|If I gave apologies, I would give you one right now.|
|—Cleo de Nile in "Here Comes Treble"|
Cleo de Nile is a 2010-introduced and all-around character. She is a mummy, though born human, and a student at Monster High. As royalty, Cleo is unsurprisingly the queen of the student body, though few know her confidence is not as solid as she makes it seem to be. Cleo has a difficult relation with both her father, Ramses, who demands the best of and for her, and her older sister, Nefera, who cannot handle Cleo having any successes over her and as such regularly works to sabotage Cleo's efforts and undermine her self-esteem. Her mother, Dedyet, is the only immediate kin she is on good terms with, but circumstances separated Dedyet from the family for millennia. Had it not been for the support of her friends from the Fear Squad, the loyalty of her BFF Ghoulia, and the comfort of her boyfriend Deuce's embrace, Cleo's crown would have been crushed a long time ago. Cleo is aware she is lucky to have found people around her that allow her to flourish and while not always the most tactful, she is very protective of her crew.
In the music video for the Monster High Fright Song, while Cleo de Nile herself does appear in animation, she is also cast with several other character mummy analogues who received creative interpretation by the video crew. The mummy girl is played by Megan Mackenzi.
She was portrayed by Megan Nicole in the YouTube video of the Monster High special song "Digital Monsters, We Are Proud".
Cleo was a princess of Egypt over 5,800 years ago and raised with the knowledge she'd never be queen of her home, as that honor would befall her older sister Nefera, yet consequently with freedom to pursue her own interests. One event highlighting the difference in the sisters' upbringing was when delegation from a far-off country arrived and gifted Nefera a corpse flower that was claimed to be a rare treasure only fit for a future queen. The flower became one of Nefera's most precious possessions, while Cleo instinctively developed acrimony for it.
Life would not remain kind to the De Niles as trouble was brewing within the kingdom. Cleo's own uncle sought to overthrow Ramses de Nile and found loyal followers among Ramses's own trusted advisers. The day the traitors committed their coup d'état had been perfectly planned to remove the royal family before anyone knew what hit them. The chief adviser led Ramses and his daughters to underground quarters that were prepared in advance to house them would they come under attack. The plan was for them to be wrapped up in magic cloth that would sustain them until the guards would have dealt with the danger. Despite that the queen had yet to join them, Ramses de Nile already had the family wrapped with magic cloth that would keep them safe while their loyal followers would deal with the usurper. What they didn't know was that they had no loyal followers left and that the magic cloth was meant to keep them asleep forever. Nonetheless, they woke up after 1,300 years, only to find the queen still missing and themselves trapped within the hiding spot. As Ramses began to spend his days looking for an exit, Cleo pessimistically enjoyed the luxuries of their prison, but Nefera was hit badly by both the loss of her mother and her future and spent most of her time talking to her corpse flower, that she'd taken with her. An earthquake eventually damaged the prison enough to create a hole, allowing sunlight in. As the family rejoiced, the corpse flower awakened from her slumber and introduced herself as Amanita Nightshade. She explained what truly happened during the coup d'état, revealed that the family had been asleep for 1,300 years, and elaborated that they now no longer fit the human world but must find their place in monster society. When a caravan passed by, the De Niles' shouting was not enough to draw attention, but Amanita was thin enough to get through the gap and promised to return with help. She never did and the family eventually got out on their own.
About 4,500 years later, the family has relocated to New Salem, Boonighted States of Scaremerica. Though the throne of old is gone, the family has access to a large collection of magical artifacts that only works for them and over 10,000 servants, most of which apparently ushabti. Cleo has easily adapted to her monster life, enjoying the riches of her temple and enjoying the life of an high-schoolar at Monster High, the prestiged school of the Boo World, eventually finding interest Clawd Wolf, the co-captain of the basketball team, only to later dump him for his co-captain Deuce Gorgon, where she found love, that made her ascend in the social pyramid, making people realize that she was also a princess, making her incredibly popular, enough to join the fearleading squad led by her sister, that, because of this, elected her for captain when she graduated. Since then she's been either famous for her success and status or infamous for her less-than-kind personality.
