Film Theory: What is Disney’s Body Count?

Film Theory: What is Disney’s Body Count?


MatPat! Back for more, eh? Haha! I thought you’d had enough after all that princess nonsense. You’re right Mickey, I may have already proven that you’re a hypocrite cashing in on women’s empowerment. But this time I’m out to go one step further. I’m out to show the world that you’re not just a money-grubber, but also that you are one murderous mouse! But, we produce family-friendly movies MatPat! Totally. Brand. Friendly. Tell that to the victims in your movies. Oh, yeah, and how many people have I killed then, MatPat? Ten? Twenty? A few hundred? A few thousand!? Hahhahah! Haaahaaha Ahhaahaaha! How many, MatPat?! How many victims are there in my movies? Calculate that one if you’re so smart! I dare you! Hello Internet! Welcome to Film Theory! Call us Detective Pikachu, ’cause we’re solving the mysteries you didn’t ask about, and might not have actually wanted to know about. Like our episode on WALL-E, where I talked about the fact that everyone is a cannibal, or all those theories about child murder… Ah, those are good ones to catch up on with your hot cocoa during these lazy holidays. And hey! While everyone else is starting their holidays early, I’m still gung-ho about giving you a present! A present of Film Theory-specific merch being available for the first time ever, right now. Film Theory hoodies and socks! They’re warm, they are super high-quality, With embroidered patterns and patches into the fabric. and they’re available for delivery in time for Christmas, if you order in the next few days. We all know that theaters are way too cold! Show everyone in that theater that you’re proud to overanalyze what you’re seeing up on screen, and that you’re staying warm and snuggly in the process! Links are in all the places you would expect those links to be. Come on, this is YouTube. It is not your first time at the rodeo, you know how this works. But that’s not the only present I’m getting you for the holidays this year I’m also giving you the gift of ruined childhood classics. So strap in for a particularly stabby one today, and quite honestly over the next couple weeks, because I’m starting in on what’s turning out to be one of the most monumental feats of my entire Film Theory career. I am dissecting every major Disney movie. That means every Disney animated film that’s been in theaters since 1939, to determine once and for all which is the deadliest of all the Disney movies. And, if I can swing it, what is the overall total kill count for the entire Disney canon? And whoo-boy! It is so much harder than it looks. In case you haven’t noticed over the years, Disney movies, for all their cute talking animals, can get surprisingly dark, and the characters are pretty darn good at killing one another, and in some really creative ways, too. I mean Clayton in “Tarzan” hanging himself with a vine, “Oliver and Company”s electrocution by subway track, Some of this stuff is better than the slasher movies that you see in Dead Meat’s “Killcount” series. I mean sure, some Disney movies only managed light emotional scarring: “Mother!” “Mother, where are you?!” But when you start dealing with dragons, snow monsters and very sharp sewing equipment, [spooky sound] You start running into some serious collateral damage in a hurry, but just how much are we talking about? Well, it is way more than you’d think. Especially considering that this lineup is all G or PG rated, and intended for kids. But, looking across all of Disney’s history, across its sixty Disney animation studio theatrical releases, I’m aiming to find out where the mouse is not just killing it at the box office, but also literally killing everyone you see on screen. And if you think this is just a matter of a little counting here and there, you are sorely mistaken. There is so much more here than meets the eye, as evidenced by the fact that I thought this was just gonna be one straightforward episode and has now blown up into a three-episode mini saga through the depths of the Disney catalogue, covering everything from the ecology of the Pacific Islands, to the biology of the African Serengeti, to the ancient history of the Grecian Isles. Oh, yeah, we are going thorough with this one! I’m telling you now; by the end of this little miniseries, you are gonna be struggling to crawl out from under the heaps of animated bodies piled up on top of you! So, what is the deadliest Disney movie? Place your bets now, and see if you’re right at the end! I don’t know, you can make a little bet about it with your family, or whoever you feel comfortable talking about this topic with. Hey Mom and Dad, what do you think the deadliest Disney movie is? Bet you five bucks it’s “Meet the Robinsons”! Don’t do that, that would be a stupid, stupid bet. Spoiler alert: it is not “Meet the Robinsons”. Like I said, approaching the concept of the most deadly Disney movie is deceptively complicated. Take for instance; this rabbit, this rabbit, and this rabbit. They’re all the same animal across three different movies, but would you count them all in a death total if they died? One is the white rabbit from Alice in Wonderland, one is Thumper from Bambi, and one is just… guess like one of Snow White’s supportive woodland friends. They’re all alive, they’re all cute bunnies, but for the purposes of this theory, they don’t all count. And this is where we have to lay ourselves some ground rules. Should we count the rabbit who carries a pocket watch, because he’s wearing people clothes? What about the one who defends Bambi in his time of crisis? For this theory, I drew the line around sentience versus non sentience of the characters deaths. One thing that’s really obvious