6 Perfectly Wicked Disney Villain Songs - Dangerously Genocidal


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Tuesday, 23 May 2017

6 Perfectly Wicked Disney Villain Songs

Disney is pretty well known for the songs that make up about 70% of every animated movie they make. Although none of them can really be called bad, there are a few that stand out as really, really good. And no, I’m not talking about “Let it go”. Yes, that was a good song. Yes, every person in the world has probably heard and sung it. Now let it go. This list does focus on good songs, but we’re going to leave heroes, heroines and princesses out of it. Instead we are going to look at the worst of the worst, the most malicious – and delicious – songs. Here are:

6 Perfectly Wicked Disney Villain Songs

1. Snuff Out The Light, Yzma’s Song – Emperor’s New Groove

This is probably the most tragic song on this list – not because it’s sad in any way, but because this brilliant tune was actually cut from the final film! It’s a tragic loss to the world of villain themes. Yzma was a good, if somewhat comical, villain. There’s no denying that. But the lyrics of the song provide some much needed insight into Yzma as a person and as a villain – backstory and motifs left out in the final film that prevents Yzma from becoming the great villain she could have been. Did I mention that she happened to be quite the looker when she was young?

The song itself is sung by the late legend Eartha Kitt, and good lawd, does she pull it off. The tune is catchy as all hell, with a type of island-ish, big-band feel, and it’s near impossible to listen to it without wanting to start dancing. Or singing along, for that matter. Thankfully the song itself survived the cut, and you can sing your heart out alongside Yzma and Eartha by getting the official soundtrack. Or, you know, just looking it up on Youtube.

“Whatever it takes to keep my looks, you really can’t blame a girl for trying!

2. Be Prepared, Scar’s Song – The Lion King

There cannot be a person on this earth that hasn’t heard ‘Be Prepared’ from The Lion King. And if you just so happen to be the only person who’s never heard a lion sing about “the coup of the century”… I pity you. Jeremy Irons performs the voice of Scar, although some parts of the song is sung by Jim Cummings (due to Irons’ voice giving out – but he does a damn good job of never letting you realise it).

Elton John composed the music for the piece; the rather cheery feel he gave the song is made that much creepier by the dark theme. The imagery is to die for, with the lighting, shadows and the lines of hyenas marching along all reflecting a very eerie Nazi-propaganda style.

The bottom line is this – every single second that Scar insults the hyenas while plotting his murderous takeover is just delightful. In a darkly demented, oddly enjoyable way. And it kind of makes you want to cheer for him… just a little. Long live the King!

3. Mother Knows Best, Mother Gothel – Tangled

This song isn’t just a villain’s song – it’s downright cruel and abusive. The song is sung by Mother Gothel – brilliantly voiced by Donna Murhpy – in a very cheery, jazz-pop mix that makes you want to smile and bounce happily. Especially since the entire song is like a little mother-daughter chat. That is, until you listen to the lyrics. Then things take a turn for the horrific.

The first clues are visual. Not one of the ‘loving’ gestures are made towards Rapunzel herself. Every little hug, kiss and pat is directed at Rapunzel’s youth-restoring hair. Gothel doesn’t give a damn about the girl, you can see it in these clues alone. But if you go on to listen to the words themselves you quickly realize that the entire thing is about scaring Rapunzel and putting her down. Gothel makes it quite clear to Rapunzel that there’s just no way she would survive on her own; she’s sloppy, clumsy, gullible, ditzy, and – not in so many words – getting fat.

Yes, Mother of the Year award winner right there. But, as much as I hate to say it, the combination of a happy tune and heart-wrenchingly cruel lyrics makes this one epic villain’s song.

4. Friends on the Other Side, Dr. Facilier – The Princess and the Frog

This is, undeniably, both one of the most fun and one of the blatantly dark villain songs ever used in a Disney film. While other songs may allude to some other evil or power, Dr. Faciliar pretty much tells you right up front that he’s dealing with some pretty nasty spirits and loa (those are the voodoo spirits, by the way.). He does all of it with a big smile, sugar-coated promises and jaunty Cajun music. And if, at any point, you start feeling like this song is reminding you of something, look to number six on this very list.

Understandably, critics raved about the song. It was compared to everything from ‘Be Prepared’ to ‘Poor, Unfortunate Souls’, praised for its trippy visuals and sinister feel. The song is, to say the least, a guilty pleasure. And, when his ‘friends’ sing the song right back to him when they drag the good Doc’s soul to hell, it’s somehow still as much fun. If you find yourself smirking at Dr. Facilier’s grave… know that you’re not the only one.

5. Hellfire, Judge Claude Frollo – The Hunchback of Notre Dame

If there ever was a villain song that did NOT belong in a CHILDREN’S movie, this is the one. It’s the song that single-handedly put Hunchback of Notre Dame at risk of getting a higher than PG age restriction. For a Disney film.

The song itself is fantastic – it’s incredibly dramatic, and the use of a Latin confession prayer makes it feel that much more appropriate. The highly religious visuals combine with the music to create an incredibly heavy atmosphere – especially when cloaked figures start accusing Frollo of putting himself in the soul-threatening position he’s in.

The entire piece deals with Frollo’s lust for Esmerelda, his struggle with this ‘sin’, his fear of being condemned into hell and, naturally, how all the blame is to be placed squarely on Esmerelda and the devil’s shoulders. From the opening line to the final moment that Frollo passes out on the floor, spread like a man crucified… it’s all perfect. Darkly, disturbingly perfect.

Burn, Frollo. Burn.

6. Poor Unfortunate Souls, Ursula – The Little Mermaid

Arguably, Poor Unfortunate Souls is one of the best villain songs ever written for a Disney movie – and it must be said that the performance by Pat Carroll is nothing short of epic. It’s dramatic, it’s showy, it’s deceptive – Poor Unfortunate Souls is everything a villain’s theme should be. At the same time, the animators need to get some serious credit here.

That face as it belts out the final “Poor, unfortunate SOUL!” is enough to give anyone nightmares for life.

Like the earlier mentioned Friends on the Other Side, in this song Ursula plays on the fears and desires of her victims to trick them into deals. Naturally, she demands a very reasonable price for her services. It’s a price that gets near impossible to pay and one that, if forfeited, will turn you into a very, very unfortunate soul – an odd, misshapen little worm stuck to the sea-witch’s floor. That’s one way to spend eternity.

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