You’re about to dive head first into the unorganized, rant-filled portion of my Disney-oriented mind- enjoy…or hate. Either way, feel free to join in on the ranting fun down below in the comments.
Disney used to give us the embodiment of pure evil for a villain and fey that are evil just because they feel like it. Now we’re being given more humane and realistic villains.
I miss the classic villains like Chernabog and Maleficent who were evil for the sake of being evil. Even The Evil Queen from Snow White was a terrifying villain as she was as shallow as a puddle and used that quality as a reason to kill Snow White. What I love the most about these villains is that they are straight up evil with little to no reason. I mean Maleficent cursed a baby simply because she wasn’t invited to its christening.
As time went on these villains became more complex. Instead of literal evil, we’re given villains like Frollo, and Scar. They both are absolutely evil but put up a public facade. Frollo is a deeply religious man who vows to rid Paris of gypsies but ends up lusting after one. Eventually he comes to the decision that she either needs to be with him or she must die. I don’t know about you but that’s really terrifying; a man being in such power being able to bend the system to fit his needs. In Scar’s case he really just wants the throne so he kills his brother and makes his nephew think it’s his fault. In both cases, they feel no guilt for what they’ve done and keep their evil deeds on the down-low. The lack of a conscience is what really sets these guys apart as being true villains.
This theme of having complex villains has continued to this day but I really don’t like the recent way they’re being portrayed. Mother Gothel from Tangled is reminiscent of The Evil Queen as she wants to stay young and beautiful but just comes off as a deranged kidnapper. She raises Rapunzel to believe that she is her mother yet degrades her at any point she can. Mother Gothel just plays head games with Rapunzel so she stays in line and does what she’s told without question.
Hans from Frozen is such a wimpy villain. First off, I’m going to applaud Disney for making his villainous ways such a twist because that hasn’t happened in another Disney film. Secondly, I’d like to yell at Disney for creating this twist because it was kind of stupid. Hans wants the throne of Arendelle because it isn’t possible for him to take his own country’s throne as he has about a dozen older brothers. Somehow pretending to fall in love with Anna and killing both sisters becomes his grand scheme to reach his goal. While I can appreciate conniving villains I simply cannot appreciate Hans as he is in no way a real villain in my views. Instead he is just a sad little man who is so desperate for a crown and goes a little too far in his psycho rampage. If he had been a more aggressive character then my views of him may have changed.
For me, a villain needs to be ruthless and able to show a true evil side to be considered a villain. Maleficent and Hans just can’t be compared to one another fairly since one of them isn’t truly evil. Dear Disney, please produce some true evil as the antagonists for your upcoming films.