Emily "The Corpse Bride", is a living corpse who was a talented and wealthy lady in her lifetime, as well as the self-proclaimed bride of the young Victor Van Dort after their encounter at the woods. She was murdered by her ex-fiancee Lord Barkis Bittern, and indirectly killed him shortly before gaining her freedom. It is unknown exactly how she died, although she may have been stabbed, given the context of her death, and since Barkis is known for carrying a sword.
Emily was a tall young woman who had a slim and graceful figure. As a corpse, she is still graceful. Her current only colorful features are her purple lips, in contrast to her monochromatic blue coloring. After her death, her long wavy hair and her once pale skin turned blue, while her big eyes became wide and circular with black dots as pupils. They have a gaunt, sunken look after her death.
There is a hole in her left cheek that shows that her skin is deteriorating and reveals her white teeth. On her right hand she still has nails. Under her left arm is some exposed muscle, although her actual left arm is only bone. Her right ribs are showing due to the hole in her wedding dress. Her right leg is almost completely bone except for the skin that still covered her foot and her ankle. The tip of her nose is somewhat skeletal.
Emily wears a strapless dirt stained wedding dress which has a form fitting (likely corseted) bodice that ends in a deep V in the front. The dress belonged to her mother. The dress has a long flowing pleated skirt with a rip up the middle showing either of her legs. There is light blue filigree on the bottom of the skirt and edging the veil. There are pearls trimming the bottom and top of the bodice. Her tattered veil is attached to a rose crown made of dead blue roses. She also wears tattered fingerless gloves that end to her elbows though her right one appears to be hanging on her wrist. She wears white pumps and white stockings (that have piled at her ankles, due to her skeletal body) to match her wedding dress.
Emily is a kind, somewhat gullible and sweet young deceased woman who has a kind-hearted nature. While she is rather fun-loving and easy-going, Emily can easily feel guilty for others' situations indirectly caused by her and often shows nostalgic moments after arriving to the Land of the Living.
Emily is willing to give her whole heart (even literally) to those she cares for, and would even sacrifice her own happiness even after to help them, as evidenced when she stops Victor from killing himself, then willingly steps aside and lets Victoria be with him. She is usually a kind person, but she was encouraged highly to marry Victor. However, she learns not to use her emotions for selfish reasons, since she saw how depressed Victoria was, and saved her from marrying Barkis (which would have led to Victoria suffering a similar fate as Emily).
Emily was the daughter of an unspecified wealthy Victorian era family. Apparently, she had a high education regarding arts related with music, since she surprised Victor with her piano skills.
Emily met Lord Barkis, whom she loved but her parents didn't approve of due his lack of fortune. When Barkis was rejected her hand in marriage by her parents, he convinced her to elope with him using his charisma and charm. They agreed to meet under the cover of night at 3 AM under an old oak tree out in the woods. On that foggy night, Emily snuck out wearing her mother's wedding dress and carried a small fortune (a gold satchel filled with the family jewels) with her, the last at Lord Barkis's request. Unbeknownst to the young lady, her groom-to-be had only proposed to steal her family's fortune.
After waiting in the dark forest for some time, Emily was robbed by Barkis from the shadows and murdered. Before passing on, she made a vow to remain under the tree until her true love came to ask for her hand in marriage, thus setting her free.
Emily had remained buried under the tree for 8 or 9 years prior to meeting Victor. When Victor was practicing his wedding vows, he slipped his ring onto her hand he mistook for a branch, causing Emily to rise from her grave. After chasing Victor, she took him to the Land of the Dead with her. There, he learned her story, and feigned agreement to marry her to return to the land of the living under the pretense of introducing her to his parents.
This led to a visit with Elder Gutknecht, a wise old skeleton well versed in the magic arts. He gave them a spell that took them to the Land of the Living. The moonlight made Emily feel overjoyed, and she gracefully danced around the woods. Shortly after this, Victor left Emily there to wait. After a while, she decided to look for Victor, and after finding him with Victoria Everglot, his true fiancé, angrily taking him back to the Underworld with her and greatly argued with him.
Heartbroken, Emily went to her room and laments about what happened to her and that Victor doesn't love her, being comforted by Black Widow and Maggot while singing a sad yet beautiful song about her current undead status compared to a living young woman. Later, she was playing a piano piece which was very similar to the one that Victor played in the day he met Victoria. Then Victor came to her room and played the piano along with her, leading them to reconcile with each other rather quickly.
Later, upon learning of the returned Barkis and Victoria's engagement, Victor felt betrayed by his lover. At the same time, Elder Gutknecht informed Emily that her "marriage" to Victor wasn't valid, since according to their vows, "death has already parted them." She said in despair that she could never ask Victor to give up the life he has. Victor, who had given up entirely on Victoria, heard all of this and agreed to drink the "Wine of Ages" (poison) to kill himself and join Emily in undead matrimony.
