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Estragon is one of the two protagonists. He is a bum and sleeps in a ditch where he is beaten each night. He has no memory beyond what is immediately said to him, and relies on Vladimir to remember for him. Estragon is impatient and constantly wants to leave Vladimir, but is restrained from leaving by the fact that he needs Vladimir. It is Estragon's idea for the bums to pass their time by hanging themselves. Estragon has been compared to a body without an intellect, which therefore needs Vladimir to provide the intellect.
Vladimir is one of the two protagonists. He is a bum like Estragon, but retains a memory of most events. However, he is often unsure whether his memory is playing tricks on him. Vladimir is friends with Estragon because Estragon provides him with the chance to remember past events. Vladimir is the one who makes Estragon wait with him for Mr. Godot's imminent arrival throughout the play. Vladimir has been compared to the intellect which provides for the body, represented by Estragon.