The Five Greatest Disney Villainesses of All Time

Cruella: She's the woman you want to shop with, but not necessarily someone you want to have watch your puppies. Or children. Or plants.
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Sure the heroines of Disney's Frozen are all the rage, but a good, wicked Disney villain is ALWAYS fun to watch. Here's a list of the five greatest Disney villainesses of all time.



Not only is she getting a facelift with the 2014 film starring Angelina Jolie, but Maleficent possesses a talent that Daenerys Targaryen would worship: she can turn into a dragon, and not just any dragon, a wicked, monstrous black dragon. In her defense, how silly did Sleeping Beauty have to be to touch that glowing spindle? Nothing says "Don't touch this," like a green pulsing, razor sharp needle. Maleficent represents a pure, deliberate evil and with her gothic-chic look, is one of the most iconic villainesses of all time.

cruella devil

Cruella De Vil

How evil do you have to be to conspire to make coats out of Dalmatian puppies? Partly a metaphor for those who fear aging and go to great lengths to avoid it, Cruella is rich, powerful and clinically insane. One of the most iconic screen images of all time is Cruella roaring down the street in her Panther DeVille, all crazy-eyed and weird. She's the woman you want to shop with, but not necessarily someone you want to have watch your puppies. Or children. Or plants.


Famously portrayed in Disney's The Little Mermaid by an overweight woman with the body of an octopus and drag queen make-up, Ursula is a take away from the original Sea Witch from the Hans Christian Anderson story. In the original story, she is portrayed as just a neutral vehicle for the mermaid's transformation, but in the Disney movie, she became the wicked sister of King Triton who longed for power. Sinister and contriving, the Sea Witch has a talent with words, which we later uses to steal a voice, and she lurks about her leviathan lair, doting on her eel henchmen. It should be noted that all villains should have henchmen, and the more slithery, the better.

queen of hearts

The Queen of Hearts

Described by Lewis Carroll as "An embodiment of blind rage," the main monarch and antagonist of Alice in Wonderland is tyrannical and deranged. She completely dominates her weak husband, the King of Hearts, and her immediate solution to every problem is beheading. More dangerous in the Disney film than in Carroll's original novel, the Queen of Hearts is, as noted by Alice, a "fat, pompous, bad-tempered old tyrant." With her red face and spiky hair that flairs in her rage, she becomes the villain embodiment of either the sin of Wrath and a lack of cross-training. There are some theories that the Queen of Hearts is a caricature of Queen Victoria or Queen Margaret of the War of the Roses fame. She is commonly mistaken for the Red Queen, who appears in Through the Looking Glass.

snow white

The Evil Queen

Actually named "The Evil Queen," this icily statuesque royal conceals a dark and hungry heart, and as known for being one of the cruelest of the Disney villains. This black-hearted queen is known by many names: Queen Grimhilde, the Wicked Queen, the Snow Queen, or the Old Hag. Relatively uninterested in the ruling of her Kingdom, her true desire is to be "The fairest in the land," which makes Snow White a target. When she changes into the "old hag", the Queen's physical appearance changes from that of a handsome queen to that of an ugly, elderly peddler, making her even less likable. Walt Disney described the Queen as "a mixture of Lady Macbeth and the Big Bad Wolf...her beauty is sinister, mature, and has plenty of curves..."

Charlize Theron won rave reviews for her underrated performance as the Queen in Snow White and the Huntsman in 2012.

Do you have any you would add to this list? Which villain is your favorite?

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