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Parents

We Ranked Every Disney Parent From Absolute Worst To Absolute Best

Spoiler: Mufasa isn't number one.

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41. The Evil Queen from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

Disney

Mirror, mirror, on the wall, who, now, is the worst parent of all? Congrats, Evil Queen, it's you! And how could it not be? She's disturbingly jealous of her stepdaughter, and forces her to dress in rags and work as her servant. Then, when Snow White proves to be "fairer," she dispatches a hitman to kill her! Later, when she learns Snow White is still alive, she tries to kill her herself! That, my friends, is a bad parent.

40. Claude Frollo from The Hunchback of Notre Dame

Disney

This is one bad dude, er, dad. First, he only agrees to care for Quasimodo as his son because he killed his mother — not a good start. But then he names the baby Quasimodo (meaning "half formed" in Latin), and locks him away in the Notre Dame Cathedral. There, he cruelly stops Quasimodo from having any enjoyment at all, and even shames his lonely son for making "friends" with the gargoyles. At the end, he tries to kill Quasimodo (after boasting about having killed his mom). Ugh!

39. Mother Gothel from Tangled

Disney

You know those horrifying news stories where a kid is kidnapped by some psychopath and then secretly raised in seclusion? Well, that’s basically the story of Mother Gothel and Rapunzel — just with cute animation. Mother Gothel is pure evil, and gaslights Rapunzel into thinking she can’t survive outside the tower. This, again, is exactly what the monsters in those news stories do. She also tries to kill Rapunzel's boyfriend, Flynn, so she's not great!

38. Lady Tremaine from Cinderella

Disney

Wow, this lady is a real piece of work. She psychologically tortures Cinderella and makes her a virtual servant in her own home. She’s also not very kind to her biological daughters, viewing them merely as representations of herself and a way for her to get ahead. And she does it — most of the time — while maintaining a steely composure that makes her even scarier.

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37. Kerchak from Tarzan

Disney

Kerchak lost his biological son, so he went through some shit, but sorry — he’s still a crap dad. He treats Tarzan with disdain for years and years until, on his deathbed — after Tarzan saved his family — he accepts him as his son. Pfft! Too little, too late, Kerchak!

36. The Great Prince of the Forest from Bambi

Disney

I know he's busy being the Great Prince or whatever, but let’s drop the crap — he's so absentee from his son’s life that Bambi doesn't even know he's his dad when he sees him. Yikes! (Why am I imagining little Bambi waiting on the stoop for his dad to drive up, but he never does?) He redeems himself later after the death of Bambi's mother, but he's still not exactly Dad of the Year.

35. George Darling from Peter Pan

Disney

Is there another way to put it other than to say he's kind of a dick? He is quick to anger, lashes out at his sons, and is hell-bent on Wendy becoming what he considers a "proper lady." Sure, he improves a bit by the end, but — as we mentioned earlier — most of these parents do.

34. King Agnarr and Queen Iduna from Frozen

Disney

(NOTE: For the purposes of this list, when parents are minor characters and/or operate mainly as a unit, we've grouped them together.)

They WERE dealing with a very challenging situation, but their decision to isolate Elsa from the world was…not great. Yes, it may have helped her hide her powers, but it also made her incapable of connecting with people — so much so, in fact, that the first time she meets with the people, at her coronation, she flips out and goes full ice queen. (Also, telling your kid to “conceal, don’t feel” an innate part of themselves isn’t A+ parenting advice.) Cutting off Elsa from the world also meant isolating Anna, and that stunted her development, too. Is it any wonder she wanted to marry the first guy to bat his eyes at her?

Lastly, considering that if something were to happen to King Agnarr and Queen Iduna, their poorly socialized daughters (including one with devastating powers) would suddenly be in charge of an entire country, perhaps they should've skipped the dangerous overseas trip?

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33. Geppetto from Pinocchio

Disney

Geppetto is a good person, and it is very sweet to see him granted his dream of having a real boy (even if there is something weird about a man who makes a puppet and pretends it's his son). But shit goes south real fast, and Pinocchio ends up saving his dad more than the other way around. Geppetto might not be cut out for this parenting thing.