in Disney movies is that different species may or may not be sentient in any given movie. Usually humans or at least humanoids take the spotlight, but in movies like The Lion King, animals are the focus. They are clearly sentient, and most importantly for our purposes, they can speak. So let’s just set the rule: If animals can speak or if they act as intentionally driven characters like Maleficent’s pet raven, Diablo, then they count in our overall death total. We also can’t extrapolate beyond actions taken in the movie that we’re watching. Did the colony established by John Smith eventually go on to kill thousands of natives in the 1995 “Pocahontas”? Yeah, absolutely, but that doesn’t happen during the runtime of the movie, because we can’t have that punky white guy lose, right? So he gets a pass- at least in this context, history would beg to differ. And finally, we can only count kills that are actually caused by the characters in the movie. For example, in “Hercules”, we can’t count the actions taken off screen by Hades in his normal role as god of death, since he’s just presiding over the people who are dying as usual. Instead, we can only count the actions he takes directly against Hercules and the other gods. Also guys, no sequels. There is nothing less satisfying than coming out at the end of one of these really long analyses, only to find out that “Cinderella 3: A Twist In Time” actually kills the most people, because it creates this time paradox that threatens to destroy Cinderella, and her entire kingdom. That takes “Ralph Breaks the Internet” and “Rescuers Down Under” off the table. Yeah, just take my word for it guys. We’re all dodging a bullet by sticking only to the original in theater releases. We’re already covering fifty-eight other movies. These are long episodes! So maybe if you like this concept, we can do another tournament of the sequels, or Pixar movies or whatever, just later. I need a Disney break after this one. So with our handy-dandy rulebook established, we’re ready to face death head on! Or, at least in our Disney movies. Our first task is to carve up our fifty-eight contender movies into more manageable categories, to see who has a fighting chance, or should I say a dying chance of claiming the ultimate title: Disney’s deadliest movie. If you look across the spectrum, from 1939 to today, You’ll see that these movies fall into a few pretty distinct categories when it comes to death. You have no death movies, single or double death movies, low kill count movies, and then you have the really heavy hitters. There aren’t too many mid-level death movies in Disney’s canon, surprisingly. You’re either all-in on the murder, or you’re not and you’re questionably family-friendly. Our job is to figure out who’s in that last category, and then suss out who’s the biggest offender from the last eighty years of filmography? Starting at the very beginning, there is a whole slew of movies in the Disney canon, where the kill count is either zero, or just a really low number. Movies like “Dumbo”, “The Jungle Book”, “Sword in the Stone” and “101 Dalmatians” are all no kill movies, [cheering noise] as are “Robin Hood” and the feature films of “Winnie the Pooh”. In our no-kill films, the antagonist is usually thwarted in some comedic way, and then just kind of gives up their evil plot. Cruella Deville from 101 Dalmatians? Car wreck, and just gives up! Also while we’re talking about it, I’d be remiss if I didn’t play this gem of a line from “101 Dalmatians”. “Crazy woman driver!” It’s great. Old-school Disney was so inappropriate! Shere Khan from “The Jungle Book”: Also, fire on tail, just gives up! Or, quite frankly, there’s just not enough movie there to have time to kill anyone off! Man, a lot of these movies are a lot shorter than I remember. What’s that one supposed to mean you ask? Well, I’m talking about the Disney movies you probably haven’t seen or even heard about from Disney’s forgotten decade: the 1940s The reason it’s the Forgotten decade is probably because during the 1940s, a large portion of Disney’s writing and animation staff were drafted into World War II, sometimes leaving their stories half done or half animated, and making it necessary for whoever has left in the studio to cobble together a feature film from whatever was left. The movies that came out during this time kind of had plots, they had little to no dialogue and are sometimes even just repurposed pieces of animation that were left over from other movies while everyone else was out supporting the war effort. This is why so many of these no-kill movies are musical reviews featuring questionable live-action segments of Donald Duck sexually harassing women, and totally uncomfortable race relations. It’s interesting to note here too that the drafted Disney animators weren’t trading in their pens for guns. They weren’t out on the front lines fighting, they were actually still wielding their animator pencils. They were still developing films using the exact same skills they used at Disney, only now they were drafted into making propaganda films for the war effort. In fact, if you want a really fascinating watch, check out “Victory Through Air Power ” an official Disney release that outlines the history of air combat which in and of itself is fascinating, but also was one of their first major propaganda films meant for public consumption. I just didn’t include it in the overall kill count since, you know, it’s World War II. There were a lot of deaths but they were historically accurate deaths. It’s just a fun fact that I came across while I was researching for this episode, and I thought you might enjoy, but it also explains why you don’t see a lot of full character arcs, or deaths