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Egon Spengler, Ph.D.

Scientist, Ghostbuster

Spengler 01
Appeared in Ghostbusters, Ghostbusters II, Ghostbusters: The Video Game
88MPH Studios
Ghost Busted (manga)
IDW Comics
Ghostbusters: Sanctum of Slime
Played by Harold Ramis

"I collect spores, molds, and fungus."

- Egon Spengler; Ghostbusters

Dr. Egon Spengler, Ph.D. is a former professor of paranormal studies at the Columbia University. Upon his termination, Egon founded Ghostbusters, Inc. along with Doctors Ray Stantz and Peter Venkman. He is considered the brain behind the Ghostbusters and has designed and built nearly all of their equipment, including the Proton Pack and the Storage facility. Typically, Ray is the only other member of the Ghostbusters who has no trouble understanding Egon's technical jargon.

PersonalityEdit

Egon is bookish and socially awkward. In his spare time, he collects spores, molds, and fungus. He doesn't articulate his emotions well and has described himself as "always serious." His childhood may have been normal in many regards, but one strange fact is that he didn't play with toys. Egon said that his parents did not believe in toys. He was given part of a Slinky once, but he straightened it. And once, in Ghostbusters II, Egon flatly informed Mayor Lenny's porter that the Proton Pack was not a toy. Despite Janine Melnitz' subtle hints that she was attracted to him, he seemed to ignore her romantic advances, kept quiet, and their relationship remained platonic. Egon doesn't handle stressful situations well, as evidenced by his statement that he was "...terrified beyond the capacity for rational thought," when facing the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Egon is not without a sense of humor and has been known to be sly. Such as after the Ghostbuster's first case, when he holds up his fingers to show the amount of the bill to the Sedgewick Hotel, and during the court trial in 1989, when he chimes in from "Doe, Ray, Egon!" and then grins mischievously.

Occasionally Egon is given to understatement; he initially only states that crossing the streams would be "bad".

Egon has a very dry sense of humor, once jokingly stating that most women would be "more interested in his epididymis," rather than his intellect. He is not immune to anger, as under duress he has been shown to swear twice in the first movie. He even lunged at Walter Peck in anger when Peck ordered them arrested for the disruption regarding the shutdown of the containment grid, despite the fact Peck himself was entirely responsible. He will also on occasion smirk and give a wisecrack; such as during their encounter with the Opera Diva ghost in the Ghostbusters: The Video Game Egon says "The fat lady's singing!" And while exploring Central Park's Cult Cemetery, Peter says "This isn't the Central Park I'm used to." to which Egon replies, "You still have your wallet?" Generally speaking though, Egon remains largely pragmatic and straight-to-the-point when it comes to his demeanor. Even though he has a tight and awkward personality, he is still the brains of the team.

Egon puts few restraints on the scope of his paranormal research. This is evident in Ghostbusters II, as he conducts experiments in his lab in which he deliberately incites couples to argue. When the mood slime is being tested, Egon sleeps with it in order to check its response to nurturing behavior. Science tends to take precedence over people's well being, as Egon is rather detached in his instructions regarding psychological experiments with couples and children in the second movie.

HistoryEdit

GhostbustersEdit

Egon was very interested in paranormal phenomenon, even while working with both Ray Stantz and Peter Venkman at the University. He and Ray Stantz studied paranormal literature in their spare time and were interested in theories of reincarnation.

Egon was usually the first to interview case subjects, adding to their mantra, "we're ready to believe you." Examples were Dana Barrett from her Zuul encounter and her carriage phenomenon with Oscar. Even people Peter called "schizo" always went to either Egon or Ray to describe their paranormal experiences, no matter how far fetched their stories were. For his part, Venkman once took back everything negative he said about him, rewarding the fellow scientist with his favorite candy bar (a Crunch bar).

