With Father’s Day right around the corner, I thought we’d count down the top 10 Disney dads (in my opinion). This is the first year I get to celebrate my husband’s new role as a father, and the second year I don’t have my own dad to celebrate with. So in honor of all dads, old and new, here are 10 shining examples of fatherhood.
10. The Great Prince, Bambi
Bambi’s dad is a little hands-off in the beginning, but makes up for lost time by appearing as soon as Bambi’s mom is killed, leading Bambi through the next phase of his life.
9. King Triton, The Little Mermaid
He might begin on the wrong flipper, but he makes amends quite well. It certainly doesn’t hurt that he shows how parents feel– willing to sacrifice his life for his child, yet also having a hard time letting her grow up. Oh, parent struggles.
8. Maurice, Beauty and the Beast
Maurice shows Belle how great it is to be odd. He also puts his own life at risk, nearly dying in his valiant efforts to save her.
7. Chief Powhattan, Pocahontas
He might start off a bit pushy, but he makes up for it when he admits Pocahontas is right and doesn’t wrongfully kill someone. It takes a big man to admit when he’s wrong, especially publicly. He also still speaks of his deceased wife, offering comfort and encouragement to Pocahontas. He never second-guesses his role as a single father or doubts his ability to handle any situation with his daughter on his own. He’s a pillar of strength.
6. James, The Princess and the Frog
Sweet little Tiana learned a lot from her wise daddy– that you have to work for your dreams to come true. He also instilled a strong work ethic in her, an invaluable character trait. He also showed us how you have to be strong for your kids. He may have been weary when he got home from work, but she certainly never knew it. Inspirational.
5. Fa Zhou, Mulan
Milan’s dad let her spirit develop on its own, despite the fact that it contradicted their culture. He also showed that he loved her for who she was, not who society expected her to be.
King Fergus stood up for his daughter while supporting his wife, which is no easy task. He also fought for his family, literally and figuratively.
3. Marlin, Finding Nemo
The little clown fish that could, Marlin overcame his tragic last and fear to rescue his son. He was honest with himself and showed a fierceness we never knew a clown fish could have.
2. Pongo, 101 Dalmatians
Pongo sets a great standard– he fixes up his owner with a lovely lady, meets his own love in the process, and protects his pack from the evil Cruella. He owns up to his mistakes (watching his language), supports Mom’s decisions, and, oh yes, adopts 85 homeless pups. Whoa– what a dad!
1. Mufasa, The Lion King
Surely you aren’t surprised Mufasa is my top choice?! He admits his fear, leads his family, and comes back from the dead to steer his son back onto the right course. He’s strong, wise and honest.
Of course, a few Disney dads didn’t quite make my list. So here are some honorable mentions in pictures (sorry for any repeats in the collages!)
Now that I’ve given you my list, let me know which Disney dad is your favorite in the comments below. My dad was most like Fa Zhou– he loved my sister and me just as we are. Which Disney dad is your dad closest to, personality-wise?
Happy Father’s Day!