during the films from this time period. It also makes you look at propaganda films and Disney movies just a little bit differently. Probably merits a theory for another day. Regardless, for as short, boring, and culturally inappropriate as a lot of these might be, for this theory I’m digging up all the skeletons of the past, and need to know whether anyone dies in Disney features, like the “Three Caballeros” and “Fun and Fancy-Free”, and holy shattered childhood, some of these movies are shockingly brutal. While most of them do rack up zero kills, you have yourself some horrific surprises, like “Make Mine Music”, where a whale whose only goal in life is to sing at the opera, gets himself harpooned to death in a mistake, and takes four sailors down in the process. Also a wolf dies so that one has a total of six. Or you have “Melody Time”, where we see the story of Little Toot, who honestly should be renamed big body-count , after his pranks decimate a giant tanker and an entire city block. That’s a body count in the double, if not triple digits! Next, there’s also a slew of movies where only the head villain gets the axe, or just the head villain and like, one or two other people he kills during his first scene of the movie, just to show how evil of a villain he is. In these cases, they’ve already shown themselves to be a hundred percent irredeemable, so you don’t have to feel badly about their gruesome grotesque murder. “Snow White”? Only the Evil Queen dies. “Sleeping Beauty”? Maleficent and her underling raven Diablo. “Lady and the Tramp” only kills a rat, but remember it counts, because it’s a movie filled with sentient animals. “The Rescuers” have Medusa, who is just a recycled version of Cruella Deville, “The Great Mouse Detective” has Ratigan, an underling and two of his henchmen, and “Peter Pan” loses two pirates, surprisingly not Captain Hook. So yaay! Despite the fact that there are still like, dozens of other murderous pirates running around Neverland, and also killer mermaids, if you know the source material. Other notable mentions from this category, Snow White singing “With a smile and a song,” “All your cares fly away,” right after her attempted murder. Like I’ve heard of the power of positive feelings, but jeez, you might want to take a couple minutes and process what just happened to you, Snowy! Also, coming from the dishonorable mentions of this sixty movie spree, “Fantasia 2000” which only has one death: A shockingly handsy Jack-in-the-Box, but also features the single most absurd moment and all of Disney animated canon; a sequence of Donald Duck on board Noah’s Ark. Like two by two animals, and then – there’s just Donald Duck! Noah literally reaches out to Donald Duck and said “Come. Come aboard my biblical Ark.” What? That’s already after you’ve had scenes of flying whales and Penn & Teller’s cringy magic hand bit I mean, if you have never seen “Fantasia 2000”, this movie is like the hottest of hot messes. Last things to call out here real quick, because I know I’m gonna hear about them in the comments. “Tangled”: Yes, we see a huge dam break, but it’s in a secluded area of the wilderness, and everyone swept away by the water ultimately resurfaces later, so there’s only one death there. And that’s Mother Gothel at the end Also, “Wreck-It Ralph” forced me to think through my rules, since we see thousands of Cy-Bugs die, but remember, they’re not sentient, so they don’t count. Also, we see Sergeant Calhoun’s husband die in a flashback, but remember she is just video game code, meaning that her husband never actually existed as a program in the system, so only one death there, which is the big bad of Turbo, who died in a videogame that wasn’t his, and therefore he is just outright dead. No more “Continue?”s for him! Tallying up the Disney films with just a single-digit death toll gives us forty-one, which leaves us seventeen left to cover, but this is where things start to get difficult. It seems like it should be just an easy task to go through and count dead bodies, but in a number of these cases the analysis starts to get pretty complex, like “Frozen”. We see Anna and Elsa’s parents die in a shipwreck, but how many actually bit the dust in that scene? I mean, sure, we see a third-person welcoming them on board the ship, but clearly there needs to be more crew on here than just him. When you do the research, technically, there’s probably about thirty-three deaths total in “Frozen”, obviously the parents, and Marshmallow who does count, (because if Olaf dies, you would probably count him) So Marshmallow should also count, but also there’s the crew of 30 people that it would take to man a whole ship of that size, from that era, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. How about “Bambi”? How do you calculate how many woodland creatures die in that movie’s forest fire? How about how many Antelope deaths is Scar responsible for in “The Lion King”? That fulfills all our rules. How many Huns did Mulan kill? How many lives did Ursula destroy in her little mermaid typhoon at the end? The answers involve a mix of history, art, and computer science. So stick around because who makes it to the deadly finish line, and how we crown the winner is likely to be a bit surprising. The next episodes are already written and ready to go, but in the meantime, you should let me know which movie you think is gonna come out on top in the comments. The next part should be out in just a few days. I know, I know it’s a cliffhanger! You can murder me in the comments! It’ll just add one more to that kill count! Ha ha! I am slaying myself over here You see? Now you want me to stop! So until next time, remember! That’s just a theory, a Film Theory! Aaaand cut!

