Study Guide

The Invention of Hugo Cabret Part 2, Chapter 2

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Part 2, Chapter 2

The Armoire

  • Text
  • Hidden in the bedroom, Isabelle and Hugo listen as Papa Georges enters the apartment. Mama Jeanne reminds them to be quiet, and then goes out to greet her husband.
  • Isabelle and Hugo decide that they have to search the armoire. Isabelle climbs on top of a chair to look at a decorative panel—and tries to yank it off with sheer strength.
  • Illustration
  • A wide-eyed Isabelle pulls a panel off of the armoire to reveal a big box behind it. She’s pulled the panel off, and we see her eye-to-eye with the box, peering at a keyhole.
  • She starts to pull it out of the hidden compartment, and Hugo looks up expectantly from below.
  • Wow, that’s a big box, Isabelle! Sure you can handle that all by yourself?
  • In the next image, we get the answer: a couple of chair legs snapping.
  • Text
  • Yikes! Isabelle falls to the ground and drops the box, spilling papers all over the place, and a thin, old blanket covered in stars and moons, too.
  • The bedroom door opens and it’s Papa Georges and Mama Jeanne. Not good.
  • The old woman is very upset, but Papa Georges just stands in the doorway mutely.
  • Mama Jeanne gives Hugo the key to the armoire (to lock it up) and tells him to gather up all the drawings, which he does as Mama Jeanne tries to usher Papa Georges and Isabelle out of the room.
  • Illustration
  • Here we go on a journey through some of the drawings in that mysterious box! Put on your seatbelts.
  • Drawing 1 shows a dragon or gargoyle type creature with some sort of contraption to its right. It’s sketched in black ink.
  • Drawing 2 is quite a bit more refined (in comparison to the first) and shows a bearded man’s head emanating light through some cracks. The head is rested on a sort of stand in a laboratory.
  • Drawing 3 is another sketch, this time of Saturn (or another ringed planet) with an old man poking his head out of it through a trap door. Cool, huh?
  • Drawing 4 is sketchier, like the first one. It shows a man with a plumed helmet riding a fish.
  • Drawing 5 is super detailed and realistic looking and shows a foreign man (in fancy dress) facing off with a dragon or monstrous creature in a building with plenty of columns. Another man is on the floor behind him.
  • Drawing 6 is a super lush and detailed image of a fairy breaking out of a cocoon and fluttering over an old, turbaned man who plays a flute. Below, you can see a caterpillar. The whole scene is filled with fern-like plants.
  • Drawing 6 is a set of stairs… but mostly, it’s the whole page engulfed in flames.
  • Text
  • Papa Georges races forward and grabs the drawings, trying to tear them apart. Isabelle, Hugo, and Mama Jeanne, all horrified, try to stop him. It's his work, Mama Jeanne reminds him.
  • Papa Georges replies that he is not an artist, that he is nothing, and starts to cry. Mama Jeanne tries to comfort him and says that she’s sorry.

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