Cleo is extremely royal, so she expects everyone to treat her like it. Usually, her attitude is selfish, arrogant, and sassy; she can't be entirely blamed for her behavior, because it's shown that she was raised to be like this. She is extremely competitive with other ghouls, especially Toralei Stripe. But deep down, Cleo's a very caring, kind, and thoughtful ghoul who cares about her friends.
As royalty, Cleo is unsurprisingly the Queen of the student body, though few know her confidence is not as solid as she makes it seem to be: she is easy to be taken by the insecurity of not being fit for leadership, had it not been for the support of her friends from the Fear Squad, the loyalty of her BFF Ghoulia, and the comfort of her boyfriend Deuce's embrace, Cleo's crown would have been crushed a long time ago. Cleo is aware she is lucky to have found people around her that allow her to flourish and while not always the most tactful, she is very protective of her crew.
She can work well with the others if they share a common goal, in which case she becomes the de facto leader of the ghouls. She's a highly effective organizer and a leader who will deviate between acting selfishly and selflessly, depending on her mood, which is easy to alter, as she is a tad tempered, when fueled, and violent if upset. Additionally, she is stubborn and will only follow her rules if she feels like it, and she lacks when it comes to learning from her mistakes, making the same mistakes of dodging responsibility and attempting to control others. It doesn't help she has access to limited amounts of magic, through her magical amulets. In the webisode series of Monster High, Cleo is mainly known as the Queen Bee at school, having self-proclaimed popularity which is not untrue despite being self-proclaimed. Despite Cleo's personality overall, one of her true personality traits is that she is kindhearted deep down with a true heart of gold, which is much more than what can be said about her sister Nefera, who, when asked about best friends in her profile bio, only said she "rule[s] alone". Cleo also solely goes by the name Cleo in the Monster High without the adding of the family name "de Nile" to not raise suspicion to her name resembling the Egyptian name Cleopatra and having a name that has to do with the river, the Nile, which is what her surname is based on. Though her full name is never actually said, as in, "Cleo de Nile", it is hinted at, especially when Brett Redding, calls her "Queen of de-Nile" as a pun on the river Nile and the word "denial", and her father is referred to as "Ram de Nile" in the beginning of the second book.
Cleo de Nile is in the possession of black and brown hair, which is commonly enhanced with golden highlights, although she also picks blue, teal, and/or purple as additional colors. She favors her hair to be long and hang loose, but she isn't hesitant to switch it up with a shoulder-length haircut. She has tan skin and blue eyes, always surrounded by thick black winged eyeliner, and wears a gem on her right cheek that is blue in most of her ensembles (it was red in Scaris). While Cleo can get creative with her look, there is one fashion rule she can't break: she always has to have at least one piece of burial wrapping on her, lest she disappears into dust.Fortunately for her, she is allowed to apply the burial wrapping in whatever way suits her. Sometimes, she wears an entire jumpsuit with limb warmers made of the material. At other times, the burial wrappings are worked into a simple waist wrap easily forgotten among the rest of the look. In Frights Camera Action, however, no wrap is visible. Cleo's standard colors of choice to dress in are shades of yellow, including gold, which is her favorite color, and anything in the range blue-to-teal. She has also experimented with purple and red, but those are limited to specific periods. While not dress-shy, Cleo prefers to step into a pair of pants, usually as part of the aforementioned jumpsuit. As part of an Ancient Egyptian Royal Family, Cleo commonly works large gems into her look, as well as scarabs, lotusses, snakes, and triangles (pyramids).
Cleo lives with her father, and older sister, Nefera de Nile. Her dad's name is Ramses de Nile, and he's an antiques dealer. Cleo and Nefera's mother is Dedyet de Nile. Through circumstances, she was left behind when the De Nile family went into hiding. The family reunites later according to Hexiciah Steam's and Robecca Steam's diary, though it is unknown what happens to her after. In The Ghoul Next Door, Nefertiti is said to be the girls' aunt.
In the webisode "Miss Infearmation", Cleo mentions having an older sister called Nefera de Nile, who's out of the country with their father. Clawd's 'School's Out' diary also mentions Nefera being the previous fear squad captain. Nefera is said to be a model in Cleo's 'School's Out' diary. Based on both the 'School's Out' diaries and the cartoon, Cleo and Nefera don't get along very well.
