Disney bear discovers bad guy hangout, uncovers mystery behind villains’ existence.
by Blake Taylor
The hero wants something, the villain sets out to stop the hero, the hero defeats the villain, and everyone lives happily ever after. More or less, this is what every Disney film consists of. But there’s a glitch in the formula. The villain is defeated—most of the time seemingly dead—but does not disappear. Instead, he or she reemerges from who knows where and continues to haunt the innocent Disney good guys on a daily basis in the Parks. Prince Phillip stabbed Maleficent, yet she comes back to crash Mickey’s castle party. Gaston fell to his doom off of Beast Castle, but here is his romping all over New Fantasyland with not so much as a scratch on his face. How can this be? If these bad guys ultimately die in their movies, how it is possible that they still exist in the Disney Parks as if nothing ever happened? We sent WDW Radio reporter Duffy the Disney Bear undercover on a very special assignment to get the top-secret scoop on the villains’ mystery.
Duffy donned his trench coat and reporter hat (a la Kermit the Frog style) and stealthily followed Gaston just after nightfall at the end of one of New Fantasyland’s dress rehearsals. Duffy’s small teddy-bear size allowed him to be completely unnoticed as he quietly paced several feet behind the man who uses antlers in all of his decorating.
Thanks to a tape recorder (yes, they still exist) kept beneath Duffy’s coat, WDW Radio has a complete transcript of the bear’s findings as he followed Gaston north of the Magic Kingdom. We’ll spare you the ten minutes of Gaston saying things to himself like, “No one greets families as they come into multi-million-dollar theme park expansions like Gaston.” Instead, we’ll skip directly to 23 minutes and 19 seconds into the tape, when Gaston and Duffy arrived approximately 300 yards northeast of where most of the Park’s fireworks are shot, deep in the woods.
“No one sells pork shanks like—”
“Quiet, you fool! Someone might hear you.”
[Note: WDW Radio has identified this second voice as the Evil Queen from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.]
“Woah! I didn’t see you there, you frightened me. No one gets frightened like Gas—”
“Yes, yes, we know. I was waiting for you. The others said you needed assistance with transporting. Turns out you don’t have much brawn in that brutish body of yours.”
“Well, you know, madam, I am roughly the size of a barge. After all, no one wolfs down five dozen eggs every morning to help them get large like—”
“Enough of this! Hurry along, you know we don’t have much time.”
“All right, fine. Where is it?”
“Right over here.”
[There is the sound of walking as the two villains approach a tree and Duffy inches closer.]
“My dear servant, come from the farthest space. Through wind and darkness I summon thee—speak! Let me see thy face.”
“Ah. You see, that’s the part I was missing. I thought you were supposed to say, ‘With grits and sausage put food in my face.’ But this makes much more sense.”
“Quiet! He’s coming. Look into the glass, there he is.”
[At this point in the transcript, Duffy’s recordings indicate a third voice. The track is scratchy, though WDW Radio informants suspect that the voice belongs to the Magic Mirror. Ellipses indicate where the tape recording became indecipherable.]
“Good evening, your majesty. Many villains I see, though …. grant you passage …. lair shrouded in secrecy. Tonight we summon …. to transport the Evil Queen and Gaston …. lest there be any intruders before dawn breaks. There, your majesty. It is ready now.”
That is where the transcript ends, though only because a blinding, eerie flash of radiant green light startled Duffy so much that he was knocked to the ground and his recorder was busted. Thankfully, the tape survived, and Duffy reports that there was nothing to take note of after the incident, other than that a bare mirror, with no face, was attached to the tree that the Queen and Gaston had just been standing around, though both villains were no longer there.
This investigation proved immensely successful and was key to Duffy’s mission; he now knew that a villain hideout did indeed exist just as he suspected. Rather than attempt to follow Gaston a second time and put the entire assignment in dangerous jeopardy, Duffy next employed another tactic: interviewing the villains themselves. Cleverly strategizing, Duffy chose interviewees who he knew wouldn’t blow his cover, nor even realize they were being used as the downfall of decades’ worth of villainous treachery: the Tremaine sisters.
A simple gesture from Duffy—a slight wave of his paw—as he approached Anastasia and Drizella in the Fantasyland courtyard was all it took. Nothing more than that small wave was enough to send the two ditzy bullies on a rant more insightful than WDW Radio could have ever bargained for. Once again, Duffy recorded the conversation (this time on his snazzy new digital recorder).
“Oh hey there, bear. I’m Anastasia. I’m kind of a big deal, being a villain and all.”
“Oh, please, you? A villain? Give me a break. If we’re villains, then that must make Spider-Man a Disney character. Yeah, right.”
“Drizella, I am to a villain!”
“No, you’re not!”
“I am to! I get to go to Mr. Mirror every night. You hear that, bear? I get to go to Mr. Mirror every single night!”
[At this point, Duffy raised his eyebrows to indicate he didn’t know what she was talking about and was curious in learning more.]
“Me and Drizella and Mother and all the other bad guys get to—”
“You mean have to.”
“It doesn’t make any difference, Drizella! We go inside Mr. Mirror with all the other bad guys because our enemies have had their happily-ever-afters. Once the happily-ever-after is in place, we can’t exist anymore in the real world. We have to live inside the Villain Domain with all the others, but we get 7 hours of freedom into the outside world every day, as long as we make it back to the Mirror in time. If we didn’t have to do that, we wouldn’t be villains, but since we DO, that makes us one of them. Thank you very much, DRIZELLA.”
“Hmmph. Well at least I don’t face-plant every time I try to dive in the Mirror.”
“DRIZELLA, I HATE YOU!”
[At this point, Lady Tremaine approached. Duffy was very thankful she had not been around before to stop her daughters from revealing the villains’ secret.]
“Girls, girls! Please. Compose yourself. What is all this squabbling about?”
“Mother, Drizella says we’re not villains. How could she say that! Make her take it back! Make her, Mother!”
“I will not take it back, Anastasia! Mother, tell Anastasia to shut her face!”
“GIRLS! Yes, you are both villains. However, seeing as Cinderella is living pretty as a pumpkin in that castle over there and you are out here making fools of yourselves to prove your worth to a teddy bear, I’d say you’re both doing a rather unimpressive job.”
And now we know we can get the Tremaines to say anything we bloody well want just with a wave of a paw and a raise of an eyebrow. Everyone at WDW Radio sincerely congratulates Duffy on uncovering such an insightful revelation into the question that has baffled heroes and Guests alike for decades. His girlfriend, Shellie May, currently living in Tokyo, says she’s very proud of him.
Blake is a college student focusing on Creative Writing and Media Studies. He enjoys making his family of six watch the parade on Main Street and then sprint to Frontierland in time to see it again. You can follow Blake’s random Disney ramblings on Twitter at @blakeonline, or at BlakeOnline.com.