David Anderson

Related Posts

100 thoughts on “Film Theory: What is Disney’s Body Count?

  1. Aishani Rampal says:

    The fish don’t count because they don’t talk

  2. Meme Masters says:

    The lion king !!!

  3. Gabriel Rodriguez says:

    #dead_meat

  4. LJ & PEK says:

    Who watches dead meat
    Like if you do
    Comment if you haven't

  5. hyper fan says:

    Wait I did not know matpat whatches deadmeat

  6. Sszuper Szenator says:

    I'M guessing 300-400

  7. kewlavenger the gamer says:

    Mat pat:the deadliest Disney movie is dinosaur
    Infinity war:hold my beer

  8. jaxhon zzimmz says:

    star wars

  9. Jhonny Hernandez says:

    Objection 14:33 marshmallow didn’t die you would know if you saw past the credits

  10. Zayne Meowzner says:

    New theory matpat is really Sherlock Holmes

  11. Brian Pie says:

    You forgot how Disney brutally murdered a perfectly good Star Wars series (Star Wars)

  12. MALCOLM WILSON says:

    Maybe The Huncback of Nora Dum

  13. Hacker Ninja says:

    Its the LION KING

  14. summit striker says:

    Dinosaur

  15. Hugo Nava Kopp says:

    Atlantis

  16. Hugo Nava Kopp says:

    no, I think it is dinosaur

  17. H o n e y L a v y e n d e r says:

    Reply if you watched all of the episodes of this and picked the one that actually won

  18. not Jane and pikachu and more says:

    marshmallow doesn't die after the credits we see him in the castle putting on a crown.