Egon also developed the technology behind the P.K.E. Meter, the Proton Pack, the Trap, and the storage facility, he was also aware of the danger of crossing the streams. He spent a lot of time focusing on the stability of the storage facility, and was concerned about the possibilities of a P.K.E. surge of dangerous proportions. Egon was particularly critical of Walter Peck's actions and his attitude that the Ghostbusters were responsible for the explosion of the containment unit that occurred when Peck ordered a municipal worker to shut the unit down. After their encounter with Stay Puft, Egon suggested an atypical solution when he recommended blasting Gozer's dimensional portal while crossing the proton streams to reverse the particle flow and send Gozer back to her/its dimension.

Egon once tried to drill a hole in his own head, (A process known as trepanation.) which "would have worked" if Venkman hadn't stopped him.

Ghostbusters IIEdit

Egongb201

Egon as seen in Ghostbusters II

Due to the large amount of collateral damage the city of New York suffered from the battle with Gozer, the Ghostbusters were sued by nearly every county and city agency in New York. Additionally a judicial restraining order was enacted which barred the Ghostbusters from performing services as paranormal investigators and eliminators, effectively putting them out of business. Five years after the events of the first film Egon was working at the Institute for Advanced Theoretical Research and was conducting experiments on human emotions. A negative test involved keeping a couple with marriage problems locked in a room for hours and gradually raising the temperature. A positive test involved a girl in a room with dozens of stuffed animals and a puppy. He was the first person Dana Barrett contacted when her baby carriage took off by itself. Egon recommended bringing in Ray, and they both performed a physical exam on Dana's son Oscar. Egon, along with Peter and Ray were later arrested after digging a large hole under 1st avenue as part of their paranormal investigations to help Dana. During the course of their trial they were found guilty of willful destruction of public property, fraud, violating their judicial restraining order, and malicious mischief by judge Stephen Wexler (whom Egon said was known as "The Hammer"). While angrily insulting the trio judge Wexler inadvertently released the ghosts of the Scoleri Brothers; two murderers he sentenced to death by the electric chair. During the chaos judge Wexler dismisses the charges against the Ghostbusters, and rescinds the judicial restraining order allowing Egon, Ray, and Peter to capture the ghosts, effectively putting the Ghostbusters back in business. Egon had a dry sense of humor, of which he used on Peter to bewilder him, and smirked at his friend's cluelessness on what the word "epididymis" was. Egon primarily worked with Ray, both of whom were still living at the Firehouse, conducting research on the pink slime. Still very scientifically minded, Egon seems to have loosened up a little bit, letting his sense of humor show and even giving Dana a smile and Peter (who was carried away with photographing Vigo's portrait), a knowing smile.

Ghostbusters: The Video GameEdit

EgonTVG

Dr. Egon Spengler as seen in Ghostbusters: The Video Game

Egon becomes significantly more 'hands-on' during the course of the video game. He and Ray instruct the Rookie in the use of the Proton Pack and its eventual PCS (Paranormal Countermeasure System) upgrades. Over the course of the game, it becomes evident that he was somewhat traumatized by their exhausting trek up the stairs of 55 Central Park West. While in the alternate dimension of the library, Egon is heard to groan, "Oh no," and when Ray asks if he saw something scary, Egon replies, "Stairs, lots of stairs.."

Egon still collects spores, molds, and fungus. When the Ghostbusters return to the Sedgewick Hotel, Ray reveals Egon was once a licensed coroner in the past.[1] He still has a minor interest in it as a hobby.[2]

Secondary Canon HistoryEdit

IDW Comic SeriesEdit

Roughly in the 1970s, Egon witnessed a car accident involving his friend Eugene Visitor. Eugene was hit by a car but vanished without a trace. It was one of several events that got Egon interested in supernatural phenomena. In reality, Eugene somehow captured Death in his bag and teleported to 20 years in the future.

