It’s Father’s Day today here in the UK and as I wrote a lovely post about Disney Mums for Mother’s Day, I knew I had to honour the Disney Dads, too. When you first think of Disney films parents don’t really spring to mind, so I’ve decided to search some of my favourite films to find the dads, or father figures in some cases, we should all aspire to be. Without further ado, here are my top 5 Disney dads in descending order!
- Pongo – 101 Dalmatians:
Pongo is the father to our spotty furry friends, who get stolen by the evil Cruella de Vil. Throughout the film he stops at nothing to find his children, searching the country and calling all dogs for help. Not only is Pongo reunited with his own puppies, he takes on more rescued Dalmatians too, becoming a father figure to 101 in total! Perdita made it to my Top 5 Disney Mums, so there’s no doubt Pongo should feature, too.
- Maurice – Beauty and the Beast:
Maurice is one of my favourite Disney Dads, ever. Although he’s often forgotten about, he endlessly loves his ‘odd’ daughter, as the towns people would describe her. Maurice encourages Belle’s creativity and uniqueness, helping her to find herself and become the loving person we see in Beauty and the Beast. He even tries to persuade her to leave him for the Beast, but of course he’s taught her better than that and she sacrifices herself. But Maurice doesn’t stop there. He does everything he can to help rescue Belle, resulting in him being labelled as ‘crazy’. Maurice is possibly the most dedicated dad in Disney history.
- Mufasa – The Lion King:
When we think of Disney Dad’s we automatically think of Mufasa. King of the land, not only is he a father to his people, but he’s a wonderful dad to Simba. In the short time we get to witness his parenting skills, we see Mufasa teach his son the skills to become the next King, as well as messing around stalking Zazu. It is clear that Mufasa’s love for Simba is endless. He literally sacrifices himself to save Simba’s life, and returns in the afterlife to guide him on his difficult journey. Mufasa is definitely a father figure we would like to mould ourselves on.
- Carl Fredricksen – Up:
Carl Fredricksen, the grumpy old man who ties balloons to his house to fulfill his late wife’s dream, is probably in everyone’s top Disney characters, but is overlooked as a dad. Not being a father himself, as revealed by the heartbreaking sequence, he seems to hate kids and everyone for that matter. Until he meets Russell. Although he takes him in unwillingly, it is clear that Carl cannot help but grow to love Russell. He welcomes him and uses his Wilderness Explorer skills, lets Russell keep Kevin, and grows to love him as his own. Their journey is not easy, but Carl does everything he can to rescue Russell and save the day. But is love doesn’t stop there. Carl Fredricksen really steps up to the father role when they return home, joining Russell in his Wilderness Explorer ceremony and standing in as his male role model. Carl Fredricksen is easily one of the best Disney Dads.
- Marlin – Finding Nemo:
Marlin becomes a single parent to one fishy son at the beginning of the film when his wife and eggs are attacked by a shark. It’s understandable that he becomes the overprotective parent Nemo hates, driving him to ‘touch the butt’ in defiance. However, when Nemo is kidnapped, nervous Merlin stops at nothing to be reunited with his son. He travels across the ocean, dabbles with dangerous sharks, meets a turtle and tackles the current, arriving at the East Australian Coast to rescue his son. His actions are courageous and selfless, even surprising Nemo. His journey with Dory isn’t easy, but his devotion is admirable. By the end of the film, Marlin is more open as a parent, trusting Nemo’s own judgement and allowing him some freedom. Whilst he isn’t always the perfect parent (but let’s face it, who is?), he is the most loving Disney Dad of all.
Of course there are many other Disney Dads I could have included. From the devoted humans to our loving furry friends, Disney has created many model dads, and of course honourable father figures who step up to the task when no one else does. I hope you loved reading about my favourite Disney father figures. Who would be your top Disney Dad?
Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there!