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Nubbins Sawyer
Nubbins Sawyer
Known aliases: The Hitchhiker
Location: Texas
Known relatives: Leatherface (Brother)
Chop Top (Twin Brother)
Drayton Sawyer (Father)
Grandpa Sawyer (Grandfather)
Status: Deceased
Year of birth: 1945
Year of death: 1973
First appearance: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre
Portrayed by: Edwin Neal
Nubbins Sawyer, also known as The Hitchhiker, appears in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and in the first sequel, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2. He is portrayed as a mentally unstable and murderous cannibal and grave robber; he lives with his equally depraved family, the Sawyers, in the back roads of Texas, capturing, torturing and feasting on unwary travelers.

DescriptonEdit

Though sadistic and violent, he is generally one of the least threatening characters in the movie, being not very intelligent, and behaving erratically. The character also has a bizarre speech impediment and a large birth mark on the side of his face. His speech impediment came from the actor who portrayed him, Edwin Neal, who played the hitchhiker as someone who suffered from schizophrenia.

HistoryEdit

The Hitchhiker first appears in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre walking along a road, where he is picked up by a group of friends traveling through the area, who feel sorry for him having to walk in the heat.

The group asks him what he was doing out there and he tells them that he was "over at the slaughterhouse" where he and "his brother" and "his grandfather" used to work. He shows them pictures of he and his family killing the cattle while telling them a story about how headcheese comes from the cows there when their heads are melted, all the while attempting to get them to drop him off at his home and even inviting them to dinner. He soon begins acting erratically after being given back the photographs by the disgusted travelers. The Hitchhiker suddenly pulls Franklin's Hardesty's (Paul A. Partain) pocket knife out of his grasp after he sees the crippled teen picking his fingernails with it. The group is shocked and appalled when the Hitchhiker uses Franklin's knife to cut open the palm of his own hand. Shortly after, the Hitchhiker shows-off the straight razor he keeps in his boot and then takes a picture of Franklin using a camera he pulls out of his satchel. After Franklin refuses to buy the picture, the Hitchhiker sets the photo on fire and slashes Franklin's arm with the straight razor before being kicked out of the van. The Hitchhiker briefly chases after the van, kicking and yelling as he smears a bloody handprint onto the side of the vehicle but soon relinquishes his attack on it. The smeared blood on the van was a symbol for Drayton to see which marked the teenagers' van as a target for murder.

The film later identifies the Hitchhiker as the brother of the two other main villains of the film, Leatherface (Gunnar Hansen) and Drayton Sawyer (Jim Siedow), as well as the middle son of a family of mentally unstable and murderous cannibals. It's also revealed that he was the one responsible for the grave robbings mentioned at the beginning of the film. He was taking photographs of decomposed corpses and making horrific art and statues out of them at the cemetery. Together, they torment Sally Hardesty (Marilyn Burns), Franklin's sister whom Drayton had captured. Eventually deciding to kill Sally, the Hitchhiker, Drayton and Leatherface are at first content to allow their highly-regarded Grandpa (John Dugan) to do so, but when Grandpa proves unable to kill Sally with a hammer, the Hitchhiker and his brothers become impatient and over-eager with trying to help him. The Hitchhiker forgets to keep a hold on Sally when he tries to take the hammer from Grandpa, allowing her break free of their his and jump out a nearby window; as Sally flees, the Hitchhiker and Leatherface give chase to her, with the Hitchhiker catching up to her on a road. While slashing Sally with a knife, the Hitchhiker meets his demise when he is run over by an 18-wheeler.

In The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2, the Hitchhiker appears only as a macabre puppet-like corpse: his family has reassembled him after the events of the first film, and his twin brother, Chop Top (Bill Moseley) carries him around and treats him as if he were still alive. At one point, Drayton refers to him as Nubbins, indicating that that is his real name. The Hitchhiker's corpse is presumably destroyed when a hand grenade, accidentally set off by Drayton and the film's secondary protagonist, Lieutenant "Lefty" Enright (Dennis Hopper), blows up the family's hideout with the Hitchhiker's body in it. In the Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3, another Sawyer brother, Alfredo, appears to be very similar to his brother Nubbins, like the hitchhiker, Alfredo has a speech impediment and he also uses an old polaroid camera to shock people. Also, in this movie Nubbins has another brother, Tex/Eddie, who also hitchhikes. In The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation another Sawyer brother named Vilmer practices self mutilation like the Hitchhiker. In the original script for Next Generation, Vilmer's character was originally the Hitchhiker, but when Edwin Neal turned down the role, his character was replaced with Vilmer.

In the Jason vs. Leatherface Topps Comics' miniseries, Nubbins the Hitchhiker (bearing only a minor resemblance to his film counterpart and without his name mentioned) appears as a main character. Encountering Jason Voorhees (the main villain of the Friday the 13th franchise) in the woods near the Sawyer house, the Hitchhiker, after seeing Jason non-lethally disarm Leatherface after a brief skirmish and decapitate a man he and Leatherface were chasing, befriends him and takes him home, where Jason is inducted as an unofficial member of the family by Drayton. After a fight happens between Jason and the family, the Hitchhiker "kills" Jason by bashing him in the head with a hammer.

The miniseries expands upon the Hitchhiker's character, revealing that he owns a pet dog named Sparky (whom he killed by shooting in the head and treats as if it were still alive) and that he creates furniture and sculptures out of corpses (another possible reference to Ed Gein, upon whom The Texas Chainsaw Massacre series is loosely based). The miniseries also showed the extent of the Hitchhiker's abuse of Leatherface whom the Hitchhiker constantly bullies for little or no reason (although he apparently respects Leatherface's prowess at frightening and killing people, as he laments to Jason). The comics also hint that the Hitchhiker, as well as Leatherface, were born of incest, with Drayton's younger sister Velma being implicated as being their sister and mother. The Hitchhiker is also seen driving a tow truck and working at the family gas station, where he sabotages motorists' automobiles. He then informs his family and they attack they newly stranded people. The Hitchhiker's bizarre birth mark also changes shape several times throughout the comics, at one point it takes the form of a swastika and a lightning bolt. After "killing" Jason, the Hitchhiker's brother Drayton (called Cook Slaughter in the comics) implicates that the Hitchhiker killed his own cousin named Emery with a two-by-four after a losing a game of checkers, to which the Hitchhiker replies "He shouldn't have laughed at me".

An unnamed character (simply called "The Butcher") similar to the Hitchhiker in both mannerisms and appearance appears in the one-shot comic book The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Cut! by Wildstorm, which takes place in the remake continuity of the films. A member of the Hewitt family and brother to Leatherface and an unnamed, Drayton Sawyer-esque character (simply called "The Cook"), the Hitchhiker look-alike utilizes a sledge hammer and bolt stunner as his weapons. In the comic, the character terrorizes and murders two members of a group of teenagers seeking to make an amateur film about the Hewitt family murders, and near the end of it, aids his siblings in slaughtering the film project's director in a manner similar to livestock.

TriviaEdit

  • Nubbins' real name is never identified in the original Texas Chain Saw Massacre; he is only identified as The Hitchhiker. His name is not mentioned until the second movie when Drayton says "Come here, Nubbins!" before dragging Nubbins' corpse under the table to where he is to get the grenade from the Hitchhiker jacket.

Behind the scenesEdit

  • Nubbins is played by Edward Neal in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and by Dejan Angelov in Leatherface.

GalleryEdit

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