Coraline Jones is a Feisty curious adventurer and is the main protagonist of all Coraline productions. She moved from Pontiac, Michigan with her parents to the Pink Palace Apartments in Ashland, Oregon. With her parents perpetually working and offering little attention to her, Coraline becomes increasingly bored and neglected and thus, decides to become an explorer of their new living location.
Coraline has chin-length, bobbed dark blue hair which is parted to the side, with more hair covering the right. However, due to her brown eyebrows, it's revealed that she's dyed her hair that color possibly some time before moving. To complement her dark blue strands, she wears a cerulean blu dragonfly hair clip with light pink wings. She has oval-shaped brown eyes and thin lips that are the color of coral pink. Her nails are polished with turquoise blue nail polish. She is shown to wear a yellow raincoat paired with yellow shin-high rain boots over a vermillion skirt and red and black tights. This outfit is usually worn when she is outside exploring the garden. When Coraline is inside her house while counting the windows and doors, she is clad in a full-sleeved striped red shirt, loose denim jeans, and orange socks.
The next day, she was seen in her raincoat again, but this time with an additional black newsboy cap with gold accents.
When she was out with her parents, Coraline had on the same cap, shirt, and skirt, along with light green tights, a blue-grey cardigan over the shirt and orange sneakers.
The third time she went into Other Mother's world, she had on a dark teal, yellow-star imprinted, long-sleeved turtleneck, dark blue pants, and light cerulean ankle-length heeled boots.
While prepping up for the rescue of her parents, Coraline is dressed in makeshift combat gear that consisted her pajamas, her newsboy cap, along with a dark grey vest, and her dark pink knit purse to hold her garden shears and the seeing stone.
Lastly, for the garden party, she wears denim overalls over a light green t-shirt with deep pink brims and frog, bright pink tights and blue sneakers.
In the movie
- An excerpt from the main article: Coraline (filmography)
It starts with Coraline Exploring outside of her home gripping a poison oak branch along the way. She then heads down the trail to the orchard to find the well using her magic dowser rod. While doing she meets Wybie who greatly annoys her as well as his cat. She then goes home and despite her wanting to do things like garden she cannot. This makes her go to her dad. He tells her to explore the house.
While exploring, Coraline finds a small door sealed off by a brick wall. That night, Coraline is awakened by a mouse and follows it to the small door where she discovers a long, dark corridor in the brick wall's place. Coraline goes through it and finds herself in the other world, a fantastical version of the Pink Palace inhabited by doppelgangers and better versions of her parents called the other mother and other father, who have black buttons for eyes. These beings prove to be warmer and more attentive than Coraline's real parents, particularly the other mother, who does everything she can to impress Coraline. Coraline decides to stay the night at the other world, but when she wakes the next morning, she finds herself in her old world.
Despite warnings of danger from her neighbors, Coraline continues to go to the other world at night to escape from the doldrums of her real life and is entertained by button-eyed "other" versions of her neighbors, including a mute other Wybie, who guides her through the other world. During her third visit, Coraline encounters a black cat from her own world that has the ability to talk in the other world, and also warns Coraline of danger. She disregards the warnings until the other mother invites her to live in the other world forever if she sews buttons over her eyes. When Coraline demands to return home, the other mother angrily reveals her true form as a monstrous witch and traps Coraline in a small room behind a mirror where she meets the ghosts of three children who had lost their eyes and souls to the other mother. With the help of the other Wybie, Coraline escapes to her own world, but finds that her parents have been kidnapped by the other mother.
Armed with a seeing stone provided by the real April Spink and Miriam Forcible, Coraline returns to the other world and challenges the other mother to a game to find her missing parents and the eyes of the ghost children in the other world, agreeing to stay in the other world if she loses. Coraline uses her seeing stone to find the ghosts' eyes and outwits the twisted inhabitants of the other world guarding them, and later finds her parents trapped in a snow globe. Knowing that the other mother will never let her leave even if she wins, Coraline tricks the other mother into opening the door to the real world and escapes through it, closing the door on the other mother's hand and severing it. Coraline finds her parents safe with no memory of what had happened, and the ghost children at peace but not after they warn her that the other mother will still try to get the key from her. To keep the other mother from returning, Coraline intends to drop the key to the door between her world and the other world down a water well near her house, but the other mother's severed hand enters Coraline's world and tries to drag Coraline back to the other world. Wybie arrives and destroys the hand, and he and Coraline drop its remains and the key down the well. With her parents done with their work and able to spend time with their daughter, Coraline holds a garden party with her family and neighbors, content with her new life.