32. The Sultan from Aladdin

Disney

The Sultan is kind at his core, but let’s be honest: He’s pretty bumbling, gullible, and foolish. He also has pretty terrible protective dad instincts. Most dads would've sniffed out a bad guy like Jafar and kept him as far away from their daughter as possible — but not this clueless, easily hypnotized Sultan. Let us put it this way: Would you feel comfortable leaving your kids with this guy? We wouldn’t!

31. Maurice from Beauty and the Beast

Disney

Maurice is eccentric and scatterbrained, but it says a lot that Belle loves him so much that she's willing to live the rest of her life with the Beast to save him. And he DOES try to save her upon being released. Still, like the Sultan from Aladdin, he doesn't do great in the "Would you let this guy babysit your kids?" test.

30. King Triton from The Little Mermaid

Disney

Granted, it's probably pretty embarrassing to be the king of the ocean and have a daughter who keeps running, er, swimming to land, but he never gets down on Ariel's level and talks to her, father to daughter. Instead, he always goes full authoritarian and even smashes her stuff! And while he comes around at the end, that's not remarkable for these characters.

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29. Mr. Andersen from Inside Out

Disney / Pixar

He can be a goofy, fun dad, but right now he has a lot on his plate, which has made him distracted and not able to give Riley much time. Sure, moving your family to a new city and starting a new job is stressful, but he doesn’t seem too aware of what Riley is going through, or how all of this is affecting her. Thankfully, he's much more tuned in later.

28. Bob Parr from The Incredibles

Disney / Pixar

Bob is unable to follow his dream of being a superhero because of the Supers Relocation Program, and it is a crappy situation. But he doesn’t deal with it well, and as a result is grumpy and puts his family’s situation at risk. Later, he apologizes and says, “I’ve been a lousy father, blind to what I have.” Bob looks like he’s set to be a great dad by the end of the movie — fingers crossed!

27. King Fergus from Brave

Disney / Pixar

Fergus is the definition of the "fun dad" who loves goofing off and laughing with his kids, but leaves the discipline and heavy lifting of parenting to his wife. That's not cool, and he can also be short with his sons (of course, when you consider they're rambunctious triplets, that can be understandable). He loves his kids, though, and thinks a great deal of Merida.

26. Mary Darling from Peter Pan

Disney

Mary cares deeply for her kids and does her best to protect them against George’s outbursts. With that said, she’s pretty dull. Maybe if she (and George) were a little more fun their kids wouldn’t be so starved for adventure and creativity!

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25. Luisa and Enrique Rivera from Coco

Disney

We get that there’s a dramatic family history that made them the way that they are, but still — they’re not very supportive of their son. They also allow Abuelita to dictate Miguel’s livelihood. Abuelita feels so in charge of his life, in fact, that she smashes his guitar! Luisa and Enrique aren’t bad parents by any means — they love Miguel — but they have earned their ranking in the middle of this list.

24. Mrs. Andersen from Inside Out

Disney / Pixar

She is more tuned in to what Riley is going through than her husband and does put in effort to reach her. But she seems a little sad and probably has a lot going on inside (besides, you know, sort of wishing she married the Brazilian helicopter pilot instead of Mr. Andersen). That’s one of the reasons parenting is so hard — often you’re going through stuff that makes being a fully engaged parent difficult, but your kid doesn’t see that. All they see is that you’re not the parent they need.

23. Sina from Moana

Disney

Sina is a loving and nurturing mom, and she tries her best to support her daughter against her strong-willed father. Still, we can’t help but think of how she helps her 16-year-old daughter head off into a wildly dangerous sea — one that killed her husband’s friend! This all works out, duh, because it’s a Disney movie, but it's still a questionable move, Sina!

22. Fa Li from Mulan

Disney

We don’t see too much of her in the movie, but we do see she loves her daughter and is greatly concerned for her well-being. She is very traditional, though, and wants Mulan to be the kind of daughter society dictates instead of who Mulan wants to be. But hey — this was a LONG time ago. Can’t knock her too much for that.

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21. Bonnie and Stu Hopps from Zootopia

Disney

For most of the movie, Judy's parents are the kind of parents you pray don’t bring up politics when you go home for the weekend. They’re also not all that supportive of Judy’s dream to be a police officer (although we get being nervous about their kid moving alone to the big city to take a dangerous job). To their credit, they clearly love Judy deeply and DO change for the better by the end of the movie.

