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Villain Overview

The storm provides!
~ Thunderclap's catchphrase, also his most famous (and last) words in the film.
You know, I just want to take a moment and thank the storm for this meal.
~ Thunderclap after he swallows the critter whole also revealing his true nature.
Do you think you can mess with me?! I have seen the eye of the storm, and I forgot what fear is! I'm not afraid of anything!
~ Thunderclap

Thunderclap is the foremost villain of Pixar's sixteenth full-length animated feature film The Good Dinosaur. He is a Nyctosaurus who serves as the leader of a gang of other pterosaurs and Arlo's arch-nemesis.

He was voiced by Steve Zahn, who also played Monty in Stuart Little, and Cliff in A Perfect Getaway.

Official Biography/Disney Bio

"The Pterodactyls are a search-and-"rescue" team of five. They like to sit back and let the often-treacherous storms in this part of the world do their dirty work, then reap the benefits of the devastation. But when these flying hunter-scavengers set their sights on Spot and Arlo, they’re in for a big surprise."



Like the other members of his flock, Thunderclap is a scavenger who follows storms to prey on trapped critters. He seems to be slightly deranged, having a sort of fascination and veneration for storms. He claims that he used to be scared and shy until he had a "relevation" when he saw "the Eye" of a storm. He believes that the storm freed him of fear. Thus, he renamed himself "Thunderclap", going by the motto that "the storm provides."

The Good Dinosaur

Following a violent storm, Arlo and Spot are found by the Pterosaur flock. At first, Thunderclap pretended to be friendly to Arlo; recounting to him his story of how he overcame his fears. However, his true motives become apparent when he eats a small fox whole that Arlo helped to free. Thunderclap and the others then set their sights on Spot.

Arlo and Spot flee and are saved when two young Tyrannosaurus rex named Nash and Ramsey come to the rescue and scare the pterosaurs away. Sometime later, Arlo and Spot are stuck in yet another storm. Thunderclap and his gang find them again and they succeed in separating Spot from Arlo this time. They trap Spot into an old stump by a river and try to claw him out. With newly found courage, Arlo faces off the pterosaurs and easily defeats them by knocking them into the river.

Arlo lets out a vicious roar, which terrifies Thunderclap, causing him to regain his sense of fear. Spot then tears a hole in a scared Thunderclap's left wing and as he tries to fly away, Arlo throws a stick at him and Thunderclap is rendered flightless as he crashes into the river and is swept downstream.

Other media

Dino Crossing

Thunderclap appears in the game Dino Crossing. He makes his appearance when the player stands on a pterodactyl's shadow in Journey Mode during later levels. If the player remains idle too long during gameplay, a pterodactyl will fly over the player, causing him or her to lose. There is also an Endless Mode of the game, where Thunderclap will land on the player's character, causing him or her to lose a life or an instant game over.


Oh good, thank goodness for that, uh, Coldfront, Downpour, keep looking for wounded folks!
~ Thunderclap.
NO! A "relevation"!
~ Thunderclap to Arlo about revelation.
I was in a real low point, ya know?
~ Thunderclap explaining his life story to Arlo.
Yeah "Wow!", that's when the storm gave me my new name.
~ Thunderclap
The storm provides, you can call me Thunderclap.
~ Thunderclap introduces his name to Arlo.
Ya know, we could use your help friend.
~ Thunderclap to Arlo.
Ah, a free critter, thanks to you.
~ Thunderclap to Arlo before eating the critter that Arlo saved.
Hey!, Where're you're going friend?
~ Thunderclap to Arlo.
And I said I would get you home." (sniffs) "Friend, you have a critter of your own.
~ Thunderclap showing his true nature
Hey slow down! There's no place to hide, yellow-belly!
~ Thunderclap, calling to Arlo while chasing him.
Well, look who got relevated!
~ Thunderclap to Arlo during the climax.


Thunderclap used to be frightful of the world around him, but this changed when he was caught in a storm which no longer made him frightened. Following this, Thunderclap had a "relevation", realizing that the storm saved his life, therefore he must follow it. The experience made him nuts and obsessed with the storm's power, turning him into a sadistic scavenger as he relied more on the animals caught in the storm, gleefully devouring them every time.