  19. Death Card says:

    i now what the deadliest disney film is: star wars the force awakens. a few planets and the star killer base was destroyed,that means a few millions or billions died

  20. Case Case says:

    Think about coco

  21. Gage Gregonis says:

    Moana

  22. Isaiah Ramos says:

    MattPatt: What is Disney’s body count?

    Dead Meat: “Now this looks like a job for me”

  23. Joanne Stubbings says:

    I bet dinosaurs will win

  24. Foxy Arts says:

    0:50
    About 10 million.

  25. Matt. exe says:

    Red pants Disney: hehe I'm about to end this mans career

  26. Saiseila Tuliau says:

    Frozen1/2

  27. TryHard _Artist says:

    the intro legit scared me

  28. Aj Lastimosa says:

    Matpatt:What is the overall kill count in the entire Disney canon
    Dead Meat: Let's get to the numbers

  29. Gamingwith Kody says:

    i was born in the 1940s so I've actually seen all of these. 8:53

  30. spriggan lover says:

    Force awakens
    BILLIONS OF TRILLIONS I THINK

  31. Enoimee YT says:

    isn’t marshmallow alive? like at the end end.

  32. Jellybean says:

    snowhite voice cracks scene

  33. cameron sullivan says:

    Yes child murder i love it (not really its bad)

  34. Bubby Mac says:

    Dinosaur

  35. Vicon Property Management says:

    Marshmallows alive in the post credit scene sorry to ruin your fun matpat Mickey bete you on that one

  36. SpiderYoda123 says:

    Matpat: more better than the slasher on dead meat channel
    Dead meat: hold my beer

  37. Well Golly Gee says:

    Well golly gee mat pat really hates Mickey Mouse mabye he got traumatized at Disney but watching his favourite Disney charter get murdered, BUT that’s just a theory A WEIRD THEORY

  38. [FML]The dominator 15 says:

    Shpuld of gotten dead meat on board he does kill counts for a job

  39. C-Chizzle says:

    Would have been great if you could have featured dead meat

  40. C.c and Chara says:

    "How many people have I killed then matpat,
    Ten,
    Twenty,
    A few hundred,
    A few thousand,
    HAHAHAHHAHA,
    HOW MANY MATPAT, HOW MANY VICTEMS OUR IN MY MOVIES,
    I DARE U TO CALCULATE THAT!"

    -How this video was born..

  41. The Lego guy says:

    Deadliest is dinousaur

  42. Miki Marko says:

    Dont u dear disrespect me
    And my belived deadmeat

  43. memelord 9000 says:

    james a janiccce has left the chat

  44. Pendexion says:

    Insert deadmeat here

  45. NL Katgamers says:

    I just saw big hero 6 just pop up and cried because i had a flashback to tadashi hamada ;-;

  46. Bella Ramsey says:

    It would be infinity war. Since Disney owns marvel marvel is technically a Disney movie.

  47. Seeker of Nothingness says:

    So Marvel and Star Wars don't count

  48. Alan David Guevara says:

    the lion king

  49. Darth vader says:

    Dinosaur will win

  50. Daniel Cercanpes says:

    Dead Meat

  51. Kyran AFK says:

    Dinosaur?

