|“||Laputa will live! I will return it to life! Laputa's power is the dream of all mankind!||”|
Colonel Muska is a human government agent and the main antagonist of the movie Laputa: Castle in the Sky. He is a colonel whose goal is to conquer Laputa by using the volucite/aetherium crystal. It is also revealed that he is biologically related to Sheeta and a descendant of the royal line of Laputa, as his full name is Romuska Palo Ur Laputa. He was voiced by Minori Terada in Japanese, Jeff Winkless in the Streamline English version, and Mark Hamill in the Disney English version.
Muska has light brown hair and hazel eyes. He wears tinted glasses, a brown suit, a white shirt, and a pale yellow cravat. His design is similar to that of David in Katushiro Otomo's Steamboy.
As a descendant of Laputa's royal line, Colonel Muska believes he is entitled to rule Laputa and use it as a powerful weapon to secure control over the Earth. Unlike Dola and her gang, Muska is uninterested in the treasures of Laputa; he wants to find the island for the power it will give him.
Muska is duplicitous and will turn on his allies once he has used them to attain his goals. At first, he seems to treat Sheeta well, offering her fine clothes and acting somewhat kindly toward her. However, his true objective is to get the volucite/aetherium crystal belonging to Sheeta and, when he realizes that only she can use it, to force Sheeta to take control of Laputa for him. When Sheeta continues to defy him, Muska reveals his ruthlessness: he kidnaps Sheeta twice, threatens Pazu to force Sheeta to cooperate with him, and shoots off Sheeta's braids in an attempt to frighten her into submission. Muska also betrays General Mōro and the army, then even the other government agents when he no longer needs their assistance.
Role in the Film
In the beginning of the film, Muska and his men have kidnapped Sheeta and are holding her captive in an airship. Muska has taken her volucite/aetherium crystal necklace. When Dola and her gang attack the airship hoping to get the crystal for themselves, Sheeta takes advantage of the confusion and knocks out Muska by hitting him over the head with a bottle. She takes the crystal back from him and escapes.
Throughout the film, Muska pursues Sheeta and her crystal, which can show Muska the way to Laputa and allow him to conquer it. Even though Muska is also descended from Laputan royalty, the crystal shocks him when it is activated and he tries to touch it, so he must have Sheeta's cooperation to use it.
At first, Muska seems to be working for the government in cooperation with its army, but ultimately, he proves that he is only interested in seizing Laputa for himself. When he corners them, Sheeta and Pazu use the crystal and a spell to destroy Laputa rather than let Muska take control of it. The light of Sheeta's crystal, combined with that of the giant volucite/aetherium crystal in the roots of Laputa's giant tree, blinds Muska, and he stumbles away as Laputa begins to fall apart. When almost all of the human-made structures on Laputa fall into the sea, Muska can be seen falling along with many of the Laputan robots. It can be presumed that Muska was either killed during the destruction of the Laputan ruins, or drowned after he fell.