milk squeezed from day-old kittens? No, it’s simply voodoo magic. Voodoo in the Monkey Island series is very powerful, wresting spirits from their long sleep, controlling minds, making body parts move of their own accord… So here is how it has aided LeChuck, since he perished whilst searching for Monkey Island.
1: Ghost Pirate LeChuck -
First appeared in The Secret of Monkey Island, where he was terrorising the Tri-Island area in an effort to stop everyone else from being a pirate, then the object of his affections - Governor Elaine Marley - would finally fall for him. However, whilst putting together the final touches, Guybrush Threepwood turned up and managed to douse him in root beer, which is inexplicably strong enough to kill a spirit.
2: Zombie Pirate LeChuck -
Returning in Monkey Island 2: LeChuck’s Revenge, the still-living beard of LeChuck was stolen from Guybrush and used to resurrect the dread pirate. Deciding to avenge himself against Guybrush before again pursuing Elaine, he eventually lured Threepwood back to Monkey Island. The two battled with voodoo dolls, but just as the hero seemingly had the upper hand LeChuck used a voodoo curse to make him think he was a child, playing with his brother Chucky - thereby surviving.
3: Demon Pirate LeChuck -
His attentions back on Elaine in The Curse of Monkey Island, LeChuck was unprepared for Guybrush’s unexpected escape from the curse - which resulted in a voodoo cannon ball blowing up LeChuck’s zombie form. He soon returned as the Demon Pirate LeChuck, having harnessed the power of Big Whoop (and subsequently building an amusement park upon it) to return from the dead. Capturing Elaine and Guybrush, with the intent of marrying an undead Elaine and killing Guybrush, he strapped the hero into a rollercoaster car and sent him to his doom. Unfortunately, he was trapped under tons of ice due to Threepwood being the luckiest pirate alive.
4: Giant Statue LeChuck -
In Escape from Monkey Island, Demon Pirate LeChuck was rescued from the ice by an anti-pirate businessman. Together they made LeChuck into the ultimate evil: a politician. After some wheeling and dealing, he sent Guybrush to Monkey Island with no means of escape. LeChuck used his power to obtain The Ultimate Insult™, though his plans to use it against Elaine and force her to become his bride were foiled when Guybrush returned piloting the giant monkey mecha that was hidden inside Monkey Island. Using his voodoo power to enter and take control of a giant statue of himself, the two entered Monkey Kombat - until LeChuck stood on The Ultimate Insult™ and destroyed himself.
5: Demon Pirate God LeChuck (with bonus Human Pirate LeChuck) -
The five chapter Tales of Monkey Island begins with LeChuck being accidentally turned back into a human by Guybrush. This form is the least terrifying, given he is a terrible pirate. He wants to be like Threepwood and make amends for kidnapping one hundred monkeys - and all the murdering. Thankfully it’s just a ruse, as eventually he double-crosses Guybrush and finally kills him. He uses La Esponja Grande (a voodoo sponge full of - well - voodoo magic) to open a portal to the afterlife and soak up the voodoo energy, turning him into a Demon Pirate God. He uses La Esponja to finally make Elaine his demonic bride, but is foiled when Guybrush uses a voodoo spell to bring himself back to life - returning Elaine to humanity and trapping LeChuck inside the portal. There he was stabbed simultaneously by Elaine and a ghost, destroying him for good.