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Top 10 Bravest Animated Disney Characters

VO: Emily Brayton WRITTEN BY: Mersini Karkoulas
All it takes is a little courage. For this list, we’re taking at Disney heroes who proved themselves to be unselfish, truthful, and, above all else, brave. Our list includes “The Little Mermaid,” “Aladdin,” “Beauty and the Beast,” “Moana,” “Brave,” and more! Join MsMojo as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Bravest Animated Disney Characters.

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Top 10 Bravest Animated Disney Characters

All it takes is a little courage. Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Bravest Animated Disney Characters.

For this list, we’re taking at Disney heroes who proved themselves to be unselfish, truthful, and, above all else, brave.

#10: Ariel
“The Little Mermaid” (1989)

There’s a wonderful world under the sea, but for Ariel, who was stuck down there her entire life, the beauty and magic of Atlantica just wasn’t enough. Longing to walk the earth with feet, she embarks upon an adventure to follow her dream. Now, we don’t know about you, but if our dreams took us face to face with a giant tentacled witch who promised to grant our deepest wish, we’d probably think twice. But Ariel agreed to a deal with Ursula, and when things took a turn, had to fight her for survival. If that’s not brave, we don’t know what is.

#9: Pocahontas
“Pocahontas” (1995)

History is littered with the bloody and the heartbreaking, and “Pocahontas” is filled with both. When white settlers travel to America and decide to build their colony, they clash with the native inhabitants, Pocahontas among them. But this is a story about reconciling differences. It’s hard enough standing up to your family without having to convince them that the people invading your land are worth befriending. Pocahontas puts herself on the line for love and encourages everyone to stop fighting and to appreciate the differences between cultures, knowing that standing up for what’s right might kill her. That’s one hardcore lady.

#8: Marlin
“Finding Nemo” (2003)

The big blue can be scary, especially when you’re in Australian waters. There’re any number of things that can do you damage, and after Marlin witnesses his wife and unborn children die in a barracuda attack, it is no wonder that he doesn’t want to leave his safe anemone home. When divers take his last surviving child, Nemo, from the Great Barrier Reef, Marlin has to face two of his greatest fears at once: losing his son, and leaving the safety of the reef. What he learns along the way is how he can be a better father without compromising the safety of his son, which we think is the bravest thing of all.

#7: Merida
“Brave” (2012)

It’s all in the title for this one. One of our favorite redheads, Merida has to balance the expectations of her family with the choices she wants to make for her own life. Whether it’s stepping up with her bow and being ready to fire as she tries to win her own hand in marriage, or having to fight a bear and break a magic spell, Merida learns that true bravery lies in the compromise between standing up for yourself and appeasing the desires of your family.

#6: Aladdin
“Aladdin” (1992)

This street rat just wants a better life, where he doesn’t have to steal food just to live. With a bit of luck, he manages to sneak into the Sultan’s palace to woo the princess Jasmine, disguised as a foreign prince. If that’s not already a sign that he’s brave - albeit a bit crazy - then having to face down the evil Vizier to the Sultan who transforms into a giant snake is definitely enough to convince us. We guess that’s what happens when you’re willing to fight for your true love; you’re willing to be brave, even if that might get you killed.

#5: Hercules
“Hercules” (1997)

You might think that being the son of a god is an easy business, but it’s definitely not when you’re the child of Zeus, and Hades wants you dead. This is the reality for Hercules, who almost dies as a baby, and then fights his way from honest farm boy to Greek hero. We get tired just thinking about his accomplishments, but one of the most outstanding ones is pulling himself together to save Meg, even though it meant that he almost lost his own life in the process. But the bravest thing of all? Giving up the immortality he worked so hard to gain, just so he could spend the rest of his life with Meg.

#4: Belle
“Beauty and the Beast” (1991)

She’s the belle of our hearts, and she deserves that spot after everything she goes through. When her father seeks shelter in the Beast’s castle, the cursed prince traps Maurice there and refuses to release him – that is until Belle finds him and Beast agrees to take her as prisoner in exchange. While this might be enough bravery for a lifetime, Belle only manages to impress further when she stands up to the mean-spirited and jealous Gaston who attempts to kill Beast. She proves to us all that true bravery comes from the kindness in our hearts and that anyone can find that beauty if they dare to look for it.

#3: Officer Judy Hopps
“Zootopia” (2016)

It takes a lot of guts to follow your dream, especially when you’re a rabbit trying to become a police officer. Trying to differentiate herself from the rest of her species, Judy put everything she had into becoming a law enforcer, even though every single person, including her parents, and then her boss, doubted her ability. She’s an inspiration to us all, and reminds us that if something is important to us, we shouldn’t let it go just because other people think we will fail at it. If Judy can accomplish her dream, then we should be able to too.

#2: Moana
“Moana” (2016)

For Moana, living on a Polynesian island, life is hard. She longingly looks towards the sea, but is forbidden to go beyond the reef, until fate one day decides that she must set sail and heal her island home of the poison that consumes it. It takes a whole lot of brave to defy your parents to do what’s right, and even more bravery to face down a volcanic demon who wants to kill you. Moana persists anyway, and when she returns the heart of Te Fiti, restores her home to health. But the best part? Her bravery allowed her people to embrace their fear of the sea, and they became a sea faring peoples.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are some honorable mentions:

“Frozen” (2013)

“The Princess and the Frog” (2009)

“Tangled” (2010)

“A Bug’s Life” (1998)

“The Lion King” (1994)

#1: Fa Mulan
“Mulan” (1998)

Ancient China could be a brutal place. With the Huns bearing down on them, Mulan decides that she must save her father from conscription. She disguises herself as a man and joins the army instead. We think joining the army in disguise is brave enough in itself, but Mulan proves that you can be even more courageous, when, expelled from the army, she continues to follow them anyway, determined to save her country from the Hun invaders. When it comes down to it, she saves the day and all of China. We almost can’t believe that Mulan is based on a real Chinese legend!

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