- An excerpt from the main article: Coraline (books)
The book starts when Coraline explores the house shortly after moving in, but a terrible rainstorm struck and Coraline was forced inside. Bored, she asks her father what to do. He gives her a pen and pencil. She finds fourteen doors, but the large carved door in the drawing room with the uncomfortable chairs and a large door that does not open. Coraline's mother takes a large iron key and opens the door, revealing bricks. So later the next day she walks outside, and speaks to Ms. Spink. Later, upon opening the door, she finds the same hallway she was just in, but different. She walks down it, seeing paintings with something peculiar about their eyes. Just before she figured it out, a voice calls her into the kitchen. The other mother, tall, thin, pale, long, pale fingers with long red nails, and hair slithering around like snakes, and of course large black button eyes, awaits her. She serves a delightful supper, and tells Coraline she can go upstairs and play with the rats. She walks into her room, finding living toys, and the rats come out and perform a rather creepy song. The rats then scatter and run towards the doorway, where Mr. Bobo happens to be. They then dash into his clothes, apparently up to his neck, filling all the pockets, with the biggest rat dashing up and sitting on his head. Mr. Bobo then invites Coraline to go watch the rats eat, but Coraline politely denies and goes out to explore.
- An excerpt from the main article: Coraline (video game)
This section requires expanding with knowledge derived from the video game.
Coraline is an eleven-year-old girl with a large personality. She is seen as a snarky, rebellious, adventurous, curious, and creative girl for her age. She is also a quick thinker and witty. Coraline can get aggravated by adults, and people not taking her seriously because of her young age and outgoing demeanor. But her biggest issue is people pronouncing her name wrong, when they confuse it with Caroline. Coraline is also very skeptical of what adults tell her, especially her parents since it is implied that they, mostly her mother, would always break their promises to her and would not listen to her.
- Dakota Fanning, the voice actress of Coraline, admitted the similarities between herself and her on-screen alter-ego; both were feisty young girls. Dakota Fanning claimed it was as if they grew up together. She states that she would have gone through the door to the other world if allowed.
- According to Neil Gaiman, the character's creator, her name originated from a typo: "I had typed the name Caroline, and it came out wrong. I looked at the word Coraline, and knew it was someone's name. I wanted to know what happened to her."
- In the video game, cheat codes can be used to have Coraline's eyes be replaced with button eyes.
- Coraline is left-handed, shown when she's exploring the house at the beginning of the movie.
- Coraline's hair isn't naturally blue. She probably dyed it at some point before moving into the Pink Palace. This can be seen because her eyebrows are light brown and in her family picture with her parents, her hair is light brown, not blue.
These quotes are all said in chronological order.
- "I'm an explorer."
- "Magic dowser, magic dowser...show me the well!"
- "It's a dowsing rod. And I don't like being stalked — not by psycho nerds or their cats!"
- "I almost fell down on a well yesterday, mom. [...] I would've died."
- "I can't believe it. You and Dad get paid to write about plants, and you hate dirt."
- "One boring blue boy in a painfully boring painting. Four incredibly boring windows, and no more doors."
- "You're not my mother!"
- "I was kidnapped by aliens, they came down from outer space with ray guns, but I fooled them by wearing a wig and laughing in a foreign accent, and I escaped."
- "I don't want whatever I want. Nobody does. Not really. What kind of fun would it be if I just got everything I ever wanted just like that, and it didn't mean anything? What then?"
- "She's got this whole world where everything's better. The food, the garden, the neighbors, but it's all a trap."
- "But how can you walk away from something and still come back to it?"
- "Of course you don't understand. You're just a bad copy she made of the crazy old man upstairs."
- "I don't want your love. I don't want anything from you."
- "You have a very funny way of showing it."
- "Oh, my twitchy-witchy girl, I think you are so nice. I give you bowls of porridge and I give you bowls of ice cream, I give you lots of kisses with lots of hugs, but I never give you sandwiches, grease, and worms, and mung...beans."