As one of the most popular students at Monster High, Cleo enjoys a vast list of followers, Ghoulia Yelps and Deuce Gorgon. The latter is her boyfriend, while the former is Cleo's sole confidante. The two met when Cleo reached out to her in a time of need and they've been inseparable since. They make for an odd couple, Cleo being popular and Ghoulia being regularly disregarded like zombies often are. Even Cleo is not always aware of her treatment of Ghoulia, taking her as a personal assistant and gateway to an easy grade, but Ghoulia knows she means well and is among the very few people Cleo will readily apologize to when she realizes her errors.but her selection of close friends is modest and can at its most extreme be brought back to two:
After a rough start with the Fear Squad in which the entire team walked out on her for her constant negativity towards their efforts, Cleo was saved by Frankie Stein, Draculaura, and Clawdeen Wolf, who signed up as new members. More than that, they proved themselves the perfect combination of pushback and loyalty that Cleo needed to become a good captain and a better person in general. Out of the three, Cleo seems to be closer to Clawdeen, the most mature of the three, something she respects. However the two didn't start all that good. Cleo used to date Clawdeen's brother, Clawd Wolf, who she dumped, leaving a grudge between the two divas. Clawdeen didn't trust Cleo and Cleo looked down on lowly Clawdeen in their begginings, however when the two grew closer they discovered they have more in common then they previously thought. Despite Clawdeen not standing Cleo's bossy nature and her dramatic reactions, the two are popular and fans of high fashion, fierce and confident, and work very well together. So much that Clawdeen has become sorts of an inspiration to Cleo, with her hard work and free creativity.
Cleo can get easily furstrated with both Frankie's and Draculaura's antics, both being the most immature of the crew, with overly excitement and positivity in them, which Cleo appreciates but also gets slightly annoyed with. She also had a hard time to adapt the clumsiness of the two, who to top it off weren't the most skilled cheerleaders to begin with. However, she will do anything to protect them and loves them with all her heart. Like with Clawdeen, Frankie's and Cleo's mutual relationship didn't have smooth begginings, with Frankie, accidently, embarrasing her twice, once by insinuating her boyfriend was actually Deuce.
Lagoona is the other member of their clique that is close to Cleo. Though interactions between the two are rare, Lagoona is just as sympathetic and friendly towards her as she is to the next one, though Cleo is probably the one out of the main six she is the most hostile towards, though not in big amounts, sometimes being sassy and lecturing her, though only when Cleo is inconsiderate. As the voice of reason and the most down to earth of the gang, Cleo definitely trusts her and enjoys her company too.
Among Cleo's less close friendships lie Jinafire Long, her wise, advice-giving roommate, that is living in her palace while the exchange program carries on; Abbey Bominable, her foreign friend who she kind of thinks lowly of but still adores, especially as a competition partner; and Twyla, who goes against her expectations of being popular during the high school year but whose selflessness has helped Cleo at time, usually giving her advice and wise words.
Despite her friendships, Cleo's popularity and personality have gained her several nemeses too, the most prominent one being Toralei Stripe and the werecat twins, Purrsephone and Meowlody. It all started when the werecats swore to make use of what they learned in delinquent prison, to overthrow those who rule, this being Cleo, the queen bee. Then, when Nefera chose Cleo over Toralei for squad captain, despite the difference in experience that would otherwise benefit Toralei, the rivalry between the two sparked for real, and the werecats gave up on the squad to make their own, to rival Cleo's yet inexisting squad. What they weren't expecting was the success of the replacements Cleo found, and were tempted to join again, though Cleo refused. Since then they're faithful to their promise to make Cleo's, and the Fear Squad's life a living nightmare, playing pranks and framing them on a daily basis. Cleo and Toralei act hostile to one another and constantly insult each other, cat fighting usually and throwing shade at each other, a toxic relationship of cat vs. rat. However, the two have shown signs of harmony when working together, and it is implied by Neighthan Rot that their problem is the lack of communication. Despite this, they can't stand each other no matter what.
Gory Fangtell is another opponent. Fresh from Belfry Prep, where Gory was the captain of the cheerleading squad, she's not willing to give up her status, and developed a low-key rivalry against Cleo, when her ambitions were denied.
