(This blog INCLUDES MINOR SPOILERS.)
You’ve all probably heard of a game called Undertale before. It took the world by storm when it was released, arguably shaping the internet itself. Even now, eight years later, the fandom is still kicking, a testament to the effects it had (and still has) on people.
Undertale was a big part of my life in the past. To be exact, it was a special interest of mine for years. I would listen to the phenomenal soundtrack on loop, I would watch playthroughs on T.V using YouTube, and I would eat up and create so much fan content, among other things. Every now and then I go back into a less intense version of my Undertale phase, which is what inspired me to write this blog! There’re so many incredible things about Undertale- the attention to even the smallest details, the comedy, the characters, the story, the music, the secrets, the charm- everything, really. Even now, though I’ve watched playthroughs like a billion times, I still find new things. All of these are great topics to discuss, but today I want to talk about my favorite character in the game: Papyrus.
Papyrus is a confident, energetic, optimistic, and extremely intelligent skeleton who thinks very highly of himself. He often refers to himself as ‘The Great Papyrus’ and commonly thinks he can’t be wrong, but not in a way I found annoying. Yes, he can be a bit insensitive at times, but I don’t think he means to be, he just doesn’t realize. In fact, I’ve noticed that he struggles with recognizing tone, which I appreciate to see in a character, albeit the reason being his optimism and naïve nature. Not to say he’s unaware when something big is wrong, but he gives one of his friends the same gift every time they train because he thinks she loves it. In reality, she just says thanks and puts them in a drawer.
Papyrus is also just so friendly and excitable, minus the attacking you to capture you and turn you over to the royal guard. Despite your soul being the key to freeing his species from their underground prison and fulfilling his dreams of joining the royal guard, Papyrus still hesitates to attack you. He stops himself in the middle of asking to be friends, telling himself he must capture you and turn you in. He’s one of the only monsters in game who doesn’t try to kill you, too. When your HP reaches zero, your soul stops taking damage and he just puts you in a big shed. He also gets really nervous when you have to face one of his legitimately deadly traps, so he turns it off before you can even do it. Papyrus also lies to Undyne, his closest friend, to ensure your safety, and that’s huge for him. He feels so bad lying, and says he just wants to be friends with everyone. IT HURTS MY SOUL. The reason he wants to join the royal guard in the first place is because he thinks it’ll get people to think he’s cool, get him more friends, and praise him. He doesn’t have many friends and desperately seeks the approval of others, WHICH MAKES MY HEART BREAK. He tries so hard to be loved, man.
Moving on, a thing I’ve noticed within the fandom is that a lot of people gloss over how smart Papyrus is. Sure, he thinks Toriel is just a shaved clone of Asgore, but he’s built entire puzzles in Snowdin. Puzzles with pressure plates, spikes, axes, flames, and more. He even sets up an invisible electricity maze for you, and in the winter alarm clock dialogue (which is canon) he builds a labyrinth made of ice and musical ornaments in front of his house. The thing was so huge and complex that another character ended up stuck inside. Papyrus’s dedication, creativity, and intelligence is wild. He even painted a rock formation to look like a giant cliff, and it ended up so realistic that people started believing it was real! Though, that might have something to do with the fact Papyrus can break reality…
Overall, I just really like Papyrus, man. There are so many more Papyrus facts I could share, but then this blog would probably end up clunky and jumping from topic to topic too much. I will say that I don’t agree with his whole ‘don’t be lazy’ mindset towards his brother, but Papyrus still holds a special place in my heart. He’s so goofy, but there’s also so much more to his character. There’s Papyrus iceberg investigations for a reason.