Top 7 Disney Villains Songs
For some reason, the idea of Disney’s villains have been stuck in my head all week. If you follow me on Twitter, you would know it was used as the basis for this week’s #FF, and I wanted to extended upon it just a bit for the site. Instead of doing a typical list of Top 7 Disney villains though, I wanted to look at the best musical numbers by these classic villains.
There were only a handful of rules in place when making this list. First and foremost, the villain had to sing the song, it doesn’t need to be the entire song but a fair majority of it. Thus a catchy melody like Cruella de Vil doesn’t make the list because she never actually sings it. The second rule was this is based on the song quality, but since it is also from movies I factored in the visual appeal of these songs for ranking.
With that said, let’s check out the Top 7!
7) Savages (Governor Ratcliffe in Pocahontas)- This song makes the list for several reasons. First, it plays up the dynamic that good and evil aren’t always as different as both sides are played as “wrong” in this scene with only Pocahontas trying to maintain the peace. The other reason is it is a very visually engaging number. Not just to see the difference between the two warring parties, but the clouds that hang over head in the oncoming storm.
6) Hellfire (Judge Claude Frollo in The Hunchback of Notre Dame)- Disney has no problem going dark when they need to, and this is one of the darkest songs on the list. The villain is making a deal with the forces of hell to sacrifice a woman in order to bring back a loved one. And when she escapes, he vows to burn down an entire city to find her.. so that he can sacrifice her. Not that the song was subtle to begin with, but we also have extremely mysteriously cloaked figures and a woman emerging from the fire place. It is all really dark stuff.
5) Mother Knows Best (Mother Gothel in Tangled)- This isn’t an “evil” song in the general sense. It’s a mother singing to her daughter about how dangerous the world is, and how her daughter isn’t prepared to face the harsh reality. In theory, it’s a noble cause except for the fact that the mother has her own motives for keeping her daughter from the rest of the world. It is a fun song, and has a very show tune sound.
4) Friends on The Other Side (Dr. Facilier in The Princess and The Frog)- This song isn’t as hellish as “Hellfire” but deals a lot with demonic images and figures. The song itself is a bit different from your typical villain song as he is basically trying to swindle two poor (formerly rich) saps into making a very bad deal with him. He comes off more as a showman than a thief or criminal in that regard and the song showcases that well. Once the deal is made though, the song’s visual take a turn for the trippy and produce some very cool scenes.
3) Gaston (Gaston in Beauty and The Beast)- Unlike any other song on this list, this song doesn’t serve to make the villain more evil or sinister or cunning or powerful, it’s a ballad about how awesome he is. Not only does he think he is awesome, everyone in the village thinks he is awesome and they have no problem sharing it. I really can’t do Gaston justice because no one can do Gaston justice but Gaston!
2) Second Rate (Jafar in Aladdin: The Return of Jafar)- I’ll be upfront, I’m completely bias, Jafar is my absolute favorite Disney villain for a number of reasons. It is a bit sad that he didn’t get a major musical number in the original film (he does sing a reprise of a theme), but during his return he gets a great musical number. Not only is it a fun and catchy song, but it is the only song on this list where the villain gets the better of the heroes (even if not the main ones) during a musical beat. Throughout the course of his song, Jafar makes a fool of the Genie who is trying to fight him with everything and coming up short. One thing I will note, this was a DTV so the visuals (namely the backgrounds) are lacking compared to the rest of the list.
1) Be Prepared (Scar in The Lion King)– Was there any doubt this would be number one? Take elements from all previous entries, a dark and brooding backdrop, death imaginary, plotting to kill a king and his young son and Nazi callbacks, and you get the most sinister song sung by a villain ever. Not only that but this song is loud and angry and at times comical. It’s a very well done song.
Agree? Disagree? Let us know your thoughts on the list in the comments below!