10 Disney Sidekicks Who Are Better Than Their Heroes

Some of the most beloved Disney characters in their cavalcade of animated stars are shockingly the comic relief characters playing second fiddle to one of the main players. Not that there’s anything wrong with being a sidekick, but there is something worth noting when they are more popular than their leading counterpart.

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Funny best friends never go out of style, and Disney has proved that time and time again. Although the studio plays host to a number of heroes and heroines like Aladdin, Simba, and Belle, sometimes their friends are the ones that truly step up to the plate.

10 Thumper (Bambi)

To be entirely and brutally honest, is there anything anyone remembers Bambi for other than just being a cute, wide-eyed deer who lost his mom? The image of a rabbit happily bouncing his foot repeatedly is much more associated with the film than its main star.

Thumper is one of the most adorable creations ever spawned by the studio, so adorable in fact he’s one of the only characters from Bambi to even get a parks appearance.

9 Jiminy Cricket (Pinocchio)

Jiminy Cricket is so much more popular than his wooden-headed costar that he has not one but two featured film appearances. That’s not even counting his frequent roles in Disney TV shows long after Pinocchio premiered.

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Truth be told, Jiminy Cricket is more quotable, marketable, and definitely more memorable. If it wasn’t for Pinoke’s famous nose, Jiminy would be the star of the show. After all, the movie is almost entirely told from his point of view.

8 Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather (Sleeping Beauty)

Sleeping Beauty is more focused on its side characters than it is its leads. Everyone essentially knows it for being the film that gave viewers Maleficent, but there is something to be said about the Three Good Fairies.

Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather aren’t the typical Fairy Godmothers, but they definitely have more personality than the one scene in Cinderella. Make it pink, make it blue, or even green, these three ladies definitely have a large part to play.

7 The Seven Dwarves (Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs)

Snow might get top billing, but her seven bearded companions are the true stars of the show. It wouldn’t be wrong to go further and say they are actually the heroes of the film who come riding to the princess’s rescue. Where was the prince while she was chomping on that poisoned apple anyway?

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Doc, Grumpy, Dopey, and all the rest are much more memorable than Snow White could hope to be. Fairest of them all or not, it’s the dwarves that give the movie personality.

6 Kronk (The Emperor’s New Groove)

Kronk and Yzma from The Emperor's New Groove

Kronk and Yzma are a match made in comedy heaven and while she might be the villain, it would be a crime not to give a spot to her muscle-bound meathead. Kronk might be working on the wrong side for a while, but his heart’s in the right place.

Perhaps one of the most under-appreciated characters on the list, Kronk’s lovable charm and cheerful disposition earn him some high marks in the big book of Disney.

5 Sebastian (The Little Mermaid)

Some sidekicks are useful, some are loyal, and then there are those that just serve to be a living slapstick. Sebastian is a reluctant representative of that latter category.

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The cantankerous crustacean is a pompous and proud member of King Triton’s court who serves as Ariel’s put-upon protector. Although he’s billed as the king’s court composer, he’s mainly used to be the recipient of the film’s physical comedy. Not that viewers are complaining.

4 Dodger (Oliver and Company)

Disney, you have a dog voiced by Billy Joel. Why on earth is he the sidekick? Oliver really isn’t that interesting. Apart from being a ball of cuteness with big bright eyes, he really doesn’t contribute much to the plot.

Dodger, however, is arguably the film’s biggest name, the fan-favorite character, and sings the best song on the entire soundtrack. Why doesn’t he have his own movie? It would have definitely helped the box office.

3 Mushu (Mulan)

Mulan is great, easily one of the most beloved and heroic of the Disney Princess lineup. That being said, Mushu is unapologetically the most memorable character from the movie.

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Eddie Murphy’s performance is easily one of the main reasons why the character became so popular, but pair that with his fluid movements, his wild expressions, and comedic timing and it’s a recipe for a near-perfect Disney sidekick.

2 Baymax (Big Hero 6)

Baymax, though soft-spoken and often the most silent member of Big Hero 6, is unarguably the star of the film. When someone hears the title “Big Hero 6,” which character instantly comes to mind?

Rarely is it Hiro Hamada, that’s for sure. With his caring demeanor, passive-yet-quirky delivery, and soft, snuggly exterior wrapped up in bright red power armor, is it any wonder he became the face of the flick?

1 The Genie (Aladdin)

Genie at the ending

Is there anyone on the face of the earth who doesn’t know Robin Williams’s Genie? Like so many previously mentioned characters, he’s the reason viewers watch Disney’s original Aladdin. Williams is absolutely at his best in this character, so much so that it’s hard to tell if it’s an act or not.

From his over-the-top, reality-bending antics to his various impressions, jokes, and pop-culture references, viewers truly never had a friend like him.

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Updated: November 20, 2020 — 5:30 pm

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