When the Ghostbusters were banished by Koza'Rai, only Egon suffered from the effects of chronological displacement. It had an adverse effect on his personality manifesting as a form of cognitive dissidence. He also began to speak in third person. Egon adopted the tyrannical guise of the Great Defender and protected the Outer Colony of Mars from Exploding Manifestations. He automated the colony's defenses and initiated a police state. After Ray knocked him out twice, Egon came back to his senses in the present. Egon quickly deduced Koza'Rai's plans to turn Earth into a Netherworld and told the team Rachel Unglighter was not a student of his. While Egon, Ray, and Winston distracted Koza'Rai and his army, Peter and Rachel toppled the nearly reassembled Stonehenge and pulled all non-living beings back to the Netherworld.

Egon continued to create new additions to the team's arsenal, including Ectoplasmic Glasses and Arm Mounted Proton Packs. After saving some Necrotic Slime, Egon was able to quickly rig a "zombie radar" to track Zombies, controlled by Britt. During the Infestation, he was mainly concerned with safely neutralizing the caustic properties of the slime which was achieved with the team's other problem, Poltergeists.

After Ray had a weird dream, Egon analyzed him with the Aura Video-Analyzer and discovered his brain was not quite in sync. To compound matters, Ray's alpha waves were behaving like a seismograph during an earthquake. Egon concluded the dream was a precognitive episode and wished to examine Ray's brain, at Ray's suggestion, with an MRI. According to his calculations, Egon predicted the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man would return by the weekend. While going over data from his instruments and researching what could be possessing Jim Silver, Egon discovered a new entry forming out of thin air in Spates Catalog. However, the Gozerian Terror Bear returned. During the bust, Egon donned the Refined Prototype Pack and easily destabilized it with a few Boson Darts.

After the Idulnas incident, Egon wrote a computer program that calculated an almost random pattern of words that positively stimulated the brain. He ran a sample in Newer York Magazine. A month later, Peter observed the effect in action. A young woman ran up to Egon in public and asked him to sign her chest. Egon planned on publishing a paper on the reactions once he sorted through all the data.

After the Schenectady case, the ambient P.K.E. was still a lot higher than it should be. To compensate for the lasting increase, Egon modified the power of the Proton Streams but the Ghostbusters continued to have a more difficult time on standard cases. Egon concluded the spike was not related to Gozer's recent manifestation nor Idulnas' presence, it was something more potent. For a period of three days, Egon adopted a Polyphasic sleeping schedule and tried to figure out what the problem was. Once research reached an effective standstill, Egon went to Delgado's Gym and ran six miles. After running into Janine and meeting her boyfriend, Roger Baugh, Egon returned to the spot where he thought he saw Eugene Visitor and took scans. 20 minutes later, he got a ping. Egon took Ecto-1a to Belleville in New Jersey and discovered Eugene alive and well in the home of his father, Mr. Visitor. Egon tried to explain to Eugene that he was endangering the natural order of things and the physical plane by keeping Death in his bag. Eugene countered he deserved as second chance and refused to release Death until Egon returned with concrete proof about his claims.

While continuing research into the augmentation of ambient P.K.E., Egon began to suspect it was not exclusive to Manhattan. The Ghostbusters set off on a road trip across America taking on several jobs. During a private job in New Orleans, Egon and the ghost of Marie Laveau shared an interesting conversation about what defines being alive or not. Laveau contended love mattered and gifted Egon with some powerful Gris-Gris for when he was ready to be "alive." In New Mexico, Egon met Special Agent Jim Savage and the two had a heated ideological clash about the paranormal and extraterrestrials.

While investigating the Ghost Smashers, Egon concluded it would only take a day or two for the atomized ghosts to reconstitute and wreak havoc on the city. During his analysis, Egon confronted Janine on her failed advances on him through the years and ex-boyfriends who share one or more superficial characteristics with him. He made a flow chart of Janine's process once for contrast while studying the haunting of a chapel in Yonkers. Janine was insulted and stormed off. Egon noticed he may have ironically become jealous. In the battle against the Megaspook, Egon had enough of Ron Alexander and choked him.

