Just the mention of their names makes our knees quiver and our fists clench. We all hate them because, one way or another, they made our favorite protagonists suffer. While the main characters are unforgettable, the best Disney villains became too iconic that they also made a name in the movie industry.
Which of them was the most ruthless, most greedy, and most evil of all?
Top 20 Most Iconic Disney Villains
1. Cruella De Vil
Cruella De Vil, 101 Dalmatians’ glamorous, sociopathic, and elitist villain, is on top of our list. Betty Lou Gerson voices this character. If you’re a dog lover, she would be your ultimate enemy. She viciously skinned puppies just to have a beautiful fur coat. She’s so bad that in 101 Dalmatians, you would often hear people calling ill-mannered people the “Cruella” of the 21st century.
Maleficent (Sleeping Beauty) is one classic villainess, the queen of sorcery and the master of revenge. Sure, Disney made a spin-off about Maleficent and even called its title character “Disney’s greatest villain” to paint her another “misunderstood-villain” story.
However, it doesn’t change the fact that this horn-headed villain of Sleeping Beauty ruined everybody’s fairytale when she cast a spell at Sleeping Beauty. Angelina Jolie played Maleficent in the recent spin-off story. She also starred in the second leg of the spin-off entitled “Maleficent: The Mistress of Evil.”
Ursula may be funny and sings beautiful songs, but her devious character in the Little Mermaid made every girl’s dream dark. She did every cruel thing she thought of just to ruin Ariel’s life, including Eric's and King Triton’s.
Ursula had a garden of evil souls and two equally evil sidekicks, Flotsam and Jetsam, Disney’s scariest minions. The Little Mermaid supervillain is really cold-blooded.
Scar is a greedy lion who wished nothing but to gain the wilderness’ throne. His character orchestrated one of the most painful deaths in Disney movies’ history—Mufasa’s.
He wanted to become Scar the Lion King so bad that he had to kill his own brother and planned to kill Simba, his own nephew, too. As evil as it may sound, his death was one of the most deserved villains’ deaths. Jeremy Irons' amazing voice performance made the character even scarier.
5. Mother Gothel
Who would forget Mother Gothel, the evil fake mom of Rapunzel in the 2010 Disney movie, Tangled? She even had the audacity to claim that “Mother knows best” and locked up Rapunzel for eighteen long years in an inescapable tower. Whenever she had to climb up the tower in the middle of nowhere, she would use the poor girl’s long hair. Her manipulation, abuse, and guilt-tripping made it easy for people to hate her.
6. Evil Queen
Would you ask for the heart of an innocent child just because she is more beautiful than you? Well, the Evil Queen just did that in the Disney movie Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. The mistress of evil was so threatened that her insecurity turned her into a vicious murderer. Mirror mirror on the wall, who is the craziest of them all? Of course, the Evil Queen!
Like most villains, Jafar of Aladdin is hungry for power. His greed turned him into a despicable supervillain that fed his ego with manipulation, vicious actions, and magic. Jafar is the iconic antagonist with arched eyebrows and snake-headed staff in Aladdin.
He’s also the advisor to Agrabah’s leader, who used his evil magic to manipulate everyone to get the upper hand. He jeopardized many people’s lives, including the life of Aladdin.
8. Captain Hook
Captain Hook (Peter Pan) is a classic Disney supervillain whose existence mainly occurred due to his willpower to seek revenge against Peter Pan. Do you know why? It was all because Pan fed his arm to a crocodile! His revenge escalated as the story progressed, as he became too hell-bent on getting rid of the Pan, the eternal child.
Loving one's elf is essential as it builds up confidence. However, in the case of the brutish and brawny man, Gaston, his misogyny is over the top. He loved himself too much that he couldn’t accept rejection—at all. He was too self-entitled that he thought he could get everything he wanted—including Belle, the heroine in Beauty and the Beast.
Also Read: How Many Disney Parks Are There?
10. Wicked Stepmother/Lady Tremaine
The Wicked Stepmother/Lady Tremaine, voiced by Eleanor Audley, is too iconic that it paved the way to represent that some stepmothers are evil. The mistress of evil was too disgusting when she snatched everything Cinderella owned and even turned her into her family’s slave. This royal wannabe is the nightmare of all stepdaughters.
Hades is the main supervillain in Hercules, who sported a terrifying and ugly mug façade with evil powers. James Woods voiced Hades. He loved skull accessories, which perfectly fit his iconic evil character. Hades, the God of the Underworld, is also sarcastic, powerful, and so good at being bad that you’d hate him forever. Yes, even when you grow up.