After going up to the Land of the Living, or "Upstairs" as the dead call it, Victoria, who was forced to marry Barkis Bittern, found Victor and Emily's wedding while sneaking. When Emily saw her, she decided to stop Victor from drinking the poison, realizing she cannot steal the happiness of another to achieve her own. Just then, Barkis interrupted and tried to run away with Victoria, but is identified by Emily as her murderer and ex-lover. After that, a fight with Victor breaks out. Just as Barkis was about to stab Victor with a sword, Emily used herself to block the thrust which has no effect (since she’s a zombie) and disarms the attacker. Before moving to leave, Barkis berated Emily with a mocking toast and drinks from the glass meant for Victor, not knowing that it is poison. It stopped his heart and he is no longer bound by the rules of the living, causing the dead to drag him away to face judgement for his crimes. Due to his current zombie status, he is ominously declared a “new arrival”.
Meanwhile, Victor still wanted to fulfill his promise to Emily, but she had already decided to let him marry Victoria, since Victoria was happier with him, instead and gave back the ring that Victor accidentally gave her earlier. She then tossed her bouquet of blue roses, which Victoria caught. Emily then turned into a shower of beautiful blue butterflies ascending to the "Land of the Reborn" while both Victor and Victoria watch her go up to the heavens with deep sadness in their eyes, knowing that they will miss her. This was caused because Emily’s purpose was fulfilled and she was set free, finally at peace in Heaven.
Powers and AbillitiesEdit
As a zombie, Emily can teleport to anywhere by crow, phase through walls, and talk to animals. As she is already dead, she can receive lethal attacks without feeling pain. After getting her freedom and finally being at peace, Emily gained the ability to turn herself into a swarm of butterflies, symbolizing her ascent into Heaven.
Emily is great at singing and dancing, being skilled at both nostalgic and enthusiastic songs and step-sequences. She also can play the piano in a similar way to Victor, playing solemn to lively tones. All this suggests that she had a considerable education in musical arts.
- Victor Van Dort - "ex-fiance"
- Victoria Everglot - Victor's Wife
- Scraps - Pet dog.
- Black Widow - Best ally.
- Bonejangles - Best ally.
- Elder Gutknecht - Close ally.
- Maggot - Close ally.
- Barkis Bittern - 1st Ex-fiancee, murderer and indirect victim.
"I do." - After Victor Van Dort raises her from her grave.
"You may kiss the bride." - After chasing Victor Van Dort through the forest.
- "He's not my boyfriend, he's my husband." - To Maggot who was in her head literally, referring to Victor.
- "Isn't the view beautiful? It takes my breath away. Well, it would if I had any." -To Victor in the Land of the Dead.
- ”Maggots. *laughs awkwardly*” -To Victor after shoving Maggot back into her ear.
- "I've spent so long in the darkness, I'd almost forgotten how beautiful the moonlight is." - To Victor and herself after arriving to the Land of Living.
- "Go chew on someone else's ear a while." - To Maggot while waiting for Victor at the woods.
- "Hopscotch!" - An angry Emily grabbing Victor to the Land of the Dead.
- "Maybe, perhaps he does belong with her... Little Miss Living, with her rosy cheeks and beating heart." - To herself and Miss Black Widow about Victoria Everglot and Victor.
- "Pardon my enthusiasm." - To Victor after her hand escapes her arm while playing the piano and dances up Victor's arm.
- "I was a bride. My dreams were taken from me. But now - now I've stolen them from someone else. I love you, Victor, but you are not mine." - To Victor at their wedding after having seen Victoria.
- "You left me... For dead!" - A shocked and furious Emily to a shocked Lord Barkis Bittern.
- "Get out!" - A furious Emily to a threatened Lord Barkis.
- "You kept your promise. You set me free. Now I can do the same for you." - To Victor before her farewell.
"Tears to shed"- Emily, Black Widow and Maggot
”Remains of the Day”- Bonejangles explains Emily’s backstory to Victor
- Emily knew Victor's name before he told her his name. This implied that Emily might have met Victor in life and he had forgotten, or she at least knew about his family before her murder.
- While Emily was a wealthy lady in her lifetime, she wasn't part of the royalty. At most, she would have been an aristocrat. Barkis killed her for her money.
- A Youtube channel named The Fangirl made a theory and featured a part of how Emily died from suffocation. However, since Barkis fights with a sword, it’s possible that she was stabbed.
- It is unknown if her parents are still alive, since she’s around the same age as Victor. The wedding dress belonged to her mother, but it may have been a simple hand-me-down.
- She woke up as a zombie shortly after her murder and remained under the tree for about 9 years. It is unknown who buried her or how she was buried, since as a zombie, she would have been conscious during the burial.
- In life she had blonde hair and pale peach skin.
- She was voiced by Helena Bonham Carter, who also played Lady Tottington in Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit, Mrs. Bucket in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Julia in Dark Shadows, Fairy Godmother in the live action Cinderella, Red Queen in Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass, Mother Squirrel in The Gruffalo, and Marla Singer from Fight Club.