Months later, in February, Egon was taken by a blue tentacled demon while on the second floor of the Firehouse. He was awoken by Peter and found the Ghostbusters were imprisoned in another dimension. Egon and Ray dismantled Ray's Proton Pack and planned to rip a hole through the dimensional fabric in order to return to New York. However, it was likelier to cause the universe to fold over and destroy both realms. Egon was elected to rip the hole. The plan was a success and the guys found themselves in Times Square. Janine was elated to see them and kissed Egon on the lips. After the Ghostbusters were freed of the Collectors, Ray and Egon elected to delve into pioneering research into extradimensional theory and went over an exhausting compilation of data. Egon even went consulted with a witch doctor on Bleecker about barring the Collectors from the physical plane of existence.

While conducting an experiment, Egon was interrupted by Roger Baugh. While upset, Egon eventually noticed Roger had Yellow Slime on him. They returned to Roger's Apartment had found Janine floating and covered in ectoplasmic discharge. Egon's attempts to neutralize the slime with the Slime Blower failed. Egon and Roger took Janine back to the Firehouse. Egon dropped his Gris-Gris on Janine but she remained unchanged. However, three Draugar manifested behind them. Egon asked how to dispel the curse but was told Janine's soul was forfeit for cheating against the Grendel weeks ago. Egon then threatened them. When they refused, Egon activated the Wall-Trap and captured two of the Draugar. Roger Baugh intervened and before Egon could stop him, the Draugar agreed to show them what happened to Janine.

Both were subjected to a form of astral projection and transported to Janine's mind. They worked their way from the fringes to where the Draugar were with Janine. Egon attempted to talk them into releasing Janine. However, the ghosts decided to kill Egon and Roger and offer their souls to Hel in addition to Janine's. While in a memory of Peter's apartment from New Years Eve 1989, Egon realized the power of mind made things tangible. They quickly ventured to a memory of the Firehouse where Egon donned the Refined Prototype Pack. Egon once again issued a threat to release Janine or else. The lone Draugar from before engaged Egon but was dispersed. The other Draugar returned Janine, Egon and Roger to their bodies. The Draugar declared they would have their revenge but Egon activated the Wall-Trap again and captured them all. Instead of discussing what all just happened, Egon went down to the basement to check on the Containment Unit.

Concerned with his well being from the Draugar battle, Egon began a thorough analysis. After several days and no sleep, all tests indicated he was in perfect health. Egon was even more concerned and wanted to know why nothing was wrong. Peter tried to get him to go out on a maritime bust involving the John Milton but Egon was adamant about studying himself. Janine attempted to talk some sense into him, but Egon made a chart. Egon finally found evidence his perceptions were mis-calibrated upon return to his natural form, a gamma wave variance of .00076%. Before he could start to corroborate it, Egon answered a call from Winston who was in Las Vegas. After insisting the Arm Mounted Proton Pack would never jam, Egon quickly guided Winston on how to troubleshoot the pack's issue which was just a loose wire.

Ghostbusters: Sanctum of SlimeEdit

Egon discovered the supernatural activity, caused by the Relic of Nilhe, had a predictable migratory progression southeast from its point of origin. According to his analysis, Egon believed it was headed to the Sedgewick Hotel. However, with the team exhausted, Egon suggested it was time for the junior team to take on their first solo mission. Some time later, with testimony from Janosz Poha, Egon allowed the junior team to follow a preemptive strategy and go after other shards of the Relic.

Animated SeriesEdit

He appears in the cartoon with a blonde yellow hair color and red glasses. Much like his movie counterpart he is the egghead of the group. One noted difference between him and the movie version is in later seasons when he plays more of a leadership role than he did in the two films.