12. Shere Khan
Shere Khan of The Jungle Book is also one of the Disney villains who is calm, calculating, and powerful. He was too scary that even just the mention of his name made everybody shake in fear. He was too obsessed with defeating Mowgli, a mere child who some animals raised in the Jungle.
13. Dr. Facilier
Dr. Facilier is the Shadowman of New Orleans and the ultimate rival of Ratigan, The Great Mouse Detective. Don’t be fooled by his charm and charisma because he also possessed over-the-top evilness that even the underworld’s evil spirits cowered from his wickedness. This Ratigan rival is one wicked character, indeed.
Claude Frollo, the hunchback of Notre Dame, pretended that he had God’s grace by doing evil deeds. His overflowing twisted desire and lust for Esmeralda turned him into an attempted rapist and a genocidal maniac. Claude Frollo, the hunchback of Notre Dame, was one of Disney’s scariest and most sinister villains that haunted every child.
Governor Ratcliffe is also one of the Disney villains of Pochahontas. He possessed diabolical tendencies, which made him into a bad guy. He thinks that everything he desires is his—no matter what. Like Prince John of Robin Hood, his greed for power and respect made many people dislike him, including the Native American Princess, Pocahontas.
16. Shan Yu
If you think you have seen the evilest supervillain of all, then you’re wrong. Shan Yu takes the top spot in being the evilest Chinese character of all time. He ordered the occurrence of the mass genocide across China. He is also the evil leader of the Hun Army. He used an unfortunate event to take over the country and fought head to head with Mulan.
17. Sid Phillips
Sidney “Sid” Phillips is an 11-year old boy who fancied and enjoyed destroying his toys. Basically, he is the ultimate enemy of all the toys in Pixar’s Toy Story film. Disney wanted to teach every child to take care of their toys, so they made Sid evil. Through the help of Woody and Buzz Lightyear, Sid was always defeated.
Yzma is one evil sorceress who is too obsessed with snatching the emperor’s throne in The Emperor’s New Groove. When Emperor Kuzco fired her from being his advisor, she became hell-bent on trying to kill him so she could get his throne. Her part was too well-played that everyone hated her.
19. Randall Boggs
Aside from greed, this canon Disney supervillain’s main characteristic stems from jealousy for Sully and his friends. Randall Boggs possessed both. He is a chameleon-like creature in Monster Inc who was too jealous of other creatures outperforming him.
Hopper is a cunning and ruthless Disney supervillain who sees ants lower than dirt. This grasshopper thinks of nothing but to kill ants. He also abuses his girlfriend, Princess Atta, and even beats up his henchmen.
- Who is the evilest Disney villain of all time?
Based on our research, the evilest Disney supervillain of all time is Scar. His greed and jealousy turned him into a ruthless murderer. Scar even killed his own family just to have power and the throne. The part where he killed Mufasa, the Lion King, is one iconic scene. The songs in the film are equally iconic.
- Who is the most beautiful Disney villain?
If we base the Disney world question, the Evil Queen is the most beautiful canon Disney supervillain on this list. According to her magic mirror, she’s the second most beautiful woman, next to Snow White. Some Disney fans claim that Maleficent, The Queen of Hearts, and Madame Medusa are also the most beautiful yet hateful characters of all time.
- Who was the first-ever Disney villain?
Disney’s first-ever animated full-length film was Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Therefore, the first-ever Disney supervillain is the Evil Queen. Snow White and the Seven Dwarf’s villain started the evilness and spread hate and jealousy all over the Disney world. However, the first-ever Disney supervillain to have a spin-off was Maleficent.
- Who is the youngest Disney villain?
As to date, Gaston of Beauty and the Beast, who is in his mid-20s, and Hans from Frozen, who is only 23, are the youngest Disney villains. The self-loving and narcissistic Gaston is also the first-ever male villain in a Disney princess movie.
Wrapping Up - Best Disney Villains in History
Without these Disney villains in history, princess movies and fairy tale animated films would be boring. They may be evil and hatefully disturbing, but they always teach us essential lessons that will guide us in making life-changing decisions.
Their cruel acts and evil wrong-doings serve as examples in making people realize important things in life - that greed, hunger for power, and jealousy lead people to become the evilest versions of themselves.
Can't get enough of these popular Disney characters? Check out our Disney collectibles here.