20. Chief Tui from Moana

Disney

He's a loving dad who lived through something traumatic (seeing his friend die at sea), so it’s understandable he wants to keep Moana on land. But he is stubborn, has a bit of a temper, and tends to make choices for his daughter based on what he feels and thinks more than what she does. Basically, he puts a lot of his own baggage on her. He does — say it with me! — get better by the end.

19. Fa Zhou from Mulan

Disney

Like his wife, he is very traditional (probably more so). He’s an intense dude, but he comforts his daughter and gives her good advice when she needs it. And while his pride won’t let him support Mulan 100% when she refuses to do what society expects of her, the fact she is willing to go to war to save him says a lot about the kind of dad he is, don’t you think?

18. Django from Ratatouille

Disney / Pixar

He may not be supportive of his son's dream to cook for humans, but who can blame him? He's probably seen friends and family viciously killed in rat traps for years! Yeah, he’s tough, but he loves Remy and comes around to his dreams at the end. Plus, sometimes the parent who does what’s right for their kid — without worrying about being their kid’s best friend — is the right parent for the situation.

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17. Charlie and Jenny from Finding Dory

Disney / Pixar

Charlie and Jenny deeply love Dory and try hard to give her the tools to survive/succeed with her short-term memory issues. And when she gets lost they never forgot her — laying down shells for years in hopes she'll find her way back to them. Good parents, even if they don't go after her the way Marlin went after Nemo.

16. Queen Elinor from Brave

Disney / Pixar

Elinor is a stubborn, hard-ass mom who doesn’t always listen (but she kind of has to be this way with her "fun dad" hubby). She wants things done her way, and when Merida disobeys her she throws her bow in the fire. (Damn, Elinor! You're lucky Merida couldn’t tweet an image of that because it would not have gone well for you!) Still, Elinor LOVES her kids and will go to the end of the earth for them. She definitely grows as a parent and redeems herself by the end.

15. Chief Powhatan from Pocahontas

Disney

Powhatan is a good dad who loves and respects his daughter. When she chastises the tribe for giving in to hatred, he takes her words to heart and releases John Smith (and stops his warriors from fighting). Despite these positives, he was very committed to his tribe’s tradition and culture, and sometimes put distance between him and Pocahontas because of it. As a result, Grandmother Willow becomes her real sounding board.

14. Sarabi from The Lion King

Disney

She dotes on Simba and never loses her temper when he complains. Gotta say, though, she might not have the best mom instincts. When the Simba and Nala wanted to go to the Water Hole, Nala’s mother seems more suspicious of the idea (rightly so) than Sarabi. Sometimes you gotta say, “Play around here! I know you’re up to no good and I’ll be damned if I let you get killed by hyenas!”

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13. King Frederic and Queen Arianna from Tangled

Disney

Their grief over losing Rapunzel is palpable, and the fact they still honor her every year by releasing floating lanterns says a lot about how deeply they love her. What’s more, when they reunite with Rapunzel, they welcome Flynn too. We don’t know too much more than that about them, but they will probably be very good parents to Rapunzel as she lives the rest of her life.

12. Marlin from Finding Nemo

Disney / Pixar

Marlin has seen some shit. I mean, he lost his wife and, like, 399 children. An experience like that will change a man, er, fish, so it's understandable that he's an overprotective worrywart. But Marlin loves Nemo with every fiber of his being, and gladly went to the ends of the Earth, er, ocean, to save him. He may be an imperfect parent, but he's a damn good one.

11. Bambi’s Mother in Bambi

Disney

We don’t know too much about Bambi’s mother, but she is clearly a very loving and protective mom who teaches her son how to survive in the forest. Tragically, she ends up, essentially, giving her life for her child. She would likely be ranked higher if we knew more about her.

10. Pongo and Perdita from 101 Dalmatians

Disney

Not only do they go the extra mile and risk their lives to save their kids, but when they learn there are 84 other dalmatians Cruella might kill, they adopt them! Gotta say, any parents who are willing to raise 99 kids are pretty impressive, if you ask us!