The following is part of the animated canon universe for this character:

Primary Canon

Secondary Canon

To read more about the Animated counterpart character, please check out "Egon Spengler "Animated".

TriviaEdit

  • Christopher Walken, John Lithgow, Christopher Lloyd and Jeff Goldblum were considered for the role of Egon.[4]
  • In the novelization, young Egon read books such as "The Mysteries of Latent Abnormality," "Electrical Applications of the Psycho-sexual Drive," "Your Friend the Fungus," "Astral Projections as an Untapped Power Source," and "The Necronomicon." [6]
  • Egon is also said to have a brother in the novel. Aside from the aforementioned Slinky, Egon's brother was said to own a Lionel train set, the tracks of which young Egon had commandeered to use in an experiment. Young Egon used three concentric rings from Plasticville houses in his brother's Lionel train layout as components in a compact explosive.[7]
  • In the novelization, Egon displayed a scientific attitude quite early in life, as he would pester librarians into ordering various arcane books to read, conducting an anti-gravity experiment utilizing a jungle gym and hundreds of feet of industrial copper wire (which managed to brown out all of Brooklyn in a crude EMP burst). By observing fellow high school students making out in the park and applying a variety of scientific principles, Egon managed to precisely forecast the exact number of VD cases in Ohio state for that year. As a result, most parents would express a strong aversion to letting their children associate with him.[8]
  • In the novelization, Peter introduced Egon and Ray to each other.[9]
  • In the novelization, Egon lives in an apartment and maintains a rooftop fungus farm.[10]
  • In the novelization, Egon tells Janine that his rationale behind his interest in spores, molds and fungi is that he believes that they will become the food of the future. To which Janine flatly replies "remind me to never have lunch with you." [11]
  • In the novelization, Egon was the first scientist to hypnotize a hamster by subjecting it to low-frequency radio waves. He also made a sonic gun that set off soft-drink cans at 100 yards.[12]
  • In the 8/5/1983 script, Egon owned a 1957 Saab car. [13]
  • In the 10/7/1983 script, it was noted Egon single-handedly got Peter through graduate school.[14]
  • In the 10/7/1983 script, Egon tells Vinz Clortho he is a "Doctor of Physics, Graduate of M.I.T." [15]
  • Harold Ramis wrote the line about Egon trying to drill a hole in his head. It was inspired by a thwarted experiment by John Lilly, a prominent researcher in dolphin communication who proposed drilling a hole in his head to test some higher brain function. [16]
  • Egon has a fondness for junk food. In the first movie he's shown to be eating Cheez-Its and a candy bar, and scarfs down the Twinkee he uses to illustrate the level of PKE in the New York area. In the Ghostbusters role-playing game Egon is known to eat large quantities of fish. It's implied that this helped him attain his high intelligence quotient. (fish is regarded by some as a brain nurturing food.) Egon is also shown to enjoy Chinese takeout.
  • During the first commercial, Egon looks down at his mark.
  • Egon subtly gives Peter the numbers to the cost of the bill that Peter quotes to the manager of the Sedgewick in the first movie.
  • In the West End role-playing game, Egon's motivation is "Soulless Science." Which means he's far more interested in the overall goal of acquiring knowledge, with little to no regard of how it might inconvenience or endanger others.
  • In the February 27, 1989 version of the Ghostbusters II script, during the epilogue scene, Egon revealed his grandparents came to America from Ostrov in Eastern Poland.[17]
  • Egon's favorite foods seem to be Thai and Mexican.
  • The game Dungeons of Dredmor has a skill named "Fungal Arts", which says "You collect molds, spores, and fungus", a reference to Egon's hobby.[18]
  • In the 88MPH Studios Legion miniseries, Egon reveals he's moved on from a fungus to a coral hobby, admits he prefers free diving over scuba because he doesn't believe in compressed air, reveals he worked at a Krazy's one summer... and experimented in the deep fryer.
  • In the Ghost Busted (manga), in Chapter One Page 18, Egon tells an actress he studied four years at Columbia University, studied two years at Oxford University, and had an extended residence with the Gnostic Monks of Carpathia.
  • Egon also mentions his niece (possibly through this same brother) in Ghostbusters: The Video Game, corroborating the notion in two mediums that Egon has at least one sibling. This brother is possibly named Elon Spengler and is Egon's twin.