Amanita Nightshade, her fellow "friend", also has a low-key rivalry, though she is much more subtle about it. She's sly with her insults, acting like she doesn't know what's going on. She has no specific reason to torment Cleo, she just enjoys it and the chaos it brings. Cleo can't stand her however, and for valid reasons, due to their unfortunate past, and because Amanita's "oblivious" façade annoys her to the core. She has suffered enough because of her and isn't willing to forgive her that easily or take up with her, though she has stated she'll try.
Cleo de Nile's pet is a snake named Hissette, whose attitude reflects Cleo's. In the Monster High book series, Deuce gave Hissette to Cleo as a gift, saying she was his mom's 'first gray hair', yet in her diary, it was stated that it was given to her as a gift from Egypt. In the same book series, Cleo also has seven cats named Chisisi, Bastet, Akins, Ebonee, Ufa, Usi, and Miu-Miu.
Cleo dates Deuce Gorgon and the two of them are considered the 'it' couple on campus. Behind the layer of public glamour, the love they share is genuine and defined by both as an easy-going desire to be a better person to honor the other. Before getting together with Deuce, Cleo used to date Clawd, the BMOC. Their relation was forced on them as a mixture of peer pressure coming from the expectation that as the two most highly regarded students they'd be a perfect match and from C.A. Cupid having the same idea and shooting them with her arrows. However, while Cleo and Clawd picked up a friendship that kept them upright in the early days when expectations were high and experience limited, they never connected romantically. Eventually, they broke up on good terms on October 31st and Cleo picked up with Deuce, whom she had a spark with for a long time, a day later on November 1st.
Although they have their differences, such as Deuce occasionally getting tired of Cleo's competitive personality Seth Ptolemy, to whom he almost got her betrothed despite that neither mummy wanted that.and Cleo being quick to think Deuce no longer wants her, little of it matters in the grand scheme of the joy they derive from being together, even if it is just to play video games or cook a meal. . Cleo's erratic behavior whenever she fears Deuce favors another aside, the biggest struggle the couple faces is the disapproval of Cleo's family. Her father in particular believes that Deuce cannot live up to the demands of royalty and at times resorts to manipulation in an attempt to get Cleo to choose better. One boy he'd have liked to see her with is
- July 11, 2008: Mattel requests the trademark for Cleo de Nile.
- May 05, 2010: The Monster High website goes live, featuring Cleo de Nile's profile.
- May 05, 2010: Cleo de Nile's profile art is revealed.
- May 05, 2010: Cleo de Nile makes her animated debut in the Higher Deaducation commercial.
- May 05, 2010: Cleo de Nile makes her 2D cartoon debut in "Jaundice Brothers".
- Early July, 2010: Cleo de Nile's debut doll is released as part of the 'Basic' series.
- Early July, 2010: Cleo de Nile makes her diary debut in her 'Basic' diary.
- September 01, 2010: Cleo de Nile makes her Monster High book debut in Monster High.
- Early December, 2010: Cleo de Nile's debut plushie is released as part of the Friends series.
- February 12, 2012: Cleo de Nile makes her 3D cartoon debut in "Why Do Ghouls Fall in Love?".
- September 05, 2012: Cleo de Nile makes her Ghoulfriends book debut in Ghoulfriends Forever.
- November 05, 2014: Cleo de Nile makes her anime debut in "The Golden Cleo de Nile".
- The webisode "Hiss-teria" introduced Cleo's fear of spiders, which came up once more in "Escape From Skull Shores".
- The hieroglyphs on Cleo's vanity translate to Klio, the first part of how the real-life Cleopatra's name was spelled. In Ancient Egyptian, there is no letter representing an "e"-sound and phonetically the "e" in "Cleopatra" was and is treated as an "i". Meanwhile, Ancient Egyptian had three letters for "k", one for the "c/k" sound, one for the "kh" sound, and one for the "q/k" sound. Cleopatra's name was spelled with the latter "k".
- Despite the reboot being a prequel, Cleo is older in the reboot, with her age listed as 6000. This would make her at least 6001 years old in the pre-reboot seasons.