This subject recently came up to me upon browsing a few negative comments on YouTube for Disney movie clips.
I can’t help but notice how hateful people can be towards characters that are meant to be the comic relief for whatever film they’re in, no matter its theme. I’ve ranted before how sick I am of people hating on Jar Jar Binks, but in this case I’m talking about comedic characters from animated Disney movies.
With autism, one might struggle recognizing humor and responding to it appropriately. But when I see this on the Internet about how people think the comic relief clashes with the mood of the film’s tone: I can’t help but think that I thought I was going to be the one with the lack of sense of humor. I tend to recognize and enjoy humor in movies but society does not for some reason.
For example a Disney movie could be about royalty and romance like Cinderella and you get comedy on the sidelines like the mice. It doesn’t interfere too much, we’re not talking Megan Fox and her fake tits distracting everyone to a point where all they care about is her.
In Disney movies, the comic relief is where it belongs but is there to appeal to other audiences. Just like romance is placed into an action film. At first I had a problem with that because most romances in action tend to be underdeveloped.
But there is nothing wrong with comic relief, in any film. Comedy doesn’t just belong strictly in a comedy focused film. So quit being so serious pyjaks! Here, I’m going to list three comedic Disney sidekicks that I think get unnecessary hate.
Timon and Pumbaa
Everyone should know this duo from The Lion King. If you think about comedic Disney characters, then these two will be the first that come in to mind. Timon the meerkat and his warthog friend Pumbaa are two carefree pals who go by the motto “Hakuna Matata” as everyone knows it means no worries. When Simba runs away from Pride Rock feeling responsible for his father’s death, he is found by Timon and Pumbaa who ward off some scavengers who think he is dead. Once they take Simba into their care, he learns to cut loose and live a carefree life with them, thus avoiding his then potential future responsibilities as the new king as Pride Rock. What were you guys expecting? Simba stays at Pride Rock and Scar makes him turn himself in until he finds out the truth about how Mufasa died? I love The Lion King, it’s not a Disney movie I watch a lot today, but it always has its funny moments that I still remember, and many of them come from Timon and Pumbaa, so in no way should we hate them. If there was no comedy in this movie, it wouldn’t be as enjoyable! I would quote an example from the movie but I would have a tough time choosing because there are so many good ones!
Hugo, Victor, and Laverne
The gargoyle trio from The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Hugo, Victor and Laverne keep Quasimodo company up in the Notre Dame’s bell tower. Some say they’re just a figment of Quasi’s imagination as they only come to life when Quasi is alone. If Frollo comes to visit, the three of them become still like stone again. They served their part in the final battle as if they had become real to everyone in it. So how is it that these guys are meant to annoy us? Like if I was the one living in the bell tower, I’d want imaginary friends to keep me company too. This movie is considered one of the darkest Disney movies because of the mature themes such as lust, damnation, sin, infanticide, and genocide. So just because it may be that, why is it bad to add some comic relief? As much as I loved seeing some dark stuff in this movie, the comedy is also what played its part that made me enjoy it. What’s to hate about these guys? They had me laughing throughout the whole movie whenever they did or said something silly. Just because Disney makes a darker animated movie doesn’t mean that everything should be super serious; some humorous sidekicks for Quasi doesn’t destroy the dark theme the film has. Some of the most memorable lines from this movie that I love to quote do not just come from Frollo, but also from these lovable gargoyles. Example: “Frollo’s nose is long and he wears a truss,” Hugo is the goofy one, Victor can sometimes be cowardly but still kind, and Laverne is a wise motherly figure to Quasi but she’s also fierce….especially when too many pigeons land on her!
One of the most recent comedic sidekicks in Disney is Olaf. The childhood snowman of Elsa and Anna unknowingly brought to life by Elsa. Olaf is arguably one of the characters that is easy to dislike because how popular Frozen has become. I can’t go to the drugstore without seeing Frozen kid’s makeup, meal sets with cups and plates (yes that exists,), kid’s tiaras, bath products, etc. The movie is basically over-marketed just like KISS. Then again the Pixar movie Cars goes through the same thing, and it’s STILL going on! Anyway, yeah that’s why people hate Olaf because of that. As cheesy and typical he can be with what he says, and the overproduction that the movie had, he still made me laugh; especially during his song when he comes up to the puddle and quickly pretends it’s not there. Yeah Olaf’s sense of humor seems kind of….typical, it’s hard to explain how it’s implemented in the movie, but regardless I still love Frozen. It’s not the greatest Disney movie out there but why hate Olaf? I mean he may seem a bit overrated, but not to a point where he annoys me. Olaf is just being…well…..Olaf. He’s still pretty fun-loving for the way he is so give him some slack. (and reel ‘er in!)
So those are the three Disney sidekicks that are often comic relief in their movies. We shouldn’t hate on them, they’re there for a reason. To me that reason is that Disney is considered an all ages franchise and this is how they appeal to the children. As an adult, I enjoy the dark themes that can be found in these movies, no matter how obvious they are. But, I love comedic sidekicks in these movies too. It adds a nice fun thing to the story without sugar-coating it too much. Comedic characters are not intended to clash with the film’s center plot and theme. If you want to attract a bigger audience, you have to appeal to multiple interests.
What are some other comedic Disney sidekicks that shouldn’t be hated? Drop me a line here or on Facebook and Twitter where I post links to these articles.