On to the next bracket to determine the Bradley family’s top Disney Antagonist. The toughest matchup out of the gate for me comes between Dr. Facilier and the Sheriff of Nottingham, but Facilier’s voodoo might win out over the Sheriff’s greed. Plus my Disney-bounding Dr. Facilier Halloween outfit earns him a special place in my heart. I would think that the hyenas, Ursula, Maleficent, King Candy/Turbo and the Horned King all have a decent shot at getting unanimous victories in this first round. This bracket also contains the best matchup I’ve seen so far. Not in terms of popularity, but in terms of type of character. Gaston and Clayton are both big, dumb hunters, though Gaston should make short work of his challenger.
Business is not good for Monsters, Inc. Both Henry J. Waternoose and Randall Boggs, the conniving monsters behind the scream machine scandal, were ousted in the first round. Not that hard to imagine given their opponents—the ugly stepsisters and Queen of Hearts, respectively. (I was, however, hoping for a Waternoose vs Ursula matchup in the next round, for an Octopus vs Crab monster battle). Not many surprises overall though, but Prince John losing to Mother Gothel and Smee just narrowly losing to Stinky Pete are probably the results I’m least pleased about. As expected Ursula, Scar and Gaston advanced to the second round with unanimous ease. Jafar would have done the same except for one outlier vote going for Pain and Panic (decent support antagonists), which proves that the 90s Disney Renaissance was rife with exceptional villainy.
It’s a jungle out there, but Bellwether has proven time and again that she can handle the beasts that challenge her. After knocking off Shere Khan in the first round (travesty), she takes down King Louie in the next. But now she’s up against the Evil Queen, Disney’s original bad *itch (what, that’s supposed to say witch). That quadrant consists of some of Disney’s top bad boss ladies (Ursula and Queen of Hearts in the other matchup). The match up I have been fearing now comes between Maleficent and Jafar, but my guess is Maleficent pulls it out with the nieces’ support. Surprise victories in the previous round include Stinky Peter beating Bowler Hat Guy, but both of my brothers’ families have not seen Meet the Robinsons, so that victory is tainted; and then my sister broke a tie in Hans’ favor over Tamatoa, because the phony paramour’s evilness outweighed the crab’s cool factor in her opinion. My guy Dr. Facilier was the only antagonist to advance unanimously in this round though six other victors had blow out wins with 10 or more votes.
Down to the Elite Eight and I still have seven characters going in my personal bracket! Not bad. Sadly, Jafar will go no Jafar-ther (ba dum tss) so my next round won’t be as good. If there’s one thing this Antagonist bracket shows, it’s that the classic characters are performing much better against the modern day characters. I guess there haven’t been as many memorable antagonists in the past two decades for Disney. No real upsets for me this time around, but I was biting my nails when it looked like Hades might lose to Cruella. Surprisingly, my older brother and his eldest daughter pulled for the Lord of the Underworld and gave him the win. Conversely, they both voted in favor of Bellwether and made her matchup with the Evil Queen a lot closer than expected. My oldest brother’s family unanimously supported Syndrome and gave him the one-point edge over Captain Hook.
Ursula sashays into the Final Four in the round’s biggest upset after she knocks off Disney’s original big bad. The sea witch advances with the support of my older brother and his daughter’s two points late in the voting process to beat the Evil Queen. Now, it’s a giant octopus vs a giant dragon! Maleficent is doing something no other classic Disney character (pre-1990s) has managed to do: advance to the semifinals with a shot at the Championships. The other side of the bracket should be a nail-biter between the lion and god who both attempted nepoticide (killing ones nephew, look it up!). Hades coasted past Gaston, but Scar was in a tight race with Syndrome until the final tally. So be prepared, cause that match up is definitely going to be heated.
The planets have aligned ever so nicely, and I finally won a bracket! Hades, my personal pick to win, triumphs in two tightly contested match-ups in the finals (my bracket score was a nice 145!). But enough about me, this is about the family, and our overall, agreed-upon choice to crown Hades Disney’s top Antagonist, a big accomplishment given how many other strong contenders there were. Maleficent (or as my father kept calling her “Magnificent”) easily dispatched Ursula in her first match up, while Scar put up a good fight against Hades in the battle of the wannabe nephew killers. In a fitting conclusion, and Hades’ favorite part of the game (“Sudden Death”), Hades and Maleficent came down to a 6-6 tie with the winning seventh vote going in Hades’ favor. The big deciding factor here comes from my oldest brother (a big Maleficent fan)’s middle child bucking their family’s trend of supporting Maleficent. And how Hades will rule all!