Villains are mean, grumpy, and downright naughty. They seem like the characters we should hate and dread but with Disney villains, we find characters we enjoy seeing on the screen. What is the attraction of Disney’s great villains and why do we all secretly find them appealing? This is one of the main reasons for the success of some of Disney’s best-loved films of all time. This is also why collectibles like the Evil Queen by The World of Miss Mindy Presents Disney have become so popular with adults.
Instead of two-dimensional characters, Disney provides villains we can all relate to in some way. Rather than overly general evil goals like “destroy the world” the Disney villains have desires and personality flaws we have seen. Vanity, greed, and arrogance are common themes because they are common issues we encounter in the real world. As adults we can recall times we saw this in person or perhaps ventured a bit down that road, ourselves. As children watching Disney movies, we learned more about ways that pride can go wrong and can then use the movie as a tool for recognizing that sort of folly.
The Triumph of Good
One great thing about Disney movies is we can count on a happy ending. The heroes will face challenges and peril but we know that the good guys will win and the bad guys will get what they deserve. This is something we wish would happen more regularly in real life. It’s no wonder we enjoy the experience of a happy ending at the end of movies.
Disney makes movies that are perfect for children but have interesting stories and characters adults love, as well. The stories are enough outside our daily experiences that they are able to transport us to a different place and time without reminding us too much of our daily lives. Our favourite villains often create elaborate plans when simple ones would work better. That is a tribute to their arrogance and another chance for us to laugh at their antics.
Focus on the Trivial
We all have things we want out of life but for villains, those priorities are all wrong. That’s the nature of being a villain but in Disney villains we see obsessions over minor things. The Evil Queen from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is beautiful, rich, and powerful yet she isn’t satisfied unless she’s the fairest of them all. Wealthy Cruella de Vil wants 101 Dalmatians, simply to make a coat. Buddy Pine (a.k.a. Syndrome) lets his jealousy of Mr. Incredible rule his life rather than moving on and using his genius in positive ways.
Disney villains are important reminders to us all that we need to keep things in perspective and not take ourselves too seriously. They can also help us laugh off the minor villains we encounter at work, school, or around the neighbourhood. If your grumpy boss begins to remind you of a Disney villain, it is easier to not take it personally. You might even be able to entertain your friends later with stories of your boss’s antics.