QuotesEdit

  • "Print is dead."
  • "I think they're more interested in my epididymis."
  • "We eat gods for breakfast!"


ReferencesEdit

  1. GBTVGReferenceEgonSpenglerRV.jpg
  2. GBTVGReferenceEgonSpenglerRV02.jpg
  3. Harold Ramis (2005). Ghostbusters- Commentary (2005) (DVD ts. 21:46-21:56). Columbia TriStar Home Video. Harold Ramis says: "Egon Spengler. Egon came from Egon Donsbach. I went to school with a Hungarian refuge and Spengler was from Oswald Spengler. "
  4. Shortlist 30 Facts
  5. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 23. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  6. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 23. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  7. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 23. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  8. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 24. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  9. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 41. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  10. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 49. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  11. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 72. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  12. Mueller, Richard (August 1985). "Ghostbusters: The Supernatural Spectacular," p. 77. Tor Books, New York NY USA, ISBN 0812585984.
  13. Aykroyd, Dan & Ramis, Harold (1983). Ghostbusters (First Draft August 5, 1983) (Script p. 19). Paragraph reads: "Spengler's '57 Saab is parked outside an abandoned brick, four-story fire station built by the city around the turn of the century.""
  14. 10/7/1983 Script, p.9 via Spook Central
  15. 10/7/1983 Script, p.89 via Spook Central
  16. Shay, Don (November 1985). Making Ghostbusters, p. 27. New York Zoetrope, New York NY USA, ISBN 0918432685.
  17. 2/27/89 Script, Page 109 via Spook Central
  18. http://dungeonsofdredmor.wikia.com/wiki/Fungal_Arts
  19. James; After Checking Out the Library, Firehouse 2nd Floor Answering Machine Message 8 of 13 (2009). Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Realistic Versions) - Firehouse (2009) (PC/PS3/Xbox 360). Terminal Reality. James says: "Dr. Spengler, this is James from We Ship It. Listen, you got to come down and pick up this package of Carpathian Dungbach Mold we've been holding for you. It's starting to spread. It's taken over half the dock and uh, I think it's singing!"
  20. Male Caller; After Museum of (Super)Natural History, Firehouse 2nd Floor Answering Machine Message 6 of 11 (2009). Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Realistic Versions) - Firehouse (2009) (PC/PS3/Xbox 360). Terminal Reality. Male says: "Ah..hello, Dr. Spengler. This is Gilgamir Electronic Supply. We have all the parts you requested. But a representative from the Mayor's office, a Mr. Peck has recently informed us that all invoices from you must be approved through his office first. We called him about your order and he just laughed then hang up. For all we know, he's still laughing."
  21. Male Caller; After Lost Island Rising, Firehouse 2nd Floor Answering Machine Message 5 of 8 (2009). Ghostbusters: The Video Game (Realistic Versions) - Firehouse (2009) (PC/PS3/Xbox 360). Terminal Reality. Male says: "Egon, man. So, have you ever stopped to think? I mean, really think about how the ghosts feel all cramped up inside those little boxes of yours? That could be somebody's grandma in there, you know? It's not right. That kind of cruelty is a drag! Have a nice day, oppressors!"
  22. Dramatis Personae page (2014). IDW Comics- "Ghostbusters Volume 2 Issue #13" (2014) (Comic p.ii).

AppearancesEdit

Secondary Canon AppearancesEdit

GalleryEdit

OverallEdit

Primary CanonEdit

Secondary CanonEdit

Non CanonEdit

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