Movies || My Favourite Disney Villains

Walt Disney movies are in my blood. Well, really animated films are, because I only became familiar with Disney when I was six and it was anime films like Nausicaa (my favourite anime EVER - if you haven't seen it, you simply MUST!) and series like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, My Little Pony, Brave Starr, and even The Smurfs that were my bread and butter. One of the things I love about animation is that they have the most inventive villains; villians you can hate, villains you empathise with, and villains you can just laugh at. I will stick to Disney films for this piece, because a) let's face it, Disney is a monster, and b) they have created my favourite villains of all time.

"Now, my dear, you're going to find the big shiny, diamond for your Auntie Medusa, aren't you?"
Posted by The Rescuers on Thursday, December 10, 2015

1. Madame Medusa

The Rescuers' title song always makes me cry. I knew because of this film that I was lucky to have a family, that I would never be as lost and alone as poor Penny. And the film also has a truly memorable villain: Medusa.

She is based on The Diamond Duchess from Margery Sharp's novel Miss Bianca, but the character design was also inspired by Cruella de Vil, from 101 Dalmations. The original idea was that Cruella de Vil would come to Devil's Bayou for some reason, but the plan was scrapped and Medusa came to life, some initial sketches showing her with alligator skins like Cruella. She and Cruella have a lot in common, including vanity and anger, but Medusa was made unique with her sagging breasts, extravagant makeup, and pet alligators.

Why she is a favourite: She is truly cruel. My little five-year-old heart couldn't imagine being treated as badly as Penny: told no one would want me, thrown into a watery cave, have my favourite teddy bear (my only friend) held for ransom, and having to depend on wild creatures for my salvation instead of the authorities who I had once had faith in. Heartbreaking stuff.

Interesting fact: She has a similar facial structure to Ursula. Which leads me nicely to -->

Feeling Friday fabulous.
Posted by The Little Mermaid on Friday, May 20, 2016

2. Ursula

I think Ursula from The Little Mermaid may be at the top of everyone's list of Disney villains. She is frightening and creepy, half octopus and half witch, squeezing the blood out of poor sea creatures for her lipstick and turning mermaids into seaweed. She also has a theatrical demeanour, making her utterly charming, and if it weren't  As a villain, she is manipulative of necessity, but she cheated when she used Ariel's voice to enchant Eric. She is vain and power hungry but also so smart that she knows exactly what her victims want, how to get it for them, and how to take it away.

Why she is a favourite: I really liked her songs :) I'm a simple gal. Her theatrical demeanour makes her so charming, and if it for those asides to Flotsam and Jetsam during Poor Unfortunate Souls, we may have believed she was truly interested in helping Ariel.

Interesting fact: She only has six tentacles. Although add her arms and she would have eight limbs...

Watch this exclusive Robin Hood clip featuring a deleted storyline:
Posted by Robin Hood on Tuesday, August 6, 2013

3. Prince John

Robin Hood is not one of my favourite Disney films for nothing: Prince John is hilarious, and Peter Ustinov was the perfect choice for his voice. Like all Disney villains, he is vain, but he is also self-indulgent, doing whatever makes him happy, even sucking his thumb when he thinks of his mother. His immaturity is a wonderful character flaw and I can't think of another villain who pulls it off so well, making it tragically funny.

Why he is a favourite: He is unforgettable. I think of him and immediately think of the scene where Robin Hood is pulling a money bag away from Prince John as he tries to keep his thumb in his mouth, or his wriggling toes teasing Hiss, or wrapping Hiss around a pole. He's just the funniest, meanest villain.

Interesting fact: In the early stages of character design, there was a plan to make Prince John a tiger, which was scrapped because obviously a tiger couldn't be a brother to King Richard the lion. Some say this may explain his lack of mane.

“These are NOT Joanna eggs!” -McLeach
Posted by The Rescuers Down Under on Thursday, August 23, 2012

4. McLeach

McLeach, from The Rescuers Downunder is an absolutely horrible person, there is no doubt about it. He poaches animals for a living, selling them or their hides on the black market. He is cunning and manipulative, and even sadistic and abusive. I think he even suggests he may have had something to do with Cody's father's disappearance. I think he may be Disney's most evil character. Well, I am biased when I say that: I've always been interested in nature conservation, so seeing someone disrespect wildlife and plan to kill of an entire species for monetary gain always sickened me.

Why he is a favourite: He is truly hateful. Those are the best villains. The ones you can really hate.

Interesting fact: His full name is Percival C. McLeach.

"Uh, guys...Olympus would be that way."
Posted by Hercules on Tuesday, February 6, 2018

5. Hades

Voiced by James Woods, Hades is the best thing about Hercules. The actor jumps at every chance to play Hades, and he actually changed how the character is portrayed in the film after the filmmakers saw his audition: Hades was meant to be a threatening villain, but Woods' rendition changed their minds and he turned into this sort of salesperson that is excellent at manipulating people.

Why he is a favourite: He's a real personality. I also feel as though you can empathise with him to some degree, more so than any of the other villains on my list. He just wants absolute power, to be appreciated like his brother. What sibling doesn't want that? Sure, he goes about it the wrong way, I mean he is the villain after all, but through it all he never gives up and takes the positive out of any situation.

When your boss asks you to work over the weekend:
Posted by The Emperor's New Groove on Friday, March 16, 2018

6. Ysma

Now Ysma is a rare jewel. She is villainous because she covets Kuzco's throne, because when she does sit on it she doesn't really care about the subjects who come for assistance, and because she tries to poison the Emperor (who is accidentally turned into a Llama). But she is in a strange position in relation to Kuzco because he is just like her: vain, uncaring, selfish. Her villainy in fact aids in Kuzco's personal growth. She never truly does anything evil, and often offers more of a position of comic relief as she clearly has no understanding of how to deal with people.

Why she is a favourite: I am a bit biased, I'll admit, because The Emperor's New Groove is (also) one of my favourite Disney films, and I just love how off-the-wall everything about it is. From Kuzco's narration of his life and the squirrel popping a balloon in a den of jaguars to Kronk's squirrel language skills and jumping rope while Pacha's wife is picking up a cup, it is so ridiculous and so memorable. I cannot help but love her. And Yzma's interaction with her minion is just hilarious.

Who are you favourite Disney villains? I'd love for you to let me know in the comments!

{Lead image sources: Facebook/DisneyTheRescuers; Facebook/DisneyTheRescuersDownUnder; Facebook/DisneyTheLittleMermaid; Facebook/DisneyHercules; Facebook/DisneyRobinHood; Facebook/EmperorsNewGroove}


  1. This post remind me the time of my childhood. These all villains are hilarious and the best.
    Places to visit in Chandigarh

    1. I'm so glad we agree on the villains. Thanks for commenting!


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