While he might come across as affable towards dinosaurs at first, Thunderclap is harsh and unforgiving towards dinosaurs who assist his prey get away, with no qualms towards harming them afterwards. Despite being in a group, he doesn’t consider the other pterodactyls as his friends but rather fellow followers. He will not hesitate to fight them for any meal found. Any meal that manages to get away, he’ll pursue them relentlessly until they’re devoured. Thunderclap presumably regains his lost sense of fear when he got frightened by Arlo's roar and desperately tried to depart after Spot tore a hole in his wing.


  • Peter Sohn, the director of The Good Dinosaur, confirmed on his Twitter that Thunderclap survived.
    • If Thunderclap had died, he would be Pixar's fifth deceased villain, after Hopper, Syndrome, Charles F. Muntz, and Mor'du. Since he survived, Pixar's fifth deceased villain is Ernesto de la Cruz. However, Ernesto de la Cruz is slightly different, considering he was deceased prior to the events of Coco.
  • The other four members of Thunderclap's gang are each a different species: Caulkicephalus, Guidraco, and two Ludodactylus.
  • Real Nyctosaurus did not have teeth or wing claws like Thunderclap does, nor were their feet strong enough to grasp. One of the toys based on Thunderclap didn't have teeth possibly for this reason, though it could've been a mistake.
  • He shares his name with a monster of the week from Sailor Moon.
  • He shares his name with a moose named Thunderclap, who appears as the main antagonist in the 1950 Disney short Morris the Midget Moose. It is possible that the Thunderclap from The Good Dinosaur was based on this character.
  • Despite being the foremost villain, he doesn't appear until the final quarter, as the film focuses on nature itself being the main antagonist.[1][2]
  • He mentions that he renamed himself "Thunderclap", but what his original name was is unknown.
  • Thunderclap pronounces the word "revelation" wrong, as he instead uses the term "relevation". This is shown when Arlo asks him if he means "revelation", and Thunderclap lashes out and says that it was a "relevation".
  • A deleted scene features Thunderclap (having survived and redeemed himself), Nash, Ramsey, their father Butch, and Forrest Woodbush gathered around to see Arlo say goodbye to Spot in the film's ending.



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Animated Features
Sid Phillips | One-Eyed Bart | Attack Dog with Built-in-force-field | Grasshoppers (Hopper, Molt, Thumper, Axel and Loco) | Fly Brothers | Stinky Pete | Al McWhiggin | Zurg Empire (Emperor Zurg, Zurg Bots, Warp Darkmatter, Hornets, Brain Pods & Grubs) | Dr. Porkchop | Henry J. Waternoose III | Randall Boggs | Buddy Pine/Syndrome | Omnidroids | Mirage | Gilbert Huph | The Underminer | Bomb Voyage | Chick Hicks | Chef Skinner | AUTO | GO-4 | Charles F. Muntz | Alpha | Beta and Gamma | Lotso's Gang (Lots-o'-Huggin' Bear, Ken, Big Baby, Stretch, Chunk, Sparks, Twitch & Monkey) | One-Eyed Betty | Lemons (Sir Miles Axlerod, Professor Zündapp, Grem, Acer, Victor Hugo, J. Curby Gremlin, Tyler Gremlin, Don Crumlin, Ivan, Tony Trihull, Alexander Hugo, Towga Gremlin, Kai Gremlin, Tai Gremlin, Keith Gremlin, Gremlin Family, Vladimir Trunkov, Tubbs Pacer, Petey Pacer, Jerome Ramped & Pacer Family) | Mor'du | Thunderclap's Flock (Thunderclap) | Velociraptors (Bubbha) | Ernesto de la Cruz | Security Guards | Screenslaver | Robbers | Gabby Gabby | The Bensons | Curse Dragon | Pixie Dusters (Dewdrop) | Ercole Visconti | Ciccio and Guido | Alberto's Dad | Soldiers | Emperor Zurg

Shorts, Television & Video Games
Kabuto | Big D | Ronald Tompkins | Mr. Jones | Battlesaurs (The Cleric, Goliathon & Reptillus Maximus)

See Also
Buzz Lightyear of Star Command Villains | Cars Villains | Incredibles Villains | Monsters, Inc. Villains | Toy Story Villains