I’ve been on a bit of a Disney villain kick lately, and I can’t say that I love any of them more than Ursula (though Maleficent is a close second, girl’s got style).
I think it says something about the limited scope of Disney princesses that as I’ve gotten older, I’ve identified more with each dainty little protagonist’s equivalent villainess. And nowhere is that more true than in The Little Mermaid, also known as The Little Whiny Brat who Undergoes Extensive Plastic Surgery for the Sole Purpose of Meeting a Dude.
Honestly? Ursula’s not a bad role model:
Get kicked out of Atlantis? Set up your own lair.
Need to make a living? Prey on people’s insecurities using your powerful magic. (Hey, I never said she wasn’t evil).
Need henchmen? Get Flotsam and Jetsam, possibly the only two evil sidekicks to ever succeed at anything.
Your plan to scam the spoiled little princess needs a boost? Transform yourself into an evil version of her to seduce her one true love. (But not for long, you’re much too fabulous in your original form, hunty).
Have a body type that almost never gets any representation in Disney films (or anywhere)? OWN IT.
Ursula gets. it. done.
And I love her for it.
Top image by krhart.