While Snow White is evading the Huntsman, who is desperate to rip out her heart to deliver to the Wicked Queen, she comes upon a tiny cottage inhabited by seven random little men. Who are these beard goblins, and, more importantly, why are they living out in the forest, completely off the grid? The answer to this will lead us down into the darkest depths of Disney. Behind all the catchy songs and the hijinks is a pit of forced labor and inescapable greed.
The Dwarfs Are Definitely Hiding Something
When we first meet the Dwarfs, we learn that they're all Reservoir Dog'd up with special nicknames that no regular being would ever have. It may just be a minor detail in the grand scheme of things, but it makes sense to think of pseudonyms like "Happy" and "Dopey" as super phony aliases. All of the Dwarfs are aptly named for one distinguishing character flaw, which is not only memorable for the children in the audience but must be very memorable for whoever is coldly leading them.
The Dwarfs may have come up with these names themselves, but there is a reason that Bashful has never turned to Snow White and said, "Actually, it's Edward Simone Jr." A lost identity quickly leads to a lost willpower. But we'll get to that later.
The Dwarfs also live together in squalor in the middle of the enchanted forest, which is very suspicious. Their house is so filthy that poor Snow White has no choice but to enlist forest critters to help her in cleaning it. What can they be hiding? Virtually all they do is dig for diamonds and precious gems, but they're a group of men living together in one small house. And most of them have the facial hair of someone who has been alive for a decent number of decades. Even counting in Disney logic, Doc should've at least saved up enough to afford a nice loft in Tribeca by now.
This is what gentrification does to the average working Dwarf.
"It ain't no dig to get rich quick." We're with you there, Dwarfs, but why aren't you guys living in a mansion or, better yet, your own mansions, because you're all grown-ass men? Also, remember that their tiny cabin is a dump. When you're surrounded by deer, and the most famous member of your group is named after how unfriendly he is, it's probably hard to hire a decent cleaning agency. But shouldn't they take it upon themselves to do a dish every once in a while. Even the Dwarfs in Lord Of The Rings never let it get that far. This would imply that they're too tired from mining all day to bother with it, but why not just take the afternoon off and sweep? What are you saving for, you morons?
The Dwarfs are also extremely paranoid about having their stash raided. When they come home to find that their house has been mysteriously cleaned, they lose their goddamn minds about it. It's not like they came home to a crime scene or saw any palpable damages at all. Instead, they walk through the door to find the second half of any Hoarders episode.
But, seeing as how they're really quick to drop the whole "My cup is missing!" shtick about five minutes later, this means that they're probably less angry about finding a decently arranged cabinet, and more angry about the fact that someone was in their house. Someone who could potentially take the diamonds that they're using for absolutely nothing.
The Dwarfs' Plan Is Overturned By Scrooge McDuck
Logically speaking, if the Dwarfs are mining for anyone in the Disney Universe, it would be Scrooge McDuck, whose estimated net worth is in the billions. It is never directly stated in the movie who they are working for, but the comics point a finger toward one McDuck in particular. Scrooge invested his Dwarf diamonds wisely in the post-depression Disneyverse, building an empire on the backs of Dopey and Sneezy.
A possible place for Scrooge McDuck to have earned part of this astounding sum in the Disneyverse is the diamonds dug by the Dwarfs. We know that Scrooge was a hard worker in his youth, but it seems unlikely that when this godless dog accountant in the comic issue "The Second-Richest Duck" mentioned "mines" as part of Scrooge's assets, that Scrooge was there himself.
Although, really, "mills" might be the more disturbing asset there ...
"The Second-Richest Duck" also shows us that Scrooge is willing to fly to Africa when he hears that someone may be wealthier than he is. This is a manduck who has been driven insane by his need to have the greatest financial standings in the world. So much so that, even when the Dwarfs are supplying him with what has to be a surplus in gems, he keeps them in their barracks-style cottage, afraid of giving them an ounce. Who else could have worked in the mines for him? The only critters that Scrooge hangs out with are his pants-less nephews. And this isn't just a wild guess, either ...