Tarzan of the Apes – Characters Study

Tarzan of the Apes – Storyline

The history of Tarzan begins when his parents decided to move to a tropical island. He was just a baby when a leopard killed both his parents. Not long before that, a family of apes just had their baby killed by the same leopard.

Fortunately for Tarzan, the mother of the baby ape heard Tarzan’s cry from a distance. She ran over to Tarzan and found him in a huge tree house his parents built. She found him and rescued him before the leopard could attack him. From then on, she raised him as her very own but sadly her husband wasn’t entirely happy about it.tarzan_disney9

As he was growing up, he was just like many other kids, very playful. He is always running around with his pal Turk. Every day is just fun joy and laughter for them. When Tarzan grew up, he killed the leopard that killed his parents he didn’t knew he had.Turk-and-Tarzan-classic-disney-564024_426_240

Not long after that, the island was greeted by a group of humans and was shocked to see that he wasn’t alone. He then began to fall for the female human, Jane. Jane tried to teach Tarzan how to speak English.

Over the few days, Tarzan learned how to speak the most basic of English. During this period of time, Tarzan also brought Jane around the island to explore things she had not seen before.Tarzan_1

The way the artist drew Tarzan when he grew up was with lots of muscles since the general idea was because he had been swinging and climbing trees. His face is always having the in tensed look as he is always on high alert for any threat but when he is around Jane, he becomes very relaxed. His hair is always in a mess ever since he was young.

When the leader of the tribe, Kurjak, gets shot while trying to prevent the tribe from being kidnapped, he finally accepted Tarzan as his son just before he died and let him be in charge of the tribe.

Jane and her father had to go back to London. They waved goodbye to Tarzan and were off. She didn’t feel comfortable leaving Tarzan, so she jumped off the boat and into the water. She swam back to the island just wanting to be reunited with Tarzan and she told him she was staying.Tarzan-Wallpaper-walt-disneys-tarzan-6248939-1024-768

Tarzan’s Character Design Study:


The body was built in an odd way where it changes the human perspective to an ape form. The backbone is curved more inwards thus lowering down his way to stand and the way he moves.

His body is a bit muscular where it will show that he is able to defend for himself and it makes up the difference of strength between a human and an ape. His height also was tall and therefore, he is able to move around as fast..tarzan6


The way they designed the hands is special in a way where they are trying to mix how apes walk or run into a human therefore making Tarzan to walk/run in all fours.

However they designed Tarzan’s hand as similar to an ape, for example, they made Tarzan to walk with his bare knuckles and thus bringing his whole body posture to the ground.Tarzan-model-sheet-hands


Tarzan was built in a rather odd way with his body and hands being so different from a normal human being. Therefore with that in mind he was given an attractive pair of eyes where he is constantly watching out for his surroundings.

However instead of giving him a silky long hair, they made him with a con rows kind of hair where is rough and it makes him an overall look of a caveman. But with that in thought, it somehow suits him overall with the way he walks and the way his hair is used to show the same thickness of hair the gorillas have.Tarzan_and_Kerchak

Body Posture:

Tarzan body posture was different from a normal ape. His spine was curved way down to show how beastly he looks and it counters against not having that much of hair against the apes that are naturally hairy.

Even when Tarzan stands, his body was not that much of a straight as he was brought up by an ape mom. His life spending time with the apes has changes his body posture to where he was not that easily recognized as a human by the opposite sex who came to the island. Even when he was fighting and playing his whole body posture changes.tumblr_lqjrc9WTn61r0ehs2o1_1280

Tarzan’s body posture, character and the way he perceives things is largely due to the fact that he was raised by the animals around him; mainly apes. Found by an ape that strayed away from it’s group to investigate his cries and wailings, Tarzan was picked up and adopted when he was still in his early stages of life.

Raised as part of the pack then after, it was deemed natural that Tarzan would pick up the usual habits and inherit the similar characteristics the apes had in the group he belonged to.

Thus he developed the same habits similar to how children nowadays resemble and pick up the habits of their parents. Tarzan was simply adopted, nurtured and taught to be like one of the apes.

Deriving from that we can assert that Tarzan would have simply, by default, grow up to be similar to the apes that nurtured and took care of him, both characteristically and physically.

Tarzan’s physical stature, agility and heavy build is mainly caused by the environment he lives in. As he was used to having to keep his guard up from wild animals that would attack him and such, his expressions would usually remain tensed and serious.

Growing up as a “wild” man, it is unusual for him to have a rugged stature and personality. Also, “wildmen” need “wild hair”, so having raggae and messy hair is just usual fashion for them.

Tarzan never required to cut his hair, so was unkempt and it made him look tardy. Living in the thick of a jungle, Tarzan is forced to use all his strength and muscle to climb and travel across vast distances.

Also, living among animals that are normally much stronger than average human beings, it is not unbelievable that Tarzan’s physical prowess would match those of the apes around him, also inherently due to the fact that he was raised amongst them.

It is also not surprising that Tarzan would grow up to walk like the apes around him; travelling on all fours, using his knuckles acting as the base of his fore quarters instead of using the whole palms of both his hands.

Crouching most of the time, Tarzan’s characteristics from a physical standpoint clearly resembles that of the apes that both nurtured and took care of him; again proving the fact that he picked up most of the habits of the apes, thus explaining the reason he has such a character.

Tarzan’s behaviour towards humans are somehow surprising. As an example, Tarzan lacked etiquette and respect when he first met another human being; Jane. His actions were aggressive in nature and lacked intelligence, but unbeknown to him that he was actually “human”, it would be considered just normal for him to act the way he was; like an animal; again reminding that he was raised by apes.

Tarzan soon began to understand that Jane was actually a female, the opposite of his own gender, and soon found out that he would be attracted to her. Tarzan seemed surprised when he first came into contact with humans.

Towards the animals around him, Tarzan acted naturally as he was a part of them, but it kept bothering him as to why he did not resemble them. Towards humans, he seemed to be unable to understand why he looked similar to them, but yet, have never seen or heard of them before.

Thus, he expressed curiousness and a keen attitude to want to know more about these “creatures”. Due to that, he would soon realise and accept the fact that he was actually “human”.

One point in Tarzan’s character stood firm perhaps, unmoved from all these external struggles, and that characteristic is the fact that Tarzan would always stand firm to protect those that are beloved to him, no matter “creature” nor “animal”.


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