It makes sense that one of Disney’s best animated movies has one of their best villains. The Lion King‘s Scar simply oozes evil, helped by the amazing vocals of Jeremy Irons. In a Shakespearian tale of betrayal, power and hula, Scar is the mastermind behind every bad thing that happens in the movie. Having the magnificent Mufasa as one’s brother simply has to be frustrating but Scar takes that frustration to a whole new level by planning the murder of his brother and nephew in order to take the throne. On top of everything, he has my favorite villain song. “Be Prepared” is, simply put, to die for.
So let’s see why Scar is so great!
Everything Behind the Scenes
If you ask me what my favorite voice performances of all time are, Jeremy Irons’s Scar is definitely up there. His voice is simply perfect for the character and it’s so much fun hearing him insult the hyenas, manipulate Simba and complain about the It’s A Small World song. Not only is his voice exquisitely evil, his design is amazing. Just look at him:
His voice and look are complemented by the fantastic script, who not only gives him dialogues perfect for his voice but makes him a complex character. As you’ve probably noticed from my last articles, I’m a big fan of the bad guys’s own flaws causing their downfall. For example, if you’re a manipulating liar who betrays everyone, you’ll probably end up betraying the people (or hyenas) that support you and angering them.
The Root of All Evil
Something a good villain always has is the knowledge of how to exploit the hero’s weaknesses. Scar not only knows that Simba is terrified of being blamed for Mufasa’s death, he CAUSED that fear. It’s Scar who 1) Murders Mufasa, 2) Makes Simba feel responsible, 3) Tells him to go and never come back and 4) Tries to get him killed. So he’s not a good lion, generally speaking. But he is a fantastic antagonist. He basically creates Simba’s fear of responsibility and keeps exploiting it. For a lion that has been avoiding his past the whole movie, it must be really hard to face the one other soul who knows one’s deepest darkest secret. That’s the main reason Scar is such a fantastic villain.
So yeah, not only does Scar look like the least trustable individual ever, he also has the voice of Hans Gruber and he’s the main influence in everything bad that happens to Simba (Well, Timon and Pumbaa advocating to ignore responsibility doesn’t help at all). Most of us agree The Lion King is one of the finest movies ever made by Disney. And while everything in the movie just mixes perfectly, Scar is definitely one of the best and most important ingredients.
Pablo Ruiz is a Colombian filmmaker. Movies like Toy Story, The Lion King and Aladdin made him fall in love with the art form and now he hopes to dedicate his life to telling stories, hopefully for Pixar (if they go back to doing original films).
Some of his ambitions are making a movie as emotionally impacting as Toy Story 3, meeting JK Rowling, and petting a million dogs. Follow him on Twitter (@PabloRV7).