  52. An Epic Alpaca says:

    14:30 marshmallows live… thought I'd mention

  53. Bread Cat says:

    lion

  54. Chasing4Lyfe says:

    14:30 umm… marshmallow doesn’t die. We see him again in Frozen Fever

  55. Ninja Dude says:

    I wanted you to talk about the princess and the frog

  56. Tower Games says:

    the lion king da high est boiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiisssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssss

  57. Simonne Larrea says:

    Dead eat: I counted all of the kills on the purge

    Mat pat: hold my diet coke

  58. Galaxy The dragon Lackowski says:

    Bambi

  59. Luna Loo says:

    In elementary school our music teacher put on a propaganda film in 2nd grade.

  60. Ice Forsaken says:

    Pinchio

  61. some slav says:

    why not just make 1 long ass episode….. ooohh i see you get more money from ads like that….
    eh maybe the editor just cant handle it

  62. Axel Petersson says:

    There is a post Credit scene that shows that marshmellow survived and now lives in the ice castel

  63. Silver is disappointed in your Recent decisions says:

    THATS WHY I LIKED MINNIE. MICKEY MOUSE IF THATS YOUR REAL NAME

  64. underscore gamer says:

    Hercules

  65. Daniel Blanchard says:

    Hercules

  66. Kanadai-Magyar Mapper says:

    The first rule is a bit ironyc from the persons mouth that said that the HTTYD's dragons are just beasts

  67. Troy Mulligan says:

    Dinosaur

  68. Kayla likes wolfs :D says:

    Hi.

  69. Ryandaboss man says:

    hoho matpat thank you i finally found a fellow dead meat fan

  70. Dad says:

    Why didn’t you collaborate with Dead Meat. I would’ve paid to see that.

  71. Dad says:

    You should do one of these every 10 ORIGINAL Disney movies. You could even collab with Dead Meat since you do know each other
    (See https://youtu.be/8DTPLYNguT0)

  72. James Blades says:

    A sailor by the name of Captain cook was eaten by Hawaiian natives way back in early centuries… That’s scary to think about… but he was an evil man so really.. he probably deserved it 😟

  73. Sofi Studios says:

    Mulan

  74. NHMO OYTIS says:

    If you’d included the 101 Dalmatians sequel where they visit Vietnam and get eaten the toll would be higher.

  75. Cbolds20 says:

    The villain in tangled doesn’t actually die if you watch the tangled cartoon series

  76. WiFi Fishy says:

    Lion 🦁 king 👑

  77. kaibirley gaming says:

    Lion king

  78. Turtle Master 24 says:

    If you watched the Frozen post credits scene, Marshmallow is CLEARLY ALIVE.

  79. Colton DeCourley Vlogs says:

    You should do a collaboration with dead meat if you haven’t already.

  80. teagan tomlinson says:

    I say Atlantis

  81. diamond fox says:

    Cool

  82. Wars Outside the Box Wrestling says:

    Dinosaur

  83. jackle 246 says:

    Jungle book fire on tail

  84. blaster blade says:

    Marshmallow actually survived. Check the end of the credits

  85. Ben Tsivian says:

    I’m guessing Hercules is winning

  86. Cade Griffiths says:

    marshmello does not die
    he comes back in frozen fever

  87. pandaclown 000 says:

    dead meat

  88. MrJomharp says:

    Disney released a new movie;

    Mickey and the dead people that I thought will never die movie volume 234 8. And yes

    Just yes

  89. MrJomharp says:

    So if anything can speak, example my phone. It can die or I can kill it

    Would it be a crime

  90. Dragoncat101 says:

    Dinosaurs

  91. why do i exist says:

    anything : *has lore/secrets*

    matpat : *hold my diet coke*

  92. Dorothy Nava says:

    I bet 50$ if its dinosaur

  93. Reginald Hanson says:

    Mickey: CALCULATE THAT MAT! I DARE YOU!
    Matpat: ALLOW ME TO CUT THROUGH THOSE WORDS!

  94. Nitro_Vauge says:

    lion king is the deadliest

  95. Hunter Wolden says:

    I bet Wall-E

  96. Minami Chan says:

    Umm marshmellow didnt die. Look at Frozen fevers ending

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *