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7 Best Disney Villains of All Time, Ranked

Nowadays, villains are being given credit by audiences on all platforms, and Disney villains are no exception. From the redeemable, to the worst and to the downright evil, we still find a lot of these villains to be iconic, so here is a ranking of the seven best Disney villains of all time.

7. Ursula

Ursula from Disney
(Disney)

The sea witch Ursula is the main antagonist of Disney’s 1989 animated feature film The Little Mermaid. She is an evil half-woman and half-octopus who uses mischief to trick merfolk into a deal by making their dreams come true. The open ocean is already scary enough, but to think that a witch like Ursula was born out of old tales gives her more character and more reason why she should be treated as a great threat. From her trickery to her use of dark magic and evil intentions, it is no wonder why Ursula is truly an iconic Disney villain.

6. Jafar

Jafar from Aladdin
(Disney)

Jafar, the main antagonist of Disney’s 1992 animated feature film Aladdin, is a powerful sorcerer who also serves as the royal grand vizier of Agrabah and the right-hand man of the Sultan. Jafar is the sultan’s most trusted person and the most powerful person in terms of politics and governance in Agrabah, only second to the Sultan.

Greed, pride, and the idea of being able to hold so much power are the basic character root of almost any villain, and for Jafar, those are his only personal traits. Being unsatisfied with the power he already has, from magic-wielding to a political position, Jafar does not like that his power is limited to just heavily influencing people and standing only second place to the sultan.

5. Scar

Scar from Disney
(Disney)

Scar is the evil lion antagonist from Disney’s 1994 film The Lion King. He is the brother of Mufasa and the successor of Pride Rock and preceded Simba, the son of Mufasa. Before ruling over Pride Rock, Scar was tasked with leading the Lion Guard, a legendary group of lions who were tasked to defend the Circle of Life and protect the Pride Lands.

Scar is a power-hungry lion that wants nothing more than for his ego to be fed. After he kills his brother Mufasa, he pins the blame on his nephew and Mufasa’s son, Simba, forcing Simba into exile, and to make matters worse, Scar breaks the Circle of Life and brings a devastating imbalance to Pride Rock.

4. Syndrome

Syndrome in Disney's The Incredibles.
(Disney)

Buddy Pine, also known as Syndrome, is the main antagonist of Disney’s 2004 Pixar film The Incredibles. The number one fan of Mr. Incredible, this smart, young boy only wanted to become his idol’s sidekick, but due to the dangers of the job, Mr. Incredible didn’t allow young Buddy to tag along with him. Bitter from being denied what he wanted, Buddy Pine held a grudge against Mr. Incredible for years, swearing vengeance for what he experienced, and became Syndrome.

With his smarts, he was able to sell his technology and eventually became an evil billionaire and plotted to bring down superheroes so that he could be the only one left to bask in the glory of being the people’s savior.

3. Mother Gothel

Mother Gothel from Disney
(Disney)

The 2010 Disney film Tangled introduced us to an evil villain known as Mother Gothel. Rapunzel’s wicked stepmother, Mother Gothel is only interested in keeping her youth with the use of a magical flower that was absorbed into Rapunzel’s hair that, whenever is cut, loses its power.

Left with no choice, Mother Gothel kidnapped the baby Rapunzel from her castle and her parents so that she could keep the power of the flower all to herself. Rapunzel then lived the majority of her life locked up in a tower, never to see another living person aside from Mother Gothel.

Mother Gothel is a prime example of a gaslighter and a control freak. From information to the luxury of going outside, Mother Gothel used all her might just to keep Rapunzel to herself, from an entire kingdom that was looking for her.

2. Cruella de Vil

Cuella De Vil from Disney
(Disney)

Cruella de Vil was the main antagonist of Disney’s 101 Dalmatians back in 1961. Cruella is a Disney villain known for being overly obsessed with creating the perfect, soft coat made out of the fur of puppies, kidnapping Dalmatian pups in the film so that she can use them to make high-quality cloth for her coats.

There is no doubt that Cruella and her intentions are downright evil. A successful but prideful fashion designer obsessed with creating perfection, no matter what it takes. Even in her 2021 live-action origin movie, Cruella, painted her as a person with an ego and with a dislike of being bested. With her pride and an unhealthy obsession with being on top, she affects the people around her and those who are close to her in a situation that is stressful and just downright wrong.

1. Maleficent

Maleficent from Disney
(Disney)

Maleficent is the main antagonist in Disney’s 1959 animated film Sleeping Beauty—an evil fairy and the mistress of all that is evil, who, after not being invited to a christening, curses the infant Princess Aurora to one day die before the age of 16 after getting pricked by a spindle of a spinning wheel.

Maleficent is one of the most iconic Disney villains, known for her pride, pettiness, and evil intentions against those who stood against her. After not receiving an invitation to a christening, she felt entitled to show up anyway and just drop a curse of death on a baby before she could even finish her teen years.

(featured image: Disney)

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