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9. James from Princess and the Frog

Disney

James had a lot of frustrated dreams in life, but is always a devoted father. He teaches his daughter about cooking, and, more importantly, to work hard for what she wants in life. Together they have a shared dream of opening a restaurant — something Tiana never forgets, even after his death. Following his example, she works hard for years until she finally opens a restaurant in his honor. Her undying love and appreciation shows he is a top-rate dad.

8. Helen Parr from The Incredibles

Disney / Pixar

Like her husband, Helen had to give up her superhero dream, but unlike Bob, she sucks it up for her family and does what needs to be done. And while she is a bit strict, that’s because she’s picking up Bob’s slack. Her family is lucky to have her!

7. Poppa Henry from The Good Dinosaur

Disney / Pixar

He knows full well that Arlo needs to toughen up to survive, and he works endlessly to ready him for the world. Also, he never gives up on teaching Arlo when he struggles. He even dies saving his son! And, later, he gives his son guidance in spirit form! Don’t you just love Mufasa? I mean, Poppa Henry?

6. Eudora from Princess and the Frog

Disney

Eudora is kind, nurturing, and raised a great kid (largely on her own after James’s death). And while James's lessons about hard work are important in shaping Tiana, so is Eudora's example as a hardworking seamstress. She can be a slight nag, telling Tiana not to work so hard and doing the whole “When am I getting grandkids?” routine, but she deserves a spot high up on this list.

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5. Momma Ida from The Good Dinosaur

Disney / Pixar

Ida is parenting in a very dangerous world, and if that’s not enough, her kids are a bit of a handful. Buck and Libby like to tease and prank, and Arlo needs extra attention. But she gives it to him and the others, and when her husband dies tragically, continues to give it — immediately throwing herself into ensuring her family endures.

4. Mrs. Jumbo from Dumbo

Disney

Right away, she shows she has the chops — and heart — to be an awesome mom. When Dumbo is picked on she says, “Not on my watch!” and fights back — and lands in chains because of it. Even so, she manages to comfort her son from solitary confinement by caressing him while singing the tear-inducing song, “Baby Mine.” She and Dumbo are together again at the end, and thank goodness for that!

3. Kala from Tarzan

Disney

Kala is a great mom. In the midst of despair over the loss of her son, she risked her life to save Tarzan and then raised him as her own. This wasn’t an easy choice, and she has to constantly fight for Tarzan against everyone, including her own husband. In the end, Tarzan stays in the jungle near mom — if she weren’t so great, you KNOW he’d have hightailed it to the big city.

2. Mufasa from The Lion King

Disney

You knew he’d be near the top, didn’t you? And why not? He's Simba's first example of strength, and teaches his son about his place in the world and the importance of every living creature in it ("from the crawling ant to the leaping antelope"). Really, he's an endless well of great fatherly advice ("I'm only brave when I have to be. Being brave doesn't mean you go looking for trouble.") Later, he dies saving his son, but even that doesn't stop him from coming back from the Great Beyond to dispense even more good advice! Now that’s some good dadding.

1. Mrs. Davis from the Toy Story franchise

Disney / Pixar

The Toy Story movies are, first and foremost, the toys’ stories, but in the background of their stories has always been Mrs. Davis. We don’t know much about her life other than that she’s a single mom struggling to raise two kids, but she’s always there. We watch her throw a birthday party for Andy, suffer through trips to Pizza Planet, take her kids camping, and perform the mundane, everyday tasks of parenting, like holding Molly or nagging Andy to clean his room. The last film in the series — Toy Story 3 — is set a dozen years after the first, but Mrs. Davis is still there dutifully performing the thankless tasks of raising her now-teenage children.

At the end of that film, we see the culmination of the series for the toys: getting a new lease on life when Andy sends them to live with a new child, Molly. But that moment was also a climactic one for Mrs. Davis: Andy, in kindly and graciously giving away his beloved toys before going off to college, demonstrated the result of her dedication. We may never know her private struggles, but that’s OK. What we do know is that, like so many real-life parents, she’s sacrificed herself, year in and year out, to make a good human.

Mrs. Davis lives in a world that is more like our own than the usual Disney film, so she never gets the chance to dramatically die saving her son like Mufasa, or to prove her mettle to her daughter after being turned into a bear by witch. All she gets to do is to put in the time, and she does it selflessly and with love.