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Captain William Bones was a human man.
An 18th century pirate captain, Captain William Bones was a rival of Captain Flint. After Flint's death, an elderly Bones inherited the map to Flint's "Treasure Island", the possession of which proved more of a curse than a blessing as Flint's old shipmates (led by Flint's old quartermaster Long John Silver) hunted him down for possession of the map (and the treasure to which it was key). Bones, who drank too much rum, was killed by a stroke at the Benbow Inn shortly after being tracked down by the pirates, receiving the Black Spot from Blind Pew. Before he died, however, Bones passed the map over to the innkeeper's boy, Jim Hawkins, to whom he had taken a liking.
The story of Treasure Island and Jim Hawkins's adventures there was later made into a famous novel, and this led to numerous actors portraying William Bones on stage and on screen. One of these was Portis, in an altered version of events where Bones did not die but instead flee town and turn his life over, becoming a mountain climber instead of a seaman — rather a nicer fate than Bones's true end.
Behind the scenesEdit
Captain Bones appeared in the 1950 film Treasure Island and a few other Disney adaptations and parodies of the Treasure Island story.
In the original novel, "Billy Bones" is only a nickname for the Captain, a name the Hawkinses see on his arm as a tattoo and assume to be his name despite his denials. (Indeed, some analyses of the novel have drawn the conclusion that the Captain was none other than Captain Flint himself, now old and weak and hunted by his old shipmates.) In the film on the other hand, his name is explicitly William Bones, with his initials W.B. visible on his mariner's chest and the name of Captain Bones written plainly by Flint himself on the map as seen in the comic adaptation; the name of “Billy” Bones is not even used. Treasure Planet’s version falls somewhere between the two, as he calls himself Billy Bones.